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 Hawaii Gambling & Casinos 

Hawaii casinos & Gambling

Hawaii is one of the two remaining states in the US where all forms of gambling are considered illegal (the other being Utah). There are neither casinos nor state lotteries in Hawaii. Any form of betting or pari-mutuel betting is not considered legal. Even games and raffles for charitable purposes are outlawed. So long as there?s an element of chance involving a reward or an item to be won, Hawaii Gambling Laws deem all of these as illegal.

Whereas any type of commercial gambling is outlawed here, social gambling remains legal. Social gambling is non-profit gaining and players are not entitled to win or lose anything of value. Games like bingo, and in some cases, poker, are allowed, as long as these follow the conditions set forth under ?social gaming? or otherwise known as the Hawaii Revised Statutes (Section 712-1231).

In a nutshell, this statute declares social gambling as a situation where:

  • Players contend on equal terms
  • Players must not receive anything of value other than his personal winnings. Nor are players supposed to pay anything of value to be able to play;
  • Players must not play in any public establishments like school grounds or churches.
  • Players must be of age in order to participate.
  • No corporation or entity benefits from such an activity
  • The activity does not involve book marking (wagering)

    Raffles and games sponsored by business establishments are legal, provided that purchases are not necessary to be able to join these.

    Hawaii Poker Scene

    In spite of these strict state laws, history has shown that gambling has long been a component of Hawaiian culture. Early on, ethnic groups introduced wagering games to plantation workers as a form of recreation. These games include cockfighting and pepito (stud poker).

    These days, what are commonly played in most Hawaiian homes, given the stringent state law terms, are Home Poker games or weekend pokers. On any given night, there are dozens of homes, living rooms and garages engaging in this activity, with many of them involving family, friends and acquaintances. Home poker activities have become so popular here that this has, in fact, become mainstream. In addition to this, TV shows like World Series of Poker, the World Poker Tour, the Legends of Poker, Poker Royale, have become very popular among Hawaiian households.

    Hawaii Casino Scene

    Recently, the state of Hawaii is contemplating on permitting casino gambling, either in a single area or particularly aboard cruise ships (shipboard casinos). One particular hotelier has expressed interest in obtaining Hawaii?s first gambling license by proposing to operate a casino resort. If the state goes to a vote and this proposal is approved, the casino resort shall be in operation in 2007. Other than the casino as its main attraction, this resort would also feature lodging, recreation and numerous shopping facilities that would help increase state revenues and provide additional jobs.

    At the moment, this proposal still remains a hot topic for debate among the proponents of legalized casinos and those who are against it.

    Hawaii Pari-Mutuel Scene

    As any form of bookmarking, betting or wagering is not allowed in Hawaii, there are currently no pari-mutuel betting activities in this state.

    Follow the developments of Hawaii Casinos and Gambling at:

    Hawaii Gambling Forum
    Hawaii Casinos
    Hawaii Casino

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