A Look Back: WPT Winners at ARIA

May 25, 2018

By Sean Chaffin

Jon Borenstein

ARIA Resort & Casino opened its doors in 2009 and has become one of the leaders on the Las Vegas poker scene. From big cash games and the Ivey Room to regular high-stakes tournaments, the property has made poker a priority – and that includes the WPT in recent years.

The WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic offers the casino a chance at a major championship on the WPT Main Tour, but it’s new. The resort property has hosted a WPT500 event going back to 2014, though, so having the World Poker Tour atARIA Resort & Casino is no new thing. The next  WPT500 Las Vegas will be held June 25-July 3 and no doubt plenty of poker players in town will be making their way back to the tournament area.

WPT500 Las Vegas is capping a busy couple months at the property that includes the WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic, the WPT Tournament of Champions, and the casino’s ARIA Poker Classic, which runs May 26-July 8. The ARIA Poker Classic offers a range of buy-ins for every size of bankroll and numerous tournaments of differing poker variants.

Here’s a look at the history of the WPT500 events at the Aria.

2014: Yu Does It Big

Sean Yu won the inaugural WPT500 Las Vegas event atARIA Resort & Casino, topping a field of 3,599 entries to take home $260,000. Yu hails from Los Angeles and has several other big finishes through the years, including a WSOP Circuit title in San Diego. The win at ARIA Resort & Casino remains his biggest cash. The final table included Scott Clements (3rd) and Christian Harder (4th).

2015: Varnell Tops Mammoth Field

After a whopping 5,113 entries, Craig Varnell took home the title and $330,000. The tournament experienced major growth from its first year. LearnWPT.com coach Nick Binger finished fourth for $100,000. Varnell, of Fort Collins, Colorado, now has an impressive $1.3 million in tournament winnings, which also includes a third-place finish in the Season XIV WPT Choctaw event for $306,346.

2016: Olympios Wins the Title for Europe

After having the second-lowest chip stack at the final table, Andreas Olympios battled back to claim the top prize of $260,000. A native of Manchester, England, Olympios outlasted a field that featured 3,956 entries. The win remains the biggest cash of his career, but he continues to play regularly throughout Europe and has even cashed in a few other WPT events.

2017: Borenstein’s Turn to Shine

The event attracted 3,541 entries and Jon Borenstein (pictured) came out on top, taking home $230,000. He now has eight cashes on the WPT ($308,000) and $1.2 million in live tournament winnings. A native of Teaneck, New Jersey, Borenstein had another nice finish only about two months later when he finished runner-up in a $350 WPT Borgata preliminary event for $138,000.

For more information regarding the next installment of WPT500 Las Vegas, check out the event hub on WPT.com.


Stay tuned to WPT.com for the latest news and updates from the World Poker Tour. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, like the tour’s page on Facebook, and find us on Instagram, too!

Recent Tweets @WPT