Campione d'Italia Casino closes its doorsA sad ending for the Campione d’Italia Casino which has just closed and which was the main source of income for the commune’s 2000 inhabitants. On the shores of the Swiss Lake Lugano, the Campione d’Italia Casino looks sad with its union that is on site and trying to attract the attention of politicians.

Banners show the dismay of the inhabitants, many of whom have spent their whole careers in this casino. The 500 town employees were all made redundant because of high wages and bad management. The Italian courts had ordered the closure of the Campione d’Italia Casino in July 2018.

However the Milan court had asked that the file be reopened because of a procedural question. So the casino’s closure has just been confirmed.

An Italian casino in Switzerland benefitting from interesting advantages

The Campione d’Italia Casino is in an unusual situation. In 777, Totone, a rich land owner donated Campione d’Italia to the Saint-Ambroise monastery in Milan. This Italian enclave is in Switzerland, 23 kilometres from Italy. The kilometre square enclave on the shores of the Swiss Lake Lugano is Italian.

On a fiscal level, the inhabitants of Campione d’Italia pay their taxes in Italy and benefit from interesting fiscal advantages. The inhabitants don’t pay VAT and have tax breaks based on a high cost of living. On the other hand, Switzerland features heavily in the daily life in this Italian enclave. The currency, the car registrations, telephone lines and many more aspects are completely Swiss.

Campione d’Italia Casino : One of the 4 Italian casinos

Italy only has 4 land based casinos : the Saint-Vincent Casino in the Aosta Valley, the Venice Casino, the San Remo Casino and the Campione d’Italia Casino. With the closure of this casino, Italy only has 3 casinos. This is in comparison to 200 French casinos. Even in Switzerland and Belgium, there are more casinos. With the Campione d’Italia Casino, locals were able to find work at the end of their military service. Many of the casino’s staff have only ever worked in the casino. Well known worldwide, the casino slipped into debt due to a number of factors. Allowing slot machines in bars and restaurants contributed to a drop in the number of clients.

Added to this was the exchange rate of the Swiss franc compared to the euro. Finally, the legalisation of online casinos in Italy had quite an impact on the casino’s income. The same is true for legal online casinos in Switzerland which would have worsened the situation if the casino hadn’t closed ( since the 1st of January 2019, online casinos are legal in Switzerland and the first gaming licences should soon be granted to certain Swiss operators– Editor’s note).

The Saint-Vincent casino is the only Italian casino accessible to online players. Several online roulette tables are filmed live from the casino using Authentic Gaming’s technology. So one can play live roulette from this Italian casino.