Soviets Open 1st Casino--but It’s Only for Visitors

From Reuters

Soviet authorities, who traditionally call gambling a vice, have allowed the country’s first casino to open in Moscow--but only for foreigners.

The weekly Moscow News reported Wednesday that the casino had opened opposite Red Square in the Savoy Hotel, lavishly refurbished by a Finnish company.

“It had to reach international standards--so a casino was essential,” said Pekka Salmi, chief of Casino Amherst International.

The weekly said only foreigners will have access to the two roulette and three poker tables. Chips will be issued on international credit cards and winnings cashed outside the country on presentation of a special check.