The 2014 Aussie Millions kicks off on Thursday, Jan. 23, and while there will be plenty of poker to be had, Crown Melbourne will also be offering numerous Chinese New Year festivities to celebrate the Year of the Horse.
From 5 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 30 to Sunday, Feb. 2, the Riverwalk Hawker’s Bazaar, an annual tradition in Melbourne now in its 12th year, will be open for free to the public. The Crown Riverwalk, which attracts approximately 100,000 people a day during the Chinese New Year, will feature a series of activities and entertainment including cooking demonstrations, 60 food and market style stalls, a host of cultural activities, exhibitions and live entertainment including roving and interactive performances.
- What: Crown’s Lunar New Year Festival
- Where: Crown Riverside — spanning from Queensbridge Road through to Spencer Street
- When: Hawker’s Bazaar — Thursday, Jan. 30 until Sunday, Feb. 2, from 11 a.m. until 11 p.m., daily
- Atrium display until Feb. 16, 2014
- Admission: Free
- Details: www.crownmelbourne.com.au
In addition, a fireworks display, which in Chinese New Year folklore is believed to ward off evil spirits, will take place on Thursday, Jan. 30 and Saturday, Feb. 1 at 10:45 p.m. along the Yarra River.
Finally, Crown’s Atrium will be transformed with an elaborate Chinese aerial structure, clustered with delicate spring flowers, lucky charms, firecrackers and stunning internally lit lanterns. To commemorate the Year of The Horse, Crown has added to the Atrium decorative display, a five-meter high, hand-sculptured, brilliant horse. The Chinese New Year Atrium Display featuring the Gold Horse will run from through Feb. 16.
Crown’s highly acclaimed Aussie Millions Poker Championship will commence on Thursday Jan. 23 with Event #1 Opening Event, which is the first of 20 highly anticipated individual poker events, that range in price from AU$1,100 to AU$250,000.
Slated as the Southern Hemisphere’s most prestigious poker championship, the Aussie Millions continues to draw record crowds from across the globe, resulting in unprecedented multimillion-dollar prize pools and making legends one hand at a time.
Here’s a look at some Aussie Millions facts and figures:
- Held each Jan. at Crown Melbourne, Australia
- Holds the title of the largest, richest and most prestigious gaming event in the Southern Hemisphere
- Ranked second in the world behind the World Series of Poker by PokerNews
- 20 Championship events culminating in the Main Event
- 2014 total prize pool is expected to be in excess of $20,000,000
- Comprehensive slate of tournaments in every major poker variation
- 2014 marks the 12th anniversary for the Main Event
- The ‘Main Event’ will be televised nationally and internationally
- 4,000 plus individual entrants are expected to participate in the 20 events
- Over 1,500 international visitors will participate over the two and half-week period
- Canada, China, England, Estonia, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Israel, Macau, Portugal,
- Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden and the United States will be represented
- The Aussie Millions generated approximately 7,000 room nights across Melbourne in January 2013, including over 5,000 room nights at the three award winning Crown Hotels
- 2011 saw Crown host the world’s largest poker tournament at a buy-in of $250,000, smashing all previous records for a poker tournament buy-in
Finally, here’s a look back at the prestigious Aussie Millions Main Event, which PokerNews will be live reporting from Feb. 2-9:
|Date||Entrants||Main Event Buy-In||Prize Pool||1st Prize|
|2005||263||$10,500||$2.63 million||$1 million|
|2006||418||$10,500||$4.18 million||$1.3 million|
|2007||747||$10,500||$7.47 million||$1.5 million|
|2008||780||$10,500||$7.80 million||$1.65 million|
|2009||681||$10,500||$6.81 million||$2 million|
|2010||746||$10,500||$7.46 million||$2 million|
|2011||721||$10,500||$7.21 million||$2 million|
|2012||659||$10,600||$6.59 million||$1.6 million|
|2013||629||$10,600||$6.29 million||$1.6 million|
For more on the Aussie Millions, check out A Historical Look at the Aussie Millions from 2003-2007 and A Historical Look at the Aussie Millions 2008-2011.