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Atlantic City Used to Be the Place to Visit in the Summer

Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Atlantic City isn't the "Boardwalk Empire" it once used to be.

Trump Plaza sent notices to 1,153 workers on Monday ahead of its expected September closure.

"Although this review has not been completed and no final decision has been made, the company expects that it will terminate the operations of Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino on or shortly after September 16, 2014," the company said in the statement.

The Showboat Casino Hotel, owned by Caesars Entertainment, will close in August. This follows the closure of The Atlantic Club Casino Hotel in January, and a possible closure of Revel in August if it doesn't find a buyer.

While Atlantic City casinos heard some good news this week about rising revenue, casino revenue is far from its heyday of the 1940s and '50s.

The 11 casinos that operated in both 2014 and 2013 increased their revenue by almost 4 percent last month, the Associated Press reported. Without the Atlantic Club, the casinos earned $235.9 million in June, up from $227.1 million last year. A large driver of the increase is attributed to the $9.5 million in Internet gambling winnings that were recently legalized.

More than 7,000 Atlantic City casino workers, about a quarter of that total workforce, have been warned their jobs could be eliminated within 60 days, the Associated Press reported.

New competition from other regional casinos has put pressure on Atlantic City's gambling and entertainment offerings.

In addition to Internet gambling, casinos are hoping summer music concerts and other beach-side entertainment will help boost attendance.

Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, one of the few properties not located on the boardwalk, said its gross gaming revenue comprises about 23.6 percent of market share in the Atlantic City area year-to-date, up over two basis points from the prior year.

Borgata senior vice president and spokesperson, Joe Lupo, told ABC News that Borgata is continuing to increase market share. He attributes the growth to the property's "aggressive" approach to the regional market, not just Atlantic City, in promoting its property, including its many restaurants.

"We've always been trying to grow the base and speak to the Atlantic 'rejector,' who flew to Las Vegas and wouldn't come here, with different amenities and entertainment as a way to drive business."

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