Just when you naively thought that we would offer you a mega-interesting article which will include all those inspiring casino stories about famous gamblers who went from rags to riches. Oh no, did we just lie to you and none of this is going to happen here? Hold on; we included a phrase `break a bank` for a reason here because many people fall victims of various misconceptions about this one and we’d like to set it all straight.
So what does `breaking the bank` mean in the first place and is it even possible nowadays or was it ever possible at all? This whole story can be traced back to the end of the 19th century. We`re taking a time-traveling trip to Monte Carlo, and yes, it’s that old (it was opened in 1863)! One man won so much at the land-based casino that a house didn’t have enough money at the table to cover that win, so employees had to go to a vault to get the funds. The house having to cover a win with money from the vault is what `breaking the bank` means. Only a tiny percentage of huge, impressive wins can get such an honorary title.
So basically, we’re talking about the most significant sums of money that lucky ladies and gentlemen have won throughout the history of the pleasure of gambling. Can anybody break a bank these days though? Commonly, every table has around $100,000 worth of chips in order to provide gamblers with an immediate payout. If a sum goes beyond that, casino staff just goes to a vault to pick up the cash they need. If you`ve watched Ocean`s Eleven, you know that big and reputable casinos have around $100 million in their vaults. Moreover, the most significant win so far (sadly for gamblers) hasn’t crossed that mark yet.
This proverb can be traced back to the 17th century, and we assume that gamblers were the ones who invented it. In most cases, we associate casinos with a night lifestyle, but a 74-year-old cool American lady proved it wrong by winning a whopping sum of money before breakfast time. How do you get almost $23 million just after you wake up? Johanna Heundl may have her recipe but, please, note that there is a chance it won’t work out for you.
So this respectable lady decided to play Megabucks and bet $170 which immediately turned into $22.6 million. At first, Johanna thought that her win was $2 million and she said that this sum already had made her very happy. However, when she found out that she’s a multimillionaire, she was just over the moon.
How would you feel about all of a sudden winning around $700,000 at once? It does sound like that would be the best day of your life. You may think that such lucky occasions don’t just happen to anybody. Some people who engage in gambling claim that it’s all about karma, some are sure that you need to find the right slot machine and others believe in lucky numbers or omens. No matter what your beliefs are, we all know that big wins at casinos are scarce. How about two huge wins in a lifetime? Okay, we won`t intrigue you anymore. Because having two wins in a lifetime is the story of a 67-year-old American lady who never thought she would become a millionaire.
Does anyone of us think of this though? Unfortunately, the name of this woman remains unknown, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is her story. It was the year of 1996 when she just walked in a casino, decided to bet about a hundred bucks, and ended up winning $680,000. A couple of months later, the same adventurous lucky lady came back to bet $300. She had no idea she would turn into a millionaire in a couple of minutes. She won almost $28 million at Megabucks which is a slot game. What can we say? Wow! Just wow!
Do we hear a wave of disagreeing voices among our audience? Good! We need you to think in all possible directions now, and yes, we`re still talking about massive casino winnings. So let’s start with a question `What are you willing to give up to become a multimillionaire?` If you had to answer this as a part of a social survey, we bet your answer would differ drastically from the one you’ll give yourself right now. Usually, only people who have a plethora of financial opportunities say that money isn’t the central thing in life.
Now we switch to a lady who won almost $35 million at a casino in 2000? This girl, Cynthia, may know a thing or two about how the whole gambling world works from within because she was waiting tables at Las Vegas when the time of her golden opportunity came. She bet a couple of times and ended up with a humongous sum of money in her pocket. Hm-m, you need a large pocket to fit $34.9 million in there! What did Cynthia do with her money? Our girl got herself a dream wedding. No, she didn’t spend it all on the ceremony and reception, she wasn’t a Kardashian!
A couple of weeks after the happiest day of her life (and we mean the casino win, not the wedding), Cynthia got into a horrific car accident which took the life of her sister and left herself paralyzed forever. People shamelessly speculated about this story for years. Some of them were saying that it’s karma, some started pointing out that it was a case of a big casino win and some agreed that it`s fascinating, yet a tragic example of a rare coincidence of the biggest luck and the biggest failure in a lifetime of one human being.
Furthermore, we`re not talking about professional athletes right now though you don’t want to check out salaries of NBA players. There is a chance this information will make you feel depressed. A guy whose name nobody knows decided that if he didn’t play basketball, it still could help him become wealthy. However, he didn’t realize it at the very beginning of this story. Back in 2003, this man wanted to kill some time because he came to a basketball game too early. There was a casino nearby, and he must have thought `Why not?` This Fortune’s favorite human being spent only a $100 and won, get this, almost $40 million!
Now, try to tell us that you`re so happy for that guy and you`re not jealous at all. By the way, if you didn’t know, when you win big, like really big at a casino, you have an opportunity to take your money in parts. What if you blow them away and won’t be able to manage your eagerness to bet more and more? It happens to many people who tasted big bucks at a casino and smelled a colossal pile of cash. So this dude (it’s not disrespectful, it`s just that we don’t know his name) decided that casino should be paying him out $1.5 million annually during 25 years. It was a right choice because you never know when your inner gambling junkie wakes up and this way, you get to save your money, lead a luxurious lifestyle, and avoid a possibility of losing it all.
How about winning a couple of dozens of millions of bucks at a casino, then lose almost all of it, then come back, win even more, blow that money, and be left only with a couple of millions? Yep, we’re saying `only` a couple of millions like it’s not a sufficient amount of money. It’s just that when you find out how much Mr. Archie Karas won and lost in total, you`ll see the whole picture. So this man is easily a gambling legend, and every professional in this industry knows about his achievements. How do we tell Archie Karas story so it will be clear?
He’s just an incredibly lucky fellow who always managed to win more than he lost. Archie the gambler used to borrow money from his friends and still paid them back with interest. Archie`s biggest award from a casino was $40 million, but he didn’t win all at once, it`s a collective sum of money, but it’s a record-breaking one, so it’s definitely worth a good piece of attention on our list. Mr. Karas lost more than $10 million playing craps and almost $20 million playing baccarat. Moreover, it only took him three weeks! He then took some time off gambling to have a rest and think of better ways of spending his money. Nevertheless, he blew the remaining $10 million in Las Vegas.
However, this man didn`t give up that easily. After quite some time, he was back in a gambling saddle. Archie borrowed money from friends and even won a million bucks! Unfortunately, he got caught cheating and was banned from all American casinos for the rest of his life. What can we say? At least, his life was far from being boring! His ups and downs are featured in a book among the best casino stories, along with celebrities reckless habits and the world’s most ridiculous bets.
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