Christchurch Casino

Coordinates: 43°31′33″S 172°37′59″E / 43.52583°S 172.63306°E / -43.52583; 172.63306
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Christchurch Casino
Whare Petipeti o Ōtautahi (Māori)
Logo of Christchurch Casino
Main entrance to Christchurch Casino on Victoria Street
Address 30 Victoria Street
Christchurch, New Zealand
Opening date1994
Total gaming space4,087.5 m2 (43,998 sq ft)
Casino typeLand
OwnerSkyline Enterprises
Queenstown Tourist Co Limited[1]

Christchurch Casino is a casino in Christchurch, New Zealand, owned by Skyline Entertainment. The 4,087.5 m2 (43,998 sq ft) casino was New Zealand's first when it opened in 1994. The casino operates four hundred fifty slot machines and thirty-two table games. The property has two restaurants and one bar. Entry is restricted to patrons over 20 years of age who are dressed accordingly.[2][3]


Christchurch Casino is majority owned by Skyline Enterprises, however it has undergone several changes in its ownership structure over its lifetime.

On 29 June 2004, SkyCity Entertainment Group announced that it had settled the acquisition of Aspinall (NZ) Limited, which held a 40.5% shareholding in Christchurch Casinos Limited. The purchase price was NZ$93.75 million (on a debt-free basis). The deal marked the end of an era for Aspinall.

Skyline Enterprises, which controls a 41 per cent stake in the casino, had opposed SkyCity's purchase of a matching stake from Aspinall earlier in 2004. As part of his resistance to the deal, Mr. Thomas refused to cooperate with overdue diligence. Skyline had attempted to purchase the 41 per cent stake from Aspinall but had been rebuffed. [4]

Skyline Enterprises chairman Barry Thomas had objected to the SkyCity purchase on the basis that it gave SkyCity an interest in five out of six New Zealand casinos. The deal was nonetheless approved by both the Casino Control Authority and the Commerce Commission. In clearing SkyCity's application, the Commerce Commission said that the deal would not substantially restrict competition in the Auckland, Christchurch and Dunedin casino entertainment markets.[5]

SkyCity Entertainment Group Managing Director, Evan Davies, said that SkyCity's acquisition of the shares in Aspinall and its interest in CCL was a logical extension of its New Zealand operations and in line with the company's investment strategy. The acquisition was motivated in part by the 2003 Gambling Act which outlaws the opening of any new casinos in New Zealand.[6]

In December 2012, both partners reached a deal, in which SkyCity sold its shares in the casino to Skyline for $80 million, and bought Skyline's 40% stake in SkyCity Queenstown for $5 million. As a result, Skyline Enterprises became the major owner of Christchurch Casino.[7][8]

Online Operations[edit]

Christchurch launched its digital operations in 2000 under the brand Kiwi Gaming. They subsequently launched Fast Win casino in 2005. [9] In 2007, Christchurch Casino was forced to exit its digital operations due to the an order from the Kiwi government Internal Affairs Department. [10][11]

In October 2023, to bypass New Zealand restrictions on online gambling, Christchurch Casino launched an online casino licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority.[12][13] The business operates a partnership with White Hat Gaming to provide the platform and appointed Keith O'Loughlin as the Executive Chairman of the online business Limited. [14]

Expansion plans[edit]

In November 2016, Christchurch Casino announced it will build a 200-room hotel.[15] In September 2017, it purchased 4,047 square meters of adjacent bare land at auction.[16]

New Zealand Poker Championships[edit]

Christchurch hosts the New Zealand Poker Championships annually in August. This is one of the country's biggest events and can have a prize pool of up to $1m. [2][17][18]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "". Retrieved 4 February 2024.
  2. ^ a b "Christchurch Casino – General Information". Archived from the original on 5 June 2010. Retrieved 25 August 2010.
  3. ^ "Christchurch Casino | Activity in Christchurch – Canterbury, New Zealand". Retrieved 30 August 2023.
  4. ^ "High-stakes game; From the inside". Retrieved 8 February 2024.
  5. ^ SkyCity Completes Casino Deal Archived 13 March 2007 at the Wayback Machine SkyCity gets nod for casino purchase Archived 7 May 2006 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ SkyCity press release:Cleared To Buy Interest In Christchurch Casino
  7. ^ "SkyCity sells out of Chch – takes over Queenstown". The New Zealand Herald. 20 December 2012. Archived from the original on 26 December 2012.
  8. ^ "Skyline buys out partner SkyCity". 20 December 2012.
  9. ^ "Kiwi Gaming Launches FastWin Casino". Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  10. ^ "Kiwi Casino illegal in NZ and sold – Casinomeister Forum".
  11. ^ "Casinos on a losing streak – New Zealand News". NZ Herald. 6 February 2024. Retrieved 6 February 2024.
  12. ^ Jamieson, Debbie (27 September 2022). "Christchurch Casino to bypass NZ rules by launching online gambling platform in Malta".
  13. ^ "Stuff". Retrieved 4 February 2024.
  14. ^ "Christchurch Casino partners with White Hat Gaming for online operations".
  15. ^ McDonald, Liz (26 November 2016). "Christchurch Casino to build $85m, 200-room hotel".
  16. ^ "Christchurch Casino snaps up land for development". 4 September 2017. Archived from the original on 19 July 2020.
  17. ^ "2023 New Zealand Poker Championships". Christchurch Casino. Retrieved 4 October 2023.
  18. ^ "Card sharks flock to Christchurch for huge poker prize pool". NZ Herald. 8 February 2024. Retrieved 8 February 2024.

External links[edit]

43°31′33″S 172°37′59″E / 43.52583°S 172.63306°E / -43.52583; 172.63306