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Monday, October 31, 2011

Guide to picking the Melbourne Cup winner - 31st October 2011

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Americain's defence of the Melbourne Cup makes him the benchmark horse for tomorrow's running of the great race.

As the favourite and the topweight, the French stayer is a logical choice, but winning the cup two years in a row has always been a difficult task and how he stacks up against other historical aspects of the race also have be taken into account.

Only five horses have won the cup two or more times.

The great Makybe Diva won it three years in a row from 2003 to 2005 but the only other horses to win in successive years were the first ever winner Archer (1861-62), Rain Lover (1968-69) and Think Big (1974-75), while Peter Pan won in split years (1932 and 1934).

Americain will carry the prestigious number one as the topweight and since saddlecloths were first recorded in 1877, it has won 10 cups, second only to number four, (Drunken Sailor) and number 12 (Red Cadeaux) with 11 wins each.

Lucas Cranach has drawn gate 11, the same barrier Americain won from last year, and which has won a record eight cups since barriers were first allocated in 1924 and six since starting stalls as we know them, were first used in 1958.

The bogey barrier is 18 (Hawk Island) which is winless.

Liking a horse's name has been a popular way for many to make their cup selection and clearly horses starting with the initial "T" (The Verminator and Tullamore) have had the edge in the cup with 16 wins.

Four and five-year-olds share a record 43 cups each but the recent trend has been towards the more seasoned stayer.

While six-year-olds have only won 29 cups, six have been in the past 13 years while two of 10 seven-year-old winners figure in the same period.

Looking at the jockeys, and it is best to choose those with plain-bodied silks (56 wins) such as Jukebox Jury, Fox Hunt, Illo, Lost In the Moment, Modun, At First Sight and Shamrocker.

It is best to follow in-form horses as 20 of the 30 winners have won or placed at their last start.

Americain would be the 27th outright favourite to win the cup while seven equal favourites have won but horses at $9 and $11 have been the most successful with 12 and 14 wins respectively.

Horses at $5 and $17 (11 wins each) and $6 (10 wins) also have good records while there have been 16 winners at $31 or longer. *Prediction: *Illo from Fox Hunt, Tullamore, and Shamrocker.

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PartyCasino Wins Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month' Award


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PartyCasino Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment PartyPoker.com Casino News Media Media Man

PartyCasino.com has been awarded the Media Man and Casino News Media "Online Casino Of The Month" award.

PartyGaming's igaming suite has grown a custom to winning awards since they first opened for business in 1997.

The competition for the coveted award was intense again this month with massive bids from both WPT Casino Captain Cooks Casino, Virgin Casino, PKR and Noble Casino however there can only be one winner... ladies and gentlemen, that's PartyCasino.com

The award follows PartyPoker's EGR Poker Operator Of The Year and PartyGaming also made the shortlist for EGR Operator Of The Year. Recently Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment's PartyPoker.com also won the Casino News Media "Online Poker Website Of The Month".

The Media Man - Casino News Media accolade is based on a combination of elements including user experience, innovation, trustworthiness, customer service, gameplay, affiliate program offerings, newsworthiness and company values.

PartyCasino.com is one of a number of Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment brands.

The most popular PartyCasino.com games of late include Heist, Circus, Rambo, Palladium Slot, The Godfather, Sinatra, Slotbox, Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Mission: Impossible, The Terminator, Cleopatra, Sinatra, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, The Amazing Spider-Man, Monopoly, Resident Evil, Melon Madness, Wheel Of Fortune and Mega Fortune Wheel.

The PartyCasino.com jackpot is currently approaching the $4 million mark. Players can also compete for The Big One and Marvel Hero Jackpot, playing the Marvel super hero themed online slot games.

PartyCasino's most recent game releases include War Of The Worlds, Atomic Fruit, Aztec Gold, Sin City, Robin Hood, Shaaark! SuperBet, Crocodopolis, Alice's Wonderland, Glamour Puss, Super Cubes, Heist, Palladium Slot and Circus Slot.

Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Co CEO Jim Ryan has gone on record advising PartyCasino will soon feature more Hollywood blockbuster themed slots. A few in the know journalists and media agents have been recently tipped off that an all time classic movie adaption will be showcased in the PartyCasino portfolio within 1 month. PartyCasino has the world's most impressive line up of Hollywood themed games, and more are just around the corner.

PartyCasino.com and PartyPoker.com customers can also benefit from rewards and bonuses via PartyPoints and the Palladium Lounge. Be certain to check out the PartyCasino exclusive "Cash Machine" that is being championed as one of the greatest online casino promos ever.

Media Man, Casino News Media and Global Gaming Directory do have a b2b relationship with Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, as they do with dozens of other companies in the gaming, igaming, media and entertainment industry.

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PartyCasino.com

PartyPoker.com

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PartyGaming PartyCasino PartyPoker PartyBingo Circus PartyCasino Marvel Slots The Big One Melon Madness Casino World Poker Tour PartyCasino Promotions

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Packer upset by suggestions Crown profits from victims - 28th October 2011

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Crown Casino Crown Limited James Packer Politics Melbourne Gaming


Crown Casino chairman James Packers says suggestions his business relies on problem gamblers are upsetting and he is not ignoring the human cost of profits.

Transcript

ALI MOORE, PRESENTER: Crown Casino chairman James Packer says suggestions his casino business relies on problem gamblers is upsetting.

Mr Packer is now publicly attacking the Federal Government's laws to put compulsory betting limits on poker machines.

But he says he's not ignoring the human cost of casino profits.

JAMES PACKER, CROWN CASINO CHAIRMAN (FAIRFAX RADIO): This perception that the only people that come to Crown are helpless victims and we are just sitting there praying on them, you know, I reject that absolutely and that does upset me. And I think that that is, you know, that is a spin line from the latte set, which is completely wrong.

ALI MOORE: Independent Senator Nick Xenophon says James Packer is in as much denial as a problem gambler.

He has challenged the Crown Casino chair to open his gambling books for public scrutiny.


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Friday, October 28, 2011

Stevie Wonder sorry for late performance at The Star; Sydney, by Greg Tingle - 27th October 2011

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World Casino Directory Global Gaming Directory Australian Casinos The Star The Darling Echo Entertainment Gaming Sydney Australia


We all used to have a bit of a love - hate relationship with the Sydney venue once known as Star City Casino, but as of late many Australian's have fallen back in love with The Star (and its cousin - The Lyric Theatre).

