Finding the Best Texas Holdem Poker Games (In Las Vegas and Elsewhere)

by Michael Stevens
on September 18, 2017

Texas holdem games are the most popular ones offered in poker rooms around the world. So it’s usually easy to find a game.

But you don’t want to just find a game. You want to find the best Texas holdem games available.

This guide is designed to help you figure out where to find the best Texas holdem games right now.

The good news is it doesn’t matter where you’re located in the world. Good Texas holdem games are everywhere. You just need to learn what to look for.

What Makes a Good Texas Holdem Game?

A good Texas holdem game is one filled with players who aren’t as good as you. You need to find tables with loose players who play too many hands and who tend t play their hands in a passive manner. Passive players call and check more than they bet and raise.

The best Texas holdem players usually play in a tight and aggressive manner. This is how you want to play; not who you want to play against.

It helps to understand your own strengths and weaknesses at the holdem tables so you can look for games where you can be the most successful. But the bottom line is if you can find games with more bad players than good you should be able to play a winning game in the long run.

Las Vegas, United States

You can find poker tables in at least 33 casinos in Las Vegas. The following casinos offer poker in and around the famous gambling destination.

  • Aria
  • Arizona Charlie’s
  • Bally’s
  • Bellagio
  • Binion’s
  • Boulder Station
  • Caesars Palace
  • Cannery Casino
  • Club Fortune
  • Excalibur
  • Flamingo
  • Golden Nugget
  • Green Valley Ranch
  • Harrah’s
  • Mandalay Bay
  • MGM Grand
  • Mirage
  • Palace Station
  • Planet Hollywood
  • Poker Palace
  • Red Rock
  • Rio
  • Sam’s Town
  • Santa Fe Station
  • Skyline
  • South Point
  • Stratosphere
  • Suncoast
  • The Orleans
  • TI
  • Venetian
  • Westgate
  • Wynn

Some of the poker rooms in Las Vegas only have a few tables and some have dozens. The best games aren’t always available at the biggest rooms. Some of the smaller poker rooms have profitable games available that any good player can beat.

The large rooms like Wynn, Bellagio, and MGM have plenty of tables so you can usually find at least a couple soft games, but some of the smaller poker rooms offer great games.

It’s been a few years since I’ve played there, but the Excalibur used to run some excellent low limit games.

Many of the off strip properties have low limit games. Sometimes these games are good but sometime they’re filled with local grinders. The best games I’ve found in Las Vegas are the ones on Thursdays through Sundays that fill up with tourists and convention attendees who want to take a shot at holdem glory.

One tip I use is to look for people wearing suits at the table. They’re usually in town for a conference or convention and want to blow off some steam before turning in for the night. Another good thing to look for is players who are drinking a lot of alcohol while playing.

Both of these groups can help make a game profitable.

California, United States

California has over 90 poker rooms, and Los Angeles has a couple big ones with Commerce who has over 200 poker tables and Bicycle with over 180 tables.

If you prefer tournament Texas holdem Las Vegas and Los Angeles are your best bets. You can find a number of different tournaments running every day with buy in amounts ranging from $20 or less to thousands of dollars.

Other large poker rooms in California include Club One in Fresno with over 50 poker tables, Golden West in Bakersfield with over 40 tables, Oaks Card Club in Oakland with over 30 tables, Bay 101 in San Jose with over 30 tables, and Ocean’s 11 in Oceanside with over 50 tables.

London, England

London has over 100 poker tables spread across more than 10 card rooms. It pales in comparison to Las Vegas and California, but you can find plenty of action in this large city.

Here’s a list of the most popular London poker rooms:

  • Pollards Hill Poker Club
  • Eltham Terrace Club
  • Victoria Casino
  • Hippodrome
  • Casino at the Empire
  • Grosvenor Casino Golden Horseshoe
  • Genting Casino Cromwell
  • Aspers Casino Westerfield
  • The Big Slick Club
  • River Card Club
  • G Casino Piccadilly

Many card clubs in England are private but you can play by joining the club or paying a small fee for a short term membership. Keep in mind that private clubs often have a dress code and / or other rules that you may not be used to. Ask about membership and the rules or talk to other poker players who play at the club.

