Mérida’s centros de entretenimiento are, or aren’t, casinos

Mérida has lots of casinos, or no casinos, depending on your source of information. Whatever you call them, there are several centros de entretenimiento with slot machines, bingo and sometimes sports betting. Don’t expect Vegas-style action. There are no card games, although some of the slot machines simulate blackjack or poker.

I don’t come across much comment about these places, but I was reminded they exist when I saw a news item about Play City at the Altabrisa mall. The software malfunctioned, the machines didn’t pay out, people were refunded their money and sent home, end of story.

But I was startled by the word “casino” in a headline on Sipse. They are either really low-key, or simply integrated into everyday life to the point of being hardly worth mentioning. Plus, they don’t exist in the historic center where the tourists go. Anywhere else, it seems gaming and tourism go hand-in-hand, but here it’s a pastime for the locals.

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