The Daytona Beach Poker Room (the Daytona Beach Racing and Card Club officially, but we’re going with the brief version here) is conveniently located less than a half-hour from our AirBnB in Ormond Beach. We knew we’d have to fight the infamous Florida traffic to get there, but we were hoping that Daytona would prove to be a somewhat better experience than we have had at the other venues on this trip: Creek Entertainment Gretna, Ebro, and Ocala.
One of our bucket list items has always been to spend a month in Las Vegas during the World Series of Poker. The problem was that we could not imagine spending a month in 100-degree heat during June and July when the WSOP has been traditionally held. That kind of extended heat exposure is just not our thing. Then, in one of the many twists of these bizarre times, the 2021 WSOP was moved to the fall. Suddenly, everything fell into place. Our two youngest children had just entered college, our primary jobs are portable, and we had saved up enough for the trip. So, last October, Vegas it was! We chose to drive to Vegas, in order to have our car. You can read about our poker road trip from Boston to Las Vegas.
Where to Stay
The array of hotel options at various price points in Las Vegas is obviously endless. However, if you’re spending a month in Las Vegas and are at all worried about cost, you’re going to want to look for a condo rental via AirBnB, Vrbo, or other rental site. The two primary advantages of renting are: 1) the cost per night will be much lower for the quality you can get, and 2) having a kitchen will save you a lot of money. An extra bonus is the lack of Resort Fees, that are very difficult to escape in Vegas hotels these days. In our Airbnb on West Flamingo Ave, we ate most breakfasts and lunches at home. We also cooked 2-3 dinners a week, plus leftovers.
The Ocala Gainseville Poker room is one of several central Florida options for poker. Sited in an old Jai Alai facility that still offers simulcasting, the poker room is easily the most appealing feature of the building. Ocala Gainesville’s nearest neighbor is Oxford Downs, and there is clearly a lot of overlap in players across the two facilities.
As we rapidly approach our year-long poker pilgrimage, Paul and I have begun to spend more time traveling and visiting poker rooms around the country. Our first serious poker road trip featured ten days in Southern Florida back in 2018. In 2020, we spent another ten days in Tampa Bay. And about a week after we returned, the world shut down. Last fall, we were finally able to get back on the road for our most adventurous road trip yet. We planned out a month-long visit to the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. On our journey out in September, we would take the northern route, following route 80 across much of the country. On our return in November, we would dive South via route 40 and visit some national parks along the way. The current post describes our adventures traveling the northern route. In a couple of weeks we will share the details of our trip home.