The high-stakes poker world is preparing to descend upon Panama with the second event on the inaugural PokerStars Championship schedule hosted in Panama City, Panama from March 10-20.
Panama City has played host to one of the most popular stops on PokerStars' Latin American Poker Tour since 2012 and the first PokerStars Championship Panama event will follow in its footsteps, returning to the Casino Sortis Hotel, Spa & Casino which LAPT Panama had called home since 2015.
Sandwiched in between Costa Rica and Columbia, Panama is also bordered by the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south, with the world-famous Panama Canal slicing through the country and connecting the two. Panama City is the country's capital and features warm and humid tropical weather year round. The PokerStars Championship Panama will come and go just ahead of the country's rainy season, which runs April to December, so hopefully players stay dry and get to enjoy some of the wonders the city has to offer.
Visitors from European Union countries the United States and Canada do not need a visa to enter Panama and can stay up to 90 days provided they have a passport valid for the next three months. This means players can come for the poker and stay a few months after should they choose to spend their winnings on an epic Panamanian adventure.
The Balboa is Panama's official currency, but the country is dollarized, meaning U.S. dollars are used everywhere. You may get local coins as change, but they trade at a fixed rate of 1:1 with the U.S. dollar. Like many countries around the world, you cannot enter or leave Panama with more than $10,000 cash, so those looking to buy in to the $10,300 High Roller or $50,000 Super High Roller should make suitable arrangements.
Tocumen International Airport in Panama City is among the largest and busiest airports in the region and a number of major international airline carriers offer direct flights to and from several international destinations daily. Casino Sortis Hotel, Spa & Casino is only a 30-minute drive away after what could be a long flight.
Players looking for assistance with hotel bookings, airport transfers and other concierge services in Panama can check out PokerStarsTravel to make sure the experience is the best it can possibly be.
Poker And More
The PokerStars Championship Panama will feature literally dozens of tournaments over the 11-day schedule and with something for everyone, including buy-ins that range from $120 to $50,000. Cash games will also be run alongside the tournament schedule 24 hours a day from March 10-20 with a variety of games and stakes ranging from $1/$2 to $200/$400. The Sortis Casino will be running the cash games in its bingo room and poker room on the main casino floor, ensuring there will be plenty of seats for all comers.
Players looking to qualify for this epic event still have time with qualifiers being offered daily on nearly every PokerStars platform. You can qualify for the Main Event and side events with buy-ins that suit all bankrolls. Heck, you can even qualify for free if you really play your cards right.
Once in Panama, between the tournaments and cash games, a player could literally be in action day and night, but with so many other things to do and see in Panama there's really no reason to. A trip to Panama should be relished, and all who make the trip should be sure to do some exploring.
And guess what? We have some valuable tips on what to do and see when you're in Panama in Part 2 of this guide to PokerStars Championship Panama. Click here to read Part 2.