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Discovering casinos in Malta: from real to virtual

As is now well known, Malta is the island of gambling: from real and virtual casinos, the sector confirms itself as one of the most influential and dynamic on the island, ready for a great restart once the coronavirus emergency is behind us.

Let’s discover this world of gaming starting with a summary of the main Maltese casinos, frequented both by tourists and by the resident population.

The first of these is the Olympic Casino Malta. Located in Eden Place, it is the newest on the island, opening in late 2015. It is also the largest, with a mix of Las Vegas-style entertainment and gaming in a space of 3,000 square meters. The casino houses 29 tables including 10 poker tables and 300 slot machines. On weekends you can catch a show by various performers or relax in the comfortable bar lounge.

Then there is the historic Dragonara Casino. Housed in a 19th century mansion by the sea in St Julian’s, it has retained much of its original architecture and interior design. First converted into a casino in 1964, it underwent an extensive renovation in 2010 and now features an exciting design and some of the world’s best gaming equipment, with more than 300 slot machines, 18 live table games and more. Open 24 hours a day, it also offers hospitality packages that include lunch and dinner at a celebrated brasserie.

Located on Qawra’s waterfront, the Oracle Casino on the other hand hosts a variety of daily poker tournaments, table games and slot machines. Visitors can also gamble live in the Sports Lounge, or enjoy live entertainment at the Oracle Casino Bistro restaurant, which features Mediterranean cuisine.

Finally, there is the Portomaso Casino, part of the Portomaso residential and recreational complex in the heart of St Julian’s, which has a minimum entry age of 18 for foreigners and 25 for Maltese, and has become a hub for gambling, leisure, entertainment, and dining.

But perhaps an even more thriving sector is online gaming, as Malta is renowned worldwide as the industry’s gold standard for its innovative gambling regulation, which has attracted a large number of operators. The regulatory authority responsible for the supervision of all gaming regulations is the Malta Gaming Authority: since its inception in 2001 it has accompanied the growth of the online gambling industry with the biggest names on the international scene, covering in recent years over 12% of the country’s GDP.

But what are the advantages granted by Malta to obtain a gaming license?

The Maltese gaming license is highly prestigious as it is one of the most respected in the world: in the gambling environment Malta is associated with fairness and transparency.

Social and economic stability is another attractive factor for the Mediterranean island, whose government is known to be very welcoming to international businesses with an adaptable and flexible regulatory system for companies wishing to apply for a license.

Other benefits include access to more markets, the ability to advertise products and platforms in all EU markets, tax benefits and more.

It must also be said, however, that obtaining a gaming operator’s license in Malta is not easy: and this is one of the reasons for trusting operators who already have one. Supervisors want to ensure that they are working with honest and reputable companies in order to keep the reputation of their jurisdiction intact. This translates into timeframes that are not short, documentation that needs to be produced and interviews that need to be conducted especially in order to properly implement CFT/AML, responsible gaming and underage gaming policies.

This might mean that a Malta gaming license might not be the best option for smaller operators, such as startup brands, but it definitely represents a great option for large-scale multinational companies.

All in all, Malta is a great place to visit for those looking for a safe and fun casino experience, as well as an attractive tourist destination. And for fans of online casino games, joining a platform with a gaming license issued by the MGA can be a guarantee of reliability and transparency.

To develop your business project in the world of gaming or verify the requirements for applying for a license in Malta, rely on the support of the team of Malta Business Agency.

Giovanni Guarise
Giovanni Guarise
Professional journalist since 2010, over the years as a freelance he has dedicated particular attention to the world of Small and Medium Enterprises, creating in-depth studies and focuses for various newspapers, and collaborating in communication activities for a trade association in Veneto.
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