The entire process of living in Zimbabwe is something of a gamble at the current time, so you could envision that there would be little appetite for visiting Zimbabwe’s casinos. In fact, it appears to be functioning the other way, with the awful economic circumstances leading to a greater eagerness to wager, to try and find a quick win, a way out of the crisis.

For almost all of the people living on the tiny local earnings, there are two established types of betting, the national lottery and Zimbet. As with almost everywhere else on the planet, there is a national lotto where the probabilities of winning are surprisingly low, but then the winnings are also extremely high. It’s been said by economists who look at the subject that the lion’s share don’t buy a ticket with an actual assumption of winning. Zimbet is based on one of the local or the British football divisions and involves predicting the results of future matches.

Zimbabwe’s gambling halls, on the other shoe, pamper the exceedingly rich of the society and travelers. Until a short while ago, there was a very big tourist industry, built on safaris and visits to Victoria Falls. The economic anxiety and associated violence have carved into this market.

Amongst Zimbabwe’s gambling dens, there are 2 in the capital, Harare, the Carribea Bay Resort and Casino, which has 5 gaming tables and one armed bandits, and the Plumtree gambling hall, which has only slots. The Zambesi Valley Hotel and Entertainment Center in Kariba also has just slot machines. Mutare has the Monclair Hotel and Casino and the Leopard Rock Hotel and Casino, the two of which have gaming tables, slots and video machines, and Victoria Falls houses the Elephant Hills Hotel and Casino and the Makasa Sun Hotel and Casino, each of which offer gaming machines and tables.

In addition to Zimbabwe’s gambling halls and the previously alluded to lottery and Zimbet (which is very like a parimutuel betting system), there are also two horse racing tracks in the country: the Matabeleland Turf Club in Bulawayo (the second metropolis) and the Borrowdale Park in Harare.

Given that the economy has diminished by more than 40% in recent years and with the associated deprivation and conflict that has come about, it isn’t known how well the sightseeing industry which is the backbone of Zimbabwe’s gambling halls will do in the next few years. How many of the casinos will be alive until conditions improve is merely unknown.