Playing the APPT? Here's your guide to Melbourne

The PokerStars.net Asia Pacific Poker Tour is moving even further Down Under for Season Five, gracing the felt of Australia's biggest and most luxurious casino. Crown Melbourne is the gold-class venue for poker in Australia, with more than 70 tables filling out an exclusive poker room, surrounded by some of the city's best bars, restaurants, entertainment and four and five-star accommodation. The lively city of Melbourne is the perfect setting for the APPT's first stop of it's the fifth season.

When foreigners think of Australia, most picture sun and beaches. Well, the beaches are there, but think again about the sun at this time of year. With Melbourne being one of the lowest points of the country, trust me when I say: it gets cold in the winter. Don't let that put you off though, because Melbourne specializes in sport, culture, nightlife, fashion, food, etc. The list goes on.

If nightlife is your thing then you'll be right at home in this city where there are endless bars tucked away into hidden laneways that come to life at night. They're also in the heart of the AFL season - Australia's very own variation of football that you're bound to form an addiction to. Once you adjust to the fast-paced rules, that is.

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A day away from the felt is mandatory. Whether it's wasting the afternoon away over a drink in one of the trendy bars in St. Kilda with a view of the beach, strolling up and down Chapel Street loading your arms full of shopping bags, or adventuring through the city center snapping pictures of some of the historic landmarks. You could also take a cruise down the Yarra River and top it off with a gourmet meal at one of the countless restaurants along Southbank offering one of the most stunning views in the country. Either choice is a winner.

The hotel of choice for our qualifiers is the modern, four-star Crown Promenade. This is just one of the three excellent choices available in the Crown Melbourne complex. If extravagant five-star luxury is more your style, then Crown Towers is your destination. The newly-opened Crown Metropole is an impressive addition to the set, not to mention all three are extremely convenient, with the Crown Poker Room just a few minutes walk away.

The AUD$5,000 ($4,700 + $300) buy-in APPT Melbourne Main Event will take place from Friday 29th July, with the final table playing down to a champion on Monday 1st August. Satellites are running daily in the Crown Melbourne Poker Room.

If you can't make it there, be sure to follow live coverage here on PokerStarsBlog.com from Friday.

For more information, visit the official PokerStars APPT website.