Casinos are engaging venues that draw in millions of visitors per year – but what makes them so magnetic? A new book by professor Bill Friedman delves into this issue to reveal the design principles that draw people to casinos and what makes them come back for more.

In his book called Designing Casinos to Dominate the Competition, Friedman analyses the design elements that are common in the most successful casino in Nevada’s history. The success of each design element was based on the total casino win, lot occupancy rate, and player count. His list of design principles includes:

-          Gambling Equipment Immediately Inside Casino Entrances Beats Vacant Entrance Landings and Empty Lobbies

-          The Maze Layout Beats Long, Wide, Straight Passageways and Aisles

-          Low Ceilings Beat High Ceilings

-          Gambling Equipment As the Décor Beats Impressive and Memorable Decorations

-          Pathways Emphasizing the Gambling Equipment Beat the Yellow Brick Road

-          A Physically Segmented Casino beats a Completely Open Barn

-          Short Lines of Sight Beat Extensive Visible Depth

-          Standard Décor Beats Interior Casino Themes

-          Perception Beats Reality

-          Multiple Interior Settings and Gambling Ambiances Beat A Single Atmosphere Throughout

In addition to analysing each casino design principle, Friedman takes a look at several successful casino designs. The venues include: MGM Grand, Excalibur, Luxor, New York-New York and Harrah’s Del Rio. It is very interesting to note the specific considerations that go into the design of casinos in Las Vegas.

These principles certainly apply to a wide range of casinos around the world, especially in gambling hubs like Macau and Manila. For more information on casino design, read more about the report on io9.