After more than a year filled with hype and $500 million spent renovating, the former Trump Taj Mahal will officially reopen as Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City on June 28.

The grand opening date was announced by Hard Rock International officials at a live-streamed press conference. It was held simultaneously at three different locations. This included the Hard Rock Cafe in Times Square, New York City, and Hard Rock Cafe Philadelphia. Plus, the Tanger Outlets in Atlantic City just behind the property.

In March 2017, Hard Rock International and some local development partners bought the shuttered $1.2 billion Trump Taj Mahal for $50 million.

The group immediately announced plans to spend $375 million renovating and re-branding before opening it as the new Hard Rock Atlantic City on Memorial Day weekend 2018.

The cost of the renovation quickly ballooned to $500 million and the re-opening date was pushed to summer 2018 before this week’s long-anticipated announcement.

Hard Rock Atlantic City in the headlines

In the year following the purchase, Hard Rock Atlantic City has remained in the headlines. Every step of the way, Atlantic City and its residents and gambling fans have eagerly followed every step the new casino took.

First, it held a highly publicized liquidation sale, getting rid of the last remnants of the Taj. Then, it filed plans with the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) to open a gas station just outside the property.

In January 2018, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement confirmed Hard Rock Atlantic City had applied for an online gaming license.

Hard Rock soon announced it had entered into a strategic partnership with Gaming Innovation Group (GiG) to build a new NJ gambling site and had ambitious plan to become a global leader in the international online gaming space.

In February, Hard Rock was in the headlines again after signing an agreement that could see Unite Here Local 54 return to the property. This is the same union that was on strike when Trump Taj Mahal was shut down.

Finally, at the end of February, Hard Rock submitted its plans for casino signage to the CRDA, including a massive Les Paul Gibson guitar with the Hard Rock name written on the body. It was a clear signal the redevelopment was nearing completion.

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An entertainment brand first

Now, Hard Rock has not only set a grand opening date but it’s already got a few celebrations in mind.

Hard Rock is an entertainment brand first, said Jim Allen, Hard Rock chairman, at the press conference.

“The Hard Rock brand is not a gambling brand… It’s about entertainment.”

And to that end, Hard Rock Atlantic City has released the names of several acts expected to headline its Summer Concert Series:

The acts include:

  • Toby Keith and Trace Adkins
  • Rascal Flatts
  • Cult, STP, and Bush
  • Kid Rock
  • Florida Georgia Line
  • Amy Shumer
  • Live
  • Steely Dan

When it does open at the end of June, Hard Rock Atlantic City will include a casino with 2,400 slots and 130 table games. First-class food and beverage concepts around the property are expected to include:

  • A relocated Hard Rock Cafe
  • White House Sub Shop
  • Il Mulino New York (Italian)
  • Kuro (Japanese)

There will also be two separate arenas with more than 7,000 seats for hosting live music, sporting events, conferences, and shows.

Every hotel room on the property has been renovated and redesigned. Plus, pieces from Hard Rock’s extensive music memorabilia collection, the world’s largest, will adorn the walls throughout the property.

Now, we just have to wait until June 28 to experience Hard Rock Atlantic City in person.