What most of the world hears about Lebanon isn’t what you’d think of a country where gambling is legal. As a small country in the Middle East with a population of just over 6 million people, it’s funny to envision Lebanon as the one country in the region where gambling is actually acceptable.
Most people view the country, and its war-torn capital of Beirut, as a country devasted by more than three decades of internal and external skirmishes which have left the nation devasted. Actually, that is not the case at all.
A Bit of Geopolitical Background
As one of the Arab allies of the West, Lebanon was recently shored up by the reassurance of the Trump administration in the United States that they would continue to sanction Hizballah, a faction which is a continued threat to pro-Western allies.
With powerful western allies promising monetary sanctions on Hizballah terrorists and a level of aid should the need arise, Lebanon now has the leverage it needs to act in autonomy from other countries like Saudi Arabia.
It is apparent that the charged geopolitical background of Lebanon is a huge concern to Lebanese nationals but that doesn’t stop them from enjoying a day at the one casino in the country, the one major race track, or an occasional game or two on the country’s one gambling ship that docks there. Perhaps it is because of this volatile backdrop that the Lebanese do enjoy a break from geopolitical concerns.
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Yukon Gold Casino
Captain Cooks Casino
Grand Mondial Casino
What Lebanon Has to Offer in Legal Gambling
As mentioned above, there is one legal brick-and-mortar casino in Lebanon and that looks like all there will be in the foreseeable future. The Casino du Liban is said to be holding up the opening of other land-based casinos because they claim to have petitioned government to deny foreign companies from opening gambling casinos there.
Whether true or another mark for the rumour mill, the fact is that there is still just that one casino, and now imagine a country with a population of six million trying to make room for all the gamers who want to play.
In this casino, at last count, there were 365 gambling machines and just under 60 tables to wage a bet on. These include Blackjack, Roulette tables, and Caribbean stud poker games. The casino does have seven restaurants on location, but even with that number, how many people can possibly be served in the course of an evening of ‘entertainment’?
Lebanese Passion for Online Gaming
What does all of the above say? First, many Lebanese are still shell shocked after so many years of wars, internal and external, terrorist attacks and political coups that they prefer to stay inside and gamble online. Added to that is the fact that there is only one casino to service the entire nation, the Lebanese have simply found that it is more convenient and enjoyable to simply stay at home and game online.
As a side note, the one casino that is in existence has been so since 1959 and has earned a reputation with foreign visitors. On most nights you are likely to see more foreign nationals in the casino than Lebanese patrons because the locals simply prefer to stay at home in relative safety and in the height of comfort.
They also prefer to cook their favourite meals like Kibbeh, Kafta or a quick snack of Hummus while gaming. It isn’t that they want to avoid mingling with foreigners, it’s simply their passion for gaming undisturbed by events which might be going on around them.
Four Online Casinos Favoured by Lebanese Gamers
So what online casinos do the Lebanese like to frequent? To answer that, you’d have to understand a bit about the culture, and knowing that they want more than to stand in a cramped space waiting for a machine or table to open up, Lebanese gamers favour online casinos that have huge assortments of online slots and tables. Four of the all-time favourites are as follows:
1. Yukon Gold
With a huge assortment of jackpots, progressive and instant, this is one of the country’s favourite online casinos. Yukon Gold has games like Triple 7s Blackjack, MegaSpins Slots, Poker, Roulette and so much more. When joining, you will find two exclusive games to play that aren’t found anywhere else on the Web and those would include the Casino Rewards Millionaires Club and the Casino Rewards VIP Slot.
2. Zodiac Casino
Joining Zodiac Casino is fun and easy and new Lebanese members like the fact that they get 80 chances to become instant millionaires for less than the cost of a Gyro sandwich! Online games include slot machines (virtual of course!), roulette tables, Blackjack, Poker and the digital acoustics are literally out of this world. No wonder this is a favourite site for those who don’t want to listen to the noisy throngs of people but would rather hear and focus on the games they play.
3. Captain Cooks Casino
Like the Zodiac Casino, Captain Cooks Casino has a sign on bonus to give new players a chance to be an instant millionaire – 100 chances that is! The flavour of the casino is modelled after the Old West in America where prospectors worked their way west to hit that rich vein of gold. Games include slots, roulette, and card games like Poker and Blackjack.
4. Grand Mondial Casino
It costs a little bit more to sign up for Grand Mondial Casino but this casino is held to be akin to those luxury casinos you will find on ocean liners. No, you can’t get a breakfast buffet, but you can get 150 chances to become an instant millionaire. Grand Mondial brings luxury into their home so that they can enjoy a quick hand of poker or a spin of the roulette wheel from the comfort and safety of home.
There you have a concise look at gambling casinos in Lebanon and a bit about why online casinos are so very popular. One thing you should take away from all this is that even decades of civil war isn’t going to prevent the Lebanese from having hope for the future. Their passion for gaming is one example of this hope kept alive in the midst of strife.