The world may be gripped by coronavirus, but some hope that normality will return has come courtesy of casino operator Paradise Co Ltd.
The operator has reopened four of its venues in South Korea, marking the end of a one-month shutdown. As of Monday, Paradise City Casino, Incheon, Paradise Casino Walkerhill, Seoul, and Paradise Casino Busan were all accepting bets.
The trio of openings came seven days after Paradise Casino Jeju Grand started operations again on April 13.
South Korea Easing Coronavirus Containment Measures
The decision to reopen came after South Korean Prime Minster Chung Sye-kyun eased social distancing measures. As the daily number of infections leveled out at 20, Sye-kyun gave the green light for a degree of normality to resume.
Although efforts are still being made to avoid contact, some businesses and sports venues have reopened. According to eye-witness reports given to the World Economic Forum, golf courses “brimmed with visitors” over the weekend.
In line with the easing, news site GGRAsia confirmed that all four Paradise casinos are open for business. However, what’s not clear is whether the company has implemented any safety measures.
We know from Las Vegas that at least one poker room will change the way it operates once it’s allowed to reopen. A 23-page plan released by Wynn Resorts outlines how its casinos will screen players using thermal cameras.
All equipment will be sanitized on a regular basis and everyone will be encouraged to wash their hands regularly. The plan was published by Wynn in an effort to get Las Vegas businesses back on track as soon as possible.
Paradise Co Ltd Positioned to Show Casinos Can be Safe
The reopening of four casinos in South Korea may not have a domino effect that prompts immediate changes in Vegas and beyond. But, it may be viewed as a testing ground. If Paradise Co Ltd can control the spread of disease and South Korea’s infection rates hold firm, it will send out a positive message.
It’s important to note that all four casinos are only open to foreigners. Under South Korean law, natives aren’t allowed to gamble in these venues. Therefore, the immediate influx of customers may be low as only non-natives already in South Korea can enter.
Only after international travel bans are lifted will the safety of casinos truly be tested. Regardless, the fact remains that casinos are starting to reopen.
Even though online poker and casino sites are enjoying a purple patch, a significant part of the industry is struggling. If Paradise Co Ltd can get through the coming weeks without any coronavirus-related issues, it should serve as a beacon of hope to operators around the world.