"Having a pool table in your home is a long term decision. Once installed, you are looking at $200+ dollars to move it just a few feet. We went back and forth for a long time and were dissuaded by all of our friends that have pool tables that never get used. The commonality with all of them was their pool table was tucked away in a basement which they rarely used. The few people we know that use their tables have them in a room that sees more use.
My research started online. Their used to be a handful of dealers who shipped their tables in a crate and left it up to the customers to find a local installer. It was supposed to be a great way to save $$. For some reason, this doesn’t appear to be the case anymore, probably due to warranty issues? We visited a few local retailers and looked at Olhausen, Brunswick, Vitalie and American Heritage tables. This was a lot like shopping for a car, each retailer knocked the others and their brands. One even had “official literature” warning against buying a particular brand which was sold by a competitor across the parking lot. Our requirements were fairly simple, a unique pool table that didn’t look like the same table everyone else had in their home, and one that was durable enough to raise two kids on. With the state of the economy, we looked extensively on Craigslist. You need to add roughly $300 for locally moving a pool table. The Craigslist avenue didn’t work out after several months of trying. It seems no one really wants to get rid of their pool table, so maybe pricing it high will show intent but allow them to hang on to it?
After tons of research, we were faced with a decision: Pay $4000+ for a nice table or $2300 for a questionable table. We didn’t want to drop $4k and we didn’t really want to settle for a table that we knew wouldn’t hold up well. In the back of our minds, we knew Costco had a pool table but couldn’t find much in terms of reviews on the brand, Thomas Aaron. Our luck with high ticket items at Costco thus far has been positive and we know they stand behind their products. The Thomas Aaron website boasts some nice qualities about their table, and they seem to be more furniture craftsman rather than a pool table assembly line.
We took the plunge and about two weeks later had a pool table delivered. The installers were third party and had no loyalty towards any one make. They were also experienced in that it only took them two hours to setup the table. I questioned them on this table vs. others. They were very impressed with Thomas Aaron pool tables because of their solid build. The table itself is much better looking in person vs. online. We have received a lot of compliments on it and it plays perfect. The price is comparable to the entry level tables that have a far inferior build quality. Even the bottom of the table looks like a finished piece of furniture. There was an accessory kit included which I didn’t expect much from. To our surprise, it included four VERY NICE pool cues. Cues that look like works of art. A quality set of balls, tips, chalk, chalk holders etc. were also included. I was expecting to pay another $100 for a table cover. There was a light translucent cover included with the table that’s perfect! For anyone in the market for a pool table, I would highly recommend a Thomas Aaron table. I did have a small issue with the third party delivery company and I called Thomas Aaron. The people at the company are easily accessible, promptly return calls and absolutely stand behind their products and service 100%.
Bottom line, don’t subject yourself to the inevitable months of research every pool table buyer goes through. Each retailer will drive you nuts with fine print in warranties and car salesman tactics. The truth is, I don’t know what the warranty is on our table and I’m not worried about it. This table rocks!"