There aren’t a lot of things that can top a night of poker with your mates, chewing the fat while you enjoy a few beers (or maybe something a little stronger) and chomp on some snacks. Getting a game together isn’t always the easiest thing in the world to do, however, and it might be that you’re looking for higher stakes than your friends are happy with.
If playing on your phone or computer isn’t appealing and no-one’s available for a few hands at home, however, you don’t have anything to worry about. Birmingham has plenty of places for you to go and play poker – probably more than you realise, in fact. There are some 36 tables spread over multiple venues, with variants including NL Texas Hold’em, No Limit Holdem, Pot Limit Omaha, Pot Limit Hold ‘Em and Texas Hold’em.
So, give yourself a quick refresher on how to play poker if you need it, then head back over here for the lowdown on where to play poker in Birmingham.
The Broadway Casino
If you’re still a relative newcomer to poker, The Broadway Casino would be a good first stop. The staff are noted for being friendly and, more importantly, are happy to offer advice to novices and even provide free training, detailing poker hand rankings and other basic rules to any beginners who pass through their doors.
It’s not just for beginners, though. The casino has a separate cards room with cash games from Monday to Sunday starting at 6pm as well as regular tournaments. It even offers a monthly cash back £5000 guarantee (terms and conditions apply, obviously).
Beyond the three card and stud poker, Broadway offers games including Blackjack, American Roulette, 32 Mini-Roulette terminals and 20 slot machines with payouts up to £20,000. As an added bonus, poker players get 25 per cent off their restaurant bill and if you want a time out, you’ll find a smart piano bar as well as a sports bar.
Rainbow Casino is a good choice if you’re into shopping local. Unlike many of Birmingham’s other gambling houses, Rainbow Casino is family run and independent – one of the few independent casinos with a license in the UK, in fact. It’s been in business for 40 years, in fact!
On the games floor you’ll find American Roulette, Touchbet Roulette, Blackjack, slots and, of course, Three Card Poker and Texas Hold’em. You can find a game of £10 No Limit Hold ‘Em every day of the week. Rainbow Casino gets added bonus points for the fact that it provides tuition for every one of its games, should you need it.
Beyond the gaming floor you’ll find a lounge area with a bar, TV (which often shows sports, including boxing) and a la carte restaurant. You’ll find Rainbow Casino off Hagley Road in Edgbaston. It operates from 2pm to 4am seven days a week.
Grosvenor Five Ways Casino
As the name suggests, Five Ways is part of the Grosvenor group and is just off the Five Ways roundabout in Birmingham city centre. The poker room is just off the main casino floor and has four tables that seat up to 16 players. It hosts cash games and is open 24 hours a day, so if you need a bit of poker in your lunch break then you’re in luck!
Another Edgbaston casino, this time located on Norfolk Road, Maxims is one of three in Birmingham run by Genting. It’s smaller than some of the other venues, but very friendly and laid back. Poker options include Progressive Stud Poker and 3 Card Poker, with other games including American Roulette, Blackjack with Perfect Pairs, Electronic Roulette Terminals, Punto 2000 and plenty of slot machines.
One of the big pulls for Maxims is the Kalooki competition that the casino hosts on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Make sure you register by 8:30pm and be sure to enjoy the complementary buffet for players.
Genting Casino Chinatown
The second of Genting’s three Birmingham casinos that we’ll be discussing, the Chinatown operation is located on Hurst Street in (yes, you guessed it) Birmingham’s Chinese quarter.
Alongside poker it offers American Roulette, Blackjack, Baccarat and Electronic Roulette (the Baccarat, in particular, is a highlight, with the Fortune 8 offering a minimum jackpot of £2,000). Most important for our purposes here, however, is the Genting Club Star City Card Room hosted at the casino. It has three poker tables, including one for No Limit Hold ‘Em and two for Pot Limit Omaha, with all of them being cash tables. Buy-ins vary from £0+ £3 to £100+ £10.
Genting Casino Chinatown has a reputation for being welcoming, with friendly croupiers and a generally pleasant environment. Another added bonus is the excellent Chinese food that the casino serves up until late into the night (it’s even been praised for its vegetarian offering). Food is served from 7pm to 2am Sunday to Wednesday and from 6pm to 1am Thursday to Saturday, while the Casino itself always has a game for you thanks to it being open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Genting International Casino
Located out by the airport, the third Genting casino isn’t super likely to attract you if you’re a local but if you’re reading this because you’ve flown into town for a couple of days then you’re in luck. No Limit Texas Hold ‘Em is the name of the game here, and the casino is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 7pm to 6am. It hosts cash games with blinds starting at £0.25/£0.50 as well as turbo tournaments.