For many card slingers, playing a game or two in the best poker rooms in the world is a dream they never get to fulfill. And few cities in the world can compete with Las Vegas’s great poker rooms.
The World Series of Poker (WSOP), the biggest poker event in the world, is held in Las Vegas every year. After being canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic, WSOP organizers resumed the event last September, choosing the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Nevada as its venue.
Over the years, Las Vegas poker rooms have built up a reputation for their competitive nature, and overall unique atmosphere — so there’s no wonder Vegas is referred to as the “poker capital” of the world. And despite the challenges posed by current restrictions, there are over 20 active poker rooms in Las Vegas, slowly beginning to reopen their doors.
Out of all the venues that patrons get to choose from, the best poker rooms are arguably the ones that are found inside the city’s prestigious casino resorts, along the Las Vegas Strip. But make no mistake, not all of its poker rooms are impressive. So if you’re planning to play in Las Vegas, here are the ones you shouldn’t miss out on visiting:
CREDIT: @wynnpoker on Instagram
The poker room at the Wynn is definitely the most stylish one — not just on the Strip, but in the entire city. It has sky-lit art- and floral-filled galleries, inviting you to a different level of luxury and fun. If you want to reserve an entire room for your game, you can do as well. Aside from daily tournaments with up to $95,000 in a guaranteed prize pool, the Wynn poker room also hosts tournaments. Throughout fall, there will be a Wynn Fall Classic, featuring 37 events and more than $13 million in prize pools.
Aria Resort and Casino
CREDIT: @ariapokerroom on Instagram
Probably only second to the Wynn in terms of sheer beauty, the poker room at Aria Resort and Casino exemplifies class. The poker room has regular high-stakes games, and it’s not uncommon for players to brush shoulders with rock stars, celebrities, or even a poker pro like Erik Aude. There are daily games with a guaranteed prize pool of at least $30,000. But if you feel like taking a break from the competition, Aria is also home to several of the city’s award-winning restaurants, including Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant. It features seasonal American cuisine, such as gulf oysters and chilled Maine lobster, with a generous list of international wines and specialty cocktails.
Bellagio Hotel & Casino
CREDIT: @starpokerplayers on Instagram
While the decor is slightly more understated compared to the Aria, the Bellagio’s poker room is still well-known for its extremely high-stakes games and its competitive atmosphere. There’s even a dedicated high-stakes room inside the area called the Legends Room, where poker buy-ins reach $10,000. Although there aren’t any daily tournaments here, the constant presence of high rollers and celebrities, including Matt Damon, Demi Moore, and Alex Rodriguez, makes it extremely popular with A-listers. Additionally, the Bellagio boasts Club Privé, a high-limit lounge, where you can enjoy the thrill of table games with the seclusion of a personal room and speakeasy-style bar.
The Venetian Resort
CREDIT: @las.vegas.experience on Instagram
If you want to be surrounded by luxury and art while playing, the poker room at The Venetian should be on your bucket list. Boasting over 35 tables, the poker room remains the biggest amongst all Las Vegas casinos, perfect for hosting major tournaments. One of which is The Venetian’s monthly DeepStack series tournament that always comes with guaranteed six-figure events, inviting high-rollers from all over to play. Despite the mystery of playing with high-profile strangers, the featured elegant Rococo artworks in the room still make the atmosphere more calming compared to other poker rooms. The Venetian even has plush seating and an on-call masseuse.
Caesars Palace Hotel and Casino
CREDIT: @caesarspalace on Instagram
Back in the day, the grandiose poker room at Caesars Palace would’ve made it closer to the top of the list. But as they have moved the room from an enclosed space to a noisier open area, the atmosphere isn’t as luxurious as it was before. That being said, this hasn’t discouraged wealthy tourists and players from maintaining a lively spirit of casual play across the still well decorated room. This is because they can get unlimited action with the 24/7 operations and comfort from the 4,500 square-foot poker room. Also, there are four No Limit Hold’em tournaments held daily, each generating at least a $2,000 prize pool
As the Nevada Gaming Control Board has allowed casinos to resume regular operations, Vegas’s poker rooms will be up and running once again. Just be sure to follow the health protocols, so you can enjoy your time in the aforementioned luxurious casino resorts.