Gambling with paradise? casino tourism development in northern Cyprus
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The topic of this paper is casino tourism and the problems and pressures it poses for one particular small island destination – northern Cyprus, in the eastern Mediterranean. Research was carried out during 1999 and funded by the Development and Diversity research fund of the University of North London. Its aim was to begin to explore the relationship between casino tourism and the ‘conventional’ tourism product, in a situation of rapid proliferation of casinos and polarizing public opinion in northern Cyprus. The paper outlines the global context of casino tourism development, the factors favouring its location in peripheral spots such as islands – both geographical and jurisdictional – and the consequences for such locations of the commercial casino sector’s global expansion. The paper also discusses some of the practical and methodological problems encountered in doing fieldwork on casino tourism, and advances some tentative conclusions with regard to the dynamics of the relationship and its future development in northern Cyprus. © 2001 Tourism Recreation Research.