For most of us commoners, a trip to Adelaide Casino in South Australia is a grand event. Instead of stopping in the local pub to down a stubbie and have a go on the pokies, we might splurge on an evening at a real casino. The poker machines are about the same (aside from the vast number of them), with tables games thrown into the mix, but just walking those lush carpets to get there gives us an impression of cultured refinement.
What that majority us of haven’t experienced (and most never will), is the interior sophistication of Adelaide Casino’s VIP Rooms.
You can walk up to the mysteriously shrouded high-roller sanctuary of the SA gambling hall and ask to take a peek inside as often as you like, but unless you’re dressed to impress and have a wad of dosh to flash, you’re not going to get in… unless, perhaps, you happen to be a member of the local press.
Such an honor was granted to Anthony Templeton, an esteemed reporter with the City Messenger, who was permitted to experience the lavish lifestyle of a “casino whale”, if only for a brief moment. He was even give $50,000 worth of casino chips and a baccarat lesson (although it was just for show; he was not permitted to keep any of the chips).
While the generic expanses of Adelaide Casino see hundreds won and lost on a regular basis, the private Grange and Horizon VIP rooms commonly see exchanges in the 6- to 7-figure range. “It’s where millions of dollars are won and lost in minutes, and where players get their every whim catered to,” wrote Templeton in an exclusive expose.
What does it take to get into such an elite designation, you ask? Templeton shed some light on that subject, saying, “The upfront buy-in — the amount of money changed for chips initially — can be as high as $2 million.”
Located on the first floor of the casino, Templeton said the high-roller quarters are “tastefully decorated with dark-stained wood and cream-coloured leather.” As for the gameplay, he wrote, “The VIP rooms are quieter than the main gaming floor but superstitious players regularly bang on the table hoping to influence the fall of the cards.”
Barman Jed in the private Premium Bar – photo by Mike Burton
The VIP lounges offer the same table games found in the common rooms. You can play baccarat, blackjack and roulette just like everyone else, except that the table limits soar to as high as $250,000 per game for international VIPs.
According to Templeton, the pokies aren’t just for us average Joe’s, ether. Even high-rollers like to take them for a spin now and again, wagering up to $500 on a single push of a button. And when someone so ridiculously rich and freely willing to gamble their abundant coinage says they want to play their favourite “lucky” slot, you can bet your arse the casino staff won’t hesitate to snatch that poker machine from the general gaming floor and install it in the high-roller lounge, day or night.
Adelaide Casino makes a significant portion of its annual revenue off international VIPs, and will do virtually anything it takes to get them through the doors. Templeton said the company is known to send private jets to pick up Asian VIPs and bring them to the casino, furnishing everything from lavish suites, fine cuisine and $1,800 bottles of whiskey—all free of charge—on the sole condition that the player wagers a minimum amount in the casino during their stay.
Aaron Morrison, General Manager of Adelaide Casino, told the reporter that competition for attracting Asian VIPs is incredibly high. “We’re not just competing against the other casinos in Australia,” he said. “We are competing against the rest of the world.”