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Casinos and gambling in Slovakia
Slovakia, when compare to other European Countries is not a power of gambling, however gambling industry is not bad at all and there are several casinos throughout the country. The largest of them belong to the Estonian Olympic, but indigenous company - Casinos Slovakia - has its casinos here as well.
LAND BASED CASINOS
History of casinos in Slovakia
Roots of gambling in Slovakia go back to the 19th century, than horse racing was of great popularity there. They were organised for the first time in 1840 by the Racing Association. The first hippodrome was made in Bratislava in 1868 and since than this branch of gambling developed rapidly in Slovakia. Currently horse racing in Slovakia is supervised by Turf Direktorium Für Die Slowakei, a company which is a member of the International Federation of Horseracing based in France. In the early 1990‘s in Slovakia land based casinos started to emerge. Currently there are 8 of them and most of them belong to two operators. Casinos Slovakia is a gruop which was formed in 1990 and first casino under its name opened in 1991 in Piestany. The second grand operator in Slovakia is a company founded in Estonia, Olympic Casinos, which opened its first casino in Slovakia in 2008 in the Radisson Blu Carlton Hotel in Bratislava.
Gambling is Slovakia is supervised by the Ministry of Finance, which alone has the authority to license entities associated with gambling. In contrast the Tax Office leads tax information service in the field of games of chances and keeps a central register of gambling operators. Tax Office is also responsible for monitoring compliance with the terms of the license included in the act. The main piece of legislation that regulates the gambling sector in Slovakia is Act No. 171/2005 concerning gambling and additional changes made in 2011 and 2012. The Ministry of Finance issues licences to casinos for the maximum of 10 years. Each newly created casino must have 500 thousand euro minimum financial guarantee, and have a share capital of 1 659 600 euro. Under current law, access to the casinos have adults over 18 years of age. This condition is meticulously followed and at the entrance to the casino players often are asked to show their ID.
Where, when and what to play in the Slovak casinos?
In Slovakia there are currently 8 licensed, land based casinos, located in 6 cities cross the country. Three of them are found in the country’s capital - Bratislava. Casinos in Slovakia are opened each day until morning hours, some are even open 24/7. Players in casino offers will find American Roulette, blackjack, poker, electronic roulette, slot machines. Poker tournaments are also held here.
Cities in which lands based casinos are found:
Internet Casinos in Slovakia
In Slovakia there are no Internet casinos, however Slavak players can play at foreign operators, which offer casinos and sports betting online. Besides the will of administration to block websites of foreign operator, players still have access to them, because such an idea was not accepted. For Slovak players there are slovakian and english sites, end bets are accepted in euros and American dollars.
Gambling online in Slovakia is regulated by sections 9 and 29 of the Gambling Act 2005. Even though playing in online casinos is not prohibited, licences to operate such casinos in Slovakia are not given. The only exception is a monopolist in online gambling, Tipos lottery operator - company under Ministry of Finance. Private companies can offer online sports bets under a regulation that they are not lead by Internet. In 2011 Ministry of Finance rejected the offer concerning blocking international operators of web sites operating without a permission on the Slovakian territory. Black list of web sites was to be actualised twice a month but this idea in the end was criticised by Ministry of Justice and European Commission because it was acknowledged as a step to censor Internet.
Information for players choosing Slovakia as their destination:
To visit a casino in the Slovakia’s capital - Bratislava - once can choose the following routes:
from New York
• In January from $1200
• In July $1393
• in January from 110€
• in July from 159€
• In January from $2433
• In July from $4243
• in January from 210€
• in July from 732€
• in January from $1961
• In July from $2090
• in January from $1531
• In July from $1927
• in January from $1885
• in July from $485
AS A CURIOSITY
World Poker Tour in Bratislava
In many casinos in the world poker tournaments are popular. In 2011 World Poker Tour came to Bratislava. The tournament was won by Welshman Roberto Romanello who in the final confrontation won against Maya Roca. The winner got a prize of 140 685 €.