After calling the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino it’s home for several years, the World Series of Poker (WSOP) finally changed its venue recently. The upcoming 53rd edition of the series will be held at the Bally’s and Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Casino.
But the WSOP wasn’t always hosted at the Rio All-Suite, the coveted series has changed several venues over the years. Let’s have a look at the history of the WSOP venues.
The idea that the WSOP will feature a set of tournaments was Benny Binion’s brainchild, the owner of the Las Vegas casino called Binion’s casino. Binion’s son Jack established WSOP in 1970. The first-ever WSOP series was held at the Binion’s Horseshoe casino in 1970. The series featured cash games that included Five-Card Stud, 2 – 7 Low-Ball Draws, Razz, Seven-Card Stud, and Texas Hold ’em. The Main Event format was fixed as a freeze-out Texas Hold ’em game the following year. Johnny Moss, the winner of the 1970 event was elected as the first World Champion of Poker, for which he received a silver cup as the prize.
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Binion along with his family ran the Binion’s Horseshow casino from 1951 until 2004. His sons Jack and Ted took over the casino as senior Binion was not legally permitted to operate a casino in Nevada due to his multiple criminal convictions. Jack forcefully sold the property in 1998 to his sister, Becky Behnen. She implemented some cost-cutting measures that didn’t go well with gamblers, eventually contributing to the casino’s end. In the year 2003, federal agents and the internal revenue service (IRS) seized $1 million from Binion’s to pay the casino’s past debts.
The Binion casino inevitably sold the WSOP and the Horseshoe brand to Harrah’s Entertainment, now Caesars Entertainment in 2004, and the Binion’s casino was sold to MTR Gaming Group in Las Vegas. Harrah’s acquired the Horseshoe brand, however, they didn’t have a financial interest in the Binion’s Hotel which was renamed as Binion’s Gambling Hall and Hotel. This property reopened in April 2004. In 2005, Caesars announced that the annual 2005 WSOP Series events would be held at the Rio Hotel and Casino, which was owned by Harrah’s. And since then, the series has been hosting its annual event at the Rio.
Last year, the organizers announced that the WSOP would change its home for the upcoming 53rd edition of the series. In the latest update from Las Vegas, WSOP’s new home is all set to be rebranded as Horseshoe Casino. Currently, major renovations are underway, as the new Horseshoe Casino preps to welcome the WSOP events and players this year. The 2022 WSOP will kick-start on 29th May 2022.
Now that you know how the WSOP venues changed over the years, the next time you visit Las Vegas to play the WSOP, make sure to relish the venues as you grind at the WSOP events.
Amarylisa Gonsalves is a Content Writer at Gutshot Magazine. Advancing from a marketing background, she found her calling in writing. She takes delight in exploring genres and is a curious learner. Patient and ambivert, she believes in letting her work speak for itself. Apart from content writing, she finds solace in writing poetry by expressing herself through words. Additionally, she adores indulging in anything that satisfies her creative self, like drawing and DIY crafts.
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