Casinos in South Korea temporarily close due to Covid-19 cases

Senior Reporter

After resuming services post lowdown closures, South Korean casinos are forced to temporarily close due to surging Covid-19 cases linked with their properties. As of last week, South Korea had 1,556 new cases in just 24 hours, and extreme measures are being taken in hopes to knock the numbers back down. Social distancing, mask mandates, and vaccine requirements are expected to be amplified by the end of this August. The Greater Seoul area is at the moment under Level 4 social distancing rules, and an additional ban on private gatherings of three or more people after 6 p.m. is in place. At other times, private gatherings of five or more people are not allowed.

Casinos in South Korea temporarily close due to Covid-19 cases
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Covid-19 cases linked to South Korean casinos

Last week’s strike of Covid-19 cases in South Korea added 225,481 to a total number of infected, 2,167 of which died due to virus-related complications. Unfortunately, some casinos were to blame for the sudden spike, as 20 confirmed Covid-19 cases between August 12 and Monday were reported to be linked with Kangwon Land complex casino alone. Two happened to be casino employees, two catering workers, and at least 11 cases involved intern staff working at the resort’s water park. Sure enough, the facility is forced to close to slow down the spread.

While it’s a bummer for visitors, local casino lovers are also disheartened, as Kangwon Land is the only casino resort in South Korea that allows residents to legally gamble. Kangwon Land’s operator announced temporary closure from 10 am today (Monday, August 15), until 6 am on Wednesday (August 18). Additionally, the facility will remain at  30% of operational capacity until further notice.

Kangwon Land has already reduced the number of gaming table availability from 113 to 78 as soon as the first cases were reported, and a tally decided under a lot-drawing system – to 4,000 from 5,000. The water park and some restaurants in the facility also paused their operations as of August 13.

Other casinos in the region are forced to take a break from all operations as well. Paradise Casino Walkerhill, in South Korea’s capital Seoul, is undergoing closure from Saturday (August 14), until 3 pm on Tuesday (August 17). As a safety precaution, all guests that visited the facility from July 27 - August 8 are advised to take a Covid-19 test, although the operator has not commented on potential cases related to visitation during the dates.

According to Mason Korea, The Korean government has announced that it will place the greater Seoul area (Seoul, Gyeonggi, and Incheon) under the toughest social distancing rules of Level 4 for 2 weeks effective from July 26 to August 8. Social gatherings of more than 2 people are restricted after 6 pm. (social gatherings of up to 4 people are allowed until 6 pm). All events are restricted.

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