PokerStars, the biggest online poker website in the world carried out a major revamp of its live events programs last month which included a rebranding of the existing tour stops.
The company decided to replace its popular European Poker Tour (EPT) with two new stops in the PokerStars Championship and PokerStars Festival.
Last week PokerStars released the dates for several events being planned under the new banners in 2017.
The online poker giant has already announced that one of its biggest events the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure will be replaced by the PokerStars Championship Bahamas, which would be its first Championship event. The event is expected to take place at the Atlantis Resort in Nassau, Bahamas between Jan 6 and 14. PokerStars has already conducted its first Festival event at the recently held PokerStars Festival New Jersey which did not have the reception that the company expected.
PokerStars recently announced the scheduled for six new events which include two festivals and four championships. The festivals include the PokerStars Festival London to be held between Jan. 22-29 and PokerStars Festival Rozvadov that will run from March 2 to 13. The Championships will have the PokerStars Championship Panama between March 10-20, PokerStars Championship Macau between March 30-April 9 and PokerStars Championship presented by Monte-Carlo Casino held between April 25-May 5 and finally PokerStars Championship Barcelona that will run from Aug. 15 to 27.
For now, the latest schedule shows a lesser number of regional events than before. Further additions are expected since several original events aren’t still represented in the events calendar.
The difference between a Festival and a Championship primarily lies in the scope of events. Lasting typically for a week, Festivals will focus on attracting local and regional players, tweaking the buy-ins, events and tournaments to local preferences and to casual players. Championships are longer and more large scale events that will attract the interest of serious pokers players from across the world. It will have more high stakes games than Festivals.
As a part of the changes, PokerStars has upped the experience angle in the events as seen in the plan for the upcoming PokerStars Championship Bahamas.
In the Bahamas event, PokerStars will be hosting a free Players Party and a huge free barbeque around the AFC/NFC football games. Other fun activities include a basketball competition, a daily virtual reality competition; a football squares competition as well as an opportunity to have a meal with the poker pros. The event is also expected to have self-service terminals with PSLive registration system which will significantly enhance and simplify the registration process.