Siena Hotel gets Reno’s first online poker license

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In Reno, Siena Hotel Spa Casino has been granted the city’s first online gaming license. The property will market its online site under HD Poker, and is being jointly worked on with Z4 Poker. The site is expected to go live in early 2014.

Also, WSOP.com is up and running in Nevada and is averaging more than 130 players per week. The WSOP brand has a lot to do with the early success, plus it didn’t hurt that it came online within weeks of the WSOP final table in early November.

Other factors that contribute to its success is the software, which has the ability to earn WSOP points for tournaments played online as well as perks for players who return frequently.

NEW JERSEY: The ramp up of online gaming in New Jersey is approaching a fevered pitch. The first online site was expected to launch in late November, just after press time. In the several weeks leading up to the launch, no fewer than five major casinos were approved for online gaming licenses (Borgata, Golden Nugget, Trump Taj Mahal, Trump Plaza and the Tropicana).

All of the licensed operators were allowed to open their virtual doors on Nov. 21, during the state authorized trial period for the first five days of operation. If all went as planned during the trial period, then on Nov. 26, residents and visitors within the state were able to start gambling online.

FULL TILT UPDATE: Last month, I said the Garden City Group (selected by the Department of Justice to handle the remission of the funds to Full Tilt players) had sent out all of the emails to the registered players who were entitled to receive money back from the site.

There have been a lot of questions on how the Full Tilt Ironman Medals, Full Tilt points and other promotions would factor into the money allotted for the players. The GCG said those aren’t being considered in the calculation, which means those points, medals and promotions will not be converted into money for players. This question and others are covered in detail at fulltiltpokerclaims.com/faq.ph p.

ADELSON SPEAKS UP: Sheldon Adelson, CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp., recently commissioned a study to be done how the American voters feel about legalizing online gaming. Adelson has been vocal in the past of his opposition to online gaming. The study he paid for basically found that in California, Kentucky, Virginia and Pennsylvania, there was universal opposition to legalizing online gaming and online poker.

There were 2,216 telephone-polled participants in the study. Ante Up Wisconsin Ambassador and PokerNews.com senior writer Chad Holloway wrote a great article on this, with the breakdown of each state’s results as well as other key findings on how these “likely” voters felt on gambling in general. You can find his piece on PokerNews.com.

— Email Joel Gatlin at editor@anteupmagazine.com.