While COVID-19 continues to ravage the world, the residents of Western Australia have fared better than most. In fact, casino gambling is about to return to the state in earnest.

Crown Casino Perth Reopening

While new infections have delayed the reopening of their Victoria property, Crown Casino is scheduled to open the doors to their Perth location on June 27th. This is great news for WA punters, especially when you consider that the casino has been closed since late March.

According to a spokesperson, “Crown has worked closely with government and health authorities to ensure that our reopening can be done in a safe manner for the community, and in compliance with all government mandates including physical distancing requirements and hygiene measures.”

Games of poker will be limited to five players per table. Also, every other pokie on the gaming floor will be turned off to ensure social distancing.

COVID-19 Infection Spikes in Victoria

While things are looking up in Western Australia, Victoria has recently experienced a spike in the number of coronavirus cases. Perhaps most alarming, the state has also seen an uptick in the number of community transmissions.

As of June 25th, the total number of cases in Victoria stands at 1,917. Of these, 1,602 were reported in Melbourne.

On June 1st, limits had been relaxed to allow up to 20 people to mingle in households or public gatherings. However, that’s no longer the case, as the state has renewed restrictions limiting gatherings to five in households and 10 outdoors.

This has also resulted in an extension of the state of emergency for Victoria. The new expiration date has been extended to July 19th, so don’t expect the Crown Melbourne to open before then.

VIP gaming area at the Crown Casino in Perth Australia

Good News for Western Australia

On June 25th, the WA Department of Health listed the total infections in Perth at 12. Of that number, only a single case was reported as active. That’s an impressive number, especially when you consider that COVID-19 has infected more than nine-million individuals in 213 nations and territories.

Overall, Western Australia has been remarkably fortunate throughout the crisis. Since the pandemic started, the WA areas with the largest number of confirmed infections include Joondalup (41), Stirling (38) and Wanneroo (33). Currently, no town or city is reporting more than a single active infection.

Earlier this week, Premier Mark McGowan announced the state would be moving into phase four. This includes the following:

  • Removal of existing limits on gatherings (although the two-square-metre rule is still in effect).
  • 50% capacity at entertainment and sports venues.
  • Gyms can remain open without a staff.
  • Casino gaming floors will reopen, although every second pokie must be turned off.
  • Customers can now remain standing at bars and restaurants.
  • Resumption of public transportation.
  • Events will be permitted, with the exception of large-scale, multi-stage music festivals.
  • Hospitality venues no longer have to maintain a register of customers.

Phase four will stay in effect for three weeks. If everything remains stable, phase five will then be introduced. At this point, the restrictions on 50% capacity, major gatherings, and the two-square-metre rule will be lifted.

Phase Six

Eventually, the goal is to reach phase six, which is a total reopening of the state. This will include reopening the state borders, which have been closed since April.

However, the premier is in no hurry to put a date on this milestone. According to him, the original target date for phase six was August 8th, but this has been delayed due to the new outbreaks in Victoria.

“To be clear, the WA hard border will only be removed when the chief health officer of Western Australia is confident the spread of the infection is controlled in the Eastern States. Our position is crystal clear on this.”

Additional Reading

For more gambling-related news, please see the following articles: