The live poker scene has returned to normal in Nevada and some of the other states in the country are slowly lifting restrictions and letting live poker rooms reopen without any major restrictions. California is one of those states that has now opened up its live poker rooms for business after Cali Gov. Gavin Newsom lifted lockdown restrictions on June 15.
The Gov. announced that masks will no longer be mandatory in California for those who have been fully vaccinated but gave each individual business the option to impose their own regulations for doing business.
Poker Room Decide Restrictions
So while live poker has is now officially back in California, the rules at the casino and live poker tables are not uniform and some poker rooms have relaxed the rules but others continue to be cautious as they don’t want to take any chance of causing a COVID-19 outbreak at their premises and bringing on another lockdown on themselves.
While Las Vegas casinos and poker rooms have dropped the mandatory mask protocol, you will still find a lot of patrons wearing masks at casinos and poker rooms in California. The Bicycle Casino and Commerce Casino which have two of the biggest poker rooms in the world have made it mandatory for their dealers, floor managers, security guards and cashiers to wear masks.
The two casinos have made this a mandatory policy for their staff but they are expected to lift this requirement most likely this week. Customers entering the Bicycle Casino are not required to wear a mask but they will have to confirm to security if they are vaccinated or not. Do note that you don’t have to submit any proof of vaccination at the Bicycle Casino.
Commerce Casino does not ask customers to wear masks and security will also not stop you to check if you are vaccinated or not.
CA Poker Rooms Slowly Recovering
When the live poker scene reopened in Las Vegas, most of the poker rooms started filling up quick and there was a lot of action at the poker tables as poker players were keen to get back in on the action after an extended layoff.
You don’t see the same thing happening at the poker rooms in California as business is up and down for some of these poker rooms. The Bicycle Casino is recognized as the biggest poker room in the world with 185 poker tables. The poker room is doing alright but it is still not buzzing with activity as in the past.
Gardens Casino and Commerce Casino have more than 50 cash games running over the weekend which is similar to the numbers they have witnessed before the restrictions were lifted on June 15.
Some poker rooms have removed the plexi glass dividers as they look to move past the pandemic and assure players that things are back to normal. However, it is still going to take a couple of weeks before California’s poker scene is up and running at full capacity.
Poker Rooms Withhold Perks
One possible reason for the hesitancy for poker players to return to action in California is likely because they sense that the casinos and poker rooms are still being cautious with their games, promotions and perks.
Poker players are used to accumulating comp points for doing business at the tables but you will not find any comp points as of now. Most of the casinos in California are not likely to roll out comp points in 2021 although there are rumours that the Bicycle casino is expected to bring back comp points in a few months – but no official date is confirmed.
Poker rooms are also not offering table serve or cocktail service at their premises anymore. Players are now asked to leave the poker rooms in order to get themselves food or a drink. When things return to normal at the casinos and poker rooms, you are likely to see poker players show up and play as normal.

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