Vienna, Austria

Vienna, Austria only has three casinos offering Texas holdem but they offer some of the best games in this part of the world.

The three poker rooms are:

  1. Concord Card Casino Simmering
  2. Montesino Card Casino
  3. Concord Card Casino Lugner City

Online

When players thin of the best places to find Texas holdem games they usually think of land based casinos and poker rooms first. But some of the best games are available online.

The main problem with playing online is finding a poker room that offers games where you live and getting your money into and out of the poker room. The good news is that no matter where you live you should be able to find at least two or three decent poker rooms where you can play and the poker rooms know the best ways to get money in and out for their players.

Look at the poker rooms available on this site to find one that offers games where you live. If you don’t see the specific information listed go to the individual poker sites and read where they offer their games. If you still don’t see what you need then contact the support department.

Once you find a poker room where you want to play sign up for a free account. The go to the cashier area or click on the deposit option and you’ll see the available deposit options. You can use a credit card or Bitcoin at most online poker rooms and other options are available depending on where you live.

How do you find the best Texas holdem games online?

Look for poker rooms with the most traffic.

They offer the highest number of games and generally have more poor players than the smaller rooms. But just because a room is smaller it doesn’t mean that they don’t have any good games.

The games at the lower limits, both limit and no limit, are usually filled with poor players. This is true at every online poker room.

The games at the highest limits usually have the best players, so as a general rule look for games below the highest limits.

Once you start playing keep a close eye on how your opponents play. You can usually quickly determine the ones who play too many hands and chase poor draws. When you find a table filled with these types of players you know you’ve found a good game.

Private Games

Some of the best Texas holdem poker games aren’t the ones you find in a land based casino or online. They’re played behind closed doors in private establishments and in homes around the world.

If you don’t know the right people you’ll never know they exist.

The good news is that you can start making contacts to get invited to these games or create your own private game.

Start by asking people you play poker with or work with if they know of any poker games in the area.

The more you ask the more game you’ll find.

Years ago I was surprised to be invited to a private game just a few miles from where I lived. I was in the middle of nowhere and had no idea a game was running every weekend just over the hill. It turned out to be a good game and I was able to play for quite a while before it stopped being run.

You need to be careful about where you play because you’ll probably be carrying around quite a bit of cash. Use common sense and ask about the safety of the game from whoever lets you know about it. In the game close to where I used to live it looked like a scary place to play, but it turned out one family owned all of the land and houses around the game and it was one of the safest places I’ve played.

If you think about starting your own game check the local laws and make sure you won’t get into trouble for running a game. Most areas ignore private games as long as you aren’t collecting a rake.

When you start looking for people to join your game ask people you work with and know if they’re interested in a Texas holdem game. Most of them won’t be good players and this is exactly who you want to invite.

Private games can be cash games or tournaments. Many private tournaments I’ve played in over the years have cash games start up as players bust out of the tournament.

The best time to schedule private games is Friday or Saturday night. People usually get paid on Fridays and often want to forget about the week at work.

The combination of fresh money and the chance to drink and play Texas holdem is often a good one for your long term profits.

Make sure to identify the worst players and do everything you can to get them to come back and play as often as possible.

Charity Events

Many charities run Texas holdem poker tournaments to raise money for their cause. While the entry fee is usually higher than tournaments run by casinos and regular poker rooms the up side is these games are usually filled with poor players.

Many people enter because they want to support the charity and have seen Texas holdem on television and want the thrill of moving all in.

If you’re able to play a smart game, and survive the early stages when most of the bad players bust out in charity tournaments, you can have a better than normal chance to win.

You need to weigh the higher entry fees against the competition and time involved to see if charity Texas holdem tournaments can be profitable. In many cases, they can be profitable if you’re a good tournament player.

Conclusion

These aren’t the only places you can find great Texas holdem games. But this list of where to find the best Texas holdem games right now is a good place to start.

It’s more important to learn how to recognize a good game than it is to have a list.

If everyone starts going to the same places to find the best games the games can get filled with better players.

Always keep your eyes open for good games and create your own list.

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