Friday, August 12, 2011

Poker den folds in the East Village; shuffles off to Midtown

On Wednesday, a reader noted that Chico was painting this "for rent" sign above the retail space at 27 Avenue C between Second Street and Third Street. It looks like a typical storefront. However, since late June, New York City Poker had been operating out of the space.

The Poker folks closed the place on Aug. 1, choosing to move to larger quarters in Midtown. Per the New York City Poker website:

Why is NYC Poker Tour relocating?
• Friday, July 29th 2011, there were too many effing people. With only 4 poker tables and a wait list of 25+ people there was mayhem. It was hot. It was disorganized.
• Our venue was wonderful. Previously, it was a poker room and had tons of nostalgia, plus room for improvements. At first I really wanted to spruce up the place, but in the end popular opinion wanted a complete renovation. After reviewing the financials it just seemed smarter to relocate.
• The location was near some train lines, but was not central to Manhattan or easy to travel to at all times, so for our next venue we look to be more accessible by mass transit and near easier parking.
• Security. Security. Security. Our storefront was great, but security is really important, so for our next venue players will need to do more than just knock on the door.

Speaking of security, Ian Duncan reported at the Local East Village on Aug. 2 that two armed men robbed the club on July 30. The robbers — who weren't wearing masks — left with $6,500 in cash and a Medicaid card, according to the Local. The operator, Jeremy Martin, told Duncan that the robbery played a major part in the decision to move.

Go here if you want to read about their new home on West 35th Street.


Anonymous said...

operating a border-line legal, all cash business deep in the heart of alphabet city and not hoping to get robbed (and everybody massacred) was just dumb.

now.... doing it at a building (261 w 35th St) full of offices and small businesses and endangering everybody is really really stupid

Anonymous said...

I worked in an office building with an illegal poker game running out of the floor above us and it wasn't dangerous at all. We had multiple security checkpoints in the building and they had their own security, as I assume most poker games do. We didn't even know they were there for years, until they didn't tip out the cops for some reason and got raided. Office buildings are a lot easier to secure than storefronts for stuff like that I guess. They'll be in a good neighborhood for poker games, there are a few there already. It elevates the danger about as much as the bootleggers in the buildings in that area.