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February 15, 2011 08:16 ET

PokerStars Teams Up With Club Hotel Casino Loutraki to Stage First Ever Major Poker Tournament in Greece

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Feb. 15, 2011) - PokerStars – the world's largest poker site – is excited to announce a partnership deal with Club Hotel Casino Loutraki, located outside of Athens, Greece, which will see major poker tournaments take place in Greece for the first time. This collaboration will begin with the Greek Poker Cup Main Event – a €1,000 + €100 No Limit Texas Hold'em poker tournament (200-player cap) – from March 24-27, 2011.

Club Hotel Casino Loutraki (CHCL) opened the first poker room in the country in September 2010, and is the largest live poker room with its 14 tables in operation. The €1,100 Greek Poker Cup will be the first large-scale poker tournament ever held in Greece.

General Manager of Club Hotel Casino Loutraki, Alexandros Doukas, said: "We are very happy with this new collaboration and we see PokerStars as a strategic partner. Club Hotel Casino Loutraki is the first casino in Greece that introduced Texas Hold'em in the country and we are looking forward to this international gaming experience."

"We are honoured to have the privilege of producing this historic event with Club Hotel Casino Loutraki at their incredible holiday resort of Loutraki, easily accessible from the historic capital of Greece," said Jeffrey Haas, spokesman for the Greek Poker Cup. "We expect the best poker players in Greece to compete for their first poker Championship title, and I'm sure we'll see exciting visceral action from the moment the cards are in the air."

Greek poker growth

Poker is one of the fastest growing competitive mind games in Greece. The country is seeing a remarkable increase in the number of poker players competing both online at PokerStars.net and offline in the emerging poker rooms at casinos across the country. The quality of play already apparent in this new poker market has been exceptional, with two Greek players already featuring on final tables of the European Poker Tour (EPT) during Season 7. One of the players, Konstantinos Nanos, who finished third in Vienna for €265,000, is also currently top of the EPT Online Qualifier of the Year leaderboard.

It is hoped that the collaboration between PokerStars and CHCL will give a greater opportunity for local players to be exposed to the international poker environment in safe premises, while the live poker operator can benefit from PokerStars' experience in producing large-scale poker tournaments for its local, regional and international clientele.

Club Hotel Casino Loutraki

Club Hotel Casino Loutraki is a five-star destination with 255 rooms and 20 luxury suites situated just 45 minutes outside central Athens, and is one of the largest casino resorts in Europe. It overlooks the most beautiful beach in Loutraki, the coastal spa town famous for its mineral springs. This natural water, with its rejuvenating qualities, is a feature that has been incorporated throughout the resort and its Spa and Wellness Centre.

Online qualification

Free online satellites to the Greek Poker Cup are running now at PokerStars. Players can find them by going to the PokerStars lobby, clicking on the Events tab and then on Special.

About PokerStars:

PokerStars is the world's largest free play poker site, with more than 44 million members. It's the first choice of the world's top players, with more daily tournaments than anywhere else, and with the best security online.

PokerStars is the official sponsor of some of the biggest live poker tournaments in the world, including the North American Poker Tour (NAPT), the Asia Pacific Poker Tour (APPT), the Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT), the Australia New Zealand Poker Tour (ANZPT), and the Russian Poker Series (RPS).

PokerStars.net is also home to a team of sponsored players known as Team PokerStars Pro. This elite group of players travel the world competing in international tournaments. For a complete list, visit the Team PokerStars Pro home page.

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