The act of living in Zimbabwe is somewhat of a gamble at the moment, so you could think that there would be little desire for supporting Zimbabwe’s gambling halls. In fact, it appears to be working the opposite way, with the desperate economic conditions leading to a higher desire to wager, to try and locate a quick win, a way out of the crisis.

For many of the locals subsisting on the meager local wages, there are two dominant styles of gaming, the national lottery and Zimbet. Just as with almost everywhere else on the globe, there is a state lotto where the chances of profiting are unbelievably low, but then the jackpots are also extremely big. It’s been said by market analysts who understand the situation that most don’t buy a ticket with the rational expectation of profiting. Zimbet is centered on either the local or the British soccer leagues and involves predicting the outcomes of future matches.

Zimbabwe’s gambling dens, on the other shoe, cater to the exceedingly rich of the country and tourists. Up till not long ago, there was a very substantial tourist industry, built on safaris and trips to Victoria Falls. The economic woes and connected conflict have carved into this trade.

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

In addition to Zimbabwe’s gambling dens and the aforementioned alluded to lottery and Zimbet (which is quite like a parimutuel betting system), there are a total of two horse racing complexes in the country: the Matabeleland Turf Club in Bulawayo (the second municipality) and the Borrowdale Park in Harare.

Seeing as that the market has shrunk by beyond 40% in the past few years and with the associated deprivation and violence that has come about, it isn’t known how well the sightseeing industry which is the foundation for Zimbabwe’s gambling dens will do in the near future. How many of them will still be around till conditions improve is basically not known.