AC needs more than mini-casinos

This isn’t the popular thing to say right now, but I’ve got real doubts about the AC mini-casino proposal. Here are my thoughts from the LV Business Press:

Both Atlantic City and Las Vegas have had a difficult recession of course, by definition no recession is easy. Atlantic City, however, has suffered much more due to increasing regional competition and that's triggered a not-so-profound re-evaluation of that city's casino industry.Atlantic City's casinos find themselves in a tough spot. Their regional monopoly, which once extended to the Mississippi River, now barely touches the Delaware. Pennsylvania will soon add table games and New York and Delaware are both considering expanding their casino industries. Gamblers, it would seem, are driving past more and more casinos on their way “down the shore.”

But in increasing numbers, they're not, which is the problem. The city's gaming revenues have fallen to 1997 numbers. Las Vegas, by comparison, has retreated only to 2004

via Las Vegas Business Press :: David G. Schwartz : Smaller casinos won’t fix what ails Atlantic City.

It’s worth saying that the most successful casinos in Atlantic City right now are the biggest ones (Borgata, Harrah’s). I’m just not seeing the ROI for something one-tenth of their size.

The article’s punch line makes it clear just how unrealistic I think the mini-casino=revival talk is.

Author: Dave

Director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and author of several books, including Roll the Bones: The History of Gaming. Also Gaming and Hospitality editor for Vegas Seven magazine.

3 thoughts on “AC needs more than mini-casinos”

  1. I was looking at some vintage reproductions of Atlantic City tourism posters this morning. It was once a great place (and for all I might know, still is).

    Atlantic City needs to start advertising more about their city than just the casinos. West Coasters, like me, don’t fully know about all the other fun aspects of AC’s beach and boardwalk attractions.

    The city should clue people in more about all the things their city has to offer, cuz most non-easterners don’t know much about AC. I mainly still hold a bad 1980’s image of it in my head.

    It’s true that it needs to present itself more as a vacation destination, instead of simply a gambling town. It sure wouldn’t hurt to publicize it in better ways. Would it?

  2. West Vegas I agree, Atlantic City needs to change consumer perceptions. All this negative news in “The Press”, “The Phila Inquirer”, & “The Times” doesn’t make people want to come to the city and gamble.

    AC needs a multi dimensional approach: Revel needs to be finished, aging casinos need face lifts, boutique casinos need to open, & the city needs to be safer. After all of this…run a few commercials and I believe everything will change.

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