ASTANA – Kazakhstan has its own Las Vegas and Atlantic City for people who want to try their luck, spend an unusual weekend or just observe the dynamic world of casinos. The country’s two main gaming areas, Borovoe (in the Akmola region) and Kapchagai (in the Almaty region), may be far from their American counterparts geographically, but they promise to provide visitors with a high level of service.
“I really like spending one or two weekends a year in Borovoe playing in casinos. Of course, you have to think sensibly and rationally. For me, it is just a possibility to have a good time with my friends and sometimes a way to test my luck. I never spend more money than I can afford. And I feel like I am somewhere abroad, not in Kazakhstan. I have been in casinos in a few countries. I think the level here is quite good. Maybe it is not Las Vegas, but it is still okay,” said businessman Aslan Rakhimbayev in a recent interview for this story.
Gambling has been a topic of discussion for a long time. Casinos were formerly in cities, but have since been banned by law and moved to two specially-designated resort areas.
Cash Ville Casino is located in Borovoe’s Rixos Hotel. It is operated by East Casino Management Company, which also owns Astoria and Bombay casinos in Kapchagai. Cash Ville is one of the biggest and most luxurious casinos in Central Asia, according to boora.info, promising to provide European-level service. It has 50 gaming tables, where visitors can play American roulette, black jack, baccarat and the most popular forms of poker. The hotel provides discounts for casino visitors.
Imperial-M, which opened in Borovoe in 2009, provides more than 20 gambling tables including American roulette, black jack and five types of poker. It also has in excess of 50 slot machines including electronic roulette and the latest games. The casino has the first and only license in Central and Northern Kazakhstan to operate a slot machine hall.
Lafayette, with its different types of gambling tables, is another destination for people who sometimes like to try their luck. According to boora.info, “Casino Lafayette is an atmospheric place with excellent background music, bar and restaurant. Refreshing or hot drinks, light cocktails or heavy alcohol will help you relax and relieve the tension of the game. It provides an opportunity to rest and the restaurant offers Japanese and Kazakh cuisine.”
There are several other casinos on the resort territory. Eurasia and Diamond may not be as large, but promise to provide good service and a good time.
Kapchagai resort has its own gaming activities, such as Bombay Casino. “This modern entertainment complex in the southern playing area of Kazakhstan meets all modern trends of comfort and quality. Impeccable service, reliability, comfort and individual approach to each guest is guaranteed in Bombay Casino. The Victorian-style unique interior creates an atmosphere of comfort and luxury,” its website says.
The Bellagio invites visitors “to plunge into the world of excitement, fun and passions in one of the most respected casinos in Kazakhstan.” According to its website, the casino “guarantees each visitor impeccable service and reliability, as well as an unforgettable stay in an atmosphere of luxury and comfort. Each room in the hotel is designed in classic style and has everything you need for a comfortable stay.”
The resort has many other casinos, such as Astoria, Macao, Monaco and Ritz Palace.
Kazakhstan has a special law “On gambling business” signed in April 2007. Online casinos are prohibited and the law restricts the amount of gaming equipment in casinos, which must have at least 20 tables and not less than 50 machines. Citizens under the age of 21 are not permitted in the casinos and the taxes for gambling places are high.