From Ancient Greek times, through the dominance of the Roman Empire, and onward into the eras of Napolean’s France and Elizabethan England, much of those times were spirited by stories of entertainment based on games of chance. This later became known as gambling when the first known European gambling house was opened in Venice, Italy in 1638 by the Great Council of Venice as a seasonal establishment to provide controlled gambling during the time that the Venetian city’s popular carnivals were first introduced.
Centuries later, the seasonal notion of gambling in the United States was thrust into a new modern era when the State of Nevada legalized casino gambling in 1931. The legalization surfaced gambling’s underground roots into the spotlight for what can only be described as a gold rush for Las Vegas when mega casino hotels broke ground on what became famously known as the Las Vegas Strip on Las Vegas Boulevard South. This newfound bonanza attracted some of the biggest celebrity headliners like Liberace, The Rat Pack, Elvis Presley, Celine Dion, Siegfried & Roy, and Cirque du Soleil to perform in what was to become known as “The Entertainment Capital of the World”.
Fast-forward several decades to today and Las Vegas now lays claim to hosting 32 of the largest hotels in the world, with 6 being in the top 10. Originally opened in 1999, with 7,117 rooms total, The Venetian and The Palazzo became Vegas’ largest five-diamond luxury hotel and casino resort and second largest worldwide. The MGM Grand Las Vegas is third largest hotel in the world by number of rooms and the largest hotel resort complex. When the MGM Grand opened in 1993, it was the largest hotel in the world. Other popular Vegas luxury hotel and casino resorts include the likes of Mandalay Bay, Luxor Las Vegas, Caesars Palace, and the Bellagio Las Vegas.
Today, another new gold rush is taking shape in the form of online gambling.
Like what Facebook became for socializing online, the digitalized evolution of gambling is taking a new form with online casinos becoming mainstream in our age of social media. It’s easy to see the enticement to stay home and play digital slots when online casinos like NetBet offer to claim up to £250 bonus across a host of popular gaming categories, such as sports, in-play, casino, live dealers, poker, and a new one they simply call Vegas.
Now this new medium offers an enticing choice. Why spend money on traveling to Las Vegas when an online casino like NetBet can bring it to your iPhone and iPad?
The thrill of gambling like you’re in Las Vegas has now been brought into your pocket and that is what’s creating mounting success for online casinos in a time where convenience and accessibility seems to trump everything else. Facebook is a prime example of this behavior in action as many people no longer have to commute to see friends and family, they can simply instantly touch their smartphone to communicate with them. The same is now true for online gambling, simply swipe and play a game of chance instantly on your iPhone or Android screen. The oldest luxury leisure activity of gambling that began along the hollow canals of Venice has been completely transformed in today’s online generation.
Online gambling was first conceived in 1994 when the Caribbean nations of Antigua and Barbuda passed the Free Trade and Processing Act, allowing licenses to be granted to organizations applying to open online casinos. Countries around the globe such as the United Kingdom, Canada, United States, Australia, Russia, and India have since followed suit in legalizing online gambling but it wasn’t until recent improvements in technology came to fruition that the online gambling industry achieved a turnover of over £84 billion, according to the UK Gambling Commission in 2007. Coincidentally, 2007 was also when the late Steve Jobs introduced the world to Apple’s first generation iPhone, which undoubtedly changed the world of technology, and in retrospect, gambling forever.