Casinos and Gambling in Poland

In Poland there are currently 40 legal casino. Most of them are situated in hotels. The oldest operator in Poland is a company Casinos Poland which has been introduced in 1988. Other operators on polish market include Orbis Casino Group and Olympic Entertainment Group.

History of casinos in Poland
First casino in Poland was opened on August 6th 1930 in Sopot. A year later a copartnership Zoppoter Kasino G.m.b.H was created, most of the shares where the property of Sopot commune. Casino offered roulette and baccarat, only adults over 21 years of age were allowed to go in. Private rooms were reserved for special guests. Casino attracted a large number of players and generated satisfactory earnings, therefore a decision to build hotel in which casino guests could stay was made. This hotel was opened on June 30th of 1927. In 1945 casino with its building complex was destroyed by the Red Army. However gambling traditions were not demolished with this event. In the same place casino was opened again in 1989. Thanks to Polfererries (Polish Baltic Shipping Company) with headquarters in Kolobrzeg gambling was developing in times of communism. On the ferries sailing to Scandinavia there were small casinos offering roulette, blackjack and one-armed bandit. For many years it was the only place where gambling was legal. First casino in Poland opened after WWII was casino “Pod różą” operating since July 15th 1989. It was opened by introduced a year earlier casino net: Casinos Poland LLC. Polish casinos belong as well to Olympic Entertainment Group and Orbis Casino Group. There are few independent casinos as well.
Legal regulations
In Poland gambling market is regulated and controlled by Ministry of Finance. It gives out 6 years licenses to casinos. A permission to run casinos in Poland can be obtained by companies which have the status of joint-stock company or of limited liability company, are registered on the territory of Poland and have minimal company’s capital of 3,9 mln zl (985 000 euro). In cities which have less than 250 thousands of residents there can only be one casino. For each consecutive 250 thousands of residents the number of casinos rises by one. Adults over 18 years old are allowed to enter. Advertising gambling is prohibited. On the other hand there are no regulations to protect a player. In Poland gambling is regulated by the act of gambling from November 19th 2009 with the changes from May 26th 2011.
Where when and what to play in Polish casinos?
On the territory of Poland there are 43 casinos. They are mainly situated in hotels. Casinos offer players roulette, blackjack, different forms of poker and slot machines. Poker tournaments are organised as well. Casinos are usually opened until morning hours, some are opened 24/7.
Cities in which land casinos are found: 
  • Bielsko-Biała
  • Bydgoszcz
  • Chełm
  • Częstochowa
  • Elbląg
  • Gdańsk
  • Gdynia
  • Gorzów Wielkopolski
  • Jastrzębie Zdrój
  • Katowice
  • Kielce
  • Kraków
  • Lublin
  • Łódź
  • Olsztyn
  • Płock
  • Poznań
  • Rzeszów
  • Sopot
  • Sosnowiec
  • Szczecin
  • Tychy
  • Warszawa
  • Wrocław
Online Casinos in Poland
Currently after the introduction of changes to gambling law from 2009, online gambling is prohibited. Because of that online casinos cannot legally operate in Poland. Introduced changes include a prohibition of taking part in gambling but this aspect is hard to enforce. Polish players have access to and use international casinos which have their web sites in Polish and English language, currencies available in them include polish zloty, euro and American dollar. 
Legal regulations
Changes to a gambling law from 2009 were introduced on May 26th 2011. In accordance with new law online gambling is prohibited. This bans do not concern mutual bets led by bookmakers, which have a license. However because of lack of precise definition of gambling in the law, it is not known what is truly prohibited. Enforcing this law is therefore prohibited.
Hit the jackpot in Sopot and split his winning
In 1920‘s Sopot’s casino was literally full of guests from around Poland and other countries. On July 30th 1928 engineer Glinski from Warsaw visited it. He played roulette that evening and was choosing random numbers. Such tactic brought him luck because he hit a jackpot and won 2 million guldens (around 3,5 million of before war zlotys - more than 824 thousand of euro). According to “Gazeta Gdanska” (daily newspaper) a player after winning gave 100 thousands of guldens to a charity which helped the poor and afterwards he left casino.
The highest winnings of polish casinos
Players of polish casinos sometimes do have real luck. A high prize was won by a winner of European Poker Tour taking place in Casinos Poland Hyatt Hotel in Warsaw in 2009. He won over 2 million zlotys (more than 487 thousand of euro). In 2011  in Casinos Poland Marriott Hotel in Warsaw a player had won 1,7 million zlotys (more than 414 thousand euro) on a slot machine. Moreover, on October 15 2009 in Casinos Poland in Altos, Katowice, a player has won a prize of more that 400 thousand zlotys (more than 97 thousand euro) in a Mega Jackpot slot machine.

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