Niagara Falls poker room could be part of Stage 3 reopening

Posted on: July 20, 2020 09:05 PDT

The two casinos in Niagara Falls, Canada could soon open their doors, with the Niagara Region slated to join Stage 3 of Ontario’s reopening plan this Friday, July 24th if early reports are true.

Casino Niagara and Niagara Fallsview Casino don’t yet have a confirmed reopening date, but Niagara Casinos president Richard Taylor indicated that both properties are reviewing the reopening requirements and restrictions set out in Stage 3.

As of publication time, those reopening plans don’t look too promising for poker players and casino goers — or for the casinos for that matter. Stage 3 allows casinos, bingo halls, and gaming establishments (which presumably includes poker rooms) to reopen, but with an extreme gathering limit of 50 people indoors, excluding staff.

If the province doesn’t carve out an exception for gaming establishments, it’s clear that there’s no incentive for the two Niagara casinos to reopen.

However, there’s some hope for poker players craving live action. Casino Niagara has an impressive poker room located on a dedicated floor and overlooking Niagara Falls. The room features 26 tables, so it’s possible that the property could open the poker room exclusively, run 6-handed or 9-handed tables, and still fall within the 50-person limit.

Both casinos closed their doors on March 16th when the province declared a state of emergency.

Visitors to the Casino Niagara website are greeted with the following statement: “A reopening date for Fallsview Casino Resort and Casino Niagara has not been confirmed and will only occur when permitted by the province. We are working collaboratively with the Canadian Gaming Association, Ontario Lottery and Gaming (OLG), the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) and taking into account guidance from public health authorities to ensure appropriate health and safety protocols will be in place for the protection of all staff and customers, as part of the casino reopening plans.”