PokerStars, the online gambling giant had earlier announced plans for hosting a special championship event in Sochi, Russia. The company has now released an official schedule for its first ever PokerStars Championship Sochi which is scheduled to take place between May 20 to May 31 at the Sochi Casino & Resort. PokerStars has packed its first championship in Sochi with a number of exciting events that have massive guaranteed payouts and is expecting a large turnout of players, since this is the biggest poker event to be held in Russia.

Russia only permits casino gambling in special gaming zones spread across the country. The city of Sochi is the 5th gaming zone to be recently approved in Russia with the remaining four being Primorye in Primorski Krai, Vladivostok; Yantarnaya; Azov-City and Altai Krai. Since Sochi is the latest gambling zone to open in Russia, there is a lot of buzz surrounding Sochi and the newly launched Sochi Casino & Resort which opened its doors to the public in Jan 2017.

The Sochi Casino & Resort is located in the mountainous region of the Gorki Gorod resort and has a total of 569 slot machines and 70 gaming tables. The casino is owned by Domain LLC which invested $66.3 million to open the casino resort. The Sochi casino will make a mark on Russia’s gambling market by hosting the PokerStars championship and is expected to be a top draw for all of the top poker players in the country. There will also be a number of international poker pros who will fly in for the Sochi championship including PokerStars pros Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier, Chris Moneymaker, Igor Kurganov and Liv Boeree.

Igor Kurganov is Russia’s number one poker pro based on the Hendon Mob’s all time money list in Russia and has made more than $12 million in career prize money. Kurganov stated that he was excited to see PokerStars hosting such a major championship in his country and he would be taking part in a number of events. The highlight of the PokerStars Sochi championship will be the Main Event which has a guaranteed $2.6 million in prize money and comes with a buy-in of $5,590. The Main Event is scheduled to take place between May 25 to 31.

Some of the other exciting events include the No Limit Hold’em which takes place between May 20 to 22 and has a buy-in of $10,860; the PokerStars National Championship which runs from May 20 to 25 and comes with a buy-in of $1,160; the PokerStars Championship Super High Roller which takes place from May 23 to 25 and has a buy-in of $52,700 and the No Limit Hold’em Single Day which takes place on May 26 and has a buy-in of $26,880. To see the full list of events and their buy-in fees, one can go to the PokerStars website.

The event will receive a lot of promotion and coverage in the coming weeks and the Sochi championship will be broadcasted via television and the internet. The 70 tables at the Sochi casino is expected to be in full use and will be used on a 24/7 basis. PokerStars has already launched a number of satellite events that will also interested poker players the chance to qualify for the Sochi championship with very low buy-ins. There is also a Main Event qualifying package on offer via special Spin & Go tournaments where the buy-in is just $8. Players who are interested in heading over to Sochi to take part in the Main Event can also avail discounted accommodation at the Marriot Hotel as there is a fifty percent waiver on accommodation during this time. More information regarding discounted accommodation is available at the PokerStars website.

Edgar Stuchly, the PokerStars Director of Live Events stated that the company was excited to host its first ever championship in Sochi, Russia as it is a great destination that offered visitors a lot of excitement apart from the PokerStars championship. Sochi hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics and is one of the popular tourist destinations in the country, with great weather, lots of outdoor activities and a wide range of five star accommodations. The company expects a great turnout at the Sochi championship.