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Every time we walk into a casino, we’re overwhelmed with the feeling of excitement and possibilities. The thought “Maybe tonight is my lucky night” can’t be escaped, even if we tried. And for a good reason.

Most people don’t know but the design of all land-based casinos has been carefully planned so it makes you want to stay for as long as possible. Perhaps some of you might think that it’s the great promotions or free beverages that are used as bait, but that’s not the case. All brick-and-mortar casinos use similar strategies that affect the fragile human psychology and make you stay and play for a long time.

Two Different Approaches

The design of casinos has changed over the decades. Once upon a time, the moment you walked into one, you would be greeted with gaming machines. Nowadays, a great number of gaming venues have a lobby of some kind that intensifies the feeling of anticipation and excitement. Only after that brief intro into the casino world, are you “allowed” to see the slot machines and card tables in all their greatness. Two men who deserve all the credit for the design of casinos as we know it are Bill Friedman and Roger Thomas. While Friedman is famous for his classic casino design, Thomas is known as the man who redesigned Las Vegas. In this article, we’ll focus mostly on Bill Friedman’s methods that have been adopted by casinos from around the world.

No Clocks and No Windows

The best way to make someone give you their time is to make them forget about time altogether. Moreover, the feeling of running out of time can also make you feel stressed and anxious, which is what casino owners want to avoid. Bill Friedman worked on his casino design theory around the fact that the player should be kept in a casino for as long as possible. And this was simply impossible if the player kept on thinking about how much time he or she has spent inside. So, the best practice was to steer clear from windows and clocks when building the gaming area, so there were no indicators of how much time it has passed since the player came in.

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Casinos Want You To Be Focused On The Prize

What both land-based and online casinos have in common is that they want you to have your eyes on the main prize. The potential of those prizes can in some cases be life-changing, but even if it’s not, it certainly isn’t something that you would want to leave behind. So no matter if we’re talking about a £3 minimum deposit casino or grand venues like the Bellagio, they all are giving their best for you to see what they have to offer. For brick-and-mortar venues, this means colourful slot machines with colour coded passageways. The emphasis should always be on the slot machines and they are always the main decor of the gaming area. There’s no need for anything else, to keep the player’s attention away from the prize.

Intimate Setting To Make You Feel More Comfortable

Making smaller rooms where the player can enjoy other games, enabled visitors looking for privacy to step away from the crowd and enter a safe zone. Low ceilings and lots of seating create a feeling of comfort and intimacy. Moreover, separate rooms inspire the visitors to go exploring their options and possibilities behind closed doors. That is, it evokes curiosity and the desire to discover new things.

Labyrinth-Like Design Is Not A Coincidence

If you have ever had trouble finding the exit or a toilet inside a casino, it’s not by mistake or poor design. It was done on purpose using Bill Friedman’s methods. Wherever you go looking for something in a casino and you start to wander, the casino owners are counting on the possibility that you will be distracted by another game along the way.


All modern-day casinos use these tricks to make us want to stay more. But is that so wrong? After all, the part of the entire gambling experience is that unique feeling that any casino gives to its visitors. Without it, it would only be a room filled with machines that are now even available in the virtual world. So, without these tricks, they would soon become abundant and forgotten. Therefore, these casino tricks are not only ways to make you spend more, but a part of the entire experience that turns each visit into a memorable event.

About the Author

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Mirko Humbert

Mirko Humbert is the editor-in-chief and main author of Designer Daily and Typography Daily. He is also a graphic designer and the founder of WP Expert.