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Thread: Future of Atlantic City if New Orleans gets Gambling

  1. #1
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Default Future of Atlantic City if New Orleans gets Gambling

    The mayor of New Orleans has suggested bringing full fledged gambling to New Orleans to rebuild the city. What will Atlantic City do if New Orleans gets gambling? Of course competition is good - but the question is - is AC ready for it? Atlantic City casinos for years sat on it's laurels happy with the status quo. Then came Borgata, a casino everyone said wouldn't survive in AC. When that was proved wrong - it forced the other casinos to revamp and improve themselves. There is now a huge building boom going on in Atlantic City which is great to see. But how long with this last now? I see another problem - many of the casino companies are located in Las Vegas and they don't want AC to be a full fledged competitor with LV, so they have short changed AC in exchange of Las Vegas expanations. What will their feeling toward AC be when a city such as New Orleans, a city that has a reputation for tourism, gets gambling? Will the casino companies abandon New Jersey for Louisiana? Is New Jersey and Atlantic City prepared to fight back?

    To be honest, I'm not too confident that New Jersey or AC will fight back. Remember, they just let Miss America - an Atlantic City institution just pick up and leave, even though Atlantic City had nothing to do with why the pageant wasn't doing well.

    Mayor moves to heal New Orleans' lifeblood industry
    Nagin hopes more casinos will quickly bring back tourists
    Friday, October 7, 2005; Posted: 10:01 p.m. EDT (02:01 GMT)

    NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) -- Mayor Ray Nagin called Friday for a major expansion of casino gambling in hurricane-hit New Orleans in a desperate attempt to quickly heal its battered lifeblood industry -- tourism.

    "We will probably limp along for the next three to five years unless we do something bold," said Nagin at a news conference. "And to me, this is a bold statement."

    New Orleans' economy largely depends on tourism revenue, and the city would face continued trouble without it -- although the city's French Quarter survived much of Hurricane Katrina's destruction.

    "Now is the time for us to think out of the box," Nagin said while expressing some hesitancy about the method of his plan.

    "I'd love to have another solution for the citizens. I'm not a big gaming person," he said.

    Visitors spent $4.9 billion in 2004, according to the city's convention and visitors bureau, which also rates the tourism industry as New Orleans' second-largest employer.

    Plan centers on hotels
    Under the mayor's proposal, hotels with at least 500 rooms located in a U-shaped zone in the city's downtown area could be converted into full-fledged casinos. Nagin said six or seven hotels would qualify under the proposal, if their owners chose to participate.

    Hotels on Canal Street -- the city's main thoroughfare at the edge of the French Quarter -- would be allowed to convert into casinos. However, those inside the French Quarter would not.

    Currently, state law allows just one land-based casino in New Orleans, which is operated by Harrah's Entertainment Inc. Casino boats are allowed to operate in the Mississippi River.

    Nagin said he didn't think gambling expansion would change the unique character of the city, which holds such well-known events as Mardi Gras and the New Orleans Jazz Festival.

    "I don't ever see a scenario where New Orleans becomes Las Vegas. New Orleans is way too unique," Nagin said. "Las Vegas has casinos. New Orleans has so much more. ... To me, this is just enhancing what we have and creating some excitement."

    State officials 'open' to idea
    Under Nagin's plan, the state and city would evenly split tax revenue generated by the new casinos. A financial settlement would have to be reached with Harrah's to give up its city monopoly on land-based gambling, he said.

    "They're not going to do that for free," he said.

    Nagin said he had discussed his proposal with Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco and her aides. He said they were "a little open to it."

    "I'm not saying they have endorsed it whole-heartedly, but they are open to the discussion," he said.

    Nagin said his plan would be beneficial for New Orleans and the rest of the state because the city accounts for about a third of Louisiana's economy, anything that accelerates the return of tourism would benefit the whole state.

    In addition, Orleans Parish accounts for 44 percent of all state income from tourism, according to the New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau.

    Before Nagin's plan could be implemented, it would have to be approved by city voters and the Louisiana Legislature.

    He said the "best scenario" would be for the legislature to approve the plan and put it before voters during a city election scheduled for February.

