Thinking about taking a poker trip in 2017? Perhaps somewhere a little sexy, exotic, and different? Then São Paulo could be the place for you.
2017 will see the BSOP make its regular annual stop (which this year took place in July), before returning again around this time of year for the massive BSOP Millions festival. You’ll be able to qualify for both through online satellites, so make sure you keep an eye on the BSOP website or follow the BSOP Millions Twitter feed for the latest info on the events.
Just in case you need some convincing of why you should come and play poker in São Paulo, here are ten pretty persuasive reasons.
1. The atmosphere
You’ve seen Brazilians at football games, right? Or maybe you’ve seen them on the rail of a fellow countryman at a big televised poker final table? The guys and girls here in Brazil are a passionate bunch, not to mention fun-loving and kind. We guarantee you won’t find a poker atmosphere quite like the one here in São Paulo. Vamoooo!
2. The different styles
The Italians play different to the Germans, they say. And the French play different to those from the States, we’ve heard. Well, if you’re looking for another style of play to tick off your list, why not give the Brazilian one a try. It’s hard for us to pinpoint exactly what’s different here, but who knows; maybe the Brazilian style will suit your game down to a tee.
3. The culture
São Paulo is a diverse melting pot of people, and that makes for a rich and varied culture. In just a quick stroll around the streets of Vila Madalena, for example, you’ll see and experience different vibes with just the turn of a street corner. For example, did you know that São Paulo has the largest population of Japanese people outside of Japan? There’s a very large population of Italians here, too.
4. The sightseeing
With Ubers and the metro, it’s pretty easy to get around in São Paulo. That’s definitely a good thing as not only is the city one of the biggest in the world, there’s also so much to see. From the architecture on Paulista Avenue and the breathtaking São Paulo Cathedral, to the beautiful public gardens, quirky markets and stunning graffiti-laden alleyways. That’s the good news should you bust a tournament here; you’ll always have something to do.
5. The food
The succulent meats…the fresh, juicy fruits…the stews and pastries and sushi and pizza…sorry, I lost myself there for a moment. The food here in São Paulo is extraordinary, from local favourites like the Felipe Ramos-recommended feijoada (a stew of beans with beef and pork) which you can only get on Wednesdays and Saturdays (for some unknown reason), to street food favourites like coxinhas. Plus, the aforementioned large population of Japanese and Italians in the city mean the sushi, pizza and pasta here are first class.
6. The way you can order food
This one’s pretty specific to the poker room here at the Golden Hall of the Sheraton WTC, but players are able to order their food via WhatsApp message while playing, so they never have to leave their seats or call over a waiter or waitress. Your food is then delivered right to your seat. Nice and convenient.
7. The drinks
Earlier this week I told a story about a bar I visited on my first night here, one I described as ‘beer heaven’. Yep, the beer here is fantastic, whether it’s refreshing pilsners or hoppy IPAs you’re after. Not a beer drinker? Don’t fret. One of the favourites here is Brazil’s national cocktail – the Caipirinha. It’s made with cachaça, sugar and lime, and packs a refreshing punch.
8. The weather
This is Brazil, so needless to say the weather here is pretty good compared to most places. São Paulo might not have the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, but if you bust out a tournament and want to take a swim in the sun, there’s also the pool in the hotel. Which leads us nicely onto our next point.
9. The Sheraton WTC Hotel
Should you qualify for a BSOP package on PokerStars, there’s a good chance you’ll stay at the fantastic Sheraton WTC Hotel. It’s a top class establishment with friendly service and great rooms. The benefits of this place are that 1. You can get to the poker room without even going outside, and 2. Because it’s attached to the São Paulo World Trade Centre (where hundreds, if not thousands of people work), there’s an enormous food court inside offering a vast array of options, from amazing barbecue and steak to sushi and even McDonald’s.
10. The sexiness
São Paulo is a pretty sexy city. If you’re a single man, you’ll love it. If you’re a single woman, you’ll love it. Let’s just leave it at that.
Want to come and play in São Paulo next year? Well, you can win your seat to one of countless PokerStars live events around the world by playing on PokerStars. Click here to open an account and get started.
Jack Stanton drinks Brazilian beer for the PokerStars Blog.