Atlantic City is anxious for the new year to arrive, and with it, the $2.4 billion Revel casino-hotel that should bring new gamblers and new money to the resort.

The city has been pummeled by a five-year losing streak brought on by unrelenting competition from casinos in neighboring states and worsened by the sluggish economy.

Also in 2012, Hard Rock International expects to break ground for its own new smaller "boutique" casino at the opposite end of the Boardwalk. It will also be the first full year that Gov. Chris Christie's Atlantic City rescue plan will be in place.

Pitfalls lurk as well. They include the ramping up of New York City's Aqueduct casino and the continuing financial fragility ofthe casino formerly known as the Atlantic City Hilton.



(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)