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Some tokens from the casinos of Dar Es Salaam

Dar Es Salaam is Tanzania's largest city and is on Africa's eastern coast. In the past several casinos in this city issued tokens, but now these have either closed of they have modernised and so no longer issue metal tokens. Here are some metal tokens, for slot machine gaming, from three different Dar Es Salaam casinos. Any information not source from the internet or the tokens I have was sourced from a collector who visited Tanzania a few years ago.

Sea Cliff Casino

These tokens were issued for use at the casino at Sea Cliff Hotel & Casino, Toure Drive, Msasani Peninsula.

Sea Cliff Casino “100 SHS”
Sea Cliff Casino “100 SHS”

The first piece can be described as:-
Obverse:- “100” / “SHS” as two central lines for the denomination / “SEA CLIFF” above-around / “CASINO” below-around
Reverse:- company logo (including stylised sail and waves) centrally / “NOT LEGAL” above-around / “TENDER” below-around
Appearance:- Stainless Steel, round, 22mm diameter with a plain edge.

Sea Cliff Casino “200 SHS”
Sea Cliff Casino “200 SHS”

The second piece is the same as the first except for the denomination appearing as “200” / “SHS” and the larger diameter of 25mm.

This casino opened in 2000 and changed over from tokens to a card system in 2003. They used these two tokens:- one of 100 Shilingi and the other of 200 Shilingi. The English spelling plural of the denomination is “Shillings” hence the “SHS” on the tokens. Although the location “Dar Es Salaam” is not mentioned on these tokens, they are known to be from there. One thing that proves this is that the logo on the tokens can be seen on the company's website...

http://www.hotelseacliff.com/


Las Vegas Casino

These tokens were issued for use at Las Vegas Casino, Ali Hassan Mwinyi Road.

A token from the “Las Vegas Casino”
A token from the “Las Vegas Casino”. Image from Dietmar Fiedel.

The first piece can be described as:-
Obverse:- in what you could say are four lines – a large five-pointed star betweem two medium five-pointed stars / “LAS VEGAS” (tops of letter all reach same levels but letters taller nearer the middle of the line of letters) and a small five-pointed star spacer below the first and last letter / two large dice between two small dice / “DAR ES SALAAM” curved within rim.
Reverse:- same as obverse
Appearance:- Brass, round, 25mm diameter with a plain edge.

Las Vegas “100 shs” – small denomination
Las Vegas “100 shs” – small denomination

The second piece can be described as:-
Obverse:- “100” / “shs” together as two central lines, with “LAS VEGAS” above-around and “LAS VEGAS” below-around and then with a small and upright five-pointed star spacer at 9 o/c and another at 3 o/c.
Reverse:- same as obverse
Appearance:- Brass, round, 21.2mm diameter with a plain edge.

Las Vegas “100 shs” – large denomination
Las Vegas “100 shs” – large denomination

The third piece can be described as:-
Obverse:- “100” / “shs” together as two central lines all in a slightly larger size than on the piece described above, with “LAS VEGAS” above-around and “LAS VEGAS” below-around and then with a small and upright five-pointed star spacer at 9 o/c and a small and inverted five-pointed star spacer at 3 o/c.
Reverse:- same as obverse
Appearance:- Brass, round, 21.2mm diameter with a plain edge.

The type with stars and dice is known to be have been used as 200 Shilingi, note this type includes the location “Dar Es Salaam”. The denomination is included in the legends on each of the other two tokens. It appears “100 Shs” (in either one of two sizes). The city name does not appear on these pieces. A few years ago these 100 Shilingi tokens were still being used in small gambling arcades in Dar es Salaam, in the townships outside the city, such as that of Kariakoo. So it would seem very likely that the “Las Vegas Casino” named on these “100 Shs” tokens was the one on Ali Hassan Mwinyi Road, Dar Es Salaam. This casino has used a chip card system since around 2004/2005. So it would seem that following the introduction of that system, the old slot machines along with the old tokens, were sold to the local gambling arcades. Likely metal tokens in other denominations will exist from this casino’s past.


Monte Carlo Casino

These tokens were used at Monte Carlo Casino, Ohio Street.

Monte Carlo // (jack)
Monte Carlo // (jack)

The first piece can be described as:-
Obverse:- “MONTE” / “CARLO” (as two central encircled lines) / “DAR ES SALEEM” above-around / “TANZANIA” below-around and with two 5-pointed star spacers to each side
Reverse:- Jack of spades (stock design).
Appearance:- Brass, round, 22mm diameter, with a plain edge.

AMUSEMENT / NO CASH VALUE / INDEPENDENT MINT // (jack)
AMUSEMENT / NO CASH VALUE / INDEPENDENT MINT // (jack)

The second piece can be described as:-
Obverse:- “AMUSEMENT” / three fairground horses depicted / “NO CASH VALUE” (with curving of legends) and then below all of this “INDEPENDENCE MINT” in tiny lettering.
Reverse:- Jack of spades (stock design).
Appearance:- Brass, round, 22mm diameter, with a plain edge.

As detailed above, these two tokens share a common “Jack of spades” reverse design. Some standard/stock token designs and specifications can be seen on the website of The Independent Mint SA (Pty) Ltd of Midrand, South Africa – see…

http://www.independentmint.co.za/stocktokenpg.htm

This lists stock tokens with reverse design and diameter combinations of Jack/22mm, Queen/24mm, King/25mm, Ace/26.5mm and Joker/28mm; all available in either Brass or Nickel-plated-Steel. All five pieces are shown as having the same obverse as the generic “AMUSEMENT” / “NO CASH VALUE” design on the second “Jack of Spades” piece I have shown here.

This all points very much to the “MONTE CARLO” piece above as also being a product of Independent Mint. The design on that token is fairly simple but it would have been an extra expense as compared to a stock design. I have come across two other special order obverse designs used on these tokens:- one for a casino called “Queen’s” in West Street, Durban, South Africa and the other for Star World Casino, Accra, Ghana. Some other tokens from Independent Mint use a mint mark of a super imposed “I” and “M” within a lozenge, quite a number of examples are known from South African casinos. Monte Carlo Casino, Dar es Salaam is known to have closed in 2005.

All images shown are scaled to about 250dpi.

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