To avoid any confusion, this article is not going to be talking about the most expensive high-roller tables to play blackjack around the world. We are not concerning ourselves with how much it costs to play. We are more interested in the buildings themselves. After all, building casinos is a feat in its own right.
Ever since Las Vegas became more than just a desert outpost, casino bosses have been building the most extravagant palaces dedicated to gambling. These days you can play games at a Las Vegas casino online. But there are still billions of dollars poured into the construction of the biggest real-life casinos. And these are the seven most expensive ever to be built.
The Cosmopolitan, Las Vegas
If you build a casino that counts the Aria Campus and The Bellagio as next-door neighbors, the place has to look pretty special. Luckily, The Cosmopolitan definitely fits into the stylish feel of the place. The Chandelier Bar is a perfect example of how the Cosmo (as visitors like to call it) more than warrants a place on this list.
With outside terraces offering some of the best views in Las Vegas, many of the people through the door spend as much time here as on the casino floor. But with 1,500 slots and 83 tables, there is not a dearth of choice for casino regulars. All of this for just under $4 billion.
Wynn Palace, Macau
Wynn Resorts have made a big play for casino visitors in Macau, with the Wynn Palace joining the Wynn Macau that paved the way for the organization in the region. Opening in 2016 and coming in at a total cost of $4.1 billion, this addition to the skyline became the most expensive casino in Macau.
There are 500 gaming tables and 375 slots that manage to cover a huge 39,400 square meters of casino floor space. There are also 28 floors of the hotel for guests to choose from, as well as all the retail and eatery establishments any of them desire. Wynn is not content with building this palace dedicated to casino gaming though.
There are now plans to expand even further, with two more hotel towers providing another 650 rooms each. They are scheduled to open in 2024 and add another $2 billion to the total cost.
Resorts World, Las Vegas
Built on the site of the world-famous Stardust Resort and Casino, Resorts World was a long time coming. The old casino was actually demolished in 2007 to make way for this new glitzy resort. But due to a number of delays and financial issues, the new Resorts World didn’t actually open its doors until 2021.
It became the first new casino to be completed in Las Vegas since 2010 and the most expensive property ever developed in the city at $4.8 billion. With three hotels offering a combined 3,506 rooms, guests are well catered for – and the 117,000 square foot casino floor offers just about everything they need for their stay.
Wynn Las Vegas and Encore, Las Vegas
When The Wynn was opened in 2005 it was already pretty big. The 45-story hotel tower immediately became the tallest building in the entire state and the bill for the development came to a cool $2.7 billion. But the owners obviously thought that they needed to make a bigger mark on the Vegas skyline.
Three years later The Encore, a sister resort to The Wynn opened right next door, giving their customers a combined 16,700 square feet of casino gaming. With almost 2,000 slot machines and 250 gaming tables, there is plenty of choice. This small upgrade brought the total cost up to $5 billion.
Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore
We leave Las Vegas and head to Southeast Asia for our next mega-structure. Located on the island of Sentosa, just off the coast of Singapore, this Resorts World became the third most expensive building of any kind when it was completed in 2010. This was a statement that Singapore casinos had arrived.
Although the casino space is a very impressive 15,000 square feet, consisting of 500 table games and almost 2,500 different slots, it is the rest of the resort that really provides the wow factor. There are four hotels, a maritime museum, a marine park, and Michelin dining options for its many guests to enjoy.
With new mega-casinos being planned all the time, it would not be a surprise if we revisited this list in a few years’ time to find an entirely new set of names. Bigger is always better when it comes to casinos and the desire to build bigger establishments – at even higher costs will always be there.
Marina Bay Sands, Singapore
But the Resorts World Sentosa is not even the most expensively constructed casino resort in the country. Step forward the Marina Bay Sands, a 2,500-room hotel complex that offers incredible views from its three towers overlooking downtown Singapore – and a 1,120-foot skyway that connects each one.
There are restaurants, a shopping mall, and a theater to enchant the 19 million people that visit each year. But it is the casino that they really come for. Over 600 tables offering classic casino games and more than 2,300 slot machines are spread over the four floors of gaming.
Aria Campus, Las Vegas
Our number one most expensive construction is not so much a casino, as a city on its own. Originally called the CityCenter, it has since been renamed the Aria Campus (although many still refer to it by its former moniker). With two hotels, there are almost 4,000 rooms and all the luxury shopping options you can dream of.
There are also 19 separate dining establishments and a pool area that covers an incredible 215,000 square feet. Did we mention the casino? There are 145 tables, with some of the best poker spots in the city, and almost 2,000 slots.
That may all sound like a lot – but then it did cost $8.5 billion to build when it opened in 2009, making it the most expensive casino resort ever.