People go to casinos because they believe that casinos are where impossible dreams can come true - like our super duper SlotoCash no deposit bonus (talk about dreams come true!).
But, it turns out, a lot of the improbable becomes possible when people gather with big bankrolls, alcohol, and a devil-may-care attitude. Over the years, casinos have seen more than their fair share of bizarre occurrences. Some of those that stand out include:
All or Nothing
Organizations that promote responsible gambling advise gamblers to carefully plan their wagers and to never bet more than they’ve set out in their budget.
One gambler who didn’t pay much attention to that advice was Ashley Revell, a quirky Brit who sold everything that he owned, including his clothes, in 2004. He then took that £76,840, along with additional funds that he raised by changing his name to “Ashley Blue Square Revell” (Blue Square Gambling Company paid him to make the change) to the Plaza Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and put it down on red on the roulette wheel.
When the ball landed on 7 Red, Revell doubled his bankroll. Revell’s leap of faith was filmed as part of a Sky TV documentary named Double or Nothing and his win was recorded on film.
Revell did show some self-promotion skills and business sense when he bet everything on one roulette spin. In addition to raising some of the money from the Blue Square betting company, he also raised cash through auctions and sales. In addition to being filmed by Sky One his antics became the base of a Reality Series titled Double or Nothing.
Revell didn’t re-bet his payout. He used his winnings to establish Poker UTD, an online poker company (which was eventually closed in 2012) .
Before Donald Trump became President of the United States, he was best-known as a businessman who owned three casinos in Atlantic City.
Trump heard about Japanese businessman Akio Kashiwagi, a baccarat aficionado who was known as a “whale” of a player, and invited him to the Trump Plaza in 1990, gave him a luxurious penthouse and reserved a baccarat table for him.
Trump and his people saw Kashiwagi’s presence as a publicity coup that reinforced the Trump brand as providing elegance and excitement. Kashiwagi brought $6 million and the casino extended him an additional $6 million in credit.
Kashiwagi was said to have won $1 in the first hour and $4 million that first night by playing $250,000 per hand, 70 times an hour. After 2 days Kashiwagi had won $6.2 million which was a big hit for Trump’s casino.
To recoup the money, Trump invited Kashiwagi back and got him to agree to continue playing until he had doubled his bankroll or lost it. Trump was relying on mathematicians who calculated that the longer one plays baccarat, the more money the player loses. He also kept female dealers at the table after he noted that Kashiwagi lost most when the dealers were women.
After 6 days Kashiwagi lost $10 million and left the casino. Trump claimed that that’s where the game was supposed to have ended but Kashiwagi told media sources that Trump ended the game early and didn’t uphold his end of the deal.
Kashiwagi repaid Trump $6 million but couldn’t repay the rest. He moved on to other casinos to try to get more money but by the time he died, he owned millions of dollars to casinos worldwide, including to Trump.
FedEx and Lady Luck
Today, FedEx is a billion-dollar company that operates in over 200 countries but in 1974, just 3 years after its founding, it had total assets of $5000 and was on its way to bankruptcy. Founder Frederick W. Smith figured that he didn’t have much to lose so he took his last $5000 to Vegas and put it on blackjack, where he hoped to raise at least $24,000 which is what he needed to keep going.
Smith left the casino with $32,000 which enabled him to purchase the fuel that he needed to keep his trucks on the road. Now, he could attract new investors and within a few years his books were in the black.
Lady Luck was smiling down on Grandmother Patricia Demauro in 2009 when she played craps at Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa.
Demauro had $100 to spend on her night out and she chose the craps table, even though she’d only played craps once before.
Over the course of the next 4 hours Demauro won 154 consecutive rolls of the dice, breaking a world record for the longest craps roll without any sevens out. Demauro never discussed her wins but analysts say that it was likely in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more.
The financial crisis of 2008 put Atlantic City casinos in a tough spot. They determined that, by luring high rollers, they could get through the recession and one of the VIP players that they tried to entice was Don Johnson.
Johnson negotiated with the casinos and got them to agree to changes that gave him a mathematical edge in blackjack. These changes included a 20% rebate on all losses for losses in excess of $500,000, dealers being forced to stay on soft 17, six decks and resplit aces.
Johnson then sat down at a blackjack table at the Tropicana and won $6 million. He moved to the Borgata where he won $5 million and then on to Caesars where he won $4 million. The casinos learned their lesson, barred Johnson and never offered such deals again.