Baccarat tables are one of the most exciting areas of any casino floor, but they do have some rules. Most of these revolve around etiquette and card dealing, but they are easy to learn, meaning that players can join in quickly. However, there are also a few strategies that should be understood early on.
The game of baccarat is played between two hands: the Banker and the Player. After the players have placed their bets, two cards are dealt to each hand. The objective is for the player to predict which hand will have a total closest to nine. If a player hand has a total of eight or nine, it is called a “natural,” and no third card is drawn. If a player’s hand is lower than nine, then the players must either subtract 10 from their total or drop the first numeral. Depending on house rules, the player hand may also have the option to draw a third card.
Whether betting on the Banker, the Player, or the Tie, players must understand the odds before placing a bet. This will help them to make informed decisions and determine which bets to place, based on the probabilities of each outcome. The house edge on the Player and Banker bets is a low 1.36 percent, while it is much higher for the Tie bet at 14.1 percent. This is largely due to the fact that intelligent players avoid making the tie bet altogether, and stick to the two main bets.
Baccarat was founded in 1764 in the town of Baccarat in the Lorraine region of eastern France, although there had long been a history of glass production in the area. The firm’s early success at the Great Exhibitions of the 19th Century led to royal patronage: Charles X visited the factory in 1828 and was so impressed that he commissioned an extensive glass dinner service for the Tuileries Palace. Baccarat would win several more medals at these events, and the company’s reputation was established worldwide.
In addition to the standard tableware, Baccarat produced a variety of other designs. The firm was responsible for the famous Harcourt glass, which became known for its prismatic lustre – an effect that caused it to reflect a range of colors in different light.
In the earliest days of the business, Baccarat’s products were shipped overseas to clients across Europe and beyond. The Russian Tsar Nicholas I was a particularly important customer, ordering two monumental Baccarat candelabra to decorate the palace of his new home in St Petersburg. The candelabra never made it to Russia, however, as the first world war broke out and the order was canceled. The pieces that did make it to the United States are now prized collectors’ items. The company still produces a wide range of glassware, including high-end wine glasses and vases. They can be purchased online and at many brick-and-mortar casinos. Baccarat’s most iconic pieces can be seen at the firm’s museum in Paris.