The world’s best casinos don’t just feature a huge gambling floor with countless games, they also have hotels, restaurants, non-gambling game rooms, bars and swimming pools to make sure they appeal to the entire family. As disposable incomes have grown all over the globe and the traveling industry has become more mainstream, these mega-casinos are now trying to attract a global audience and compete with each other for gamblers’ dollars.
Casinos earn their money by charging a small percentage of each bet, called the house edge, which is built into the odds of each individual game. This is how casinos have enough money to build elaborate hotels, fountains, pyramids, towers and replicas of famous landmarks. The house edge can be as low as two percent, but it adds up over time and is a large part of the reason why many people take weekend bus trips to Atlantic City or Las Vegas.
Gambling in some form has been popular throughout history, and the modern casino is largely a result of European influence. The first modern casino opened in 1863 at Monte Carlo, and its popularity has spread worldwide. Monte Carlo has been featured in numerous books and movies, including the popular Ben Mezrich book and movie “Busting Vegas.” It is the largest casino in Europe, and the second largest in the world. Casinos also appear in several cities in the United States, most notably Las Vegas and Atlantic City, as well as on some American Indian reservations, where they are not subject to state antigambling laws.