The love affair has been helped along considerably by quite a bit of celebrity rub off, with names such as musical genius Steve Wonder and Hollywood megastar Leonardo DiCaprio happy to be associated with the Echo Entertainment empire, formally more of a Tabcorp Holdings lock in.

And wait, there's more... next month Hollywood legend Al Pacino will do The Lyric in a unique and intimate performance.

Now, it's time to clear up a little bit of confusion folks.

Mr Wonder has kindly apologised to his loyal Australian fans after taking to the stage an hour late in Sydney on Wednesday night.

Audience members members got edgy and did a bit of heckling after the delay at Star City's Lyric Theatre.

Wonder was quick to bring around his audience.

"We had a few little things happening before so please forgive me," Wonder said when he emerged on stage.

"We're going to do things differently tonight, have some fun."

In between songs with his fans, Wonder played a 20-song set including his hits Superstition, Higher Ground and Signed Sealed Delivered.

The evening also featured cover versions of Michael Jackson's 'The Way You Make Me Feel' and Nat King Cole's 'When I Fall In Love'.

Wonder played a request for actor and good friend Leonardo Di Caprio watching along in the audience, but jokingly told the crowd to "take a chill pill" following their song list demands.

Oh, the official opening of The Darling, the 5 star boutique lifestyle hotel and spa, is on track to go off without a hitch today.

The Star is keen to recoup its almost billion dollar casino revamp investment but Echo Entertainment powers that be tell us that they are in this for the long haul.

Melbourne's Crown Casino, headed up by gaming billionaire James Packer is not about to roll over and die, and is a nose away from getting a leg up on Star with its Melbourne Cup tie in.

Media agencies et al such as Media Man, Casino News Media and Roy Morgan are following the battle between Echo Entertainment - The Star and Crown Limited closely.

Stay tuned to see whose star will shine more brightly as both entertainment complexes scour the universe for the world's most discerning entertainment connoisseurs.

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The Star

Echo Entertainment

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Hotels, Bars, Clubs And Casinos Of Australia And The World, by Greg Tingle


Hotel Profiles

Hilton Hotel Palazzo Versace The Darling Virgin Limited Edition Ravesi's Swiss-Grand Resort & Spa, Bondi Beach

Bars

Club 23

Clubs

South Sydney Rabbitohs

Casinos (Australia and New Zealand)

Crown Casino The Star Jupiters Hotel and Casino Gold Coast Treasury Casino And Hotel Reef Hotel and Casino Casino Canberra Lasseters Hotel and Casino SkyCity Group

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MGM Grand Wynn Hotel and Casino Station Casinos Monte Carlo Golden Nugget Trump Entertainment Resorts

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Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire told to ease off high stakes poker, by Greg Tingle - 28th October 2011

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Poker Gambling.com Casinos.com Hollywood Games United States News Financial News Casino News Poker News Entertainment News


Tobey Maguire Ben Affleck Leonardo DiCaprio Matt Damon

Many Hollywood (and AussieWood) stars love to gamble, and high-stakes poker is one of their favourite games. Privacy is high on their priorities and it's known that some forms of gambling don't sit well with the law in some parts of the world, including in the United States.

It's understood that Tobey Maguire and mates Leonardo DiCaprio and Ben Affleck are long time high stakes poker fans and may have participated in quite a few private games played mainly in Los Angeles and New York.

The word is that the FBI is probing into alleged Russian mob connections to those big dollar games.

A few months ago there was a lawsuit filed against Maguire claiming a big Wall Street investment guy paid his gambling debts with funds inappropriately acquired from his firm’s investors.

A longtime associate of both DiCaprio and Maguire is understood to have said "As much as those boys love to gamble, they don’t need this kind of hassle...It seems clear that a number of very unsavory people have used their own huge wealth to weasel their way into those games.

"No one needs a Frank Sinatra problem these days," added the leak, referring to the Mafia connections that followed Ol’ Blue Eyes most of his life.

DiCaprio and Maguire are currently enjoying a working holiday of Australia and both gents have been spotted at The Star (entertainment complex and casino) more than once.

'Our Leo' is staring in The Great Gatsby. Maguire is not working Spider-Man, but has a number of exciting projects in the works. Man the best player, er, actor Win.

All of this while online gaming companies such as Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, which owns the World Poker Tour, attempts to get the green light from the US government to offer Americans totally legal online poker games.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

In The News

James Packer Shane Warne Leonardo DiCaprio Crown Casino The Star Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Richard Branson Stan Lee Jim Ryan WWE Hulk Hogan John Cena The Rock Ric Flair Kevin Nash NextGen Gaming

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James Packer Whacks Poker Machine Reforms - 27th October 2011

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Crown Casino Crown Limited James Packer Politics Melbourne Gaming


James Packer, chairman of casino owner Crown, says proposed poker machine reforms will not tackle problem gambling.

Speaking at Crown’s annual general meeting in Melbourne this morning, Mr Packer said mandatory pre-commitments for high-intensity poker machines was not the right solution.

"We don’t have an issue with the federal government taking action against problem gambling, but it must be the right solution," he said.

"In my view, there is no evidence that introducing mandatory pre-commitment or introducing a one dollar maximum bet will be effective in tackling problem gambling, but it will hurt recreational players, and that will cost jobs and investment across the industry and cost the state government tax revenue used for essential community services.

"It’s not enough to identify the right problem, we need the right solution." Crown, which owns the Crown Casino in Melbourne and Burswood Casino in Perth, is concerned about problem gambling and always has been, Mr Packer said. "I believe no one in this country, or, in fact, in the world-wide casino industry, has done more to address problem gambling," he said.

Websites

Crown Casino

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Crown Casino Bar Club 23: Shane Warne, Elizabeth Hurley and Tiger Woods Tomorrow Night, by Greg Tingle - 26th October 2011

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Crown Casino Crown Limited James Packer Shane Warne Melbourne Gaming


Australian sporting icon and poker celebrity, Shane Warne, is hosting 50 odd close friends at his new Crown Casino bar Club 23 tomorrow night.

It is believed Shane's fiancee Elizabeth Hurley will attend, but the event is not being promoted as an engagement party.

The rumour mill says its a get together of Warne's family and friends will include Crown Limited top brass James Packer and his lovely wife, Erica.

Ms Hurley jetted into Australia on Monday morning with her son Damian.

Club 23, which Warnie part-owns with poker player and entrepreneur, Joe Hachem, opened on the quite last week. It will enjoy an official launch on November 7.

A few associates of Warne's may also attend, including golf and nightclub lover Tiger Woods.

