It’s an old cliche with casinos that the house always wins, and obviously that’s true to an extent, otherwise multi-billion dollar casinos wouldn’t be sprouting up all over Vegas at the moment. If the house didn’t win, how could they afford these vast projects, right?
Why, then, do people insist on gambling if they can never win? Well, as these stats show, some people do win, and the prizes on offer are as huge as everything else in Las Vegas.
The highest of the high rollers
When you think of big wins in Vegas, you naturally think of the high rollers. Gambling tens of millions of dollars on the flip of a card or dice will net you big wins if luck is on your side – or big losses if it’s not.
Of the many legendary gamblers that have high rolled their way into Vegas legend, Australian billionaire Kerry Packer is one of the most impressive. In 1997, he went on a famous gambling expedition to the MGM Grand, and over the course of a few days, won between $20 million and $40 million.
Such was the extravagance of the man, he was said to have tipped a cocktail waitress a house and a doorman with $1 million! This could, of course, just be legend, but his largesse was famous, as was his prowess at baccarat and blackjack.
Mind you, he did also lose $28 million back in 1999 at a London casino – easy come, easy go as they say!
Mega wins on the slots
High rolling is all very well, but you need serious money just to take part. In contrast, anyone with 25 cents can play the slots. That doesn’t mean you can’t win serious money, though. Across Nevada, certain slot machines are all hooked up together, and accumulate a jackpot of immense proportions that one lucky punter must win at some point in time.
In 1998, that lucky punter was an anonymous woman in her mid-60s, who won $680,000 on The Wheel of Fortune at the Palace Station Hotel, before scooping the Megabucks jackpot a few months later and winning a phenomenal $27,582,539!
Even this pales into insignificance compared to the largest jackpot win of all time. This happened on March 21, 2003, when a 25-year-old software engineer from Los Angeles, who was just passing time at the slots, won an incredible $39,713,982.25 at The Excalibur.
So sure, gambling’s a mug’s game, and the house always wins – but sometimes, it’s the average bloke on the street who can pummel a casino’s monthly profits!