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Traveling entrepreneur since 2005.

July 21, 2008

Poker In Asia And Poker In Bangkok

Poker In AsiaSo you’re now living in Bangkok and are craving for a game of texas hold em’… Don’t worry; you’re not the only one! There’s Not much Poker in Asia but hopefully the following will help you find your poker fix.

I’ve been a keen poker player for around 8 years and one of the things I miss most from home is sitting round a table with some friends playing one of the best skilled based games in the world: Poker.

As gambling is illegal in Thailand, the poker circuits that are here are very risky to play or get involved in. I know of circuits in Bangkok, Pattaya and Phuket but you’ll need to find these out yourself :) But be warned, if you were to get caught, you’d better have a lot of tea money or you’d find yourself inside a small dingy room with a few nut-cases for a while.

The big poker sites do work here in Thailand, but it’s worth remembering to register your account in your home country as the last thing you want is for your poker provider to deny your winnings due to being located here (I’m not sure they would do that, but it’s not worth the biscuit is it?)

So, let’s talk about where you can play poker legally in Asia… your best bet (no pun intended) if you are based in Thailand is to head over to Macau. You have the Poker Stars poker room located in the Grand Waldo Casino that offer both cash games and tournaments. I hear the surroundings and service, as you’d expect from Poker Stars management, is very good.

[The Poker Stars Room have been moved to the Grand Lisboa Casino]

You also have the option to play texas hold ‘em in The Grand Lisboa Casino (no link, I couldn’t find the web site) that has cash games 24 hours per day (minimum buy-in is 100KKD).

The Wynn Casnio also has texas hold ’em games around the clock with minimum buy ins of 500 HKD

Air Asia fly to Macau direct from Bangkok at very reasonable fairs (from 1,000฿) making Macau the most viable option to get a few hands in from Bangkok.

There are also a couple of places that offer Texas Hold ‘Em in Manila, located in the Hyatt hotel and Casino and the Manila Metro Card Club.

Although poker is illegal in Japan, there are many home based games in Tokyo which are advertised on Japan Poker League (which is sadly only available in Japanese)

If you find yourself in South Korea, you may want to check out the Walker Hill Casino for Hold ‘em.

If you are a high roller, you’ll find the following poker tournaments that operate throughout Asia of interest:

There you have it, a complete round up of Poker in Asia (to the best of my knowledge)… as you can see, there’s very little action in Asia but I’m pretty sure this will change over the next few years. I’ve got a trip planned to Macau as soon as I’m able to take some time off work so I’ll write an in-depth guide then.

Have I missed any out? If so, please leave them in the comments. Thanks.

UPDATE: I visited Macau and played at the Wynn – Was great. You can read about my experience here.

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  1. The closest casino to phuket is probably the andaman club on an island just off Myanmar.

    I went there on a weekday so no tables, only the slot mashines were open.

  2. Charly

    Hey Chris,

    just to let you know, i can help if you are really looking to play some real Texas hold’em in Bangkok.
    Check out “pokerevent” on

    or drop me a line on the email



    • Chris

      I’m sorry Charly, but I do not play face to face poker in Thailand.

    • Quinten

      Hi charly,
      Im off to bangkok in december do you
      have any suggestions in finding a holdem game?..
      who might i ask?
      how risky is it?

    • FATİH

      where ı can play texas holdem poker in banghkok

      • ever have luck finding a game?

    • fatih

      I wont play texas holdem in Bangkok can you help me where ı can

    • nick

      i am in bangkok and i wana play poker here can you help me

      • cessa

        hi nic. r u here in bkk?

      • cessss

        hi nick, r u still in bangkok? give me a call on this number +66890535953..

  3. Ian

    Hey guys.

    Im currently organising live poker games in Bangkok, starting next month and over the following 3 months in Ko-samui, Phuket and chiang mai.

    These games will be member only games and will be held in exclusive venues.totally safe and secure.we will hold a drinks night once a month for new members to join up and get to know the rest of the members.