The club is an initiative to try to keep ahead of the game, with Crown powers that be well aware that Sydney's The Star has been making a lot of noise in the media as of late.

Websites

Crown Casino

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Global Gaming Directory

Australian Sports Entertainment

Al Pacino to visit The Star Sydney with An Evening with Al Pacino, by Greg Tingle - 26th October 2011

Profiles

Sydney Australia Hollywood The Star Echo Entertainment Australian Casinos Movies The Godfather


"Fredo, you're my older brother, and I love you. But don't ever take sides with anyone against the Family again. Ever." - The Godfather (1972)

Legendary actor Al Pacino will be bringing his one-man show, An Evening with Al Pacino, to Sydney next month as part of a special happening on the 17th and 18th November at The Lyric Theatre, The Star.

In a unique performance Al Pacino entertains audiences as he revisits his amazing career and most memorable roles.

Part of the gig includes an intimate on stage interview followed by audience members pitching questions to the living legend.

We've heard the night also concludes with an unforgettable acting finale which needs to be witnessed to be believed.

Pacino has performed for over 40 years and some of his best known work includes The Godfather, Dog Day Afternoon, Heat and Scent of a Woman and Scarface.

Tickets are now on sale via Ticketek and range from $109 to $199.

Echo Entertainment and The Star powers that be continue to impress with their entertainment offerings, and Pacino has obviously embraced the opportunity, as have many other showbiz legends such as Russell Crowe and Leonardo DiCaprio.

Crown Casino's top brass including James Packer are watching this space closely, so expect Crown to pull a rabbit or two out of the hat as the battle between The Star and Crown Casino continues.

Websites

The Star

Echo Entertainment

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Ticketek

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Australian Sports Entertainment

Virgin Bingo Launches Another TV Campaign

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Richard Branson Virgin Bingo Virgin Games Virgin Enterprises Limited Games

With a mind-blowing 500% Bingo Welcome Bonus on offer, it was just a matter of time before the online bingo site of Virgin Bingo, part of the massive Virgin Games gaming family, hit the TV airways with a brand new TV campaign in order to support their most generous offer to date. New Virgin Bingo players can unlock this tremendous free £25 bonus by making at least a £5 deposit and then betting that money on any online bingo games they wish. Once that is done, their account will automatically receive this generous offer.

The TV campaign can be seen across major shows and will continue until Friday November 18th 2011 and features Ricardo Jalapeno their lively and loveable mascot. “Our new Virgin Bingo welcome bonus ensures that we are now offering our players a competitive and industry leading sign up offer. Since going live at the start of October we have seen an immediate and dramatic impact on our registration numbers and active player rates. The supporting TV campaign has helped drive acquisition across all channels and we are expecting more great results in November and beyond” commented Craig Perrott, Bingo Acquisitions Manager at Virgin Bingo.

Players at Virgin Bingo can benefit from the widest collection of side games, thanks to their partnership with leading gaming producers such as Ash Gaming, Microgaming, IGT, Cryptologic and Freemantle. With more than 250 games available, Virgin Bingo boasts one of the largest range of online slots, including Batman, Monopoly, Beat the Bank, Call of Duty 4 and King Kong.

'Unremarkable' woman strangles friend, dumps body in car park - 26th October 2011

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A Melbourne woman who strangled a friend and dumped her body in a car park has been jailed for 19 years.

Cam Linh Tu, 48, killed Thi Xuan Dung Tran after an argument over money, took her friend’s jewellery and made up a story that two women were responsible for the murder.

Victorian Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Curtain said Tu cut her hair, sold the jewellery, travelled to Sydney and bought a return ticket to Vietnam without telling her son she was going.

Tu was arrested when she returned about a week later and repeated to police the lie she told her sister, that two women killed Ms Tran.

‘‘In fact, you contrived an elaborate and skilful web of lies accompanied by detailed descriptions of what each person did and said to Dung Tran in the course of the struggle between them and Dung Tran, where each of them were standing and grappling with the deceased,’’ Justice Curtain said today.

Tu, of Springvale, later admitted she killed Ms Tran, but maintained her friend started the assault and she acted in self-defence.

On April 24 last year, the pair planned to go to Crown Casino, where they had met six months earlier, but argued and Tu strangled Ms Tran.

She dumped the body at a Springvale car park, where it was found the next morning.

Tu maintained that Ms Tran owed her money, but Justice Curtain said it was Tu who owed the 53-year-old mother of four.

She said the killing was neither planned nor premeditated, but arose from ‘‘a spontaneous escalation of a verbal argument into a deadly physical one’’.

The defence had described the case as ‘‘a very sad commission of the crime of murder by a woman who was otherwise a law-abiding citizen who had led an unremarkable life caring for her son’’.

Tu had spent about six years in a Malaysian refugee camp after leaving Vietnam before she and her son came to Australia as refugees in 1995.

A jury found Tu guilty of murder.

Justice Curtain jailed Tu, who pleaded guilty to two counts of obtaining property by deception, for 19 years with a 15-year minimum.

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PartyCasino Wins Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month' Award


Profiles

PartyCasino Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment PartyPoker.com Casino News Media Media Man

PartyCasino.com has been awarded the Media Man and Casino News Media "Online Casino Of The Month" award.

PartyGaming's igaming suite has grown a custom to winning awards since they first opened for business in 1997.

The competition for the coveted award was intense again this month with massive bids from both WPT Casino Captain Cooks Casino, Virgin Casino, Betfair, PKR and Noble Casino however there can only be one winner... ladies and gentlemen, that's PartyCasino.com

The award follows PartyPoker's EGR Poker Operator Of The Year and PartyGaming also made the shortlist for EGR Operator Of The Year. Recently Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment's PartyPoker.com also won the Casino News Media "Online Poker Website Of The Month".

The Media Man - Casino News Media accolade is based on a combination of elements including user experience, innovation, trustworthiness, customer service, gameplay, affiliate program offerings, newsworthiness and company values.

PartyCasino.com is one of a number of Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment brands.

The most popular PartyCasino.com games of late include Heist, Circus, Rambo, Palladium Slot, The Godfather, Sinatra, Slotbox, Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Mission: Impossible, The Terminator, Cleopatra, Sinatra, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, The Amazing Spider-Man, Monopoly, Resident Evil, Melon Madness, Wheel Of Fortune and Mega Fortune Wheel.

The PartyCasino.com jackpot is currently approaching the $2 million mark. Players can also compete for The Big One and Marvel Hero Jackpot, playing the Marvel super hero themed online slot games.

