My recent trip to Cleveland’s Horseshoe Casino blew away my expectations. It is everything I had envisioned for Columbus’ casino, before it was decided the Hollywood Columbus Casino would not be built downtown, but rather ~10 miles west. The Horseshoe Cleveland is in the heart of downtown Cleveland, amongst nightlife, bars, restaurants, stadiums, concert venues, arenas, hotels, convention centers, etc. It is everything that Columbus’ should be and more. The casino has already integrated itself into the scene and I’m certain it will become a mainstay.
Not to mention that the 3-level layout is gorgeous from top to bottom. The people from Caesar’s really know how to deliver a fine product. I only wish I had more time to explore the dining options.
The poker room was nice. The layout wasn’t what I expected but it works. I did not have time to play any full-ring $1/2 or $2/5 because I was in town to play the $500 Monthly Poker Tournament held on the last Sunday of each month.
The buy-in is $510 with $10 going to dealers and $50 to the house. The tournament starts at Noon and allows late registration for 1 hour. Levels are :45 and players get 9k in chips. While some key levels are skipped, we certainly had no problem with getting in plenty of play.
The dealing was pretty much fine. There were a few less experienced dealers, but no problems throughout the 10+ hours of play.
The quality of play was OK – my initial table was a dream – nice, older gentlemen and one young kid who was solid (but I had position on him). We played a fun hand early on and if I can find my notes, I will post it here along with some others.
During the run from 102 players down to 20, it amazingly only took ~ 5 hours. Equally amazingly is the fact that it took another ~ 5 hours to play down to the final table. We played 11 handed (5/6) for 2+ hours. With 18 players left the average stack was 50 BBs. Play was fairly tight/straight forward. After losing a few key pots, I fell < 20k and was able to more than triple my stack sans showdown.
The tournament was set to pay the top 9. Because of the “slow” pace of play, eventually everyone agreed to pay $100 (out of pocket) to give $550 to 11th and 10th. That didn’t really speed things up but it made people smile.
The official payouts were:
8- $1.8k (worst)
I’ll let you guess which one I got.
I’m looking forward to returning to the Horseshoe Cleveland.