Sunday, October 22nd 2017

Poker hopping in classy Austria

The top three poker rooms in Austria 

When people talk about Austria, three things instantly come to mind: the Vienna Opera House, Mozart, and the Alps. But besides music, architecture and winter sports, one aspect about Austria that tourists often overlook is the country’s strong gaming culture. Poker, in particular, has established a huge following that many of its local players are gaining ground in competitions overseas. Austria has also found itself recently by hosting high-profile international poker competitions.

 

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Poker in Austria: a backgrounder 

It may have embraced poker only recently, but Austria boasts a well-established gaming culture. Continental Europe’s first legal casino was opened in Baden in 1765, which predates other countries in the world. The country is also one of the progenitors of the modern-day deck of cards. The “Large Crown” insignia found in many playing card designs originated from Austria.

Today, games such as poker are widely popular among Austria’s casino-loving public. 7-card stud is considered to be the most preferred poker variant, although Texas hold’em is getting some attention lately due to its popularity overseas. Among Austria’s notable cardsharks are 2-time World Series of Poker (WSOP) final table finisher Markus Golser, erstwhile WSOP competitor Sigi Stockinger, and 2007 European Poker Tour final table finisher Niki Jedlicka.

Austria’s best bets: Top 3 poker rooms 

People who are visiting Austria won’t run out of choices on where to play a round or two of poker. There are a myriad of casinos in Vienna, Innsbruck and Salzburg that house topnotch poker rooms. However, the following stand out for their unique poker experience these casinos offer.

 

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Concord Card Casino, Vienna – The Concord Card Casino (CCC) in Austria’s capital city claims itself as Europe’s first poker-only casino. Opened in 1993, the CCC is known for hosting bigtime events like the Vienna Spring Poker Festival, the Austrian Poker Championship, and the European Poker Masters. The casino offers all types of poker, from 7-card stud to limit hold’em and pot limit Omaha.
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Grand Casino Baden, Baden bei Wien (Baden near Vienna) – The Grand Casino Baden is the perfect spot for travelers who want a taste of old Austria. It first opened its doors in 1934 in Kurhaus before moving to its current location – the historic Kongresshaus. The Grand Casino Baden also made history for hosting the very first European Poker Championship in 1990. Currently, it serves as the venue for party poker’s World Poker Tour Baden Series – the other WPT event in Austria besides the annual Vienna series.

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Casino Salzburg, Salzburg – Located in the hometown of the original Von Trapp singers, Casino {Salzburg} offers a poker experience that takes players back to renaissance Europe. Housed at the former Klessheim Palace, its baroque architecture makes travelers feel like playing in one of the poker rooms in the James Bond movie Casino Royale. Texas hold’em and pot limit Omaha are just some of the poker variants that the casino offers.

 

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