Now more than at any other point in history, it is easier to access your favourite casino games like blackjack, roulette and baccarat from anywhere with the help of an online live casino. However good the online experience is though, one thing that it can’t measure up to is its land-based counterparts in all their luxury and architectural glory.
What is often overlooked, while punters head inside for their fix of table games and slots, is the stunning architecture that surrounds these casino floors. Some features seep inside, such as ornate pillars and decorative high ceilings, but the next time you head to your favourite casino resort, look around, step outside and take in the wondrous surroundings in which you find yourself.
Across the globe there are hundreds of stunning, opulent casinos welcoming high-rollers and celebrities alike into their ornately designed gaming halls. We take a sneak peek through the doors of some of the most architecturally impressive casinos on the planet, from Singapore to South Africa to the U.S.
Casino de Monte Carlo, Monte Carlo, Monaco
The principality of Monaco to the south of France is the second-smallest sovereign state in the world and is in fact, smaller than London’s Hyde Park. What it lacks in size though, it makes up in style with a number of stunning landmarks including the famous Casino de Monte Carlo.
Rather counterintuitively, this casino was not first opened to satisfy the leisure needs of a rich and affluent populace. Instead, it was opened as a last-ditch effort by the ruling House of Grimaldi to inject some much-needed cash into the failing Monegasque economy.
Opening in 1863, the casino did just that, attracting some of the wealthiest people in Europe to its stunning gaming halls. Within just six years the casino was contributing so much to the state’s economy that citizens were absolved of paying all taxes. Since then, the casino has forged a reputation for attracting the world’s richest and most famous faces. With clientele like that it is no wonder that the casino is known around the globe for its stunning architecture, interior décor and the famous works of art that adorn its walls.
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
Opened in 2010, this stunning 15,000m² casino and hotel is one of the most remarkable casinos on the planet. Since opening, this $8 billion project has not only been a tourist attraction for roulette, poker and blackjack fans, it has also become a must-see for tourists in general as its stunning design dominates Singapore’s skyline.
Designed by Moshe Safdie, the building features three large towers topped with a sky park that runs the length of all three structures. Inside, there are 2,561 rooms for guests, a shopping centre, a museum, a theatre, exquisite restaurants and two floating crystal pavilions. The resort is so packed full of attractions that it could feasibly take a few days of exploration before you even made your way to the gaming tables. When you do, you’ll be met with over 700 gaming tables and 2,500 slot machines which, if anything, is too much choice!
Bellagio, Las Vegas, USA
Perhaps the most famous casino in the world, the Bellagio has been featured in the Ocean’s franchise, Now You See Me and many more films and TV shows, and with the iconic fountains attracting crowds every night, it is easy to see why. Opening its doors in 1988, the casino was rumoured to have cost £88 million to build which was a staggering amount at the time, and stepping inside, it is clear to see that no expense was spared on making this the most luxurious casino in the United States.
The décor and design of the venue have all been done with an eye to appealing to high-rollers and celebrity gamers. The two biggest draws to this casino come from the esteemed 650m² poker room that plays host to the World Series of Poker and the famous fountain at the front of the casino which, as mentioned, is a tourist attraction in itself.
The Venetian, Macao, China
Believe it or not, Las Vegas is the second most profitable gambling city on the planet behind Macau. In recent decades, domestic and foreign investment has poured into the former Portuguese colony helping to build a gambling hub that is the envy of the world.
The jewel in the crown is the luxurious Venetian which cost $2.4 billion to build and was based on the casino of the same name in Las Vegas. By floor area, this 875,000m² giant is the seventh largest building on the planet. Just like its namesake, the Venetian in Macau features indoor Venice styled canals that guests can take gondola rides on. Away from the water, there are a plethora of high-quality restaurants, shops and entertainment facilities as well as a purpose-built sports hall that has played hosts to some of the world’s biggest sports stars.
Sun City Resort, Sun City, South Africa
In South Africa it is against the law to play casino games online, so all of the country’s impressive gambling revenues come exclusively from land-based casinos like Sun City, which is without doubt the best gambling resort on the continent of Africa. Situated two hours’ drive from Johannesburg, this sprawling casino sits in the heart of South Africa’s Bush, just a stone’s throw from the Pilanesberg national park and the architecture is as sympathetic to the locale as it can be for such a sprawling resort.
Within the resort are four purpose-built hotels to cater for all budgets with great pool and relaxation facilities. When you feel like exploring there are botanical gardens, water activities, gold course, boutiques and even a nightclub to enjoy. Finally, when you want to indulge in some poker or roulette you can head to the sprawling casino hall that houses almost 100 tables and well over 800 slot machines. For sun, fun and gambling, there really is no place like South Africa’s Sun City.
Please gamble responsibly (18+ UK) – check age restrictions before participating