Gambling fans in New Jersey may soon have to stick to only enjoying the likes of the Gold Ranch Casino online, as one of the Atlantic City casinos is finally closing down after a long financial struggle. The Atlantic Club Casino Hotel has been seeking buyers for some time, with the original bid coming from PokerStars and having been blocked by local authorities; now it has at last found joint buyers in the form of Caesars Entertainment and Tropicana Entertainment, but neither of them are planning to maintain the casino as it is. This means that the casino will be closing down permanently, after going at a bargain basement price.
There were two days of bidding this week before the sales went through, with Caesars paying $15 million for the land and some of the assets, while Tropicana paid $8.4 million for the slots and table games within the casino. Each plans to salvage the parts rather than operating the premises as is. This makes the property worth $23.4 million overall; the previously lowest price which had been paid for a casino in the city was the $31.5 million paid for Resorts Casino in 2010. The owners of the Atlantic Club filed for bankruptcy in November as it faced foreclosure, despite having made moves earlier in the year to brand themselves as a destination for lower stakes gamblers, boasting of having loose slots. The revenue did increase by some thirteen per cent as a result through the first eleven months of the year, but it was not enough to make a difference – they still lost more than $7 million, according to court documents. The casino then announced that they would be closing down on January 13th for the last time. “The events of the last few months have evoked an array of emotions,” chief operating officer Michael Frawley said in a statement. “Unfortunately our pace was unsustainable in the extremely challenging Atlantic City gaming market.”
The casino and hotel planned to operate normally until the closing date, according to management, with all employee wages and benefits being paid right up until the closing date as well. The casino is the first to close in Atlantic City since the Sands seven years ago, despite that at least one other casino – the Revel – has been on the verge of financial meltdown multiple times over the last couple of years. The Altantic Club changed its name in 2012 from the Altantic City Hilton Casino Resort, and there are sure to be some local players who are sad to see it go. The online casino gambling market is hoped to be a route which will allow casino businesses in the state to maintain their business and to salvage falling revenue figures, which have not improved for some time and continue to be hit by natural disasters as well as competition from other states. It remains to be seen whether all of the venues there can continue to survive in future years.
Published by John Sullivan of Online Casino Club.