Illegal operations impinge on Tigre de Cristal

Casino Review - Russia illegal Tigre de Cristal
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A spate of illegal gambling operations in Russia has impacted the options of the Tigre de Cristal casino in the country’s Primorye gaming zone.


Illegal gambling operations in the Russian Far East have forced Tigre de Cristal casino in Primorye gaming zone to significantly scale back several of its gaming options.

Tigre de Cristal opened its doors in November 2015, the first of four gaming venues planned for the region, just outside Vladivostok. But while the casino has enjoyed strong VIP gambling growth, its other gaming options are struggling due to encroachment from illegal operations.

Craig Ballantyne, executive director of G1 Entertainment, which operates Tigre de Cristal, said the casino had been forced to trim its operating costs due to “widespread” illegal gambling in Primorye, which had forced the casino to cut back to 319 slots from 651 and trim its table quota from 67 gaming tables to 55.

Having opened with 10 tables devoted to Texas Hold’em Poker, the venue has now had to cancel its poker operations altogether.

Ballantyne citied the existence of around nine illegal poker clubs in Vladivostok as well as temporary casinos that had been opened in private houses and shops, with several slots halls disguised as Internet cafes.

He said illegal activities were being marketed on social media and urged the local authorities to take action on the issue to avoid causing licensed operators to rethink future expansion plans.

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