GAMBLING will come to Palma bay when a new casino opens in the Playa de Palma before summer 2018, pending the agreement of final details between Hipotels and the Casino de Mallorca company.
There are three casinos in the Balearics – Porto Pi in Mallorca, Mahon in Menorca, and Ibiza Town – and under gaming laws established in 2014, each casino is allowed to open a second, but smaller branch. Regulations mean that the new Palma casino will be limited to 450 square metres – just 60 per cent of the size of the existing casino in Port Pi.
The casino will be within easy reach of Palma airport, between the two Hipotel-owned hotel complexes – Gran Playa de Palma and Playa de Palma Palace. The owners believe the location should guarantee a steady footfall of clients, even outside the tourist season. The search for the ideal location began at the end of summer after approval had been granted from Brussels and the Balearic government, following the establishment of new laws aimed at further developing the local gaming industry.
The Balearic Government’s director-general for trade and business, Pilar Sansó, has said online that the new casino branch will be “positive in terms of job creation and economic benefits”.
Gaming regulations, put together and approved by the Balearic Islands Gaming Commission, also insist on player protection measures; casinos must make the dangers of gambling addition clear to all clients.
Balearic laws prohibit a concentration of gambling and betting shops in one area – there must be a distance of at least 500 metres between gambling premises in Palma.