We visited the first incarnation of One-Eyed Jack’s poker room back on our Tampa Bay vacation in February 2020. At that time, One-Eyed Jack’s was housed in the old Sarasota Kennel Club. And when we say old, we mean OLD. The facility was run down, dingy, and smelled of mold. It was dark, with low ceilings, and the tables were packed tightly together.
The new home of One-Eyed Jack’s which we visited in February 2023 was a breath of fresh air (literally). One-Eyed Jack’s is now housed in a beautiful new facility in a Sarasota strip mall and could not be more comfortable.
Setting and Non-Poker Amenities
The new One-Eyed Jack’s is located in the Palm Plaza shopping center in Sarasota. Other occupants include a Dollar General, a dance studio, and a couple of car parts stores. The plaza is just a few minutes off Interstate 75, so quite easy to access.
Sarasota itself is about 45 minutes south of St. Petersburg and just a short ride away from the lovely Siesta Key, which has one of the nicest sand beaches we have ever visited. The day that we played at One-Eyed Jack’s, we took the opportunity to visit Siesta Key. After an amazing walk on the beach, we had a wonderful lunch in town at the Bonjour French Café. They offer everything from croissants to sandwiches and omelets. We highly recommend a stop there if you are in town.
One-Eyed Jack’s offers simulcast betting and a few fake poker table games, but it is primarily a cardroom. As we have mentioned elsewhere, there are no slots or true table games in Florida outside Native American casinos. There is a sports bar on one side of the facility. Drinks are not free, but they appear to be reasonably priced. Like bestbet St. Augustine, this relatively new facility has a very modern, open, and bright design making it a very pleasant place to play.
One-Eyed Jack’s Poker Room Comfort
One-Eyed Jack’s offers 23 poker tables in a large, bright attractive room. The tables are very well-spaced. Although they do not offer many amenities, they are comfortable to sit at. The tables have a padded rail and offer USB ports, but no shufflers or drink cups. The room is very clean, as are the cards, felts, and rails. There is no smoking in the facility, so the air quality is excellent. However, the room was quite loud. In addition to the tournament and simulcast activity, there were 17 active cash tables at 1pm on a Saturday afternoon.
The chairs do not have arms, but they are adjustable, have wheels, and are very comfortable. The felts, cards, and chips are all branded. The chips were very clean when we visited. Play was 9-handed.
Poker Room Staff
The front desk staff was extremely helpful and the tournament floor and dealers were all excellent. They were fast, competent, and personable. The wait staff were earning their tips, circulating frequently, taking orders, and moving quickly to deliver them.
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Players at One-Eyed Jack’s Poker Room
The players at One-Eyed Jack’s were largely regulars. They were diverse in age, gender, and ethnicity. There was a range of playing styles represented, from quite tight to extremely wild and aggressive.
Cash Play Activity
When we arrived around 1pm on a Saturday, there were 17 cash tables in play. Games included $1/2, $1/3, $2/5, and a few limit tables. The room typically hosts a handful of $1/2 games on weeknights, and up to 10 on a Saturday. You will also find several limit and other cash games here on weekends. If you are interested in cash poker play at One-Eyed Jack’s and in the larger region, be sure to check out our Poker Room Cash Activity Map.One Eyed Jacks offers an active yet comfortable poker room south of St. PetersburgClick To Tweet
The tournament that we played on a Saturday afternoon was a style we had never played before. It featured play using a double board. One player would typically win one board, while a second one the other. Play took forever as the dealer and players muddled through who won what and where to send the money. While the structure was mathematically slow, at 41 s-points, it definitely didn’t play out that way. So much time was spent demystifying the board that it took way more than the typical 20 minutes to complete a circuit of the table.
One-Eyed Jack’s hosts tournaments every day of the week but Sunday. Some days see two tournaments. Regular tournaments range in buy-in from $40 to $320 and generally have healthy player participation. The Wednesday and Friday evening tournaments both average over 100 players. If you are interested in tournament poker play at One-Eyed Jack’s and in the larger region, be sure to check out our Poker Room Tournament Activity Map.
Overall Assessment of One-Eyed Jack’s Poker Room
One-Eyed Jack’s offers an active, comfortable poker room south of St. Petersburg and near the lovely Siesta Key. The staff is both friendly and extremely competent. While the tournament that we played was a bit wonky, we would happily return here to try one of the regular tournaments.
One-Eyed Jack’s offers an active, comfortable poker room south of St. Petersburg and near the lovely Siesta Key. The staff was both friendly and extremely competent. While the tournament that we played was a bit wonky, we would happily return here to try one of the regular tournaments.