PartyCasino's most recent game releases include War Of The Worlds, Atomic Fruit, Aztec Gold, Sin City, Robin Hood, Shaaark! SuperBet, Crocodopolis, Alice's Wonderland, Glamour Puss, Super Cubes, Heist, Palladium Slot and Circus Slot.

Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Co CEO Jim Ryan has gone on record advising PartyCasino will soon feature more Hollywood blockbuster themed slots. A few in the know journalists and media agents have been recently tipped off that an all time classic movie adaption will be showcased in the PartyCasino portfolio within 1 month. PartyCasino has the world's most impressive line up of Hollywood themed games, and more are just around the corner.

PartyCasino.com and PartyPoker.com customers can also benefit from rewards and bonuses via PartyPoints and the Palladium Lounge. Be certain to check out the PartyCasino exclusive "Cash Machine" that is being championed as one of the greatest online casino promos ever.

Media Man, Casino News Media and Global Gaming Directory do have a b2b relationship with Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, as they do with dozens of other companies in the gaming, igaming, media and entertainment industry.

Websites

PartyCasino.com

PartyPoker.com

Profiles

PartyGaming PartyCasino PartyPoker PartyBingo Circus PartyCasino Marvel Slots The Big One Melon Madness Casino World Poker Tour PartyCasino Promotions

Stevie Wonder Media Frenzy At Star City Lyric Theatre; Red Carpet Report, by Eva Rinaldi - 25th October 2011

Profiles

World Casino Directory Global Gaming Directory Australian Casinos The Star The Darling Echo Entertainment Gaming Sydney Australia

We know you have heard of Star City Casino, recently rebranded as The Star, but wait for it... introducing you to The Lyric Theatre. It falls under parent company Echo Entertainment these days.

Stevie Wonder was the headline act tonight, as he performed to an intimate audience of 2000 patrons, paying between $225 to $455 to see the music legend close up.

Around the corner on the red carpet, news media waited for the celebs. The name listed included Jennifer Hawkins and Jake Wall, Kate Richie and Stuart Webb, Wendell Sailor and wife Tara, Ricki-Lee Coulter and boyfriend Richard Harrison. Does anyone know how much the celebs are getting paid to turn up to Star invites, or is it just a win - win, all done to generate positive media buzz?

Finally, after what seemed like hours for Russell Crowe and beautiful wife, Danielle Spencer did the red, fresh off dinner at the revamped casino aka integrated entertainment complex.

For the record, Stevie Wonder did not do the red carpet. Promoters across Australia, if not the world, are attempting to find out how much money Mr Wonder is making for his intimate appearances at The Star, and that's likley to be something that is kept well under wraps for a while yet.

The Star may be a bit of a media darling at the moment, but nothing lasts forever. The Star would do well to go out of their way to also impress news media who have been quite supportive of the Echo Entertainment owned complex, since they first announced it was going to get a massive makeover.

We've heard that the next trump card for more news headlines will be the official opening of The Darling, the 5 star boutique lifestyle hotel and spa.

Just how long it may take The Star to recoup its almost billion dollar casino revamp investment is unknown, but Echo Entertainment looks to be in this for the long haul, so good on them.

Websites

The Star

Echo Entertainment

The Darling

Eva Rinaldi Photography

Eva Rinaldi Photography Flickr

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Melbourne Cup News: Sarah Jessica Parker Mate Kristin Davis Scratched From Cup Trip, by Greg Tingle - 25th October 2011

Profiles

Crown Limited Crown Casino Movies Hollywood Racing Melbourne Cup Melbourne Australia


Famous actress Sarah Jessica Parker of 'Sex and the City' fame will soon be in Melbourne to both promote her new film and also to take in Oaks Day as well as perhaps the Melbourne Cup.

We heard Sydney's eastern suburbs are near the top of Parkers' favourite Australian destination, however she is contractually obligated to attend Melbourne.

What's the racing - fashion - celeb news at the races?

Well, Charlotte York (SATC) aka Kristin Davis was originally tipped to be joining Sarah Jessica Parker for Oaks Day at Flemington as a guest of Crown Limited.

It's understood the 'Sex and the City' bombshell had Davis as the one to accompany her during her Melbourne stay, and to help promote her new film, 'I Don't Know How She Does It', and slotted into the Crown marquee in the Elms enclosure, but now we hear Davis is a scratching (to use a horsey term).

Davis has had a lot going on in her life as of late, included just adopting baby Gemma Rose

Parker is confirmed for the movie press conference at Crown Casino on Tuesday 1st November and will be doing the red carpet premiere at Crown following day.

Many a hotel - resort in Melbourne's CBD would love for Parker to be their guest. No prizes for guessing how is most likely in the running.

The flick be released nationally on November 3.

Websites

I Don't Know How She Does It

The Weinstein Company (TWC)

Sex And The City (HBO)

Crown Casino

Crown Limited

Melbourne Cup official website

Casino News Media

Website Network

Media Man Int

Media Man

Media Man News

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Australian Sports Entertainment

Sarah Jessica Parker Heading To Melbourne Crown For Movie Premiere, by Greg Tingle - 25th October 2011

Profiles

Crown Limited Crown Casino Movies Hollywood Melbourne Australia


Famous actress Sarah Jessica Parker of 'Sex and the City' fame will soon be in Melbourne to both promote her new film and also to take in Oaks Day as well as the Melbourne Cup.

Don't get us wrong. She just loves Sydney (and its great weather and beaches), but its in Melbourne where she will get to mix business and pleasure.

The American beauty and talented producer will attend the traditional Ladies Day at Flemington in November when she heads to Melbourne for the first time to promote her flick, I Don't Know How She Does It.

We've also been told she's going to be a very guest at the Crown Casino Marquee, one of the most exclusive, as you might have guessed.

Crown Limited PR General Manager Ann Peacock advised they were delighted to welcome the New York fashion icon to Melbourne.

"It's a perfect match on this most traditional of race days," Ms Peacock said.

The new movie, 'I Don't Know How She Does It', also staring Greg Kinnear, Christina Hendricks from Mad Men and Pierce Brosnan, focuses on the life of Parker, a mum-of-two balancing work and family life.

The press conference is to be held on Tuesday 1st November At Crown's complex and the Australian premiere is on Wednesday 2nd November, also at Crown.

It's rumoured that Ms Parker will be staying at the exclusive Crown Towers, where other actors such as Tom Cruise and his actress wife Katie Holmes have also stayed when doing Melbourne. Crown have not confirmed her rumoured stay at this stage.

