So I'm in the Bay area for work this week and decided to take a trip over to Bay 101 for a little action tonight. I used to play there alot back in 1996 and 1997 when I lived on the West coast. I actually lived in San Jose for a very short stint and then in Oregon for a few years. I would come down to San Jose on Alaska for relatively pennies back then for some good Northern California action.
Well, I am here to tell you that the action is just as good if not better than it was back then. They were spreading all limit games from 2/4 up to 80/160. I settled in at 20/40 and played for several hours. Unfortunately for me, I was never able to make any head way. The best I could do was one pot every hour and had it not been for rivering quad Jacks at one point I would have ended up on a really slippery slope. In the end I donated a few dollars and while the action was still good, I started feeling a little tilted and decided to pack it in while I still had the large portion of my bank roll in tact. I'm here all week, so there is no sense in getting all tilted the first night. Besides, I have meetings all day tomorrow, so some good sleep is warranted.
Bay 101 has something like 20 poker tables. They were all full...every seat had an ass parked in it. The wait lists were crazy! There were 20 players on almost every list. Mind you, this is on a MONDAY NIGHT. I can't imagine what it looks like on a Saturday night.
Since my last visit there have been a few improvements, most notably is the addition of shuffle masters on every table. These little work machines must drive the hands per hour up by at least 10%. I still think they could manage the seating of players much better than using the intercom system. I guess it is a small price to pay for all of the action. The thing is though, at the height of the evening, the noise is as deafening as being grouped in with a bunch of slot machines. I have my ideas on how to a large room could be operated more efficiently, but this is not the place to publish those ideas.
When I first started playing at Bay 101, it was relatively a new establishment as I think it opened in 1994 or 1995. To visit it today, I would say that it shows many signs of age, and it looks like the owners haven't invested the money to keep it looking sharp. I would think as much money as they are making, they could afford to spend a few dollars to paint the place and replace water damaged ceiling tiles. But then I know from experience, players will play no matter what a place looks like as long as there is action. So maybe it isn't wise to spend the money on asthetics.
I would like to make a trip over to Garden City while I'm here just to check out the action over there. I used to like playing there more than at Bay 101, so I am interested in seeing how the action compares. Besides, they spread a 10/20 game which I had always found to be quite profitable. I think I might even make that venture tomorrow night. Stay tuned.