By now you’ve nary uncertainty heard astir nan World Poker Tour (WPT) and their upcoming WPT Voyage, which will return spot from March 31-April 6, 2024 arsenic they return complete an full Virgin Voyages cruise vessel – nan 1,400-cabin Valiant Lady – for a six-day poker show that features $1.5 cardinal successful guarantees, including a $5,000 buy-in, $1,000,000 GTD WPT Main Event.
Leading up to nan WPT Voyage, PokerNews will beryllium profiling respective unit members of nan WPT astatine Sea Poker Room successful our “Industry Insiders” series. For those that don’t know, nan WPT astatine Sea is nan existent poker room aboard Virgin Voyages (currently connected nan Scarlet Lady cruise vessel but soon to grow to others).
Check retired our profile connected WPT astatine Sea Poker Manager Kirk Saunders here.
Get to Know Andrea DiBattista
One smiling look poker players tin expect to spot erstwhile cruising is that of WPT astatine Sea General Manager Andrea DiBattista, who grew up successful Norwich, Connecticut.
“Norwich is simply a mini metropolis that does not person overmuch successful nan area different than 2 ample Native Casinos,” she explained. “Most of nan group that grew up successful nan area astatine that clip ended up moving location for a short play astatine least. When I graduated precocious schoolhouse successful 1998, I started moving arsenic a coin cashier astatine Mohegan Sun. The system of nan erstwhile business area of Norwich had gone downhill a lot. The casinos were a booming manufacture astatine nan clip and were employing thousands and thousands of people. For young group pinch nary assemblage degree, who came from a working-class family, this was a awesome measurement to support your family. I was genuinely excited astir getting my ft successful nan door, moreover if I decided to move departments.”
Eventually, successful 1999, DiBattista recovered her measurement into poker dealing schoolhouse contempt knowing thing astir nan game.
“People successful nan people were learning really to publication hands, and I had nary thought what hit what. I was a young mother who needed a occupation that would make capable money to lend to my household. The unit was connected for maine to believe and do well. I was moving astatine nan section Friendly's scooping crystal cream, successful poker school, and taking attraction of a baby. Now I look backmost and laughter a little, but I besides cognize really grateful I americium that I pushed myself nan measurement that I did, this virtually was a life-changing moment.”
"Being a azygous mom and trying to activity afloat clip connected a non-flexible schedule started to return its toll connected maine truthful I decided to woody again."
After passing her audition, DiBattista dealt for a fewer years earlier moving her measurement up, and successful nan early 2000s relocated to Florida to activity successful nan poker industry.
“I quickly moved up to being a Dealer Coordinator, which I really loved doing. I besides ran tournaments, ran chips, sat astatine nan podium, immoderate was needed. Being a azygous mom and trying to activity afloat clip connected a non-flexible schedule started to return its toll connected maine truthful I decided to woody again truthful that I could beryllium astatine each of my daughters shot games, way meets, and schoolhouse functions.”
When her children were grown, DiBattista sewage backmost into nan guidance game, and successful Jacksonville worked immoderate WPT events, moreover dealing immoderate last tables. From there, she decided to return her poker knowledge and skills connected nan road.
“After astir a twelvemonth of being a recreation dealer, I was getting to cognize my roommate and we had respective conversations astir our poker acquisition … She offered maine a occupation penning SOP’s, which would put maine connected nan Scarlet Lady for 2 months (12 sailings). I, of course, hesitated because of nan uncertainty of really things would play out, but aft a fewer much conversations I said yes.”
She continued: “WPT astatine Sea has specified a positive, refreshing rotation connected poker. WPT astatine Sea keeps poker nosy and exciting. We person first clip players and knowledgeable players who are each location conscionable to bask themselves. By nan clip they leave, we are each Facebook friends and everyone has made memories that will past a lifetime. That’s what it’s each about. Do not beryllium intimidated by nan game. We are location to person fun. We want to thatch you nan crippled truthful that you are comfortable astatine nan table!”
What is WPT astatine Sea?
Not to beryllium confused pinch WPT Voyage, WPT astatine Sea is an existent poker room connected nan Scarlet Lady vessel (and soon-to-be different Virgin Voyages). That poker room is operating connected nan precocious seas correct now arsenic you publication this.
“After witnessing nan magic of cruise-line poker pinch Virgin Voyages past season, we instantly sought to found a imperishable fixture,” said WPT CEO Adam Pliska. “Scarlet Lady provides nan cleanable residence for WPT astatine Sea, which will bring nan WPT poker acquisition to nan precocious seas.”
The room features eight civilization poker tables staffed pinch master dealers. For rate games, nan rake is simply a reasonable 10% up to $10, which is overmuch little than different cruises. As for tournaments, buy-ins connected a emblematic sailing scope from $80-$320.
Recently, WPT astatine Sea has held a $240 buy-in Main Event, which awards a WPT prize package to a early sailing.
The room caters to players of each acquisition levels, from absolute beginner to seasoned pro. For nan former, nan unit holds beginner training courses connected each sailing, and dealers besides connection their services if 1:1 instruction is desired.
WPT astatine Sea goes wherever nan vessel does, meaning those who spell for nan poker will besides get to acquisition caller and breathtaking destinations. The room is closed erstwhile nan vessel is docked truthful sailors are incentivized to get disconnected nan vessel and cheque things out. But fearfulness not, erstwhile everyone is backmost connected committee it doesn’t return agelong for cards to get backmost successful nan air.
Here are immoderate different things to cognize astir WPT astatine Sea:
- The WPT astatine Sea poker room doesn’t judge cash. Sailors grip each transactions via their wearable devices (all sailors person a bracelet they deterioration that allows them to beryllium scanned astatine various outlets crossed nan ship), meaning buy-ins tin simply beryllium charged to your account. Likewise, tourney winnings are credited to nan relationship arsenic good (you tin rate retired either astatine nan casino cage aliases astatine nan extremity of nan cruise).
- Private and meet-up games are allowed astatine WPT astatine Sea.
- There is simply a casino area adjacent doorway that features a wide assortment of slot machines, roulette, craps, Blackjack, and different array games.
- The WPT astatine Sea poker room has windows, truthful you tin get a position of nan water outside.
- The poker room has its ain group of backstage bathrooms.
- Not only is location a barroom located successful nan casino conscionable extracurricular nan poker room, but portion serves are speedy to service nan poker-playing sailors.
- WPT astatine Sea offers up to 25% disconnected and up to $600 successful free drinks depending connected nan cruise, truthful beryllium judge to inquire erstwhile you book.
- WPT astatine Sea is very progressive connected Instagram, which you tin travel by clicking here.
WPT astatine Sea is taking reservations done nan extremity of 2024. To study much aliases book your cruise,visit wptatsea.com.
Executive Editor US, PokerNews Podcast co-host & 2013 WSOP Bracelet Winner.
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