Ukraine’s Billionaire Casino Reopens After Overhaul, Gaming Laws Relaxed

Posted on: July 7, 2021, 10:42h. 

Last updated on: July 7, 2021, 02:07h.

The Billionaire Casino in the Ukraine capital of Kiev has reopened following a major overhaul of the VIP gaming space. 

Ukraine casino Kiev Billionaire Casino
The rich wood mahogany interior of the Billionaire Casino in Kiev, Ukraine, is seen. The casino space recently underwent a renovation and welcomed back gamblers to the capital gaming venue, located inside the InterContinental hotel. (Image: Billionaire Casino)

Located inside the five-star InterContinental Kiev, the Billionaire Casino has renovated the venue with luxurious table games manufactured by Abbiati Casino Equipment. The Billionaire Casino has placed 14 table games and roulette wheels produced by the Italian gaming manufacturer on its casino floor. 

The Billionaire Casino recently reopened for play with its red mahogany tables and roulette wheels. The boutique casino measures approximately 5,000 square feet.

We manufacture our handcrafted products at our facility in Italy, paying a lot of attention in choosing the highest quality raw materials,” said Giorgio Abbiati, owner of Abbiati Casino Equipment. “The Billionaire knows very well how we work, and it couldn’t choose anyone else for their casino, located in such an elegant building.”

The InterContinental hotel building dates back to 1638. 

Gambling Returns to Ukraine 

Ukraine and then-President Viktor Yushchenko outlawed casinos in 2009 following a fire in a gambling den in Dnipro that killed nine people. Online gambling was included in the prohibition.

But last year, current Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky opted to end the gaming ban. Zelensky signed the “State Regulation of Organizing and Conducting Gambling” act in July of 2020. 

That allowed casinos to reapply for operating privileges, so long as they met a host of criteria. That includes protections that the casino operation is not controlled by a Russian resident or business, and that no major shareholder in the organization is a Russian citizen. Shareholders must also not be from North Korea or Iran. 

Hotel casino licenses in Kiev cost €3.8million (US$4.5 million), and €2.2million outside the capital city. Casinos share 12.5 percent of their slot machine and table game revenue with the government.

Ukraine casinos are open to citizens and foreigners, so long as they’re at least 21 years old. 

The Billionaire Casino was the first gaming establishment to be recertified in the wake of the gambling prohibition being lifted. Along with its dozen table games, the Billionaire offers approximately 50 slot machines from manufacturers Novomatic, IGT, and EGT. 

Zelensky is a well-known foreign leader to Americans for his involvement in what led to Democrats bringing impeachment charges against then-President Donald Trump in early 2020. The Democratic-controlled US House of Representatives brought two charges — abuse of power and obstruction of Congress — for Trump’s phone call with Zelensky.

The Republican-controlled Senate later acquitted Trump, concluding that he did not break the law in asking Zelensky to investigate Hunter Biden and now-President Joe Biden’s dealings with Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings. 

US Advises Against Ukraine

The Billionaire Casino’s red mahogany tables are certainly much richer than those typically found in a US casino. But government officials currently warn Americans against traveling to Ukraine. 

Citing COVID-19 and increased crime and civil unrest, the US State Department tells Americans to reconsider traveling to Ukraine anytime soon. But in the future, the US hopes to better allow citizens to visit Ukraine.

“The United States remains dedicated to assisting Ukraine to advance its Euro-Atlantic aspirations in support of a secure, prosperous, democratic, and free Ukraine,” the State Department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs said last week.