The Venetian in Las Vegas is the mega-resort of gambling and luxury that the billionaire Sheldon Adelson ordered the construction inspired by the lines of the Italian city of Venice.
Robert Turner has a hobby that does not hide from anyone: loves casinos. The ‘hobby’ would not be problematic if he lived in a common North American location. But this taxi driver was born 45 years ago in the city that bears the title of Sin City. And many people that every day pass through the South Boulevard, the main street of the city, suffer its sins and excesses, including Turner. Nowadays the biggest trend has been the online casinos as the ones chip analyst provide but this is a different casino.
He is sitting in one of the hundreds slots machines of the Venetian casino, ‘mega-resort’ of luxury that is owned by one of the richest men in the world. After his cab interior, they are Turner’s second home. “Just missing the voice of Scarlet Johanssen to fall in love with them”, he admits.
The casino is on the ground floor of the luxury complex built at the end of last millennium by Adelson. He currently enters in a restricted billionaires list, with a fortune estimated in 38 billion dollars, according to Forbes. In a city that welcomes the visitors at the airport with slots installed at the arrivals, to draw attention with a copy of the Eiffel Tower, a pyramid of Egypt that flashes the most powerful light in the world or the largest Ferris wheel in the world can seem impossible. But Adelson achieved it.
After the honeymoon with his wife Miriam in Venice in 1991, tried to replicate the Italian city in an entertainment mini-city within a city of show biz. The interior was worked in detail. If the walls with cream tones easily buy our sensations regarding the magnificence of the building, the rest is more than mere illusion. There are canals and gondolas with gondoliers singing in Italian crossing the mega complex of buildings, there are paintings on the ceiling remembering the art of Michelangelo and Boticelli and dozens of traditional food restaurants, pastas and pizzas – even the presenter of Bizarre Foods television program runs a restaurant there. We can take a ‘cappuccino’ after an afternoon of shopping in Grand Cannal Shoppes, where you have brands like Louboutin, Tory Burch and Michael Kors. And if there remained doubts about trying to recreate the Venice, Adelson built the St Mark’s Campanile.
Apparently, all this luxury does not rule out Turner to go to the casino Venetian almost every day, assuming that the living cost in Las Vegas is not high. “It’s a lot to pay about $800 per month for a house with three bedrooms and a swimming pool? In New York, a small apartment should cost more than $3,000…”.
Henrique Cavalcante has another opinion. “A ticket to the Cirque du Soleil cost more than $150, is expensive”, he complains after traveling from Sao Paulo with family. The market logic also fits in the Venetian. “If there are people who can buy a bottle of 33cl of water for five dollars, why not sell at that price?”, said Turner.
To tackle these inflationary pressures Cavalcante recommends the diversity that a street economy can offer – where a bottle of water costs five times less. At least saves four dollars in the name of an addiction that every year takes more than 40 million visitors to the Mecca of the gambling. Sheldon Adelson, the eighth richest man in the world, thanks!