I mostly play bar pool on a 7' American style table. I am at the mercy of the music, but it never bothered me before, until I read this article. Last night I found myself whinging and moaning about the music, almost sorry I read the thread, LOL.
Thank You for the link in reply No1, was a great read. I feel sorry for you guys in the USA, having to put up with noisy pool halls. I live in Bandung, Indonesia. We have approximately 50 billiard halls. I haven't visited them all, but those I have are like libraries. No music, no sound on the TV. Just quiet banter from people who love the game.
People are very friendly and show respect. It takes five minutes of hand shaking before I get to a seat and wait for a table. Even though 90% of the players in the room can wipe the floor with me, they always throw a few games my way. I don't like this at all and demand that they give me their best game so that I can learn. They offer up advice when my technique is slipping and prevent me from forming bad habits.
Every table is managed by a girl, for keeping score and racking. Another boy wanders around, polishing the rails, so you do not have to put up with other peoples sticky hands. Another couple of boys wander around, keeping the floors clean, sweeping up the occasional stray cigarette butt (smoking still allowed) or sweet wrapper. A modest bar, supplying soft drinks and bottled beer. Only vary rarely would you see anyone who has drunk too much.
An in house technician, who maintains the tables and cues. For a small fee, he tips and services my cue. The cloths are rotated regularly and replaced before they become an irritation. The tables are very busy, so cloth wear reflects this. The cloths are all replaced during Ramadan, the month long religious holiday requires that all bars and pool halls are closed, the longest month of the year.
If you ever save up and want a billiards based holiday, I would recommend Bandung, but check the dates for Ramadan first.