Poker in France
France is the cradle of European gambling, the birthplace of roulette and most luxurious casinos in the world, the number of which may reach two hundred. It is the country where Queens have become a part of the card deck. And there is no doubt that poker is highly appreciated here; the main thing is to dress up in a proper way.
In the late 80s the minimum age of visitors to the French casinos was lowered to 18 years, and slot machines were legalized. In 2010 France gave its permission for online gambling.
No other European country has such a number of casinos: almost 200; most of them are located in resort towns and tourist centers in accordance with the law. However, you can also gamble in the center of Paris.
Where to play poker in France?
But, first of all, any tourist goes to Paris. The rules are much stricter in the capital – there is a number of private (mostly small) clubs Cercle and… Aviation Club de France. Along with baccarat poker in Aviation Club is considered to be one of the main games. Every year a round of WPT is held here; cash tables work day and night (minimum buy-in is € 50), tournaments are held every day (average buy-in is about € 200).
Clubs and casinos Cercle, the number of which is less than ten in Paris, are less attractive and not so popular in most cases; some of them are situated in precarious districts of the city.
One of the largest casino networks in France belongs to the Groupe Lucien Barrière company: about 40 gambling venues on the coast and in the major cities. A round of EPT in Deauville is held in one of the casinos of this network.
Enghien les Bains, Megève, Barrière de Deauville, Joa Casino Port Crouesty, Ruhl Casino Barrière de Nice, Croisette Casino Barrière de Cannes – these places and many other gambling establishments are considered to be the best in the country. One of them hosts French poker tour tournaments.
And in most casinos poker is very popular; there are many poker rooms.
Who plays poker in France?
People don’t know much of French players as Poker Stars France is a reservation. Since many French casinos are located in resort centers playing fields are very diverse and often weak. Daytime players are old men, adherents of straightforward TAG style, casual tourists; in the evening it is the rush hour, there are more regulars and risky players who like to bluff. So who are they, French poker players?
There are not so many professional players in French casinos as in Moscow clubs, for example. And if they are present it is easy to recognize them: young players in their twenties.
You can find a huge number of tournaments and cash tables in France. Their buy-ins may reach astronomical values.
Tournaments are usually expensive: on the average, from €100. There are also local series, such as ACF Cup, French poker series, Barriere Poker Tour, etc. Buy-ins at the main events sometimes amount to several thousand Euros.
Cash limit begins with €1-2. It won’t be difficult to find opponents for NL Hold’em even with limits €5/10+.
Let’s sum up. Most French casinos are located in resort areas, but you can also find a place to play poker in the capital. Rounds of EPT and WPT are regularly held in France. About 200 casinos are scattered across the country, and most of them have their own poker rooms. Gambling venues that are worth visiting are any venues of the Groupe Lucien Barrière.