Top 5: Places To Play Poker In LondonBy Angelica Malin
London, from East to West, offers something for poker players of every bankroll and player type. As you expect from a major European city, the casinos are bright and modern and attract players from all over the world as well as hosting major events like WSOPE, GUKPT and the recent addition of The Cash Games Festival. Here are five of London’s top five poker rooms:
Aspers Stratford City
Part of a bright new development in London’s East that went up alongside the 2012 Olympic stadium, soon to host regular Premiership football as West Ham United move in as tenants, the Aspers Casino is in fact a super casino and now the largest throughout the United Kingdom. It sits sweetly on the third floor of the Westfield shopping centre and was recently the host venue for UK’s first ever Cash Games Festival. It’s a relaxed venue, spread across the one floor, with a young cosmopolitan vibe which, probably wisely for Stratford, is not too concerned with dress code. At the far end of the casino, you’ll find the poker tables, of which there are plenty with a wide range of limits, for higher limits head west across the city. There’s also wagerweb reports on non gamstop casinos.
If you can’t make to any of the casinos listed here but still want to get involved, the online casino world is constantly growing and that’s the place where you can still win big money and join in with the buzz – wondered how to get involved and where you can find the best bonuses – check out this guide from PokerSites.co.uk which is aimed for UK players.
Genting Casino Cromwell Mint
Set in London’s expensive Kensington district, the private Genting Casino Cromwell Mint gives off an exclusive feel and you could be forgiven for thinking that such a venue would be for the high stakes gambler but it also welcomes regular players just looking to have some casual fun too. The GCCM opened its doors in 2010, since when it has carved out an accurate reputation for itself as a classy West London home for fun home for mid-range and high-stakes gamblers alike. Regarding its poker tables, the casino was actually opened in conjunction with Bluff Europe and retains a strong focus on poker as a vital part of its operations, attracting millions of gamers every year. There are plenty of high class facilities on offer here to, such as an in casino restaurant and bar. Unlike Stratford above, this is Kensington so a dress code does apply and anyone not wearing formal wear won’t get in, so dress smart for a good night on the cards, it’s worth it.
Hippodrome Leicester Square
Head over to Leicester Square, right in the heart of London’s theatre land and west end tourist district, where sits the once former theatre and now, after 3 years of rebuilding, an immense home to three floors of superb gaming. We’re talking, of course, about The Hippodrome, voted best casino operator in 2015, three years after it opened its doors, and which also works in conjunction with PokerStars, the largest online poker site in the world, who together host PokerStars LIVE and regular high cash games and tournaments including the most prestigious live poker tours in the UK and other promoted event series are also on offer. There is an excellent, but not inexpensive, bar on the main gaming floor as well as a smaller cocktail bar upstairs on the third floor. There are also three other onsite bars, a restaurant, four private dining rooms and a cabaret stage making for a perfect night out in the city.
Just a short stroll across the very same square lies the even bigger Empire Casino. So respected a venue is the Empire that, in 2007, it hosted the inaugural World Series of Poker Europe, which has since moved to France due to the Empire’s impressive size not quite being big enough to hold an event that has grown in size year on year. Pleasingly (for some), the Empire also offers a decent amount soft cash games too, despite its West End location. It’s an envious location, much like the Hippodrome, with Soho, Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square all within a short walking distance. However, this casino encourages foot traffic from differing bankrolls which is not something London excels at, preferring instead to have casinos for everyday people (Aspers) and high end spenders (Kensington Mint), where here everyone plays together.
Grosvenor Victoria Casino
The Grosvenor Victoria Poker Room, or ‘The Vic’ as it is affectionately known, houses, by some way, the biggest poker room in the city. Just a short walk from Edgeware Road tube station and part of the Grosvenor group, its open 24 hours a day, with cash games and tournaments running throughout and binds starting at just a mere quid. The Vic is the London home of huge events like the GUKPT, the EPT and the WHUP. As you would expect from such a venue, it’s very well run and hosts a massive variety of other games, tough it is undoubtedly most famous as a poker room of some distinction. It’s beautiful in and out in a great part of the London scene and it’s highly likely that you’ll run in to one of London’s many poker pros playing at one of the tables.