Revel Owner Glenn Straub: House Syrian Refugees at Ex-Casino

"If the government wanted to house Syrian refugees, I'd give them use of the building and let them put those people there."

Revel - Atlantic City casino hotel

Revel on its last full day of operation in 2014. (Photo: Dan McQuade)

The Syrian refugee crisis is a tragedy with no end in sight. And winter on its way, refugees will be facing new struggles in the coming months.

Enter Glenn Straub. It’s been a while since we checked in on the owner of the former Revel casino in Atlantic City, but today he gave an interview to the Associated Press about the casino, still shuttered more than a year after it closed.

And, yes, he has an idea.

Straub told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he’s willing to let people displaced by the civil war in Syria stay at the 47-story Revel resort as he fights in court over its future. Straub has been trying to reopen Revel since buying it in April for $82 million but has been beset by litigation from utility companies and former tenants that has so far kept it shuttered.

“We treat our dogs better than we treat the Syrians right now,” he said. “If the government wanted to house Syrian refugees, I’d give them use of the building and let them put those people there.”

Straub says the only compensation he’d like for his charitable deed is to be reimbursed for operating the cost of the building. Revel — which was open from April 2nd, 2012 to September 1st, 2014 — has 1,399 hotel rooms.

Of course, like many of Straub’s proposals for Revel — the university for geniuses, his idea to blow up the building if his plans fail — this one is far-fetched. (The Associated Press even reached out to the State Department to ask about Straub’s plan.)

Meanwhile, Revel appears to still be ways away from opening up again as a casino (or refugee housing). Straub is involved in several legal fights with regulators and people suing him. He’s currently working to make sure Revel has power for heat this winter.