    Neighboring Mississippi -- which also was hit hard by Katrina on August 29 -- depends largely on the gaming industry. All 13 of Mississippi's floating casinos were destroyed in the storm. The closed or destroyed casinos cost the state $500,000 per day in lost tax revenue.
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    Recent Resident Eric Stephenson's Avatar
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    In my not so humble opinion,

    AC doesn't have anything to worry about from New Orleans. Prior to the Hurricanes there were only a handfull (like 3) casinos in the New Orleans area.

    Even if the city agress to this proposition and the casino operators start building/rebuilding it would take billions of dollars of new construction and several years (if not longer) of really sharp marketing before anybody would consider New Orleans a direct competitor of AC.

    By then the building boom in AC will have reached the second or third stage of the current boom which will include several new casinos in addition to the revamping/adding/complete demolition of about half the current buildings.

    The entire "Gulf Coast" casino theatre which includes New Orleans, Gulfport, Biloxi and Tunica doesn't bring in more then 10 or 20% of the bottom line for any of the major casino operators (Harrahs, MGM and Boyd).

    I just don't see it being a problem especially since most of them already have or have entered discussions of having a presence in that market.

  3. #3
    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Talking New Orleans vs. Atlantic City

    We live about 200 miles from New Orleans and we went there last summer, about a month or so before Katrina. Our daughter and son-in-law went to Harrah's and won a little money.

    I've been to New Orleans a lot (I lived there for five weeks in 1992) and I think a different type of tourist goes there than goes to A.C. Also, there are enough miles between them so as not to be in direct competition. Louisiana already has casinos in Shreveport (about 6 hours from New Orleans) and they attract entirely different crowds.

    I remember when gambling was originally proposed for Atlantic City, my mother-in-law was against it and I was in favor of it. I thought casinos would turn Atlantic City into an American Monte Carlo. While I still think casinos are a legitimate tourist attraction, on the whole, I am disappointed by the way that all U.S. casinos are just so plain tacky in their atmosphere.

    My wife and I visited Monte Carlo in 2001 and the difference is like night and day. The casino in Monte Carlo doesn't even have signs on the outside of it. It is a dignified looking building. Monte Carlo itself has an upscale look similar to Morristown or Princeton. If I were in charge of casinos in Atlantic City I would:

    1.) Ban all neon and flashing exterior signs.
    2.) Institute dress codes in the casinos. Customers should dress more like James Bond than Uncle Buck.
    3.) Promote special casino flights to bring in tourists from Europe.
    4.) Don't have any tour buses originating in New York!

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    Default new orleans worry?

    I think that atlantioc city has its on charm that makes itself known to just abut every visitor to visit the united states. That said, i do not think tht atlantic city has any reason to get worried, after all development take place everywhere and we cannot stop tht from happening!

  5. #5
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    Smile What about PA, NY and MD vs Atlantic City Casinos!

    The original post was about New Orleans becoming a bigger gaming destination and competing with Atlantic City Casinos: What about now, with New York and Maryland getting approved for VLT's or Video Lottery Machines / Slot Machines for their Horse Racing Tracks. Then add Pennsylvania and Delaware, put them all on a map and see what you have!

    Over the next 2 or 3 years the above mentioned cities will be live with Slot Machines!

    The question is, what can Atlantic City do be competitive? the answer is lobby to get Sports Betting Approved!. We need some sort of an edge, this is one that would take us over the top!

    The next thing we need to do is get Revel Completed and attract some new development within the next 5 years. We have 3 or 4 prime Casino Sites waiting to be developed.

    Keep your fingers crossed and pray Atlantic City can get it turned around!

    Atlantic City Hotels Guy

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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Default My opinion

    I know this will never fly, but I think what Atlantic City could do to remain competitive is to try to develop a sense of class. For some reason, gambling destinations in this country (this includes both Las Vegas and A.C.) are so incredibly tacky.

