In the 1980s and early '90s, Sun City was the place people went to experience what they weren't allowed to in South Africa. Beset with bans and laws and restrictions, millions of South Africans, most of them white, shrugged off the repressive climate and headed to the multiracial pleasure palace in the apartheid homeland Bophuthatswana - where they got to see risqué dance extravaganzas, watch adult movies, see superstars perform and have a flutter at the gambling tables. After the first democratic elections in 1994, homelands were abolished and the previously "forbidden fruit" they offered could be found almost anywhere in South Africa. Casinos were within easy reach, and competition and fresh offerings left the resort floundering . Perceived at its zenith as a "mini Vegas", the entertainment destination has spent years trying to regain its former glory. "It ran a wonderful race for many years and then it became obsolete in many respects," said Sun International chief operating offi...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, Morningstar financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.



Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00.