[ English ]

The act of living in Zimbabwe is something of a risk at the current time, so you could imagine that there might be little appetite for supporting Zimbabwe’s casinos. Actually, it appears to be functioning the other way, with the atrocious market circumstances leading to a larger desire to play, to try and discover a fast win, a way from the crisis.

For nearly all of the people subsisting on the abysmal local wages, there are two dominant types of wagering, the state lottery and Zimbet. Just as with most everywhere else on the globe, there is a national lotto where the probabilities of hitting are extremely tiny, but then the prizes are also very high. It’s been said by financial experts who understand the situation that many don’t buy a card with a real belief of winning. Zimbet is based on either the domestic or the English soccer divisions and involves determining the outcomes of future games.

Zimbabwe’s casinos, on the other hand, cater to the incredibly rich of the state and tourists. Up until a short time ago, there was a considerably substantial sightseeing industry, based on nature trips and visits to Victoria Falls. The economic collapse and associated conflict have cut into this market.

Amongst Zimbabwe’s gambling halls, there are two in the capital, Harare, the Carribea Bay Resort and Casino, which has 5 gaming tables and slot machines, and the Plumtree gambling den, which has just the slot machines. The Zambesi Valley Hotel and Entertainment Center in Kariba also has only one armed bandits. Mutare contains the Monclair Hotel and Casino and the Leopard Rock Hotel and Casino, both of which contain table games, one armed bandits and video poker machines, and Victoria Falls houses the Elephant Hills Hotel and Casino and the Makasa Sun Hotel and Casino, the pair of which have slot machines and table games.

In addition to Zimbabwe’s gambling halls and the aforestated mentioned lottery and Zimbet (which is quite like a pools system), there are a total of 2 horse racing tracks in the country: the Matabeleland Turf Club in Bulawayo (the 2nd city) and the Borrowdale Park in Harare.

Given that the market has diminished by beyond 40% in the past few years and with the associated poverty and conflict that has come about, it is not known how well the vacationing industry which supports Zimbabwe’s gambling halls will do in the in the years to come. How many of them will be alive until conditions improve is basically unknown.