The New Jersey Casino Control Commission is set to rule later today on whether it would grant a casino license to the new Hard Rock hotel and casino complex, which is slated to open doors late next month.
The property received site approval by the New Jersey Casino Reinvestment Development Authority last month. It now needs a casino license from state gambling regulators in order to be able to open doors as a gaming resort on June 28.
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City is the latest addition to the gaming and hospitality portfolio of Florida-based operator Hard Rock International. The property will operate at the site of the former Trump Taj Mahal. Hard Rock bought the site last year from New York investor Carl Icahn.
The gaming and hospitality giant invested $500 million to bring down Trump Taj Mahal’s emblematic minarets and to redevelop what had been dubbed as the eighth wonder of the world before its closure in the fall of 2016 into a music-themed gaming and entertainment resort.
Last month, Hard Rock confirmed that the renovated property would swing its doors open on June 28. Workers at the resort installed the first signs that would identify the complex late last week, indicating that preparations for the upcoming opening were in full swing.
A Head Start
It is important to note that Hard Rock has already completed an important step toward being granted a license for the operation of a full-scale casino. A few years ago, the Florida-headquartered company expressed interest in running a casino at the existing Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, North Jersey. Hard Rock received a statement of compliance, which represented the first step in the process of obtaining a casino license from state regulators.
While that plan could not be carried out as New Jersey residents voted down the proposed expansion of casino gambling beyond Atlantic City at a 2016 referendum, that preliminary step could be of help to Hard Rock in its bid for a license for its new Atlantic City resort.
Hard Rock Atlantic City will be one of two casino resorts to re-open doors on the Atlantic City Boardwalk this summer. The new owners of the former Revel, now Ocean Resort Casino, confirmed Tuesday that the property will, too, be relaunched on June 28 after several weeks of speculations over its opening date.
Ocean was purchased earlier this year by Colorado-based real estate investor Bruce Deifik for $200 million. The businessman invested another $200 million for renovations at the property and its preparation for opening.
Trump Taj Mahal and Revel were two of the five casino resorts that closed down in Atlantic City in the period between 2014 and 2016. Their reopening is seen by analysts as a sign for the gradual revitalization of the city’s casino industry. The two properties will collectively create 6,500 new jobs. As many as 11,000 people lost their jobs due to the closure of the five Boardwalk resorts during the above-mentioned period.
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