Grosvenor Casinos is bringing back its popular tournament series, the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour (GUKPT), after more than a year of going on hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The tour’s first event for 2021 is penciled in for July and will take place in London.
The GUKPT was established in 2007 and has since been hosting multiple stops across the UK each year. But in 2020, the tour was only able to host two events in London and in Manchester. The rest of the 2020 live schedule was cancelled as a result of government-enforced lockdowns.
While organizers have yet to release a final schedule, the 2021 season is slated to kick off on July 15, with the first event taking place at the Grosvenor Victoria Casino in London.
The 2021 GUKPT London Festival will feature a £1,250 buy-in Main Event which comes with a guaranteed prize pool of £200,000. The London series will run until July 25.
UK Live Poker Scene Reopens
Among rooms that have since reopened their doors is PokerStars LIVE at The Hippodrome. The venue hosted the first UK poker tournament of the year, which was won by Carlos Estivill for £13,504.
All pandemic-related restrictions are expected to be lifted on June 21, during which the final phase of the UK government’s COVID-19 roadmap will take effect. At this stage, major poker tournaments will run as normal, without any limits. The 2021 GUKPT London stop marks the first major live poker tournament in the country since the COVID-19 pandemic.
The lifting of restrictions will pave the way for the full reopening of other major poker venues across the UK, including Dusk Till Dawn in Nottingham which is owned by Rob Yong.
Players Itching To Go Back to the Live Felts
The huge turnouts at multiple live poker events held across the world this year indicates that the demand for live poker has not diminished even with all of the social distancing, face masks and other restrictions in place.
The US leads the way in terms of live poker reopening, with major casinos and poker venues in Las Vegas and across the country now operating without restrictions.
In fact, the recent World Poker Tour (WPT) Seminole Hard Poker Showdown drew an overwhelming 2,482 entries, generating a massive $7,942,400 in total prize pool. That’s almost 4x the $2 million initial guarantee. The event was ultimately won by Brek Schutten for $1,261,095.