    My wife and I visited Monte Carlo in 2001 and the difference is like night and day. Atlantic City has one thing in its favor that neither Las Vegas nor New Orleans do not it's on the ocean. This gives it much in common with Monte Carlo. The first order of business might be to have special rooms in the casinos where dress codes are enforced. Then get rid of all gambling devices that employ noises, whistles, bells, neon lights, etc. only traditional roulette tables and card games like in Monte Carlo. Basically, if you have to plug it in, get rid of it.

    Atlantic City could be the Monte Carlo of America, if the casino owners and city fathers had the will.

  7. #7
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    As someone said - AC is tacky - the kind of tacky where there is a lot of glare and glitz and clutter but no class. Some of the restaurants are actually good and have good service but they always are so focused on daytrippers who eat the buffets that the high end goes empty a lot - no overall plan - and they are already hurting from the competition in philly and conn. Plus that new Aces train is half empty all the time and the airport has no direct flights to anywhere you want to go - New Orleans is in bad shape - been there - but they got a lot of local charm and history and GREAT FOOD - AC cant afford to lose even a small percent to another venue - NO does it even half right and it puts a strain on AC

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    Default Future of Atlantic City if New Orleans gets Gambling

    Hi everyone. I am planning a trip to Atlantic city for the first time. I am staying at the Resorts. Looks nice on the website. Any ideas on restaurants and things to do or see? All I know is STAY AWAY FROM THE BOARDWALK AT NIGHT Thank you for any help you can give me.

  9. #9
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    Smile Things to do in Atlantic City

    MAK, if you're staying for a month you'll be able to see everything Atlantic City has to offer. I would really need to know more about what specifically you're interested in but see these places for sure!

    1. Quarter at the Tropicana - take Jitney, Cab or drive parking is $5. The Quarter is a Havana Cuba themed entertainment complex with fantastic restaurants, Imax theatre, great bars including Ri Ra Irish Pub, the #1 rated comedy show, Comedy Stop at the Trop, you'll find a Hooters a Sports Bar, 5 star dining, buffet, Karoake Bar and the list goes on, must see!

    2. When staying at Resorts request the Rendezvous Tower.

    3. I would take the sky walk to the Taj Mahal and check things out there, Hard Rock Cafe and much more.

    4. Take skywalk the other way to the Showboat and check out the House of Blues etc there.

    5. If you want the best Cheesesteak in America, check out the most historic place in town The White House Sub Shop.

    6. Get over to the Pier at Caesars, first and second floor shops and 3rd floor entertainment, retaurants, sports bar, Trinity Irish Pub and way more.

    7. While your at it, you should walk 2 blocks to the REAL Irish Pub on St James and Boardwalk. You will find real Irish bartenders, great selection of beers and great inexpensive food.

    Bottom line is that you haven't scratched the service what Atlantic City has going on!

    Have Fun!

    Atlantic City Hotel Guy

  10. #10
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mak_soycle View Post
    Hi everyone. I am planning a trip to Atlantic city for the first time. I am staying at the Resorts. Looks nice on the website. Any ideas on restaurants and things to do or see? All I know is STAY AWAY FROM THE BOARDWALK AT NIGHT Thank you for any help you can give me.
    Mak - I'm not sure who told you to stay away from Boardwalk at night. The Boardwalk is entirely safe. If you are going in the winter time it isn't going to be very busy and it will be cold. In the summer they have beach bars that are open late at night, the Steel Pier is busy and there are a ton of people walking the boards from one casino to another.

    What type of things are you interested in doing? In the Marina District there is Borgata with great night clubs and restaurants such as Bobby Flay's.

    To get some great travel information on the area - as well as anywhere else in New Jersey that you may be interested in - go to our NJ Visitor Guide Request Form.

    I hope this and ACHotelGuy's suggestions help.
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  11. #11
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    I may be late to this and sorry to disagree with Jersey Devil but you stay away from the Boardwalk at night, and everywhere in AC at night. The city has been riddled with violent crime for many months - check out their local paper the Press. Even the casinos are not immune. There were attacks in some casino elevators, corridors, parking garages and on the Boardwalk.
    There is some nice shopping in Atlantic City and there are good restaurants - many of the casinos, Chef Vola, the White House for subs, the Irish Pub to name a few. But dont wander off alone and better to stick with a crowd at night.

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