HarrahsSoundproof glass is king at one of the best mid-sized poker rooms in Vegas. Located along the south wall of the main casino floor, the poker room is one of the few in town that is actually in it’s own room, but because one of the four walls is made of glass; you really don’t feel locked down at all, the only thing missed are the annoying sounds of slot machines. To this I say “THANK YOU”.

The east wall has some nostalgic artwork/photography of some of the games greats including the likes of Doyle, Chan, Hellmuth, Unger, Nguyen and others, and this really adds to the overall feel of the room and without them it would be a very dry and boring atmosphere. From the strip the room is very easy to find, and really only a short walk, but for people coming through the vallet and parking garage it can be quite the hike. Overall the only downfall of the room is, a random donkey won’t stumble in unless he wants to. You basically need to be looking for the poker room to find it.

Cash Games:

Like most rooms, the floor manager boasts the ability to spread any game at any time. However, the only things that you will find running nearly 24/7 are 1-2 NL and 3-6 FL. Dealers choice games come up from time to time; and higher NL games on the weekends, but really this is a 1-2 NL room most of the time.

Cash Game Rake:
10% per pot up to $5, +$1 from all pots of $10 or more to the high hand bonus. Pretty standard for Vegas.


Comps:

One of the strongest poker rooms in this category and for good reason. To start, they are tied in with the Total Rewards card, which will accumulate comps from any table game play at any Harrah’s property on the strip and around the world. Standard $1/hr comp rate is available for cash games, and this same rate is applied to tournament play; one of the only poker rooms that awards an hourly comp for tournament players and these can be redeemed for shows, food, rooms, etc. High hand bonus money is awarded and each hand is progressive, for example if the 7 high straight flush hits, there is still a big bonus for the guy on the next table if he makes quads.

Television:
Because the poker room stands in place of the old sports book, this might be the best place in Vegas to play poker and watch sports. A massive projection screen occupies most of the south wall, and there are other flat screens hanging on the walls to each side of it, and more on the north wall. Leo Soderman, lead poker room supervisor, told me during March Madness the feel in the poker room will be electric and if any game is on TV ANYWHERE in the world, they will get the feed into the poker room upon request.

Drinks:
Very strong rating in this category. Redbull is served in the can, and all alcoholic mixed drinks are made with top shelf liquor. Cocktailers are older and not dressed in scantly clad outfits, but another review I read says the reason for this is the fact Harrah’s workers have a union, so firing cocktailers because they aren’t what you see at a strip club is not possible. That is fine by me. I don’t need more distractions when I’m playing, and the service is very punctual so all is good in the drink category.

Food:
Table side food service is available, and can be paid for with comps. I don’t have a list of all the menus available, but this is a large property with many restaurants and food stands so if you want it, they’ve probably got it.

Tournaments:
Most people who read “poker tournament” are thinking something like they see on TV or online, but buyer beware with most all tournaments in Vegas. Many have a list like the one I have below here; but the reality is there are rarely more than 2 tables, and often these things only fill one table with only 1st place paid. This is exactly the category Harrah’s falls into. However, because the fields are so small Harrah’s does something nice and carry’s a TLB competition, which is one of the few in town. So even though they are very small, you can be rewarded for doing well consistently. $6000 is divided among the leaders every month.

$40+rebuys at 12:30 AM Daily

$150 freezout at 8:00 PM Daily (80% payback schedule better than most)

$110 bounty at 11:00 AM & 3:30 PM Daily ($10 bounty)

Special Events:
The same review that I mentioned reading earlier, boasts Harrah’s as one of the best and most aggressive with promotions and that may be true. Take February for example; “The Poker Player’s Bailout Plan – Round 2”.

75-100 hours = $2 for every hour played.

101-125 = $3 for every hour played.

125+ = max bonus of $599.

These bonuses are paid in cash; and are over and above player comps making this a very good place for locals on the daily 1-2 cash game grind. Also, because this is round two, and the way Leo described it to me, this should be an on going monthly promotion and is a very nice way of giving back to the locals that help keep this room afloat.

Staff:
Dealers are proficient; and the room is always overstaffed to ensure seamless dealer changes and no breaks in the action. Rulings were handled efficiently in the three tournaments I’ve played at Harrah’s, and in the brief period I spoke to the staff they were extremely helpful and accommodating even on a day I didn’t intend to sit.

My play in Vegas is limited to only a handful of casinos, and Harrah’s is one of them for the reasons mentioned above. You feel right at home in this very comfortable and inviting poker room, and I recommend it for anyone traveling to the city looking for a good 1-2 game in a relaxed environment. Another advantage to the secluded room is the lack of cigarette smoke. Sure, all Vegas poker rooms are non-smoking; but the barrier between smoking and non at some places is nothing more than a velvet rope; here you are completely and 100% separated from all the normal casino related downfalls a poker room would face like cigarettes and slot machine noise. And, for those who do smoke, don’t forget one of the walls is glass, so you can easily smoke and see the action at your table.

For a mid sized poker room that only has 10-15 tables, this is probably the best on the strip.

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