Crown Limited top dog, James Packer and his world class team continue to impress with their continues successes into the broad entertainment and lifestyle sector. If the entertainment business has elements of being a game, Mr Packer and team sure look like they are winning.

The film be released nationally on November 3.

Websites

I Don't Know How She Does It

The Weinstein Company (TWC)

Sex And The City (HBO)

Crown Casino

Crown Limited

Melbourne Cup official website

Casino News Media

Website Network

Media Man Int

Media Man

Media Man News

Media Man Entertainment

Casino News Media

Global Gaming Directory

Monday, October 24, 2011

The Darling At The Star Opens Friday, by Greg Tingle - 24th October 2011

Profiles

World Casino Directory Global Gaming Directory Australian Casinos The Star Echo Entertainment Gaming Sydney Australia


Well, we've all heard of Star City Casino, recently rebranded as The Star, but wait for it... introducing you to The Darling which opens its luxurious doors this Friday.

This presser is not about gambling at all, except for the fact that it's all part of The Star, owned by Echo Entertainment.

Echo Entertainment and James Packer's Crown Limited (aka Crown Casino) are locked in a casino war battle for VIP's and whales, with lear jets and "lucky money" all the rage for the privileged few.

Don't worry about new friend of the Star, movie star, Leonardo DiCaprio. He's got a whole floor at The Star for his famous mixing of business and pleasure.

Regular punters might not be in for a whole floor, but the suites are so sweet, you'll hardly noticed. You might feel like a movie star yourself after checking out the digs at the new hotel.

We're hear via the grapevine that Echo Entertainment has a promo for Australia’s media, gaming and travel press, so we will look forward to your kind offer then.

The Darling is set in the high spot of the market. Get this, you have the hotel and spa, swell views of Sydney Harbour, and you can choose from 171 rooms and suites. There's 5 penthouse suites located on the top floors and the view of the Harbour is to die for.

The Hotel also has 9 Stellar Suites, designed for comfort providing a ‘home away from home’ feel, 8 Adored Suites which exude a high end residential feel, 35 spacious Jewel Suites and 113 Darling Rooms. Yes, something for everyone, who can afford it.

The Darling wants full rooms, not low occupancy rates, hence their generosity with Australian news media, gaming and travel biz types. It's wonderful that The Star appreciate the fine job that Australian press has done for theme in their transforming of their once "ugly duckling" casino or "RSL on you know what casino jack", which wasn't exactly complimentary.

The Darling Hotel GM named the hotel "refined with subdued hues, yet the ambiance warm and inviting".

"Our guests will experience a one of a kind mix of an entertainment destination, a relaxed urban culture, a contemporary design, all overlooking the spectacular Sydney Skyline."

The gorgeous 16 room spa is a major drawing point The Darling and sports both oriental and European themes and beauty goodies.

The Hotel lobby shows off art by both Australian and international artists. We've also heard there's a billiard table that you should also try your luck on.

If you have time, check out the Japanese restaurant, Sokyo, as well as the well stocked bar, located near the lobby.

So impressed are Australian press by all that The Star offers, media agencies such as Media Man are lining up to do extra reviews. The right press is more important the advertising, so The Star and Echo Entertainment powers that be would do well to make sure the press stays on side, as soon the love affair and honeymoon period with media may be over.

From our estimation The Star is continuing to live up to the hype, and we're looking forward to spending much more time there... starting tomorrow, with the red carpet event which compliments Stevie Wonder's exclusive concert at The Lyric Theatre.



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Sydney’s Darling opens this week - 24th October 2011

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The Star is set to open its newest five-star hotel ‘The Darling’ on Friday 28 October.

Let's check out the hotel’s world class facilities.

As a special promotion the Star announced it is extending a special invitation to Australia’s travel trade to be among the first to experience the hotel, offering a special introductory rate for travel agents and airline aligned tourism affiliates from 28 October to November 2011.

Positioned in the premium category of the market, the Darling Hotel and Spa, offers 171 rooms and suites, comprising of five exclusive penthouse suites that occupy the hotels top floors, all of which featuring floor to ceiling Harbour views.

The Hotel also offers nine Stellar Suites, designed for comfort providing a ‘home away from home’ feel, eight Adored Suites which exude a high end residential feel, 35 spacious Jewel Suites and 113 Darling Rooms.

The Darling Hotel and Spa general manager Drew Schlesinger described the hotel as “refined with subdued hues, yet the ambiance warm and inviting”.

“Our guests will experience a one of a kind mix of an entertainment destination, a relaxed urban culture, a contemporary design, all overlooking the spectacular Sydney Skyline.”

The stunning 16 room spa is a key highlight of the hotel and features exclusive Asian and European inspired treatments including a range of Australian made products by LI’TYA, a natural skin care and spa treatment grounded in indigenous Australian dreamtime culture.

The spa also offers an intimate couple’s treatment room with large bath with relaxing rain showerhead and a Haman, a Turkish inspired spa.

The Hotel lobby features work by both Australian and International artists and features lounge area and a custom-made billiard table.

Also residing in the Hotel lobby you will find contemporary Japanese restaurant, Sokyo. The restaurant is also a bar, which has its own resident DJ and offers a taste of modern Tokyo in both menu and interiors.



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Betting operators accused of offering free bets, a refund on losing wagers

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A gambling inspector crackdown has seen four operators charged with offering illegal incentives.

The Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation has alleged the four have offered inducements to open betting accounts.

Free bets and a refund on losing wagers were allegedly among the unlawful offers made. Operators can be fined up to $2443 for each offence.

The commission alleged IASbet offered up to $1000 in free bets.

Sportsbet was alleged to have offered free bets of up to $200. Betezy, through roobet and bombersbet, allegedly offered a free bet of $200 and up to $2500 to existing punters who referred a friend.

Betfair is alleged to have offered refunds of between $50 and $100 for unsuccessful bets.

Stay tuned for more developments in the world of gaming and igaming.

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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pokerfest: PartyPoker’s inaugural online tournament festival starts Sunday

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Series runs until 6th November - quality from as little as $1 NOW!

Gibraltar – 21 October 2011 – The countdown is on for the arrival of PartyPoker.com’s inaugural online poker festival – Pokerfest. With 47 events in a range of game types, the festival starts THIS SUNDAY 23rd October – 6th November guaranteeing $3,000,000. Qualifiers starting from $1 are online now!

