Revel in it, it is Revel Time on the Boardwalk

The $2.4 billion luxury casino and hotel has 14 restaurants and 10 pools in a cleaned-up Atlantic City beach location. Its casino license was approved by the state on Monday.

The $2.4 billion luxury casino and hotel has 14 restaurants and 10 pools in a cleaned-up Atlantic City beach location. Its casino license was approved by the state on Monday. / TIM LARSEN/Office of the Governor, Gannett, 3-28-12

April and May are going to be the most exciting two months the gaming industry has seen in the United States in a long time with the opening of Revel.  Not since CityCenter opened in December of 2009 has anything of this magnitude happened in the gaming industry – the Cosmopolitan notwithstanding.  CityCenter however, was destined to never meet it expectation.  It was built on unstable partnerships, untested business models and opened at the peak of the recession.  Regardless of how many billions of dollars had been spent, and some estimates are as high as ten billion, CityCenter never had a chance of fulfilling the dreams of its creators.

It is different for Revel, although it is also opening in difficult times and too has a very big nut to crack – $2.6 billion was the cost of its construction; but Revel is not CityCenter.  It does not depend on the cash flow of a foreign investor in serious financial problems, like Dubai World, it does depend on the sale of condominiums as CityCenter did, and it was not built with the intent of minimizing gambling as CityCenter was; CityCenter aspired to being more than a gambling joint, a casino; it aspired to be above gambling and its creators wanted CityCenter to be a social, political and artistic center with a little gambling to help pay the bills.   However, a little gambling has not been enough to pay the cost of building CityCenter; Revel was not conceived in that way, Revel it is first and foremost a casino.

Revel has lots of the foo foo stuff as well, art, architecture and many non-gaming amenities, but it does have a casino, 130,000 square feet of gambling.  Revel will face many challenges, but it is not as handicapped in the battle for supremacy in its market as is CityCenter.  CityCenter is fighting a battle for survival; I believe Revel will battle for market dominance instead.

The Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, is really excited about Revel, so excited that he sent a personal invitation to Bruce Springsteen, a New Jersey native, to come to Atlantic City for the grand opening and help Revel, Atlantic City and the governor to welcome in a new era – one that everyone hopes will pull the city from the downtown spiral it has been on for four years.

Both New York and Massachusetts are in the early stages of an onslaught of casino expansion that will probably cause as much devastation in Atlantic City as the Pennsylvania casinos did. But Revel and the other casinos in Atlantic City most likely have three or four years before those two states actually have casinos and the battle begins.  Four years should be enough for Revel to establish itself in Atlantic City and the region.

Revel is generating the kind of buzz that has not been heard for a very long time on the famous Boardwalk or anyplace else in the gaming industry in the United States.  And the buzz is a welcome sound for industry in the midst of a recession.

 From a terrace on the new 47-floor Revel casino and hotel overlooking the Atlantic Ocean Tuesday, Gov. Chris Christie said New Jersey is ready to play its best hand in the economically bruising competition with other states for gambling dollars. The luxurious $2.4 billion Revel with its 14 restaurants and 10 pools is opening soon, but Christie said the winning factors may be a cleaned-up beach location and the breathtaking view from above, adding, “Other places that offer gambling don’t offer this.” Bob Jordan, Statehouse Bureau, Gannett New Jersey, 3-28-12

 Gov. Chris Christie put out a public appeal to Bruce Springsteen on Tuesday, asking that the rocker spend Labor Day weekend playing at the new Revel casino.  “I would make a direct plea to Bruce right now,” said Christie, who is well-known for his affinity for the rocker’s music. “Labor Day weekend at Revel for Bruce Springsteen would be an incredible show of support for his home state.” – Hoa Nguyen, Press of Atlantic City, 3-28-12

 Atlantic Avenue will undergo a historically accurate renovation project to make the four-lane roadway worthy of being the resort’s “Main Street,” officials said Tuesday. But first, architects must inventory existing buildings and their conditions, research their past uses and appearance, and come up with a funding and prioritization plan for the two-mile long stretch of Atlantic between Albany and Maine avenues, said Thomas Meehan, director of development for the New Jersey Casino Reinvestment Development Authority.  “We’re trying to return to the old Atlantic City by rehabilitating storefronts in keeping with the history of Atlantic City — what was there before,” Meehan said. – Emily Previti, Press of Atlantic City, 3-28-12


1 Response to “Revel in it, it is Revel Time on the Boardwalk”

  1. 1 lynne rosner March 28, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    Did Christie ask the jelly fish if they were bringing the troops to town?
    No lie, we were there last summer and you couldn’t ride a wave in without coming up with a jelly fish in your hand. Within twenty feet from our towel were two dead ones about a foot long laying on the shoreline in the July heat. The curious brought their children to look at them.
    Yeah, I was singing Jersey girl in my head that day…:(

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