The mention of Monte Carlo, evinces a notion of grand palaces, supreme yachts, Grand Prix in style and off-course, James Bond-caliber casinos. Monte Carlo is all together a sublime destination of scintillating pleasures and refined elegance. Opulence is redefined here in the cradle of wealth while cross the globe, perched over the rising sun, is Monte Carlo's kindred spirit, Macau. Unlike the western haven, the eastern cradle of indulgence is steeped in varied history dating back to almost half a millennium or more. From the time the Portuguese were replaced by the English and the Chinese after them, the evolution of this land's culture is simply epic.

Their histories may be diverse; their lands, contoured differently, but they share a common fate. Both are icons of a human condition epitomized in the spirit of competition and greed. There is nothing humble about the present architecture of these magnificent cities, there's is nothing muted about them. Visiting one or both of these cities, at least once in a life time is something that should be the goal of every traveler. It's a pilgrimage, of sorts, for the person who wants to come in touch with a side of himself that desires the fantasy of velvet and glitter from the everyday grind of canvas and monotony.

Some of the majestic sights in Macau will transform a travelers mind, body and spirit. From its breathtaking views of the ocean, to its splendid new world architecture and the lights that illuminate the plazas it transforms. These are the majestic optical illusions that await every visitor. But, there is something more. Each city, more so, Macau offers the allure of the casino, in all its splendor and potential. These casinos represent the very elixir that fuels the imagination when it comes to castles in the sky.

The notion of getting something for almost nothing - the search for that illusive bargain, to get the winning lottery ticket are all human emotions that reside deep beneath the surface. But once you set foot in a city like Macau, that is designed to unleash what you keep in check when you are not on vacation, surfaces with such ferocity, there is nothing to control it.

The Gambler
In some places it is called a vice. In others, it is a sin. But at the end of the day, it is just a fantasy. No different from a child's vision of theme parks and Disneyland. But what a fantasy it is. Some of the edifices that stand magnificently in Macau are beyond what most senses can fathom. It is beauty and luxury that is unparalleled. It will transport your mind to a different reality. A reality where you can enjoy the pleasures of being super rich and in vogue. It gives you the opportunity to face risk eye to eye and win. It gives you the opportunity to wrest the devil and be victorious. There is no other vacation like it. No other vacation can take you so far away from reality and convert your daily life into momentary glamour and carefree attitude.

The illusions of glamor, the audible festivities and the gastronomical opulence all come together to complete the experience. Your sense will be treated to such lofty degrees that descending to reality will take some time. But under all this veneer of grandeur lies the confluence of three very simple human traits. The desire to tempt fate and be a master of all things including chance, the desire to win against all odds and the desire for a good bargain - something for nothing. When this three meet, the result is the inevitable desire to risk it all on the throw of dice or to double down on a seemingly lost hand. Take away the bright lights, free cocktails velvet drapes and it is the thrill of the high stakes gamble that gets us all. However we no longer need to board a flight or sail the seas to visit these places of liberty, they are right at our fingertips. A few simple keystrokes and the fantasy may begin wherever we are, the chance to change a lifestyle, the chance to tempt fate, the opportunity to be the hero that won against the odds.