Some locations have perfected the magic formula for a premium, profitable and popular casino. Creating a world-standard venue might be a fine art but, when it works, how it works... If you’re looking to enter the gaming industry, Ross O’Connor from Casino.com rounds up four of the best places in the world to buy or invest in casinos.
They might cater to seasoned poker players or tourists dipping their toes into the gambling world, but there are a few special destinations around the globe that truly embody the spirit of casino culture. Read on for a rundown of the world’s most popular gambling destinations and whether they can make a solid investment for those in the industry.
While it may seem like the obvious choice, when it comes to casinos there’s just nowhere quite like Las Vegas. This iconic city is synonymous with bright lights, thrills and entertainment, and for good reason; as well as being home to over 70 casinos, Las Vegas also boasts an inexhaustible list of world-class resorts, hotels, restaurants and bars for its visitors to choose from.
Home to an array of the most prestigious gambling institutions like the Bellagio, The Venetian and Caesars Palace, Las Vegas has a world-renowned reputation that makes it the top destination for many seasoned gamers. However, this reputation means that the Nevada city is saturated with casinos, so getting any new ventures off the ground or convincing established casinos to diversify their investments is likely to be a challenge.
Despite the recent flooding in Las Vegas, there was very encouraging news for the Silver State last week when it reported its 16th month in a row of $1bn+ in gross gaming revenue.
With its booming economy and tourism industry, Singapore has a rich gambling culture that draws in international visitors every year. For many, the main attractions will be Marina Bay Sands, Resorts World Sentosa and the sea-faring Aegean Paradise Cruise Casino. These are some of the most opulent and stylish integrated casinos, which are often built right into grand shopping complexes to allow tourists to spend their winnings at the city’s most lavish high-end fashion stores.
Demonstrating Singapore’s commitment to attracting international revenue and reputation, while locals must pay a cover charge, Marina Bay Sands allows tourists to enter for free. Despite other gambling destinations struggling throughout the effects of Covid-19, Marina Bay Sands has actually been predicted to top its pre-pandemic revenue in 2022, showing a rapid recovery in its second quarter results. This city therefore has a well-established and successful gaming industry that is continuing to attract punters from all over the world.
A special administrative region on the southeast coast of China, Macau is known as ‘the Las Vegas of Asia’. Home to some of the most opulent casinos and malls in the world, this unique destination has boasted a thriving gambling industry since its casinos were liberalised in 2002.
One of its most famous venues, The Venetian Macao, was modelled on the Venetian complex in Vegas and cost $2.97bn to build – it’s now listed as one of the most expensive buildings in the world.
However, post-Covid, the city is struggling to bounce back. Its gaming industry has suffered from repeated lockdowns and casino closures that have continued into the summer of 2022, with Macau only this morning reporting a staggering 95% year-on-year drop in revenue.
Industry officials have responded with a highly anticipated gaming bill promising more official oversight, extended casino licences and a tax break of up to 5% for operators attracting international customers. This may provide some optimism for Macau’s gaming industry, but its post-pandemic recovery is still in its early stages. What that does mean is prices may be lower than usual – so any savvy investors may be looking at the world's gaming hub (at its best) for the future.
Much like Las Vegas, Monte Carlo has become a byword for a thriving gambling and casino culture, and attracts a constant flow of visitors to its shores. Perched on the French Riviera and just five miles from the Italian border, this special administrative area of Monaco is a favourite destination among a diverse crowd, including various celebrities and Formula One drivers following the Grand Prix.
Monte Carlo is full of premium resorts and hotels, such as the famous Monte Carlo Casino, which offers classic poker, roulette and blackjack, as well as French games like Chemin de Fer and Trente & Quarante. This iconic destination can offer even casual gamers a taste of the high life, meaning its reputation remains quite unchanged and its high-end casinos continue to be a promising investment opportunity.
Even the hottest gambling hotspots in the world go through peaks and troughs in their profitability.