Atlantic City July 2020
Information about Atlantic City and its casinos seems to be changing daily. For the most up-to-date information, visit MrACCasino.com.
Though only at 25 percent capacity, and with mandatory health and safety guidelines such as face masks, social distancing, and health screenings, Atlantic City’s casinos will be allowed to reopen on Thursday, July 2.
However, in a blow to the casino industry – and potential visitors to Atlantic City – New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said June 29 he is postponing indoor dining because of a lack of compliance over the use of face masks and social distancing. Indoor dining also was to resume on July 2. In addition, the governor is temporarily banning food, beverages and smoking on casino floors, as well as indoor bars.
“If any visitor refuses to comply with these simple safeguards, [they] will be escorted out of the casino,” said Murphy. “We are not going to tolerate any knuckleheads trying to ruin it for those who want to enjoy themselves responsibly and those who need to get back to work, especially if those knuckleheads could be spreading COVID-19.”
Atlantic City Casino Capacities
Bally’s Atlantic City
Capacity of the gaming floor: 7,855 | Capacity at 25%: 1,963
Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa
Capacity of gaming floor: 10,189 | Capacity at 25%: 2,547
Caesars Atlantic City
Total capacity of gaming floor: 12,987 | Capacity at 25%: 3,246
Golden Nugget Casino, Hotel & Marina.
Capacity of gaming floor: 7,100 | Capacity at 25%: 1,775
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City
Capacity of the gaming floor: 12,000 | Capacity at 25%: 3,000
Capacity of gaming floor: 14,716 | Capacity at 25%: 3,679
Ocean Casino Resort
Capacity of gaming floor: 14,069 | Capacity at 25%: 3,517
Resorts Casino Hotel
Capacity of the gaming floor: 7,478 | Capacity at 25%: 1,869
Tropicana Atlantic City
Capacity of the gaming floor: 13,491 | Capacity at 25%: 3,372
Wild Wild West Casino
Capacity of gaming floor: 7,403 | Capacity at 25%: 1,859
Courtesy of David Danzis, Press of Atlantic City
While most of the casinos will open to the public that day, three casinos are taking advantage of a “friends and family” option that allows for a “soft opening” prior to allowing the general public to play and stay. Bally’s, Caesars and Harrah’s will open at 10 a.m. July 2, but only for invited guests. Beginning at 10 a.m. July 3, all others are welcome.
Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa will remain closed until Gov. Murphy’s decision to postpone the return of indoor dining, drinking and smoking is rescinded. “We respect the Governor’s decision. . . .Given this news, our property. . .will remain closed,” a statement from MGM Resorts International said. “Our guests expect a special experience when they come to our property and if we cannot provide that level of hospitality, we feel it best that we remain closed until such time that the Governor lets us know it is safe to offer food and beverage,” the statement said. “The health and safety of our employees and guests are at the center of all that we do, and although we respect the decision we regret that we are unable to welcome back the thousands of employees who are anxious to return to work. We look forward to a time when it is safe to welcome everyone back.”
Honestly, I don’t know why the casinos would open. It’s like running a hot dog stand with no condiments and no buns.Unite Here Local 54 President Bob McDevitt
What’s open, what’s not
General Assembly signs off on open container law
Since Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small Sr. issued an executive order temporarily permitting open consumption of alcoholic beverages on the Boardwalk the New Jersey General Assembly has passed a bill to make the change permanent. The bill still requires the OK of the state Senate and the governor.
FTC approves Caesars-Eldorado merger
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has accepted a proposed consent order, which concludes the commission’s review of Caesars Entertainment Corporation’s pending merger with Eldorado Resorts Inc. The FTC’s acceptance of the consent order satisfies all required antitrust clearances for the merger.
Completion of the merger remains subject to the satisfaction of other closing conditions, including receipt of all consents and approvals from the Nevada Gaming Control Board, Nevada Gaming Commission, New Jersey Casino Control Commission, Indiana Gaming Commission and Indiana Horse Racing Commission. Because the Indiana Gaming Commission won’t vote on the proposed merger until its July 10 hearing, the deal cannot close until later this month
More about proposed Showboat water park
During a land-use hearing of the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority last month, Showboat Hotel owner Bart Blatstein said, “This will be the best, pound for pound, indoor water park in the country. We’ve spent many, many hours designing something that’s going to be completely unique, so that when you arrive here at Showboat, you’ll know that you’re somewhere different.”
Blatstein believes his proposed $100 million 100,000-sq. ft. water park and entertainment center will be a catalyst for getting more families to the city. “This is, basically, a family resort with a hotel anchored by an indoor water park, and there’ll be many, many other amenities,” Blatstein said. “My team and I are very, very excited about developing this property.”
The Showboat’s yet-to-be-named aquatic park will feature water slides, pools and a lazy river, in addition to food and beverage outlets, party rooms, locker rooms, retail stands and lounge areas. A retractable glass-pane roof will cover the entire park and make it a year-round facility. The project also calls for a renovation of the Showboat’s existing Premier Light Tower for water park guests and the construction of a family entertainment center, with arcade games, mini-golf and laser tag, inside the hotel. The park will be built on an existing lot between Showboat and Ocean Casino Resort, just off the Boardwalk.
Cruise suspensions extended until Sept. 15
Members of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) will voluntarily extend the suspension of cruise operations from U.S. ports until Tuesday, Sept. 15. This is for all ships that are subject to the CDC’s current No Sail Order (vessels with the capacity to carry 250 or more). CLIA is continuing to evaluate the situation to decide is further another extension is necessary.
Recreational gambler Darryl D. McEwen is publisher of the Seven Stars Insider – both the website (SevenStarsInsider.com) and the monthly newsletter. For a free subscription to the newsletter, email him at SevenStarsInsider@gmail.com and tell him how you heard about it. You also can download the newsletter from the website where he frequently updates news about Caesars Entertainment Corp., Eldorado Resorts Inc. and Caesars Rewards under “Latest News” on the Home page. In addition, be sure to follow @7StarsInsider on Twitter. Darryl also writes a bi-weekly column, Mr. AC Casino, for the Atlantic City Weekly. The companion website is MrACCasino.com and the matching Twitter account is @MrACCasino. A former professional journalist, based in Wilmington, Del., Darryl is president of his own consulting firm that manages several small national and international trade associations, and provides public relations and fundraising services for a number of charitable organizations.