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WPT500 @ The Gardens Concludes

The WPT held their first WPT500 in Los Angeles last week at the Gardens located in Hawaiian Gardens. The $1,000,000 guarantee was easily surpassed and Dong Le took home $224,500 for 1st place.

There were some pros and cons at this tournament:


  • Great new facility with clean bathrooms and many amenities.
  • Generously spaced out tables with plenty of space for table side food. This is very luxurious and I wish other casinos would do this.
  • Super comfortable chairs which even allows for the height to be adjusted. I wish I had chairs like this in offices that I used to work at.
  • Players were given their table assignment when checking out at the end of the day. Some other tournaments often publish tables assignments after the fact.


  • The tournament was a little disorganized at times and not run as smoothly as some other similar tournaments elsewhere. At end of day, players had to stand in line and wait to check-out at the counter with their bags.
  • Dealers were confused as to what to do at start of day 2. My bag was missing and there was a bag from another table at our table. There were several other similar problems. Dealers were coming up to the counter with extra bags.
  • Upon bust-out, there was a very long slow moving line to get paid. It was as slow as getting paid at the WSOP main event. After a while, things started moving faster but it was obvious, people were making up procedures on the fly.

All in all, the tournament director managed to power through the minor problems and made the overall experience pleasant. However, hopefully they learned a few things from this tournament and will make the small tweaks and adjustments needed to make it even better for their next big tournament.