The world’s finest casinos have built a reputation based on luxury, and from their opulent décor and enviable selection of table and slot games to impeccable, five-star service, there is plenty that goes into maintaining their status.
Some of our favourite casinos have been around for many years, and from Venice’s Casino di Venezia, which first flung open its doors all the way back in 1638, to the prestigious Casino di Monte Carlo in Monaco, which has been going strong since 1863, it’s often their lengthy history that adds an extra layer of charm.
But nevertheless, renovations and revamps are sometimes necessary to keep them in optimum condition, and as competition increases, it’s more important for casinos to keep giving customers what they want.
As the battle to provide the most lavish gaming experience possible intensifies, more casinos than ever are splurging to bring themselves up to date. We asked the experts at online casino site Slotxo to spill the tea on the most expensive casino renovations ever – and these are some of the frontrunners.
The Sands Cotai Central, Las Vegas and Macau – $1.1 billion
The Sands tops the leader board when it comes to the most extravagant casino upgrades in the world, with a staggering $1.1 billion due to be invested across its properties in both Las Vegas and Macau over the next few years. The mammoth spend will focus on redeveloping its resorts into luxurious London-themed casino and hotel destinations known as ‘The Londoner’ – and we can’t wait to see the results.
The Las Vegas Palms Casino Resort, Las Vegas – $620 million
This iconic casino resort has long been viewed as one of the most opulent in Sin City, but with new and modern competitors continuing to pop up along the strip seemingly by the day, the decision was taken in 2019 to give it a dramatic and pricey makeover to bring it back in line with other offerings of a similar calibre.
With the likes of Cesar’s, the Bellagio and Wynn snapping at its heels, Palms splashed out an eye-watering $620 million on the update, which included a selection of new bars, a premier steakhouse, 150 pieces of contemporary artwork by big names such as Damien Hirst and, of course, an all-new, redesigned casino floor. Add to that a brand new concert theatre and a collection of new table and slot games, and suffice it to say that it was money well spent, keeping Palms amongst the top choice amongst high-rollers and amateur gamblers alike in Vegas.
Encore at Wynn Macau, Macau – $650 million
In 2010, the Wynn Macau underwent a dramatic expansion project that saw a brand-new second tower added to the development. Known as ‘Encore’, it is identical inside to the Encore at Wynn Las Vegas, and comprises 410 lavish suites and an additional 41 opulent Grand Salon suites for those really looking to indulge themselves with a luxury casino break.
It’s perhaps unsurprising to find that one of the most expensive renovation projects is located in Macau – a destination that is known for its extravagant establishments and that has, in recent years, overtaken Las Vegas in the casino revenue stakes. In 2020, the casino’s 41 casinos grossed an impressive £7.57 billion, which was actually a 79 per cent decrease year on year due to the ongoing global pandemic. As life returns to normal, we can expect to see those numbers return to normal and then some – with this special administrative region of China topping the biggest spenders on new casino developments and improvements worldwide.
The Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, Minnesota
Just three years ago, the plush Mystic Lake Casino Hotel in Minnesota was given an overhaul to the tune of $90 million. The upgrade, which took a total of two years to complete, included a revamp of the casino floor, breathing new life into the outdated space with opulent marble pathways and a selection of new table games and slot machines, and attracting a whole host of customers back through its doors. The accommodation was also expanded to include an additional 180 suites to cater to the new guests it hoped to attract – and sure enough, booking numbers have surged – after a temporary closure due to the pandemic – as we head into the final quarter of 2021.
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