A casino is a place where people gamble for money, typically at tables and slot machines. They can also be found at racetracks and in truck stops, bars, grocery stores, and other small businesses.
Gambling has become a global phenomenon, with hundreds of thousands of people visiting casinos each day. The games of chance played on table or slot machines in these facilities bring in billions of dollars each year for the companies, corporations, investors, and Native American tribes that own and operate them.
The History of Casinos
While many people associate gambling with a bad reputation, in fact it is one of the most profitable industries in the world. In fact, casinos are often the biggest source of tax revenue in many states.
In the United States, casinos are primarily located in Las Vegas and Atlantic City. However, there are also floating casinos that operate on boats and barges along rivers and waterways.
The most famous casino in the world is Monte-Carlo. It opened in 1863 and has long been a major source of income for the principality of Monaco.
It is one of the largest and most extravagantly furnished in the world, drawing affluent Europeans to sample its red-and-gold poker rooms and plethora of blackjack and roulette tables.
For years a landmark on the Las Vegas skyline, the MGM Grand is a storied gambling den, attracting hardened dollar spinners and curious newbies alike.
This casino is a pioneer among its kind, with more than 1000 slot machines and 39 game tables. It also houses a luxury resort and a hockey centre; if you’re in the mood to bet a few coins on boxing, martial arts, soccer or American football, there is plenty of action to keep you entertained at this massive gambling den.
The Dark Side of Casinos
With so much money flowing into casinos, it’s no surprise that mobsters started to get involved. They didn’t just provide the bankroll, though; they took sole or part ownership of some casinos and even influenced the outcomes of games with the threat of violence to casino personnel. Federal crackdowns and the possibility of losing a gaming license at even the faintest hint of Mafia involvement meant that legitimate casino businesses were soon able to run their establishments without allowing mobsters to influence the outcome of their games.
The Most Decadent Gambling Dens
As you can imagine, a casino isn’t just about the games of chance, it’s about the experience as well. Some of the most decadent gambling dens in the world have a wealth of other amenities, ranging from luxurious hotels to swimming pools and spas.
They are designed around noise, light and excitement to create a stimulating environment for their guests. They are often decorated in lavish fashion and are surrounded by entertainment, such as musical shows and lighted fountains.
Some of the most opulent casinos in the world are situated in glamorous destinations, such as the casino in Baden-Baden, Germany, where royals and aristocrats used to flock to, but now they’re more open to visitors from all walks of life.