2018 begins on a rather high note with a lot of events and activities taking place – the remaining traces of Donald Trump’s erstwhile casino empire could finally evanesce, the former Revel casino may be finally bought and reopened and sports betting could be legalized nationwide by the U.S. Supreme Court thus allowing for radical expansion of the gambling industry. At the same time, as a much-execrated state acquisition of power is expected to come to an end, internet gambling continues to thrive.
Atlantic City, a southern New Jersey city, on the other hand, has a hopeful future in 2018 despite being years overdue for a big win.
“I’m extremely optimistic about Atlantic City and the industry in 2018,” said Mark Giannantonio, president of Resorts, which is the first U.S. casino to open outside Nevada and is celebrating its 40th anniversary in May this year. “We’re very excited about the renaissance of Atlantic City; we think it’s for real.”
Perhaps one of the biggest developments in the city will be the summer reopening of the former Trump Taj Mahal as a Hard Rock casino resort. According to Jim Allen, the Hard Rock chairman, the casino resort will be all about music and 24/7 entertainment. To this effect, Hard Rock has even enlisted the services of renowned guitar whiz and ‘Sopranos’ actor Steven Van Zandt. The entertainer will be part of advertising ventures that will include big-name concerts, small indoor performances as well as beach concerts.
Hard Rock acquired the Trump Taj Mahal from billionaire investor Carl Icahn in March 2017 after it had been shut down back in October 2016 because of a strike with Atlantic City’s main casino workers’ union. Icahn also has his sights set on an economic development project that is yet to be named and this will involve the demolition of the former Trump Plaza casino located on the boardwalk below the Atlantic City Expressway.
Also, former Revel casino could also finally be reopened in 2018. Already a group led by Colorado developer Bruce Deifik is seeking to purchase the property for $200 million then reopen it. While the sale seems to be on the verge of being closed, Glenn Straub, Revel’s current owner has denied the existence of any such deal. He insists that he intends to reopen the casino himself after the state appeals courts rules on whether or not he needs a casino license to do so.