A joint venture between English bookie William Hill and its Spanish counterpart Codere SA, dubbed Garaipen Victoria Apostak SL or “Victoria” will extend betting shops into Spain, starting with the capital city of Madrid. Seventy more are scheduled to follow in Madrid alone, extending throughout the rest of the country as well.

Up until recently Spaniards were only able to place bets on sporting events and social events through the internet. This may have been restricting the gambling habits of the citizens, estimated at about 670 euros per person currently. This is estimated to hit 39 billion euro in 2010, which makes this new merger a great idea.

The new betting shops will allow for a greater variety of gambling to happen. There will be a few restrictions, such as politics or religious events, but they will be able to bet on TV shows and sporting events among other things.

The shops are designed a bit different then the English shops on the inside as well. Instead of the male market in England, the Spanish betting shops are hoping to attract women as well and thus are furnished with a more friendly atmosphere. They have sofas, lots of glass and chrome, and other comfortable touches that are welcoming to a female better.

Further shops in the Spain’s Basque Country are set to open in September to coincide with the beginning of the European football season. Originally scheduled to open in July, they haven’t lost momentum even if they lost some time.

The basque government which presides over three of Spain’s provinces, Alava, Vizcaya and Guipuzcoa, allotted three betting licenses to open betting shops in its region. The licenses were awarded to Ekasa and Kirol Jokoa who are both local as well as Garaipen Victoria Apostak SL, a conjunction between William Hill and Codere SA, another local company. Each company was granted a license for up to twenty-five betting shops and around twenty-five are anticipated to be open by the end of the year, with at least four in the region’s largest city, Bilbao.