Welcome to the 2018 North American Open

October 13-14, 2018

New York, NY

We are proud to announce a landmark Riichi tournament here in North America - the first North American Open. This tournament will stand alongside other major tournaments such as the European Riichi Mahjong Championship (ERMC) and the World Riichi Championship (WRC) as a major, regularly run, worldwide Riichi event. Join us in starting a new tradition by participating in the inaugural event this year in the heart of New York City.

The North American Open is a NARMA event, hosted in 2018 by USPML.


The Down Town Association remains an island of quiet civility in a bustling Lower Manhattan. As a locus for nourishment, entertainment, relaxation or quiet discourse, the Club has remained of and for its members since its inception in 1859.


NAO 2018 will be played October 13-14, 2018

Saturday, October 13th Sunday, October 14th
9:00 AM - Registration 9:00 AM - Morning Check-In
9:40 AM - Opening Announcements 9:20 AM - Hanchan 6
9:55 AM - Hanchan 1 11:00 AM - Hanchan 7
11:35 AM - Hanchan 2 12:25 PM - Lunch
1:00 PM - Lunch 1:50 PM - Hanchan 8
2:15 PM - Hanchan 3 3:30 PM (approx) - Hanchan 9
3:55 PM - Hanchan 4 5:20 PM (approx) - Closing Ceremonies
5:45 PM - Hanchan 5 6:30 PM - Festivities complete
7:00 PM - Free Play


Tournament Format Overview

The first 7 hanchan will consist of a round-robin designed to pit players against the widest possible variety of opponents. After this, the top 4 players will be determined and their scores reset as they move on to a 2-hanchan final contest. Other players will be able to participate in a side event or spectate these exciting matches.

Stay tuned for a formal format specification packed with details!

WRC Ruleset

The North American Open will utilize the latest edition of the World Riichi Championship ruleset - the first international ruleset to be certified for competition play by authorities in Japan, Europe and the Americas. First introduced in 2014, the World Riichi Championship ruleset has been updated and improved year over year to be a definitive guide to Riichi Mahjong play. You can download a copy of the rules here:


NARMA has a no-solicitation policy at our events. In order to provide a distraction free environment to our attendees and protect our sponsors, we will not permit solicitation by attendees or unauthorized parties without express permission from NARMA. This policy includes, but is not limited to:

  • Unauthorized exhibits
  • Unauthorized recruitment activity
  • Unauthorized promotion of non-NARMA events
  • Unwanted advances towards players and/or staff
  • Unauthorized on-site distribution of printed or electronic material including flyers, signs, invitations, etc. (except business cards)
  • Unauthorized audio or video recording for commercial or promotional purposes.

Any person found to be violating this policy may be expelled from the event without reimbursement or refund.


NAO is an Open, all players are welcome to subscribe!

Tournament Entry: $145

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I have to qualify to enter this tournament?
A: Unlike other major tournaments, this is an Open and is designed to include as much of the North American community as possible! Register away!

Q: Are you guys bundling hotel and tournament entry just like WRC?
A: No. Registration for NAO is only for the tournament itself. There is a hotel attached to the venue that we can direct you to if you indicate your interest during registration!

Q: I've watched a lot of 80s movies and New York City seems like a pretty scary place. Is it just like 'The Warriors'?
A: Fortunately times have changed here in NYC! Modern New York City has seen record low crime rates year over year and is an extremely safe place to visit.

For any additional questions or inquiries...

Contact Us


While lodging is not provided by the tournament, here are some suggestions for where to stay during the North American Open.

If you have any questions about lodging or transportation around New York City, please don't hesitate to reach out and contact us! We're happy to help!
  • The Downtown Association has a block of rooms available for $289/night + tax, contact David Bresnick to inquire. (david.bresnick@gmail.com)
  • A nearby hotel (~15 minutes by mass transit) at a similar price: (Blue Moon Boutique)
  • A little further away but offering some of the best rates in Manhattan: (The Jane Hotel)
  • A complete visualization of all hotels and lodging options near the venue: (Google Maps)

Photo Essay Contest

Attention North American mahjong clubs! NARMA wants to see where you come from! We are asking all interested clubs to submit a photo essay with the following theme:

Riichi Mahjong in North America: Where We Come From

Show us your city or town, players, where you play, how you fit into your community, or anything that shows where your club calls home and how your club got where it is now! Submitted essays will be presented, and the best submission recognized, at the North American Open this October in New York City. Attendance at the tournament not required.

Get creative, think outside the box, and gather a collection of 6-8 images that best illustrates the theme. Get outside and show us your club as a part of your community. We will accept original photographs, compositions, and illustrations.

Entry Form

Composition Tips

  • Variety is interesting. Picture after picture of people around a table playing mahjong in a nondescript room is boring.
  • Candids are king. Posed photos and linedups are boring.
  • Essays without a narrative are boring.
  • Plan your shots or images. Random snapshots are boring.
  • Get creative with color. Dull images are boring.
  • Get creative with black and white. Images without contrast are boring.
  • Images should speak for themselves. Captions are boring.


  • Submitted material must not infringe on any copyright owned by another party.
  • Submitted material is original work that has not previously been published.
  • Submitted material must not falsely represent the purpose of this photo essay.
  • You must give permission for us to use the submitted material.


The best essay will be selected from all submissions received by 8pm CST on September 29, 2018. Judging will be done by a team assembled from the NAO organizers. We will be judging based on essay narrative, creativity, and composition. Results will be announced during the North American Open.

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