Officially known as the Casino de Monte-Carlo, the Monte Carlo Casino is a major casino gaming complex situated in Monaco, one of the world’s foremost gambling regions. The Monte Carlo Casino complex contains casino space, the Grand Theatre de Monte Carlo and the offices of Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, as well as many other amenities for visitors to the complex.
The casino is both owned and operated by the local Societe des Bains de Mer of Monaco, a company with major interests held by both Monaco’s government and the Grimaldis, the ruling family of the country. Alongside the Monte Carlo Casino, the Societe des Bains de Mer also owns many sports clubs, hotels, eateries and nightclubs across the country.
The Initial Conceptualisation of the Casino
The Monte Carlo Casino began as a fundraising idea, thought of by the spouse of Prince Florestan I, Princess Caroline. The revenues from the theoretical casino venue were intended to provide funds for the House of Grimaldi, which at the time was on the verge of bankruptcy.
In 1854, Prince Florestan’s son Charles hired the Frenchmen Aubert and Langlois to design a more detailed plan to bring in the capital needed to build a casino, a spa and a number of villas in Monaco. This venture started out successfully, and the first casino was opened in Villa Bellevu – a temporary site situated near La Condamine.
History and Changes of Ownership
Despite the successful construction of the casino, Aubert and Langlois soon relinquished their rights to operating the casino, which was then taken over by Frossard de Lilbonne. De Lilbonne, too, ceded his rights to the establishment, which changed hands again in 1857 to become owned by Pierre Auguste Daval.
During this period, the casino also moved sites on several occasions, finally settling at Les Spelugues, where construction was started in 1858 and was finished in 1863.
Francois Blanc and the Monte Carlo Casino
Dissatisfied with the amount of revenue the new casino was generating, Princess Caroline sought the expertise of the German-based Francois Blanc, who was responsible for popularising many casino games throughout Europe. Princess Caroline eventually persuaded Blanc to take over Monaco’s casino industry in 1863, and funding and construction of the Monte Carlo Casino were soon underway thanks to several prominent investors.
That casino is the same building that is currently operating as the Monte Carlo Casino, a name which was given to the casino in Prince Charles’ honour, and the casino still generates a large portion of the royal family’s annual income.
Current Casino Games and Amenities
Today, the Monte Carlo Casino is one of Monaco’s most well-known casino gaming establishments, made famous by iconic pop culture films and characters, especially fictional spy James Bond in Casino Royale, GoldenEye and Never Say Never Again.
The Monte Carlo Casino is home to Europe’s largest collection of slot machines, and it also offers European and American table games like punto banco, trente et quarante, French roulette, craps, blackjack and Texas Hold’em poker.
Other notable guest amenities at the Monte Carlo Casino include gourmet restaurants, private lounges and bars, an in-house spa, thermal pools and a beach club, and visitors can also partake in sports, golf and even shopping while at the casino.