Mayor: FTP Galway Will Generate €3m for Local Economy

Padraig Conneely
Mayor Conneely handing Gus Hansen the keys to the city.

According to the Mayor of Galway the inaugural Full Tilt Poker Galway festival is expected to introduce €3 million to the local economy.

Mayor Pádraig Conneely sees big value in the first Full Tilt poker festival hosted in Galway, and the roughly 3,500 poker players who have come to the coastal Irish town.

For Conneely's €3m prediction to come true each of those players must spend an average of €857.

“Poker players spend a lot of money,” Conneely told's Esther Amores. “They live well, they eat well and they also drink well.”

Full Tilt Poker teamed up with the UKIPT to offer players a huge 60-event schedule, and plenty of action off the felt.

Full Tilt has introduced a new concept by constructing a poker village consisting of two massive carnival tents.

There's more than just poker inside the poker village.

With one tent dedicated to poker and the other to socializing and playing games like pool, backgammon and foosball, Full Tilt has made it clear the festival is about more than just poker.

That's a concept Conneely is hoping translates to players finding their way out of the poker village entirely, and onto the streets of Galway.

“From talking to the players, they seem they love Galway,” said Conneely.

“They love the night life and the atmosphere. They don’t need cars so they can walk around, and I have seen that at night they are socializing.”

Galway Hoping for Full Tilt Poker Return in 2014

Mayor Conneely is optimistic about a Galway sequel next year, and thinks once again pairing the poker festival with the annual Galway Races, Ireland's premier horse-racing event, is crucial.

This year poker players were drawn out of the Full Tilt village by the horses and Conneely must be hoping that when they're out on the town, they're leaving a bit of cash behind.

And despite only 77,000 people calling Galway home, Conneely is confident they have the infrastructure and entertainment to handle large events.

“The event organizers seems to be happy, everybody seems to be happy,” said Conneely.

“We hope they will consider Galway again and come back in the future.”

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