Feature Coverage

'Thee Best Hands' and Drea Renee in Action in Monte Carlo

Drea Renee

If you've ever attended a poker tournament, you may have seen a team of masseuses in bright red tops, going to work on some of the best poker players in the world. Luckily, Drea Renee, part of the 'Thee Best Hands' massage team stopped by on a break to speak to PokerNews.com about what constitues a normal day in the life of a masseuse.

"A normal day is waking up from three hours of sleep, walking to work, and then seeing what vultures are here first!" joked Renee "I mean unless you have a list already, but most of the High Rollers need 30 minutes before they want a massage. Some of them are like 'Yep!' right away, but some you have to give some time.

"Hopefully you get some time to eat. If it's a great day you don't. I know that sounds terrible; if you have 15 minutes to eat you know it's been a good day. If it's more like an hour, you're like 'Ehhh'."

The team of masseuses aren't on any set schedule; Renee says that sometimes you look up at the clock at 2 am, only to realize you have four more hours - if you're lucky. Bedtimes usually range between six and seven o'clock in the morning, but that often depends on the tournament.

The 'Thee Best Hands' team covers many tournaments all over Europe and the rest of the world and Renee is no stranger to some crazy stories from what she's witnessed at the poker table.

"The craziest thing I've seen was probably a guy in a tournament who had his lunch brought to him by his wife, and then his dinner brought by his mistress! That was really nuts to see at the table. I really didn't know what was going on!

"Then one time there were these two Asian guys who got into a huge fight over tanking. They were 60 years old and just ready to throw down. They were standing there and they almost went at it. I really am a fly on the wall to everything that's going on."

Renee, just like any of the massage team, has forged strong relationships with several players on the global poker circuit.

"I've worked on some of these guys forever, and when you're standing behind someone for hours you get to know how they play. I'm not a poker pro by any means, but I know when people are doing something stupid - and I have zero poker face!

Drea Renee

"There was this one hand here where this guy had queen-six off-suit. I'm working on this guy; I don't remember the action - like I said I'm not a poker player - but I'm sure there was a blind-raise-fold-call-limp-rainbow something. I mean that's what it sounds like to me!

"But he had queen-six and he was probably one of the craziest players at the table, and it was anxiety-inducing just massaging him. It was nuts. And he went all in! And this other guy, with way more chips, calls him with Aces!"

Just like the pros that she massages, Renee has a packed schedule.

"After a tournament like this, you definitely need time to relax. I head to Vegas next. I'm hosting the Super High Roller Bowl for Poker Central, and then of course the World Series starts. The Series is a little different; you really treat it like a massage. I don't work every single day until 4 am, I try to leave at one or two.

"I take a day or two off every once in a while and just sleep. I just sleep the entire day. To be honest, even the thought of going to get a massage sounds exhausting!"

Tags: Drea Renee