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Poker in the Netherlands

Introduction

Capital: Amsterdam

Population: 17,080,000

Currency: Euro (€)

Timezone: UTC+1

Casinos with Poker

  • Holland Casino Amsterdam Center
  • Holland Casino Amsterdam West-Sloterdijk
  • Holland Casino Rotterdam
  • Holland Casino Venlo
  • Holland Casino Nijmegen
  • Holland Casino Utrecht

When the Netherlands is mentioned, for many, the country’s permissive drug and prostitution laws come to mind. This suggests a free, liberal, unrestricted way of life for the Dutch. That, in turn, suggests that it’s likely that there’s an equally permissive legal landscape for gambling.

However, unfortunately, that is not the case.

The Holland Casino is a state-run gambling company that has a legally mandated monopoly in the land casino market. Online gambling was illegal in the country until the Durch Senate passed the so-called “Remote Gambling Bill” in 2019 – more on that later.

With all those obstacles in the way, gambling is still popular in the Netherlands, many turning to the gray – or unregulated – market. Sports betting is the most commonly favored form of gambling.

A 2011 article on dutchnews.nl estimates that around 200,000 people play online poker in the Netherlands, despite it being technically illegal at the time.

Famous Dutch Poker Players

Lex Veldhuis is one of the most popular poker streamers on Twitch with over 172,000 followers. He regularly streams online tournaments and cash games as well. He has over $1.12 million in online MTT cashes and over $687K in live tournament cashes. He’s also appeared on the classic poker show High Stakes Poker on The Game Show Network back in the day.

On the top of the Dutch all time money list on Hendon is Marcel Luske, aka “The Flying Dutchman”. He has cashed for $5 million combined during his career. He made two deep runs in the WSOP Main Event – he came in 10th in 2004 for $373,000 and 23rd in 2017 for $263,532. He won a $3,000 Five-Star World Poker Classic event for $315,630 at the Bellagio in 2006.

– Playing Live Poker in the Netherlands –

   Live Poker Legislation in the Netherlands

No private company is allowed to operate a land casino in the Netherlands. The state-run company Holland Casino has a legal monopoly in the sizeable Dutch market. The profits they generate go to the Dutch Treasury, as their Wikipedia article states. They are running 14 casinos across the country.

  Live Poker Venues in the Netherlands

In the capital city, Amsterdam, Holland Casino is operating two venues: Holland Casino Amsterdam Center and Holland Casino Amsterdam West-Sloterdijk. However, poker tables are only available in the Amsterdam Center. 

They have 4 different types of cash tables: €2/€2, €2/€4 and €5/€5 No Limit Hold’em, as well as €5/€5 Pot Limit Omaha.

As for tournaments, they currently have only 3 events on their schedule – a €30, a €50 and a €100 buy-in NLHE tournament, all with unlimited rebuys.

This doesn’t mean you’ll have trouble finding a good poker tourney in the Netherlands. The Holland Casino website is advertising a number of tournament series when you select “poker” among their games. The one that sticks out the most for poker fans is the World Series of Poker. In 2018, WSOP Circuit events were held in the Holland Casino Rotterdam. However, it’s not confirmed yet if more events will be on the schedule in the coming years.

The Small Ball Series, on the other hand, is on this year in two locations – Venlo and Nijmegen. Buy-ins for those events range from €100 up to €300.

The Utrecht Series of Poker is held in September 2019 in Holland Casino Utrecht. There, you can find higher stakes tournaments, going all the way up to the €600 Main Event and a €1,000 progressive bounty event.

– Casinos and Poker Rooms in the Netherlands –

Holland Casino Amsterdam Center

Holland Casino Amsterdam West-Sloterdijk

Holland Casino Rotterdam

Holland Casino Venlo

Holland Casino Nijmegen

Holland Casino Utrecht

  Online Poker Legislation in the Netherlands

For years and years, it’s been illegal to play online poker in the Netherlands. That changed with the passing of the Remote Gambling Bill in 2019. The Senate voting in favor of it was the culmination of a process spanning more than two years – the lower chamber of the Dutch legislature voted on the bill in 2016.

With the favorable turn of events, hundreds of foreign companies are expected to file for licences with the local gaming authority, Kansspelautoriteit. However, please note that these rules aren’t going to be implemented until January 1st, 2021 the earliest. This means the poker loving Dutch still have to wait to be able to play their favorite card game legally online. 


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