A PartyPoker.com spokesman said: "We kick off on Sunday with four no limit hold’em events with guarantees of $300k, $2k, $20k and $150k – these cater for players on all levels with the $2k requiring a points buy-in only. The no limit re-buy tournaments start Monday, with the Pot Limit Omaha dominating Tuesday – the fixed limit hold’em tournaments start on Thursday."

Team PartyPoker.com Pro Kara Scott looks ahead to Pokerfest. Tony G calls everyone out for what he calls a 'Meatfest'.

At least three events every day

Pokerfest will feature at least three events EVERY DAY covering a variety of buy-ins and game types. Below is just some highlights of what is on offer:

· Event #47 - $1,000,000 guaranteed main event - $640 buy-in (qualify from $1)
· Event #23 - $350,000 guaranteed - $215 buy-in (qualify from $2.50)
· Event #46 - $50,000 guaranteed - $33 buy-in
· Event #2 - $2,000 prizepool - 20 Points buy-in

Qualify from as little as $1

PartyPoker.com want everyone to be a part of Pokerfest so they have developed a number of fantastic qualifying routes so players can qualify for a fraction of the main buy-in. There is also a wide range of extra promotions and side events - click on the tabs on the site to check out the $100k leaderboards and get the scoop on how to qualify for a fraction of the buy-in. The grand finale of Pokerfest is the $1,000,000 guaranteed main event taking place at 13.30ET on Sunday 6th November.

Variety of buy-ins and game types

Pokerfest will feature three events every day covering a variety of buy-ins for the following game types:

· No Limit Hold ‘em
· No Limit Hold ‘em + Rebuy(s)
· No Limit Hold ‘em, 6 max table, deep stack Fixed Limit Hold ‘em
· Pot Limit Omaha
· Pot Limit Omaha + Rebuy(s)

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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Donald Trump Teams With Avenue’s Lasry in Online Gaming Venture; Casino And Poker Push - 20th October 2011

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Donald Trump has witnessed too much money side slipping him, and he's hoping that situation changes soon.

The real estate, gaming and entertainment giant, and founder of an Atlantic City casino company says the US should legalize internet gambling. The company that bears his name, Trump Entertainment Resorts, is moving forward with plans to establish an online betting venture... just as soon as it is legal to do so.

The company says it wants to get in on the ground floor of the internet gambling industry, and is close to selecting a joint venture partner to run an online gambling operation. The idea is to be well-placed and ready to go as soon as such activity is legalized in the United States.

"It should be approved here," Trump told news media. "An awful lot of money is leaving the U.S. that should and could stay in this country."

Trump Entertainment, which includes Donald Trump and daughter, Ivanka, and the Avenue Capital hedge fund, would own 10% of the new business venture.

Donald Trump advised the key to success in the online gambling market is having the best brand.

"We think we have the hottest brand there is, the Trump brand, my personal brand," he said. "We think it's going to do phenomenally well."

Donald Trump and New York hedge-fund manager Marc Lasry want a seat at the virtual poker table if online gambling is legalized in the U.S.

The real estate financier, Lasry’s Avenue Capital Group and casino operator Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc. will form an Internet gaming joint venture should U.S. regulators permit such businesses to operate, according to an Oct. 14 regulatory filing. Trump Entertainment, which Avenue Capital took control of last year, would own 10% of the venture, the company said in its filing. It didn’t disclose the stakes to be held by Trump or Lasry’s $12 billion hedge fund.

The agreement coincides with a push to legalize online gambling by states including Iowa and New Jersey, where Trump Entertainment is based and holds casino licenses. The $6 billion that Americans wager each year through offshore sites is tempting state authorities who face budget deficits, as well as casino companies looking for new sources of growth.

"It’s just a matter of time," Ivanka Trump, Donald’s daughter, said in a telephone interview. "It would be a tremendous source of taxable revenue for states or the federal government and an enormous generator of jobs," said Ivanka, executive vice president of development and acquisitions for the Trump Organization, the New York-based parent company of Donald’s real estate operations.

2010 Bankruptcy

Todd Fogarty, a spokesman for Avenue Capital, declined to comment, as did Brian Cahill, a representative for Trump Entertainment. Lasry, 52, is chairman of the company, which operates the Trump Taj Mahal Resort and the Trump Plaza Hotel & Casino in its hometown of Atlantic City, New Jersey. It sold Trump Marina Hotel Casino earlier this year.

The agreement by Trump Entertainment, Donald Trump and Avenue Capital restricts all three parties from going after competing proposals through May, according to the filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Trump Entertainment, which emerged from bankruptcy in July 2010, said in the filing that the joint venture represented "the most advantageous way" to pursue online gaming "at minimal cost" to the company. "One or more other qualified parties" may also participate in the venture, according to the filing.

Ivanka Trump, 29, said that the joint venture is “positioning itself” to be the largest online gaming company if the industry is legalized in the U.S. She added that Trump Entertainment had the necessary licenses, while Lasry’s firm would provide the capital and her father would contribute his name to the venture.

Expensive Proposition

"In terms of the Internet, brand is essential toward attracting players," Ivanka said. "The Trump brand would be the most powerful one in this space."

Setting up an Internet gaming site can be capital intensive, according to Richard “Skip” Bronson, chairman of U.S. Digital Gaming Inc., a Beverly Hills, California, company that has created a technology platform for Internet wagering. While the cost of creating a site is relatively low, online gaming companies must spend heavily to make themselves known and bring in bettors.

"The question is how will you get people to come to the site," Bronson said in a telephone interview. "It takes unique promotions and significant marketing spend."

Trump Entertainment Reorganization

The online gaming industry received a jolt in April, when the U.S. Justice Department indicted the founders of three Internet poker companies, alleging that they circumvented a 2006 federal law barring banks from processing payments to offshore gambling websites. The companies -- PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker, and Absolute Poker -- ranked as the leading online poker sites doing business with U.S. customers, even though they were all based outside the country.

Following the indictments, Caesars Entertainment Corp. and MGM Resorts International, a pair of Las Vegas-based casino companies, funded an advocacy group called FairPlay USA. The group is pushing for the legalization of online poker and revisions to the 2006 law, known as the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act.

At least a half dozen states have bills pending tied to the legalization of online gaming, Bronson said, and another six to 10 are studying the issue. He predicts that online gaming will follow the same pattern as state lotteries, which were first adopted in 1964 by New Hampshire and are now offered in 43 states.

‘Domino Effect’

"There will be a domino effect, the same way lotteries started in the 1960s," Bronson said. Under the 2006 federal law, Internet poker sites established in states that legalize online wagering could only accept bets placed within those states, Bronson added.

