The Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex on the banks of Melbourne's Yarra River opened in 1977. It includes a five-star hotel, convention facilities, river-side restaurants, boutiques and an entertainment area. The Atrium entrance is designed to give the effect of four seasons in a day with a subtle blend of light, water, clouds, glass and black Italian marble combining to make a stunning display. Created by artists, composers and technical experts, the five-storwy-high space features a crystal wave ceiling and laser lights.
Crown is one of the largest casinos in the southern hemisphere, offering 350 table games and 2500 slots.
Jupiters hotel, casino and leisure complex is located on Broadbeach Island in the heart of Queensland's Gold Coast, Australia's favorite holiday destination. The buildings are set amid 6ha (15 acres) of lush land-scaped sub-tropical gardens and parkland.
The 5'574m2 (60'100 sq ft) casino covers two levels and the action takes place 24 hours a day. There are 88 gaming tables and 1176 slots. Games include roulette, blackjack, baccarat, craps, Caribbean stud poker, pai gow, two-up, keno and Jupiters Wheel. Stakes vary from A$1 to A$10'000. Admission is free, but players must be over 18 years. The exclusive Club Conrad, which caters for high rollers and serious gamblers, offers baccarat, roulette and blackjack.
Facilities include Fortunes nightclub, with the latest video and sound effects. Nine bars, six restaurants and an English-style pub cater for all dining tastes. Jupiter's Theatre, a 1120-seat auditorium, is the venue for live performances by top acts. Recreation options include swimming, tennis, squash and a jogging track.
Baden Baden, famously described by Marlene Dietrich as the 'Most beautiful casino in the world', is also one of the oldest still in operation. It was opened in 1748 by Edouard Benazet, who employed Parisian craftsmen to design the stylish rooms that are now a tourist attraction in their own right.
The main gaming area, which totals over 3'000m2 (32'000 sq ft), compromises several luxuriously decorated rooms, including the Red Chamber, Austrian Room, the Winter Garden, le Salon Madame de Pompadour, the Margrave Room and the Florentine Room.
The casino is open daily 14:00 to late. Games include American roulette, baccarat, blackjack, poker and slot machines. French rules apply. Minimum table limits are 5 Euro for roulette and slots, 10 Euro for blackjack and poker and 100 Euro for baccarat. The slot machines are housed in a separate building that was formerly the town's railway station.
Players must be over 21 and passports or identity need to be shown. There is an admission charge and dress code of jacket and tie for men.
London Clubs International operates some of the city's most prestigious and exclusive casinos, from venues offering high stakes and fine dining in elegant surroundings to more popular, lively clubs. Access is restricted to members and visitors should apply for membership beforehand.
The Palm Beach is one of the largest and most elegant casinos in London. It attracts a young, cosmopolitan clientele who enjoy the combination of fine dining and sophisticated gaming.
Les Ambassadeurs is set in a building dating back nearly 200 years. Discretion and service are hallmarks of this friendly yet intimate casino offering roulette, blackjack and punto blanco.
The Golden Nugget has lower minimum stakes than other London casinos. Games include roulette, blackjack, punto banco, stud poker and slot machines.
The exclusive upmarket 50 St James, first operated in 1828, has recently been restored to its former glory. In the gaming hall, the walls are covered with pure silk damask and the floors are carpeted with a design from the 1820s. Two salons prives offer high stakes roulette, blackjack and punto banco. Membership is compulsory, but out of town visitors can obtain complimentary membership between 14:00 and 21:00. Dress is smart and men are required to wear jackets.
Auckland's Sky City casino is located alongside the imposing Sky Tower which at 328m (1076ft) is the tallest tower in the southern hemisphere. Three glass-fronted elevators whisk visitors to the top in just 40 seconds. From the observation level it is possible to see up to 82 km (51 miles) away with views of the Leigh Peninsula, the Wailakere Ranges and Bombay Hills.
In the main casino the 1'300m2 (14'000 sq ft) gaming floor features blackjack, roulette, money wheel, keno, Caribbean stud poker and pai gow, as well as over 1000 slot machines. Gaming takes place 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The smaller Alto Casino and Bar, which has more intimate atmosphere, is open from 16:00 to late. Players must be over 20 years and are required to dress smartly, with jackets optional for men. Both casinos feature live entertainment.
The extensive Sun City resort complex, owned by Sun International, is situated 185 km (115 miles) northwest of Johannisburg. First opened in 1979 it was soon expended to include the Cascades Hotel, the family-orientated Cabanas, and the Superbowl, a multi-purpose entertainment and conference venue. On-side facilities include a man-made lake for water sports, and two 18-hole championship golf courses designed by Gary Player. (The annual Million Dollar Challenge golf tournament takes place here.) The resort is adjacent to the 60'000 ha (136'000 acres) Pilanesburg.
National Park where Africa's 'Big Five' of wildlife can be seen.
