Revel Opens In April In Atlantic City [AUDIO]
The countdown is on until the new, highly-anticipated Revel casino-hotel opens next month in Atlantic City and casino experts are hoping the mega-resort will provide a financial boost to the state.
April 2nd, 2012, is when rooms will be open for customers at the casino along the boardwalk and beach in A.C.
Dr. Israel Posner, executive director of the Institute for Gaming, Hospitality & Tourism at Stockton College, says this year will not be about making a comeback in the resort town, but about how to market to a new kind of customer, "This complex was designed to take advantage of the beach and boardwalk location and was built from the ground up with that idea in mind...to use that amenity to its fullest."
Atlantic City's casino revenue peaked in 2006 at $5.2 billion; it has since fallen to $3.6 billion at the end of 2010, mostly due to casinos opening in neighboring Pennsylvania and New York, and the poor economy.
"AC is hurting for some new money, some new visitors and some new excitement and I think Revel will bring the same kind of attention that Borgata did back in 2003" said Posner.
This is also the first year of Governor Christie's new plan to make Atlantic City a safer, cleaner, family-friendly destination.
"The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority has been put in charge of that task and it will be interesting to see what has changed or what will change under their leadership."
But the reform likely to have the most immediate impact is the formation of the Atlantic City Alliance, a private casino-financed nonprofit corporation that will spend $30 million a year for the next five years to promote Atlantic City to the rest of the world.
"Casinos can't beat stiff competition from neighboring states if they aren't well marketed to the rest of the nation and beyond, so we will see if that pays off."
Posner cautions that Revel is not the be all, end all solution to the struggling gaming market's troubles. "It will take a collaborative effort from all those avenues in order to make Atlantic City sing again."
Hard Rock International also expects to break ground by July 15th for Atlantic City's first smaller, boutique casino.