Shills: Catching flies with honey
Baccarat or punto banco is one of the few games where casinos employ shills. Shills are people (usually attractive, well-dressed women) the casino pays to sit and play at the table. Although they typically make smal! bets (with house money),their presence adds greatly to the ambiance of the baccarat tables. Shills are also a great inducement to lure single men to the table — and get them to bet more and longer than they normally would.
punto banco by any other name
Whether formal or minibaccarat, the game I explore in this chapter is American, or Nevada-style, baccarat. Some also cal) it punto banco, where punto means player, and banco is the bank.
Another variation of baccarat is chemin de fer, played ma inly in France. This form of baccarat differs from the American game in that you can often choose whether to take a third card. In this version, the casino has no stake in the game because the players bet among them¬selves, and the house makes its money from taking a 5 percent commission on winning bank hands.
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