As more and more Parisian gaming circles close, the idea of reintroducing casinos in the French capital - where they are currently banned - sparked a controversy. The project of a casino near Charles-de Gaulle airport, located in Roissy, might become reality.


More and more gaming circles close


8 out of 10 gaming circles have closed between 2008 and today. After the Cercle Cadet and the Aviation Club de France (on the Champs-Élysées) were put into liquidation, many staff members of the Cercle Clichy Montmartre, which is the last legal place in Paris to play Poker, lost their ministerial approval to work there.

Many scandals and gaming circles liquidation could lead to a new legal game offer in Paris.

Allowing casinos in Paris could be “the best solution to avoid more or less underground gambling dens“, French Minister of the Interior Bernard Cazeneuve told Le Monde.

Jean-Pierre Duport, Prefect and President of the Commission supérieure des jeux (French institution which regulates the French game industry), will release a report on gaming circles and the possible opening of casinos in Paris early June.


Debate


Paris city council would still have to agree for a casino to open in the capital. The thing is, for Mayor Anne Hidalgo, it is essential to deal with the gaming circles issue, but other political parties such as the Ecology Party (EELV), far left (PCF) and right (UMP) stand absolutely against the project. The French Centrist Party might be the only one to agree, on the condition that they allow work on Sunday. In French law, a casino can only be implanted in a «touristic city» where work on Sunday is allowed.

If casinos open one day in Paris, it could bring a lot of money to the city and to the French State and create hundreds of jobs. Today, the only casino in Paris region is located in Enghien-les-Bains, located 11 km away from Paris. According to the Mayor, if a casino opened in Paris, it would announce Enghien’s death. They would not be able to carry on their cultural policy and players who live in Paris would not have to go there anymore. Staff member union leader Jean-Christophe Tirat created an online petition against the opening of casinos in Paris. But meanwhile, another project might worry them as well.


A casino near CDG airport?


The Mayor of Roissy handed in the application for the city to be recognised by the State as a “business tourism resort“. If shortlisted, a casino could open by 2018.

It would be really close to Roissy-Charles de Gaulle airport, and it would be a part of a bigger project with hotels, offices, shops, car dealerships and a 90 ha golf course. They could start building it during the summer 2015.