On August 31st, Showboat Atlantic City closed its doors for the final time. On September 2nd, Revel did the same. More than 5,000 people lost their jobs — dealers, security guards, waitresses, maids, bartenders. When Trump Plaza closes later this month, the total will rise to about 6,000 unemployed casino workers.
Donald Trump, of course, thinks people should also mention Donald Trump — and his wise move of “getting out” of Atlantic City “before its demise.” Perhaps we should examine Trump’s history in Atlantic City.
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Revel on its last day. Photo | Dan McQuade
The Revel couldn’t even close without a little drama.
With just five hours until closing, the fire alarm at Revel went off. At 1 a.m., the casino emptied of patrons and workers. Most of the patrons strolled away from the casino for the last time, while the workers gathered outside posed for group photos on their final night. Revel closed at 6 a.m. Tuesday morning, just over two years after its opening was supposed to usher in a revitalization of Atlantic City’s northern end of the boardwalk.
Bayani, a Revel dealer, exited the casino and stared out at the ocean, the fire alarm still shrieking inside the soon-to-be-shuttered casino. “What else can they do to me?” he said to no one in particular. He laughed.
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Perfectly Innocent Amusement Co. opened a couple of weeks ago in Atlantic City. The bar at 142 South Tennessee Avenue serves up prohibition era cocktails, a tight list of high-end bar food and offers old school video games and billiards.
The Press of Atlantic City has more on the opening.
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Police have made an arrest in the January 17th killing of Nelson Viera, one of three homicides in Atlantic City this year. Omar Curry, 24, has been charged with murder and weapons offenses.
Just three days before, Curry boxed at Bally’s Atlantic City. Curry and Marvin Johnson fought to a majority draw in the four-round pro debut for each of the fighters last Saturday in Atlantic City.
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Caroline Russock, who seems to have the South Jersey steakhouse beat on lockdown, was lucky enough to be invited in to try Guy Fieri’s Chophouse in Atlantic City. What follows is classic Fieri-isms and a shocking turn:
Ridiculous name aside, the Danger Wings were borderline genius. Served five to an order, the drumettes were frenched, rack of lamb-style for a no Wet-Nap necessary wing-eating experience. And the Blue-sabi? The wasabi heat actually works with blue cheese dressing. The Baja shrimp, tempura fried and dressed with a sweet-hot sriracha mayo, came with thin slices of jalapeno and lime wedges and did a fairly spot-on job mimicking the best elements of a Southern California shrimp taco in a decidedly un-SoCal locale.
Read on for the entertaining conclusion of Russock’s dinner at Fieri’s Chophouse and also check out her Edible Philly piece on stuck-in-time South Jersey steakhouses.
A visit to the Guy Fieri Chophouse in Atlantic City [City Paper]
Great Steaks [Edible Philly]
Guy Fieri’s Chophouse [Bally's Atlantic City]
A scene from ‘Varekai.’
Here’s my confession: I finally broke my Cirque du Soleil virginity.
Yes, it is true: I had never seen any of the high-flying trapeze shows before my recent trip to Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City to see Varekai, one of the franchise’s arena shows, before it has an engagement at Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center in September. (Side note: Varekai translates to “wherever” in the Romany language of the gypsies). I’ve never seen anything so strange, so sexy, so sensual, so bizarre; there were times my hands went numb from the amazing feats performed by the 50 artists that comprise the production. Read more »
The person who has the $21,000 missing from Revel is being more careful than Joey Coyle was.
To be fair, it’s a lot less money: Just $21 grand versus $1.2 million. But, the investigation into the missing $21,000 from Revel that fell off an armored car’s roof is officially closed.
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New Jersey gambling regulators have given approval to the Showboat Atlantic City casino’s closing on August 31st at 4 p.m. The casino first opened in 1987 and underwent a heavy renovation in 1995.
On the Showboat Facebook page, some reviews say service has declined in recent years, citing the management of Caesars. Then known as Harrah’s, the company purchased Showboat in 1998.
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When it comes to Revel, the house always loses. Earlier this month, the Revel Casino Hotel lost $21,000 after a bag of money was left on the roof of an armored car. The bills lost were valued at almost $21,000.
On August 6th, a GardaWorld armored car made a pickup at Revel and somehow left the bag of money on the roof, according to an incident report obtained by The Press of Atlantic City. Per the report, the bag was still there when it made a pickup at Resorts six minutes later. It’s not known when the money fell off the roof.
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Looking back at its two-year life (and the process leading up to it), it’s easy to see where things may have started to go downhill for the Revel Casino Hotel. But could one of the falling dominos that factored in its demise have been its design?
The Architect’s Newspaper recently published a piece pondering this question, and referred back to a New York Times article that pointed out Revel’s design issue last week:
But in terms of Revel, specifically, its design may have been its fatal flaw. “The enormous cost of the property, its vast size and its peculiar configuration—patrons had to ride a steep escalator from the lobby to get to the casino, the 57-story hotel and the restaurants—made it difficult to turn a profit,” reported the New York Times.
Indeed, this “peculiar configuration” did not go unnoticed by critics. In June, the Inquirer’s Harold Brubaker mentioned many felt Revel’s layout faults “include[d] a long distance between the casino floor and the hotel’s front desk, a casino floor that fails to engage gamblers, and vast empty spaces that make Revel expensive to heat and cool.”
One of said critics was Alan R. Woinski, chief executive of Gaming USA Corp., who happened to be interviewed by NPR just a few days ago, and had this to add about the shuttered resort: Read more »