From an architecture perspective, casinos are some of the most impressive buildings around today. Made to display wealth, glamour and decadence, while attracting potential players casinos are often old but impressive buildings with unique designs and stunning attention to detail. Many of these buildings have lasted so long thanks to the quality of the construction work, as well as the impressive architecture which has ensured that they remain timeless even as the world gets more futuristic by the day. Even those not interested in casino games cannot help but be impressed by these buildings, which are often among the architectural highlights of the cities they’re based in.
While Las Vegas may be the world’s most famous casino destination, the United States’ gambling laws mean that it is one of only a few places in the country with active casinos. Europe on the other hand, has plenty of impressive casinos across many countries, such as the UK, France, Portugal and Spain. Here are some of Europe’s most impressive casino buildings.
Casino de Monte Carlo, Monaco, France
Monaco and the France as a whole, have played a major part in the growth of the casino industry. They are the creators of roulette as well as countless other table titles that are still famous today, having been among the first to incorporate them into their casinos. One of their most famous and glamourous locations is Casino de Monte-Carlo, based on the principality of Monaco. It is part of a larger entertainment complex which also features a spa and botanical gardens. It has been used as a filming location in multiple James Bond films thanks to its impressive façade and vibrant interior. It was also used in Ocean’s Twelve, a classic of the casino film genre as well as a number of music videos and TV series.
Casino Estoril, Portugal
Sitting on the southern Portuguese coastline, Casino Estoril is a beautiful destination steeped in non-fictional and fictional history. It is situated in the municipality of Cascais, behind Tamariz beach, which provides picturesque scenery for visitors. Construction began in 1916 and the casino opened shortly after, quickly becoming a major tourist attraction for the region. It was believed to be a hiding place for Second World War spies, which is said to have inspired the 1953 James Bond novel Casino Royale. The grounds feature exotic plants, statues and a fountain that is illuminated along with the casino’s name during night-time light displays. It is believed to be Portugal’s oldest casino and visitors have noted the nostalgic feeling its classic design provides.
Empire Casino, London, UK
As well as designer fashion shops and department stores, London’s affluent West End district is also home to several famous casino buildings. One of the most famous of these is Empire Casino in the vibrant Leicester Square, it is a former theatre that has been repurposed into a casino and cinema. It is popular with tourists due to its proximity to restaurants, nightclubs and hotels, while the cinema is regularly used for London film premieres. Some of Hollywood’s biggest stars have been photographed and filmed at Empire, making it one of London’s most iconic venues. Its grand ballroom like interior has also been used as a filming location and venue for hire.
Casino Barcelona is another of Europe’s most beautiful beachside casinos, situated in the city’s Puerto Olimpico district. This area was dramatically developed leading up to and following the 1992 Olympic Games, which were held in the city. The casino was one of many new buildings added to the previously deserted area and it has since become a staple of Barcelona tourism. Its impressive design is complemented by various other unique structures in the vicinity, such as the twin towers which sit just ahead of it when looking towards the sea. It has been regularly used as one of the stops of the European Poker Tour, with players and fans taking advantage of its proximity the beach when they visit.