Capital city Tallinn celebrates another successful playing year
Estonia, one of the smallest European countries, is becoming one of the most popular destinations for players seeking gaming excitement abroad.
Although the country only has a population of one million, Estonia is home to 139 casinos. Its capital, Tallinn was listed by an international magazine as one of the top three cities in Europe for gaming. With over 90 casinos, the city came third behind London and Dublin in the poll. The luxurious casinos of Monte Carlo came fourth.
The magazine described Tallinn as "the third hottest destination for gaming in Europe," adding: "Forget trips to outlandish casinos in Miami and Vegas... It's all about playing in Tallinn." The capital has seen increased success in off and online gaming and the Tallinn casino industry has grown considerably over the past year. The rise of online games and online casinos have contributed a large proportion of this growth.
Since its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, Estonia has embraced the casino industry like few other countries. 80 per cent of the Estonian population has tried some form of casino gaming and just under 20 gaming companies have set up casinos - including online casinos - in the country.
Because of the large amount of gaming halls available, the country has become a popular destination for players seeking games like blackjack, poker and roulette. The success of the gaming industry in Estonia was highlighted in May 2007 with the victory of Estonian native, Henri Kasper, in the annual Baltic Open Championships, held in Tallinn.
Priit Pajumaa, the organiser of the competition, says the event gets better each year: "In 2003 we had 30 players in the main tournament and 143,000 Estonian Kroons in prize money. The two-day main competition in 2007 attracted 95 players who were competing for EEK1.48 million in prize money."