    This will not be breaking any thai law and I will explain in full through our web site.

    If your interested in getting more info on this ill post the web site address next week…just check back here.

    • Chris

      “This will not be breaking any thai law” Even if you guys play with no money, you’d still get yourself into trouble in the Police were called on.

      I’m not sure how posting on public blogs to attract players will be “totally safe and secure”

      Take my advice: If you wanna play some cards, get some close friends together or like my post above suggests, fly over to Macau for few days :)

      • Ian

        If there is no money involved is not gambling.
        Thats a fact.

        The game will be safe and secure as No one knows the location of the game in advance and we collect all our players from a pre advised location and transport them to the game.
        All the game venues will be upmarket and totally serviced including dealers, floor manager, etc.
        ALL players must be members and known to us, so no strangers turning up.

        Its madness that if u live in thailand and fancy a game of poker you cant play that night..having to book flights hotels etc is crazy. Im gonna change that.

        I plan to have a drinks night once a month and anyone can come along and meet existing players and me and find out how we operate, if they don’t like it….cool, if they do like how we run our game then they can have a game of poker any night they like in bangkok..

        Love your blog by the way. and maybe you will come along some night and see how professional we are.

        • Chris

          I admire what your doing, but at the end of the day gambling here is illegal and one should respect the laws (even if we disagree with them). If you decide to go against the grain, you should at least do it under radder :)

          I won’t be attending personally, but feel free to leave your site address here so if anyone else wants to take the risk, they can contact you direct.

        • Ian

          As I said, were not gambling.. no cash involved.

          And It will be very discrete, just doin a bit of advertising for the upcoming site.
          No locations or players are ever disclosed.
          Its a MEMBERS ONLY club.

          Everyone that is to become a new member must be recommended by an existing member, so we all know each other.

          Thanks for your comments.

    • Tane777

      Hey just saw Ur old post. Could u text me at 0857000747 I and my Aussi friend like to find sone table.
      Cheers. Stephane

      • 0857000747 i want to play poker

        • cessss

          hi tatiana, r u still here in bangkok? give me a call at this number 0890535953.,

        • are you still in BKK?

  4. Michael

    Hey guys I want to organize some poker parties to the close casinos. I can organize the transport and some nice things at the casinos. Email me at if you are interested.

  5. David

    Are the major online sites still accesable?

    • Chris

      Not sure about all, although Poker Stars is accessible.

  6. Barton

    Too bad that there is no legal gambling in Thailand. Sure would not hurt their tourist biz.
    I go to Thailand every year and will be in Bangkok, Ko Samui and Phuket in March 2011.
    I have now scheduledI my trip return via Macao, so I will be playing in Asia.
    Any suggestions or advice re; playing in Macao?
    Thanks, KCB

  7. Zibbi

    Hi Ian, do you still host poker events?

    • Zibbi

      In Bangkok that is

      • Kit

        Hi Zibbi, could I have youe email or number?

  8. ankit arora

    Hi guys,

    I am there in Bangkok in third week of april.

    Are they any Poker tables where I can play.

    # +919243190300

    • cessss

      are u still in bangkok ankit?

  9. Vince

    Still organizing the events?

    • Sasha

      Dear All,

      I have noticed that many of us like poker. But there is no safe and legal place to play in Bangkok.
      There is another option which is 100 percent legal and safe. In fact it’s the only way to have live games and concentrate on the game only without thinking of what could happen.

      If interested send me a message here or call me at 090 917 7520.

      • Erik

        Hey Sasha,

        I’m interested in this. Could you please drop me a mail at erik_alfredsson AT

        Thank you!

      • Josh

        Id like to hear more …

  10. Kit

    We have the place could you guys kindly leave your contact number? I’ll text/call

  11. Manb

    Hi ppl, am travelling to Phuket next week. Would be interested to know if some live poker tables are running there? Also if someone can guide where to play., Thanx



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