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PokerStars opens live poker room in Macau
PokerStars announced today it is going live in Macau, opening up its first live poker room in the Grand Waldo Hotel and Casino in Cotai.
The poker room will official launch Friday, opening its doors to a 250-person capacity room that will offer cash games and weekly tournaments. To christen the new room, PokerStars will host a No-Limit Texas Hold'em Charity Poker Tournament to raise money for the earthquake victims in Western China.
The suggested minimum donation to enter is $2,000 HKD, which will give players a chance to compete for $150,000 HKD in prizes, including entries to the $25,000 HKD Asian Pacific Poker Tour Macau event in September.
"PokerStars is committed to the development of poker in Asia. Although Macau has become a gaming powerhouse, it was only with the incredible success of the Asia Pacific Poker Tour last November that Texas Hold'em poker started growing there," said Joe Hachem, former World Series of Poker Champion and member of Team PokerStars Pro.
"PokerStars planted the seeds and now this beautiful poker room is going to be the garden where future champions learn to play. I wouldn't be surprised if the next World Champion comes from Macau or elsewhere in China."
The charity tournament will be the first event of the Macau Poker Cup hosted in the new poker room. The Macau Poker Cup is a series of poker tournaments scheduled through the weekend, including a $1,000 HKD Deep-Stack event and a $10,000 HKD Red Dragon tournament.
The PokerStars poker room will also be home to the first of many satellites to the Asia Pacific Poker Tour's second season of events.
The second season of the APPT will begin at the Grand Waldo Casino Sept. 1-6 with the APP Macau Event, which will have a $10 million HKD guaranteed prize pool. The full season schedule has not yet been released.
"Poker has grown tremendously in Asia and we are very excited to be driving that growth, particularly as we were the first to produce live poker in Macau," said Jeffrey Haas, president of the Asia Pacific Poker Tour.
"After the success of the PokerStars.net Asia Pacific Poker Tour last November, a tremendous poker boom has resulted in Hong Kong and Macau - but it's just starting. The significance of the PokerStars Macau poker room on Asia will likely parallel the effect that Chris Moneymaker had on the USA when he won the 2003 WSOP."
Gary Wollard, general manager of the Grand Waldo Casino, echoed those sentiments.
"The arrival of poker as a gaming option in Macau's casinos will encourage more people to come and enjoy all Macau has to offer," he said. "We are delighted to have a company with the reputation of PokerStars to manage what is sure to be a very successful and popular poker room."
More information about the PokerStars Macau poker room can be found at PokerStarsMacau.com.