Lasry, a billionaire investor who specializes in distressed debt, was part of a bondholder group that won control of Trump Entertainment last year when a bankruptcy judge ruled that their bid for the casino company was better than a competing offer from Carl Icahn. The bondholders offered to reduce the company’s debt by $1.4 billion and invest another $225 million, while Icahn sought to convert some $480 million of bank debt into equity, leaving nothing for Lasry’s group.

Under the winning plan, Avenue Capital acquired about a 22 percent stake in Trump Entertainment by swapping the casino company’s beaten-down bonds for stock and purchasing additional shares through a rights offering. Trump, who joined Lasry and the other bondholders after originally submitting a competing proposal with billionaire Andy Beal, received a 10 percent stake in the company for the right to use his name.

Three’s A Charm

Trump, 65, entered the casino business in 1984 with the Trump Plaza, and in 1990 defaulted on $675 million in junk bonds from his Taj Mahal casino and declared bankruptcy. Following the bankruptcy reorganization, he took the company public in 1995 as Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts Inc.

Trump Hotels & Casino filed for bankruptcy protection in November 2004. When the second bankruptcy proceeding was completed the following year, Trump stepped down as chief executive officer while retaining his role as chairman, and the company was renamed Trump Entertainment Resorts.

Just before the casino company made its third bankruptcy filing, in February 2009, Trump stepped down as chairman and Ivanka also left the board. At the time, he held a 24 percent stake in Trump Entertainment.

Lasry has hosted high-stakes poker games in which the take can be as high as $20,000, according to "Hedge Hunters," a 2007 book by Bloomberg News reporter Katherine Burton. He is one of several hedge-fund managers who are also poker buffs, including David Einhorn, head of Greenlight Capital Inc., Cliff Asness, chief of AQR Capital Management LLC and Kenneth Griffin, founder of Citadel LLC.

Just a few online gaming companies that are understood to be interested in coming to business terms with Trump include Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, Richard Branson's Virgin Games and PKR. Most experts see Bwin.Party as the best bet, as they don't have any outstanding issues with the US Department of Justice, and have been playing by the rules (law) for many years, while other gambling companies continue to go after U.S players.

Internet gambling is legal in many countries, with the U.S being a glaring exception.

Media Man is following up.

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment tipped to be dominant player; Buy rec, by Greg Tingle - 21st October 2011

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Medium to long term investment prospect, Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment (LON:BPTY) could be the dominant player in online gaming across Europe, deriving the majority of its profits from regulated markets, states UBS analyst Simon Whittington.

In the meantime, the company is buying back shares, paying around 5% dividend yield, and driving double-digit EBITDA growth, underpinned by conservative synergies, he added.

UBS rates the firm a 'buy' with a 12 month target price of 185 pence (current price: 104.8 pence).

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Donald Trump says US should legalize Internet betting - 21st October 2011

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Donald Trump has witnessed lots of money side slipping him, and he's hoping that situation changes soon.

The real estate, gaming and entertainment tsar, and founder of an Atlantic City casino company says the US should legalize internet gambling. The company that bears his name, Trump Entertainment Resorts, is moving forward with plans to establish an online betting venture... just as soon as it is legal to do so.

The company says it wants to get in on the ground floor of the internet gambling industry, and is close to selecting a joint venture partner to run an online gambling operation. The idea is to be well-placed and ready to go as soon as such activity is legalized in the United States.

"It should be approved here," Trump told news media. "An awful lot of money is leaving the U.S. that should and could stay in this country."

Trump Entertainment, which includes Donald Trump and daughter, Ivanka, and the Avenue Capital hedge fund, would own 10% of the new business venture.

Donald Trump advised the key to success in the online gambling market is having the best brand.

"We think we have the hottest brand there is, the Trump brand, my personal brand," he said. "We think it's going to do phenomenally well."

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Trump Entertainment said it has "determined that such a joint venture represents the most advantageous way for the company to participate in opportunities in online gaming at minimal cost to the company."

No cost estimates were given, and Robert Griffin, the company's CEO, declined to comment Thursday. But in March, after Gov. Chris Christie vetoed a bill passed by New Jersey lawmakers that would have allowed Internet betting solely within New Jersey's borders, Griffin said the money lost to offshore operators should benefit New Jersey.

The new law would seen New Jersey become the first state in the nation to allow Internet betting.

"Currently, millions of Americans engage in online gaming with illegal offshore operators, and do so with no oversight, no regulation or no consumer protections," Griffin said at the time. "It makes sense for the state of New Jersey to regulate this activity, enforce strict standards to ensure games are fair and safe, and in turn be able to collect tax revenue instead of having those dollars and the jobs they support leaving New Jersey and going illegally overseas."

Christie advised he vetoed the law fearing it was unconstitutional and could lead to an explosion of betting parlors throughout the state. By law, gambling in New Jersey is restricted to gaming hotspot Atlantic City.

But a New Jersey lawmaker is asserting that individual states in fact have the legal right to offer in-state Internet gambling within their own borders.

State Sen. Raymond Lesniak, D-Union, wrote in July to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder asserting that New Jersey and all other states can legally offer online betting within their borders.

Lesniak said he will introduce legislation in November to address the prime concerns expressed by Christie.

The filing said the company, Donald and Ivanka Trump, and Avenue Capital have signed an agreement authorizing the joint venture once it becomes legal, and that prohibits any of them from seeking other online gambling ventures through May 2012.

Atlantic City is in the midst of a nearly 5-year revenue slump brought on by increasing competition from casinos in neighboring states, and worsened by the continuing unsteady economy. It's also speculated that many AC businesses have not adapted well to the internet medium.

Just a few online gaming companies that are understood to be interested in coming to business terms with Trump include Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, Richard Branson's Virgin Games and PKR. Most experts see Bwin.Party as the best bet, as they don't have any outstanding issues with the US Department of Justice, and have been playing by the rules (law) for many years, while other gambling companies continue to go after U.S players.

Internet gambling is legal in many countries, with the U.S being a glaring exception.

Media Man is following up.

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The Sopranos actor John Marinacci arrested for gambling; Life imitates art, by Greg Tingle - 20th October 2011

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Mid range actor John Marinacci has been arrested along with 36 others as part of an inquiry into a mob-connected gambling ring in New York.

The 56 year old, who has appeared in episodes of The Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire, was hauled in by police as part of Operation Flat Rate after allegations he solicited bets, collected money and took a percentage of losing wagers for the Gambino crime family.

