"Pan is alive and thriving at the Bicycle Club" reports Pan manager Gary Horita. "We’ve put a lot of work into this."
On a recent visit, all 16 tables were filled. Eleven were designated as in-play tournament tables for Sunday’s 24-hand, $33 buy-in game with players vying for the top cash prizes.
At the end of the 24th hand, players count down their money. They receive what they have in front of them. The player with the most chips, at each individual tournament table, receives $150 plus the amount in front of them.
High hand payout is contingent on how many games are down for any given tournament. The first four places are paid a percentage of the entire pot, depending upon position and amount of tables participating.
The same tournament is repeated on Friday nights with a $40 buy-in. Both buy-ins include a meal ticket, compliments of the Bicycle Club.
"We have a lock on low limit games," Horita continues. "The $1, $2 and $3 condition games are in abundance as we speak. We are very people-oriented and are more personable with customers."
Indeed, the personal touch showed. One of the extras for players is their "meal on wheels." The players can order food from hostesses while playing at the table. Their food is delivered, into the pan room, on a rolling try, bigger and better than the ones used at home in front of the television while we watch our favorite sports event.
THE COMMERCE CASINO features a variety of California games.
Innovative variations of poker and blackjack rank as Commerce Casino’s main attraction in the California Games section of the casino. Five Card Stud (a.k.a. Asian Poker) is called Thirteen Card Poker and is played with a 32-card deck. The deck is striped of 2’s, 3’s, 4’s, 5’s and 6’s. A flush beats a full house.
No Bust Blackjack comes close to Nevada-style blackjack with a bit of a twist. The dealer is just that, a dealer! Money exchanges for chips is the responsibility of the dealer and the commission paid for playing the hand is handled by the dealer. But, it stops there!
Individual players are the bank. They pay off winning hands and collect on the losing ones. Corporations have people sitting at the tables to bank. Alex Sharomi, supervisor of California Games explained, "Any player can be banker. What is in their try is all they can win or lose!"
No Bust Jackpot has hands that go over 21 and win. If the banker and dealer go over 21, the banker can still win if he is closer to 21 than the dealer. If both the banker and dealer are the same (example: 22), the banker wins. If a player is closer, it’s a push. This is one game that doesn’t penalize an over 21 hand if you are the closest to 21 when dealer busts!
The California Games Section opened in 1989. "Commerce is the largest poker room in the world. We have beautiful and successful tournaments."
Any table game jackpot over $600 must be reported with a tax form. This doesn’t keep the customers from playing. "We are busy every day and all night," Sharomi said. The graveyard, day and swing shifts all overlap one another, like Las Vegas, and each is responsible for building the customer base to run through the next shift.
"We have players that come and stay at the hotel from all over the country and clients that travel from abroad." There is no doubt, Commerce Casino is playing to a full house.
Commerce Casino is smokeless, with the exception of the "smoking room." Touchmaster Infinity Games are played while smokers take a break from the casino. Backgammon, Tacki, Fortune Taipei, Strip Poker, Join 11, Triple Eleven’s, Target 21, Mah Jong, Playboy Poker, 3 Peak Deluxe, Super Score Solo-Taire, 5 Star Generals, Jet Set, Power Cell, Solitaire Classic, Uplift, Wordz, Mahki, Playboy Undercovers, and Playboy Match are just some of the video games a smoker can play. The cost — 25 cents. A very inexpensive way to keep customers in action while they take time away from the tables.