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Historic Aviation Club de France Closed For Good
It's official: The legendary Aviation Club de France is well and truly closed for good.
The Tribunal de Grande Instance in Paris announced yesterday the storied poker institution has been placed in liquidation.
It is a history of 108 years that last night was abruptly ended by the decision of a Paris Court.
Five Months of Hope Quashed
Closed since last September after a police raid and search at 104 Avenue des Champs Elysées, the future of the most famous poker club in France has been in doubt for five months.
Rumors surrounding the future of the ACF and similar card rooms (known as "cercles") since have not lead to much optimism, although the 213 employees left in the lurch at the ACF still held out hope.
In late November the ACF was placed in judicial proceedings while Paris prosecutors demanded the liquidation.
Since then the non-renewal of its gaming license and inability to perform its main activity has sealed its fate.
Originally a private club reserved for airmen (hence its name) when it opened in 1907, the Aviation Club de France was opened to all and turned into a gaming cercle in 1925.
Poker was introduced in 1995 and won over many new fans and a new generation of French poker pros who would play night after night, 24 hours a day, seven days a week
"A French Poker Temple Disappears"
The reactions among pros to the announcement was fitting for a prestigious club that had held major events including the World Poker Tour and whose influence resonated around the world:
Un lieu magique, des croupiers et TD de qualité, de la gastronomie fine, de belles rencontres, des souvenirs inoubliables . Merci #ACF— Kitai Davidi (@KitBul) February 19, 2015
Byebye L'ACF, tu resteras un brillant et chaleureux souvenir ! #heartbreaking— Pollak Benjamin (@PollakB) February 19, 2015
The end of the ACF is part of a larger dilemma facing the storied gaming circles of Paris.
Just one month ago the Cercle Cadet (also closed provisionally) suffered the same fate as the ACF, this time with 90 employees left without jobs.
Today the Circle Clichy-Montmartre is the only poker room that remains open to welcome poker enthusiasts in the capital and elsewhere.