Poker players looking to return to the live tables in California might have to wait a little longer. Pechanga Casino resort, located near Temecula, California, officially reopened its doors on Monday, June 1st. But the first phase of its reopening doesn’t include its poker room.
Site visitors looking for tournament information on the poker section of the Pechanga website are greeted with a message that the Pechanga poker room is temporary closed. There’s no official word on when poker players can expect the tables to reopen.
Players looking for thrills will be greeted by a new experience with health and safety at the forefront. Smoking is prohibited, occupancy is limited to about 50%, and half of the slot machines are inactive.
The casino conducts temperature checks at all four available entrances. While other properties use no-contact handheld thermometers, Pechanga scans patrons with a device that includes a video monitor. Guests are informed to stand a short distance away from the monitor before their temperature is displayed and they’re permitted in.
While the poker room has yet to open, the table games that are provide a glimpse into what the live poker experience might look like. The tables have been modified to include plastic shields that separate the dealer from each player, and each player from one another.
The sight is bound to become a familiar one for casinos around the world, including at properties in Las Vegas which are set to welcome back guests this week.
Pechanga was one of the first tribal casinos to shut its doors in Southern California in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Poker players looking to hone their game have been turning to online poker rooms during the pandemic, with many online card rooms reporting record numbers. The uptick in traffic has meant guarantees that haven’t been seen since the fall of the big three online poker sites back in 2011.