Deputy Attorney General Peri Alyse Kadanoff announced on Tuesday that police have gathered a "great deal of wiretap evidence" against 37 members of the ring, which allegedly operated in Brooklyn from April 2010 until April 2011. Three other Gambino associates were also arrested.

Marinacci, who is also a professional poker teacher, was charged with one count of enterprise corruption, 30 counts of promoting gambling, 30 counts of possession of gambling records and one count of conspiracy, according to the New York Post.

He has been released on $US25,000 ($A24,506) bail.

It's understood Marinacci is or was associated with controversial online poker brand, Bodog, and industry insiders are suggesting that it may be a good idea for the keen gambler to change to a less risky brand, be it World Poker Tour or World Series of Poker (if they will take him).

Other actors from The Sopranos or Boardwalk Empire are not under suspicion of illegal gambling.

Something tells us that the poker lover will soon be self sponsored and will be practising his flushes with inmates.

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Betting On United States, by Greg Tingle - 20th October 2011

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Jim Ryan, the co-chief executive of Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment is a very busy man.

In fact, he's invested three of the past five weeks in the United States pushing a presentation that advertised to investors the strengths of the world’s largest publicly-traded online gambling - gaming firm. Ryan’s presentation included a one-page chart that listed the top online poker brands in the U.S. market. The names of once fierce competitors PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker, were crossed out in red. Is Party the only real game left in town? Time will tell.

“Where you see the red lines, those organizations have been indicted, so although one can’t predict the future, it’s unlikely you will see those brands back in the U.S.,” Ryan said during an interview. “The brand that has the most consumer awareness is in fact the PartyPoker brand.”

Ryan’s company happens to own both PartyPoker and the World Poker Tour, two of the top online poker brands that did not have their U.S. operations shut down by the U.S. Justice Department in April because they were not facilitating for-money online poker play in America—in the case of PartyPoker since 2006. They also own PartyCasino, a top online casino destination website. The fact that Ryan, who is based in Gibraltar, has recently been spending so much time in the U.S. demonstrates he is optimistic and hopeful for a U.S. comeback. “My focus is on the U.S.,” says Ryan, who is in the final stages of negotiating partnerships with two U.S. companies. “Even though there is no guarantee that online gaming will ever regulate in the U.S.”

For years Ryan and his staff at PartyGaming, which merged with Bwin earlier this year, had to sit on the sidelines, watching how much money PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker were snatching. It was a difficult thing to watch for the top brass and workers at PartyGaming, which was the biggest online gambling company in the world thanks to its domination of the U.S. online poker market until Congress passed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act in 2006. PartyGaming exited the U.S. market and saw its stock price take a massive hit, while PokerStars and Full Tilt kept their U.S. facing .com websites on air. Party competitors enjoyed somewhat of an unfair advantage, with the rouges using the U.S. market to expand globally at PartyGaming’s expense. “We were beyond the point of frustration,” says Ryan.

Next PartyGaming struck a non-prosecution agreement with the U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, paying $105 million and admitting its U.S. operations had for years violated U.S. law. Meanwhile, PokerStars and Full Tilt continued to operate in the U.S. and claimed that their U.S. operations did not violate U.S. law, pointing to legal opinions the companies had received from top American legal eagles. To many, it appeared like PartyGaming had given a lucrative business away. Even at the company’s headquarters there were doubts until April 2011, when federal prosecutors in Manhattan closed down the U.S. operations of PokerStars and Full Tilt, naming them illegal gambling businesses, and indicted some of their key execs. "I think Party has been vindicated now in getting out when they did and in dealing with the Department of Justice," says Behnam Dayanim, a partner at Axinn Veltrop & Harkrider, who negotiated PartyGaming’s agreement with federal prosecutors in downtown Manhattan.

With all that said, Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment is not exactly holding a management party quite yet. It's so close, yet so far, from reclaiming online poker’s crown. Operating in highly-regulated and taxed European markets while competing against well-run companies like PokerStars is not for the faint-hearted. Bwin.Party’s stock, which trades on the prestigious London Stock Exchange, has dipped by 50% in 2011. Big corporate mergers can be problematic, but the outfit has also suffered a setback in Germany, where the nation’s top civil court recently decided to uphold an online gambling ban, and been dissed by higher gaming duties across Europe. When the company attempted to take advantage of the April U.S. shutdown of PokerStars and Full Tilt, Bwin.Party found that while some new European players were attracted to its poker brands, revenues remained flat-ish. It wasn’t until Full Tilt’s European regulator suspended Full Tilt’s license in late June that Bwin.Party’s increased advertising and promotional expenditures started to pay dividends. PartyPoker is now the second-biggest online poker room in the world, according to PokerScout, averaging 4,150 cash players during any given time. PokerStars has 22,800.

Ryan, who joined PartyGaming as CEO in 2008, has been waiting for this moment for what seems like forever. He long ago took Bwin’s Norbert Teufelberger to a McDonald’s in La Linea, Spain, and chatted to him at length about the pros of combining Bwin’s strong online sportsbook business with PartyGaming’s poker brands, resulting in the merger that was first announced in 2010. Ryan also fine-tuned his company’s business-to-business capabilities over the last few years with an eye toward finding a U.S. partner with whom he can re-conquer America. "We had to be realistic about where we sat in the food chain," says Ryan. "We figured if the U.S. regulated it would be unlikely that we would secure a license directly, that the laws of the land would be written to allow existing land operators and equipment manufacturers in the U.S. to secure the licenses." Ryan is optimistic about current efforts in Washington, driven by the American Gaming Association and powerful casino companies like Caesars Entertainment and MGM Resorts, to potentially get some sort of online gambling legislation through a divided Congress. Ryan notes he is also preparing for the possibility that online poker gets regulated first on a state-by-state basis.

"We have to be ready for both federal or state," he says. "It feels good to have American taxpaying companies finally driving this.".

If an offshore operator is to succeed in American, Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment looks like the firm to place bets with.

Bwin.Party has identified Australia and New Zealand as places to further expand their business, even sponsoring high profile poker players such as Tony G and Stewart Scott (a former Crown Casino 'Aussie Millions' champion.) PartyPoker is one of a number of rumoured brands set to take over the sponsorship spot at James Packer's Crown Casino that FTP once enjoyed. Party look to have as much chance as anyone, probably more so.

In the meantime, poker and casino game players in regions such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Italy, South America, South Africa and beyond can continue to enjoy their gaming.

Poker playing celebs such as Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon and Tobey McGuire are understood to be open to sponsorship approaches from Bwin.Party.

Governments of the world - you're throw of the dice.

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