Hey everyone! I'm excited to be blogging here at PokerListings. I feel like 2008 is going to be a big year for me and I can't wait to share all my experiences with y'all.
This blog will take on a different aspect than others since I'm not only playing in these poker tournaments, I'm reporting on some of them too. Working the media side of poker has really changed my perspective on the game and I'll write about that on an ongoing basis.
Right now I'm just wrapping up my three-week stay in Atlantic City. One might think I'm crazy to stay so long in a city known for being mostly ghetto and run-down. After all, I've seen the best casinos out there; I live in Vegas, traveled to Macau and other casinos around the world. I know what's good and what's not.
Despite its bad rep, there is one exception that makes AC the place to play poker: Borgata. Hosting some of the best tournaments in the world along with tons of live action, Borgata should be on every poker player's agenda.
To understand the reason for this trip, we have to go back to September of last year. Borgata hired me to be a spokesmodel/hostess and interview players and celebrities who were playing the $10k Borgata Poker Open.
When I got the call I was so excited. After hosting for the WSOP during the summer I was missing all the chaos and ready to jump back into the tournaments. I had taken a long enough break to have recovered from the 55 events and was ready to pick up where I had left off.
I decided to come a few days early and play the $5k No-Limit Hold'em event. My boyfriend came with me to keep me company and to protect me from the "Buttafuocos" that flock the city.
We flew into the Philadelphia airport and had a driver take us to Borgata. That's usually the best option given not many flights go directly to Atlantic City. The drive is about an hour and goes by pretty quickly.
By the time we arrived it was just after 1 a.m. It was the perfect moment to experience Borgata for the first time. Not that many people were around, which allowed us to see how beautiful the hotel actually is.
My jaw instantly dropped as we walked into the lobby. Hand-blown glass sculptures by Dale Chihuly are showcased in the grand entrance. The same chandeliers that you see at Atlantis in the Bahamas, but there are more of them all over Borgata. Everything is larger than life and not one corner of this place has been overlooked from a design perspective.
To get to your room you must show your key and walk into the Living Room. This area is a comfortable meeting place and has many couches and huge paintings hanging on the walls. It gives a great buffer from the casino atmosphere if you feel like sitting and hanging out.
To get up to our room, we walked into the elevator. Right away you notice a flat-screen TV playing a movie. This one had Tom Hanks in that one movie where no one talks for an hour. What's the name? Cast Away.
It's actually a great conversation starter - something to talk about for those awkward moments in an elevator with a complete stranger.
Our room was just a regular room, but it was perfect, my favorite thing being the shower. It's huge! It doubles as a steam room too. There is a bench to sit on (plenty of room for two) and a temperature control dial that goes to 110Â°F.
The oversized towels are rolled up and placed right above where you sit. So no more opening the shower door and getting a rush of cold air. Genius.
The next morning I woke up and was ready to play the tournament. The World Series Europe was going on and I figured there wouldn't be many pros in town. Boy was I wrong! Looking around the room there were at least three to five pros at each table, if not more.
I had interviewed at least half of the field for making a final table at the 2007 WSOP. Sitting down at my table I knew right away this was going to be one hell of a tournament.
Make sure to check back next week when I'll talk about my cash in the $5k tournament, this year's Borgata Winter Poker Open, and getting the new nickname "The Poker Barbie."
I'm really looking forward to an exciting year here at PokerListings.com. If you'd like to know more feel free to check out my Web page and personal blog at www.Laceypoker.com.