Casino Hold’em, also called Caribbean Hold’em, is a variant of the poker game Texas Hold’em. Having rules that are similar to Texas Hold’em, Casino Hold’em is the first form of poker where the player plays the dealer, not other players. Other differences are minor, such as an additional bet and a payoff scale.
Initially introduced by Stephen Au-Yeung in 2000, the game originated with Au-Yeung wanting a way to train his then partner to play Texas Hold’em. He tweaked the game, first introducing it to live casinos in Egypt, South Africa and Russia. It is now available in both land-based and on non Gamstop online casinos.
The game is played with a standard 52-card deck and follows the standard poker hand rankings. Card strength goes from highest to lowest, but in some cases the Ace can be the lowest.
Non Gamstop Casino Hold’em starts with the player placing an Ante bet, followed by two cards dealt to the player facing up, two cards dealt to the dealer facing down and three flop cards facing up. The player now evaluates the cards and has to choose whether to fold or raise. Folding ends the round and forfeits the Ante bet. Choosing to raise, is to set a bet equivalent to twice the Ante, dealing two final flop cards.
Rules & Game Play
The dealer reveals his cards, comparing hands with the player. Dealer fails to qualify if he does not have a Pair of Fours or better, returning the call bet and the Ante bet paid according to the payoff: Royal Flush – hundred:one, Straight Flush – twenty:one, Four of a Kind – ten:one, Full House – three:one, Flush – two:one and Straight or Weaker – one:one. If the dealer qualifies and beats the player’s hand, all bets are lost. If the dealer qualifies but the player’s hand is stronger, the Ante bet is paid according to the aforementioned payoff, with the call bet paid one:one. If both hands tie, all bets are returned to the player.
The game offers a side bet called the AA Bonus, which is independent to the result of the game itself. Player might lose the game, yet win the AA Bonus or vice versa. The AA Bonus consists of determining the poker value of the player’s two cards and the first three flop cards. The AA payoff is: Royal Flush – hundred:one, Straight Flush – fifty:one, Four of a Kind – forty:one, Full House – thirty:one, Flush – twenty:one and Pair of Aces to Straight – one:one. House edge in Casino Hold’em varies from place to place, but is on average between 2% and 2.5%. This excludes the side bet, since it works independently.