Who is at the origin of the gambling business? Who were the first casino owners? How modern gambling magnates managed to make a fortune and firmly establish themselves in the industry, beating many competitors?
In this section of Casinoz, we would talk about the life and business of the biggest bigwigs in the industry. Read the biographies of the legendary casino owners and learn the secrets of their lives. Maybe, this will inspire you to play and win.
The founders of the legendary casinos of the past
Let's begin with the colorful personalities that shaped the appearance of the modern gambling business. Some of them were fascinating characters who came out from a different stratum of society.
- Howard Hughes – is remembered as an eccentric millionaire, a dreamer who was not afraid to invest in the most different spheres: scientific inventions, cinema, aviation, and, of course, gambling. His Vegas casinos offered a high level of service and forced the competitors to also improve the service.
- Jim McKay – one of the founders of Las Vegas as the gambling capital of the USA. He was the owner of the biggest and most popular casinos in the early history of the city. McKay casinos were successful until the early fifties when large monopolies replaced them.
- Bugsy Siegel – the most charming gangster in the history of Las Vegas. He ran a casino like a criminal. His life had daring robberies, beautiful women, wealth, fame, recognition of the wealthiest and most influential people, but it ended early and sadly.
- Benny Binion began as a typical American bandit who did not disdain theft, bootlegging, and even murder. Later he took up the organization of underground gambling, and after a while opened legal casinos. His main brainchild was the famous Binion's Horseshoe casino, which has long been a trendsetter in Las Vegas.
- Nick Abelman was born in a family of poor immigrants, but his more than a modest background did not prevent him from becoming one of the magnates of the gambling industry. He owned casinos in Reno, Nevada, and California. Abelman's casinos were visited by famous artists, big politicians, well-known athletes, and the wealthiest people.
We also describe many other casino operators of the past.
Tycoons of the second half of the 20th century
In the second half of the 20th century, the sphere of gambling business began to develop rapidly. The history of gambling at that time included many outstanding personalities.
- Frank Rosenthal is an iconic character. The legendary "Lefty" directly and indirectly managed several famous casinos, which boldly introduced all sorts of innovations. His world fame contributed to the film "Casino" by Martin Scorsese, shot based on the biography of Frank Rosenthal.
- Stanley Ho was called the king of the gambling of Macau and Hong Kong, and this flattering title does not seem an exaggeration. He created a huge monopoly, earned billions of dollars, and for many years set the tone of gambling development in the region.
- Bill Bennett was born in a farmer's family, and he served in the U.S. Navy during world war II. Returning home, he started a business and proved to be a very successful manager. Later he became the casino manager, and after a while, he became the owner of the famous Circus Circus Casino. Later he bought the casino Sahara, which is working up to this day.
- Kirk Kerkorian – he was called "father," "Baron", "lion" and even "King". The man's business reputation was impeccable. His authority was unwavering. He invested in various areas, including gambling. He owned the international Hotel casino and the MGM Grand Hotel. Later he bought Steve Wynn's company Mirage.
- Sheldon Adelson got engaged in the gambling business in the late '80s of the 20th century by buying The Sands Casino in Las Vegas. He later opened the iconic Venetian casino and then expanded the scope of his activities in Macau, running there Venetian Macao Casino and the legendary Marina Bay Sands complex.
- Steve Wynn was one of the most charismatic characters in the world of gambling. He owned very popular casinos, attracting customers with luxury and a variety of services. But his reputation and financial affairs have significantly shaken in connection with several scandals and trials.
Read more about these and other industry leaders at Casinoz.
A new generation of gambling bigwigs
Gambling business does not suffer from a lack of new top managers. Fresh blood in the face of young and ambitious casino owners pours in the industry.
Perhaps the most striking example is Lawrence Ho, son of the legendary Stanley Ho. The guy chose not to live a slacker life and seriously took up education and delve into all the secrets of the family business. Eventually, he raised the Empire founded by his father to new heights and successfully continues to develop his casinos in different countries of the world.
New articles regularly update the section with biographies of the largest gambling tycoons of the past and present. Do not forget to open this page to learn about the founders of major casinos and leading gambling figures.