Casino and gambling experiences vary wildly around the globe. From the historical gambling houses of Monaco, Germany and England to the modern interpretations that litter the Las Vegas strip and the extravagant offerings that are popping up around the world with fierce regularity, it seems that there is something suit all tastes and style of gambler. And while the past year or so has proved difficult when it comes to enjoying the glitz and glamour of a land-based casino, online offerings have seen a boom.
Whether you enjoy playing online casino from the comfort of home or now fully embrace planning those big trips to the bright lights of the big cities and try your luck at one of the land-based casinos there, there has certainly been a way to get your fix. Now that the lavish resorts are starting to open up their doors once more, we take a look at the big gambling playground of the world – Las Vegas and Macau and see how they compare. Though the explorers and seekers during the California gold rush settled in the area now named Las Vegas around the turn of the 19th century, it wasn’t until the 1940s that the glitzy hotel resorts truly propelled the city to new heights, only growing in size, popularity, and quantity of lightbulbs ever since. And while the Nevada-based entertainment paradise still attracts those looking for a fun escape in their hoards, a certain autonomous region off the south coast of China is rivalling the American city in many ways.
There’s nowhere on the planet quite like Macau
We are, of course, talking about Asia’ gambling capital that is Macau, where gambling was legalised in the 1850s and the Cotai Strip and casinos make up 50% of region’s economy alone. The place often referred to the ‘Las Vegas of Asia’ Macau’s visitors are largely made up of Chinese nationals from Hong Kong and China, but we are here to see if this region has reached a point of being declared the Las Vegas of the world.
Las Vegas boasts some of the largest hotels, casinos, and resorts with themed offerings littering the Las Vegas Strip with vigour. It has become one of the most iconic tourism destinations in the world; among its contemporary architecture, nightlife, fine dining restaurants and various other attractions, casinos are the primary reason tourists are lured to the city. Though Vegas is nearly three times larger than Macau, the population difference between them is not huge, though the larger size of Las Vegas means it holds more space to accommodate more people. This indicates that more people can gamble there and the city’s area can be leveraged to beat the revenues of Macau in the coming years. Though the difference in residential population between the two territories is not considerable, Vegas gets nearly 13 million more visitors than Macau annually. However, the visitors in Macau who gamble make up 5% more than that of Vegas.
Las Vegas saw visitor numbers slump by more than 50 per cent last year as casinos were forced to close their doors for three months due to coronavirus
Though Macau is much smaller than Las Vegas in terms of area, it’s certainly bigger in terms of revenue. Despite the many attractions and gambling facilities of Vegas, the numbers don’t seem to favour the city a lot in recent years. According to the figures of 2020, the gaming revenue of Macau and Vegas is $7.57 billion and $3.61 billion respectively.
When talking about these two gambling centres of the world, casinos are not the only attractions we are looking at. From hotels to rollercoasters and helicopter rides, people consider everything before they plan a trip to either of these cities. With 104 casinos and 68 hotels in Las Vegas and 49 casinos and 75 hotels in Macau, the comparison on the gambling front becomes a bit difficult. Though the number of people who gamble in Macau is more than that of Las Vegas, Vegas has the potential to increase that number due to a significantly large number of gambling facilities present.
Las Vegas boasts some of the largest hotels, casinos, and resorts with themed offerings littering the Las Vegas Strip with vigour. Image credit: travelview/Bigstock.com
However, people don’t merely visit these places to gamble. When it comes to attractions other than casinos, it’s safe to say that Macau has not yet reached the heights of Las Vegas. Even with its many iconic buildings, temples, and museums, it can’t compete with the theatres, clubs, roller coasters, acrobat shows, zip lines, and aquariums of Vegas. From touring the city to relish its nightlife to visiting the Grand Canyon, Vegas remains unmatched.
The Bottom Line
Though the bright lights and nightlife of the Sin City is still unexampled, the tiny territory of Macau has replaced Las Vegas as the largest gaming city in the world, if you’re looking at revenue alone, however it could never outshine Vegas on all fronts.