The hotel is new so all equipment is new. This was in stark contrast to Mandalay Bay, the other casino I played in this weekend. From the moment the taxi pulled up to the moment I got in the taxi to go home I was struck by how beautiful and classy this place is. The poker room has very nice chairs with all the adjustments you could want. The tables are not quite as nice as the ones at Venetian(the rail feels like vinyl or maybe a lower quality leather and no drink holders) but brand new and very nice. The room itself didn't smell smokey at all and looked great, very classy. The lighting was just at the right brightness and covered all areas well. The temperature was very comfortable, neither too hot or cold. It's separated from the rest of the casino by a half-height wall which makes it feel like a separate room but there's plenty of opportunity for the general public to look in on the action and maybe be enticed to play a while. The noise level was about average, there was some noise from the rest of the casino but never enough to be annoying. There are several tables in the back (which is quieter) for higher stakes games. You can hear a nice mix of popular music over the casino system when it's fairly quiet in the casino. I had originally intended to play in a number of different rooms but I liked this one so much I spent most of my time here.
The players here were very beatable. I'm sure some of this was due to the fact that it was March Madness weekend but I played with a few regulars and they weren't that tricky. It's easy to pick out the regulars because they talk to each other and to the dealers and most don't really try to pretend otherwise. For the most part they're better than the average tourist but not necessarily dangerous.
The dealers were up to my expectations. Most were friendly and some were very good and fun. I didn't witness any screw-ups over three days of play.
The cocktail waitresses were prettier than at most other places and the uniforms were very sexy but a little classier than at some other places. Most waitresses were genuinely friendly which was such a nice surprise and none were in the least bit bitchy or cold. That's one thing you notice throughout the whole facility is everyone's attitude is superb from the janitors to the bosses. The wait time from waiting for a waitress to take your order to getting your drink was fairly short.
Management was excellent, they had everything on computer screens and if I asked for a table change they always remembered my request and offered a change in a timely fashion. I never waited at the podium for more than 30 sec. before someone took my game request. Most times they walked me right over to a seat, took my cash and brought me chips. The floor people were friendly and helpful with no attitude. The two times I was there when they had an unruly player they cut off their alcohol service and stayed right on top of the situation so they didn't ruin it for the other players.
No jackpots, which I like because it's just another form of gambling(most places drop a buck per hand to fund their jackpots) which you have no control over. There's plenty of that in the rest of the casino. Right now they're giving 2 dollars/hr comps and 3 dollars in the mornings. That's a good thing because there are no cheap eats in Aria. The Skybox has a menu of food you can get in the poker room and the food there is excellent but not exactly cheap. MGM-Mirage comps are not as convenient as Total Rewards(Harrah's), you have to get a printed comp voucher from the poker room.