Ace Speaks Dutch

The Games

Ever since I started playing poker for a living, about seven years ago, there has been legal Dutch poker in one place only — the beautiful Holland Casino in the center of Amsterdam. When I started out, the only game they offered was 10-20 guilder limit hold’em, which is slightly less than €5-€10. At one time, it was decided that the smallest game should be 20-40 guilders, and after the conversion to the Euro, this was transformed to €10-€20.

It was around that time that a pot-limit Omaha game was started, too. Some people had been asking for that game for quite some time, and because of the efforts of Ed de Haas, the 500-guilder buy-in PLO game quickly became very popular. Nowadays, our regular game is €500 buy-in PLO, and when some big players are there who want to play for higher stakes, €1,000 or even €2,000 buy-in games are possible. While this would happen rather frequently about two years ago, nowadays the games are almost always €500 buy-in with €10-€10 blinds.

In fact, while this game used to go at least five days a week when it first started, we currently get the game going three days a week. And not only is the game played less frequently, it has become much tougher to beat, because despite the relatively small player base, there are actually quite a few high-quality players. The fact that the Dutch economy has been struggling for quite a while now and the competition of good games on the Internet has increased have made it increasingly more difficult for poker to grow here. This is especially true because there are not many low-limit (or small-stakes pot-limit) games available, which means it is hard to get new players into our game — and the …

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