Sun City offers one of the largest casinos in the southern hemisphere. It is open daily from 13:00 to late and the slots are open 24 hours. Games include blackjack, roulette, punto banco, craps and slots. Table stakes start at R5. Minimum stakes on the slots are 50c. The casino features the largest progressive slots jackpot in Africa, including the Dream Machine, with a minimum payout of R1 million. There are two private gaming rooms. The salon prive caters for medium limit games of roulette, blackjack and punto banco with minimum stakes from R25-R200. The International Room has minimum stakes of R50 on roulette and R500 on blackjack.
The opening of the Palace of the Lost City in 1992 moved the resort into a new dimension. This showpiece luxury hotel has won international acclaim for its opulent fantasy decor which incorporates elaborate frescos, murals and mosaics depicting the stories and myths of a lost African tribe. The hotel is linked to the casino by the trembling, smoking Bridge of Time, which is guarded by rows of life-size elephant statues.
Located near Nassau in the Bahamas, the $850 million Atlantis resort on Paradise Island was opened by Sun International in 1998. The 370ha (826 acre) resort, surrounded by white beaches and crystal-clear water, is the perfect place to recreate the myth of Atlantis, the beautiful island that was overwhelmed by the sea.
The ruins of Atlantis are depicted in The Dig, an underwater labyrinth of walk-through tunnels which wind through 11 lagoons filled with over 200 species of marine life. Giant rays, barracuda and sharks swim among fanciful relics of the ancient culture, including submarines and flying machines.
A life-size replica of a Mayan temple features water slides, such as the Serpent which spins its riders into darkness to emerge in a tunnel that passes through the Predator lagoon. The Jungle Slide meanders through exotic jungles, temples and caves.
The resort's 2300 rooms are housed in four hotels. Included in the 176 suits is the 465m2 (5'000 sq ft) Bridge Suite that spans the twin Royal Towers. The resort has 38 restaurants and bars offering a choice of Pacific Rim, American and Italian cuisine.
The Entertainment Centre, which houses the Caribbean's largest casino, has the unusual feature of opening onto outdoor terraces and restaurants, bringing the tropical environment of the Bahamas into the gaming area. The 78 gaming tables include roulette, blackjack, craps, baccarat and Caribbean stud poker, as well as a high limit table area, the Baccarat Lounge. Stakes on the 980 slot machines range from 25c to $100. Free gaming lessons are offered daily.
Beau Rivage, meaning beautiful shore, is situated in the Gulf coast town of Biloxi, Mississippi. A feature of Mississippi casinos is that they are required to float, so the 6'700m2 (72'000 sq ft) casino has been built on a barge. The 24-hour a day casino offers table games, slot machines, a race book and a separate poker room.
The Mediterranean-themed resort, built at a cost of $675 million, opened in 1999. Mature oak trees line the circular entrance which leads to an atrium planted with flowers and fragrant magnolia trees. Finches fly overhead and the floor is an Italian-designed mosaic.
When expansions are completed, Mohegan Sun, in Uncasville Connecticut, is set to be one of the largest casino complexes in the world. Opened in 1996 by the Mohegan Tribal Nation, the expansion will add a 1200-room luxury hotel, 10'000 seat arena, new retail outlets, convention facilities that include the Northeast's largest ballroom, and a second casino.
Decor throughout the complex draws on Mohegan legend and tribal lore. The original Casino of the Earth is a circular room divided into four sections, representing the four seasons of nature. The 16'700m2 (179'500 sq ft) gaming area has 3000 slot machines and 192 table games including high-stakes bingo, blackjack, craps, roulette, baccarat and a separate poker room. There is also a race book.
The new 10'600m2 (115'000 sq ft) Casino of the Sky will feature the world's largest planetarium dome, and a multi-level onyx and alabaster venue, Wombi Rock, housing a lounge and dance floor. Both casinos offer non-smoking gaming areas.
After gaming was introduced to Monaco (an enclave in France, near the Italian border) in 1857 by Prince Charles III, the Mediterranean principality flourished, becoming a playground for Europe's aristocracy and a name synonymous with glamour and wealth.Monte Carlo Casino, one of Europe's oldest, dates from 1863 and was designed by Charles Garnier, architect of the Paris Opera House. The classical buildings are set in formal gardens on a terrace overlooking the sea. There are several restaurants, including Les Prives, which has a sea view, and the Cabaret, which offers live shows. The Train Bleu restaurant recreates a deluxe dining car of a train from the belle epoque era.The sumptuously decorated gaming rooms feature marble columns, gilded mahogany and chandeliers fashioned from Bohemian crystal. Games include blackjack, baccarat, French and American roulette, punto banco, craps and trente et quarante.Stakes start at 20 french francs for roulette, FF200 for blackjack, and FF500 for baccarat, chemin de fer and punto banco. There are 280 slot machines with stakes starting from FF1. The casino is open daily from 12:00 to late. The minimum age for gambling is 21 years. Dress is smart and men must wear ties.The revamped Monte Carlo Sporting Club houses the futuristic Les Palmiers gaming hall, Maona restaurant and Jimmy's disco. Le Cafe de Paris, adjacent to the main casino, offers poker, craps, blackjack and roulette, as well as bars, restaurants and cabaret shows.