Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Opens WSOP Room; Tournaments Start Soon

Ask any avid tournament poker player about “Cherokee” and watch their eyes light up. Now, North Carolina has a second poker room to excite poker enthusiasts in the state.

Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel, the sister resort of the popular Harrah’s Cherokee, completed a $275 million expansion project on May 22. It adds 25,000 square feet of gaming space, including the anticipated arrival of an official World Series of Poker room.

NCSharp spoke with Kelci Coker, regional communications manager at Harrah’s, about what visitors can expect at the new edition.

Poker room has welcomed more than 800 players so far

Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River opened in Murphy in 2015 as an extension of Harrah’s resort in Cherokee. The latter has been a gem on the WSOP circuit calendar since 2013, attracting some of the largest fields around the world.

Nine years later, Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River follows in its sister’s footsteps.

Even though North Carolina online poker remains illegal, the demand clearly exists. Coker confirmed to NCSharp that another North Carolina poker room now exists to meet that demand.

“The WSOP Poker Room was a highly requested amenity that has already welcomed over 800 players within its first two weeks of opening.”

Poker room features ‘splash pots’; tournament play coming next month

The room is open daily from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. (until 4 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays), and June’s promotion in the room is a $10,000 bad beat jackpot.

Poker rooms usually take a percentage of the rake from every dealt hand and add it to the room’s promotional balance. Starting in July, the room will add splash pots, where $100 will be added to a random pot every hour during evening hours.

Coker told NCSharp that tournament play will begin next month.

“The 10-table poker room offers a blend of exciting gameplay, top-notch hospitality and camaraderie that appeals to players of all skill levels. Conveniently located on the casino floor, poker enthusiasts can be dealt into cash games daily, including favorites like Texas Hold’em, with supplementary Splash Pot promotions and tournaments starting in July.”

Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River tournaments will take place at 7 p.m. every Monday and Thursday with an $80 buy-in.

As for cash games, the room offers No Limit Hold’em (NLH) and Pot Limit Omaha (PLO) games with multiple stakes.

  • $1-$3 NLH: $100-$300 buy-in
  • $2-$5 NLH: $200-$1,000 buy-in or up to the highest stack at the table
  • $1-$2 PLO: $100-$400 buy-in
  • $5-$5 PLO: $300-$1,000 buy-in or up to the highest stack at the table

Expansion project added hotel and spa

Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino’s $275 million expansion project was right on schedule after December’s announcement.

The project increased the overall gaming space by 50%, from 50,000 to 75,000 square feet. In addition to the poker room, 300 slot machines and eight table games were added to the gaming floor. The casino now has 1,350 slots and 60 table games.

The expansion project also included building a new 296-room hotel tower, 1,500 parking spaces, two dining venues and a 9,600-square-foot spa and salon.


Image Credit: John Locher / AP Images

About the Author

Hill Kerby

Hill Kerby is a proponent of safe, legal betting in North Carolina, and is grateful to be able to contribute to growing the industry. He has a background in poker, sports, and psychology, all of which he incorporates into his writing.