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France – Tranchant deals the cards for first new style Parisian gaming club

By - 21 May 2018

French casino group Tranchant has opened the first of the new wave of Parisian gaming clubs, currently the only one authorised by the Minister of the Interior.

The Paris Elysées Club officially opened at the end of April on Rue de Marbeuf, close to the Champs-Elysees.

The advisory commission of the Games of Circle and Casinos (CCJCC) allowed the club to open with 30 tables, made up of five Punto Banco, five Poker 21, three Stud Poker Casino, three Three Card Poker, three Texas Hold’em Poker, three Ultimate Poker and one Omaha Poker.

The total investment came in at between €6m to €7m, which included the acquisition of the restaurant business previously taking up the space in the venue.

The iconic Art Deco building was designed by Jean Prouvé for Citroen. It was historically a cinema called Le Marbeuf, before becoming a celebrity restaurant, the Man Ray in 1999. thehe new gaming club occupies 2,500 m2 on three levels.

The director in charge is Philippe Le Gars, who will be able to rely on 170 members of staff, of which 100 will be croupiers.

A venue also includes a restaurant and two bars. The target audience is of course local, but also international, because of the location a few steps away from the most prestigious hotels of the capital, avenue Montaigne or Avenue George V.

Sebastien Tranchant hopes to have attracted, at the end of the first year of operation about 300,000 visitors, who will have paid a fee of €15 to get in.

With this opening, the Tranchant group has taken the lead on its potential competitors. Admittedly, the Cercle Clichy Montmartre, the only circle still open in Paris and which has until the end of the year to file a file authorising it to become a club is already well established. But the two institutions do not have the same targets. The circle is dedicated almost exclusively to poker in all its forms with 30 cash game tables and just a table of Multicolour, while the Paris Elysees Club offers five tables Punto Banco targeting an Asian clientele.

At the moment, only one other file of request to open is likely to be authorized any time soon with the Belgian group Ardent hoping to open the Circus Club with 31 gaming tables, including 18 for Texas hold’em Poker and Omaha Poker.

The group Raineau is waiting to open the Imperial Club. The group’s Chairman, Olivier Raineau, ‘took into account the reasons for the refusal’ and hopes that this new version can be examined and accepted at the next meeting of the CCJCC on June 12. This session may be busy because it will be the last before the summer holidays. The next one will take place only four months later, on October 9.

The group Lucien Barrière should also file an application on June 12, having found a location on the Champs-Elysees, in front of Fouquet’s, in the former premises of the circle of games run by Aviation Club de France.

The Partouche group is also one of the potential candidates for the operation of a gaming club. Socodem, is also in the reckoning, having sold its casino Gujan-Mestras (Gironde) group Joa to finance its establishment in Paris. Joa, who for a long time said it did not want take part in the Paris experiment, has finally filed a file for a club with a 1,000 m2 footprint and a work force of 100 employees including 80 croupiers.

The opening of these clubs could take place during the summer but with the experimentation phase supposedly ending on December 31, 2020, the time left to demonstrate the potential profitability of these clubs has been significantly reduced. Aside from the Paris Elysees Club, this means the rest will have less than two years to prove themselves during this phase of experimentation.

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