Whether it’s the glitz and glamour of Las Vegas or the quaint European spa town of Baden-Baden, casino gambling has been around for centuries. Some form of the game has been popular in almost every society on earth, from Ancient Mesopotamia to Napoleon’s France and Elizabethan England.
As a result, casinos have evolved from simple gambling halls into elaborate temples of temptation, featuring everything from chandeliers and art installations to luxury accommodations and high-end restaurants. Casinos have also incorporated new technologies into the games themselves, including “chip tracking” systems that allow casinos to monitor the amount of money wagered on each table minute-by-minute and alert security staff if there is a statistical deviation; and automated roulette wheels with built-in microcircuitry that monitor and report results.
Something about gambling — maybe the lure of large sums of money or the innate human desire to cheat, steal and scam a win — encourages some players to try to bend the rules, and that’s why casinos spend such a huge amount of time and money on security. In addition to guards and electronic surveillance, some casinos employ catwalks that offer a high-tech eye-in-the-sky view of the whole floor through one-way glass.
Casinos also provide entertainment, ranging from live shows to free drinks and all-you-can-eat buffets. Some casinos have even branched out to include their own golf courses, a branch of New York’s swank Le Cirque restaurant or Hermes and Chanel boutiques. The most upscale casinos in the world have taken it to a whole new level, providing an experience that’s as luxurious and opulent as their namesake cities.