Casinos Using Scents To Keep People Gambling

By Stephen Douglas
Jun 8, 2011, 6:00 PM EDT

While top casinos already use their signature scents in the ventilation systems to augment ambiance, the future may see a more focused use of scent specifically to enhance risk-taking behavior in gamblers.

“Our sense of smell is the only [sense] that circumvents our rational sense of thinking and connects directly to the emotions,” Sudhir Kale, marketing consultant for many casinos in Macau such as City of Dreams and Star World, told the South China Morning Post.

I’ve heard of casinos pumping oxygen so people stay awake and free drinks to keep people gambling, but the idea of pumping scents is a new one. The story says that Vegas hotels have experimented with casino odors since 1994. I’ve never noticed the smell in a casino – aside from cigarette / cigar – but I guess that’s the point.

I’m having a hard time deciding what scent would keep me gambling. I’m guessing it would be Christmas cookies or pine tree. Maybe cranberry chutney. Something you could find in Yankee Candle.