Atlantic City’s Revel Casino to close in September

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  • ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Atlantic City’s Revel Casino Hotel will shut down next month after failing to find a buyer in bankruptcy court, company officials announced Tuesday

    The company said it will close its doors on Sept. 10. The move comes two years after the $2.4 billion casino opened. It has never turned a profit.

    The closure will mean the loss of more than 3,100 jobs.

    The casino was due to be sold at a bankruptcy court auction last week, but that was postponed until Thursday to allow casino officials to study bids that were received. But after Revel’s board met on Monday, the decision was made to shutter the iconic glass-covered casino at the north end of the Boardwalk.

    Revel opened in April 2012 as the first new casino in Atlantic City since the Borgata opened nine years earlier, and carried great hopes for many that it would be the catalyst to jolt what had been the nation’s second-largest gambling market back to life. Atlantic City has since slipped to third place behind Nevada and Pennsylvania, whose casinos touched off the New Jersey resort town’s revenue and employment plunge in 2007.

    Since 2006, when the first Pennsylvania casino opened, Atlantic City’s casino revenue has fallen from $5.2 billion to $2.86 billion last year.

    Revel has ranked near the bottom of Atlantic City’s casinos in terms of the amount of money won from gamblers since the day it opened.

    Its original owners envisioned it as a luxury resort that just happened to have a casino, and eschewed many staples of casino culture, including a buffet and bus trips for day-trippers. But that strategy — as well as the only overall smoking ban in Atlantic City — turned off customers, and Revel filed for bankruptcy in 2013, a little over a year after opening.

    That led to new ownership and a “Gamblers Wanted” promotional campaign to emphasize the company’s new emphasis on its casino.

    But despite some improvement, Revel’s finances never recovered enough, and it filed for bankruptcy a second time in June, warning that it would close if a suitable buyer could not be found.

    Revel’s most recent Chapter 11 filing listed assets of $486.9 million and liabilities of $476.1 million.

    It will be the second of four Atlantic City casinos to shut down this year as the Atlantic City gambling market continues to crumble.

    The city started this year with 12 casinos. The Showboat will close on Aug. 31, and Trump Plaza is closing Sept. 16.

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