The big news making headlines in New Jersey this week is that legal sports betting will soon be a reality in the Garden State.
Everyone is busy trying to figure out who will be taking sports bets and when. Sports bettors may be busy studying the lines, but it is important to remember there are two momentous grand openings on the schedule for June 28.
A little background on Ocean Resort Casino
Revel Casino Hotel opened after the initial project ballooned to more than $2 billion. It soon closed and is often referred to as one of Atlantic City‘s biggest casino failures.
Glenn Straub bought Revel for $82 million in bankruptcy court in August 2015. AC Ocean Walk then purchased the casino for $200 million last January.
Since then, Bruce Deifik, chairman and owner of AC Ocean Walk, has been living at Tropicana Casino and Resort. He has been very involved in managing the over $175 million renovation project leaving no detail to chance.
Deifik is committed to opening Ocean Resort Casino only when it is truly ready. With the failures of Revel lingering, he isn’t taking any chances.
“I think everybody is looking to find fault; I’m going to make sure that’s not going to be the case,” Deifik told the Associated Press.
7 things to know about Ocean Resort Casino
You can bet the property is swarming with activity with just over a month until the big grand opening party.
Ocean Resort is the tallest building in Atlantic City. This distinction allows the property to offer 1,399 rooms, all with unparalleled ocean views.
Here is a list of other things you should know about the casino and its plans for guests come June 28.
1. A sportsbook smack dab in the middle of the casino
“Atlantic City is coming back with a vengeance and with the groundwork for the legalization of sports betting, we foresee a great opportunity to bring a state of the art sports book to a city which caters to a large and diverse sports market.”
Yesterday, Deifik applauded the US Supreme Court sports betting decision.
“I think Atlantic City is well poised to take advantage of what happened today — not to compete with Las Vegas — just to be Atlantic City and continue to raise the level of what’s taking place here,” Deifik told the New York Daily News.
Ocean Resort is vying to be the “ultimate destination for endless action and non-stop fun” in Atlantic City, according to its website.
Hosting a best-of-class sportsbook is one way to ensure that happens.
“We’re putting our sportsbook right in the middle of our casino,” Deifik said.
A prominent spot on a casino floor signals someone believes NJ sports betting will bring in significant revenue. The chairman seems convinced Ocean Resort will be a prominent player in the new and legal sports betting space.
2. 138,000 square feet of gaming space
Besides a sportsbook in the middle of the casino floor, visitors to the property will find 100 table games and 2,200 slot machines.
Ocean resort promises “hundreds of games, a robust loyalty program, and private gaming lounges overlooking the ocean.”
3. Hyatt’s Exhale Spa
Ocean Resort will open as part of the Hyatt Unbound Collection with the Exhale Spa. The spa will feature luxury spa therapies, fitness classes, and well-being programs.
In fact, the spa promises “a relaxing sanctuary [that] both invigorates and calms — paving the way to positive change.”
4. Topgolf Swing Suites
Ocean Resort is partnering with a leading golf entertainment company to bring an interactive social experience to The Boardwalk.
The largest Topgolf Swing Suite facility in the world will offer 11 bays that include a virtual putting green and interactive games with ocean views.
5. More than a dozen dining venues
Ocean Resort is slated to open with 16 different dining options. These range from fine dining to casual and family-themed restaurants.
Every good casino has a buffet, and Ocean Resort has its version in the Ocean Buffet. Breakfast-for-dinner types will enjoy Cereal Town, a family-friendly restaurant that offers a wide variety of cereals.
Fans of Mark Wahlberg can get their fix in the popular burger chain, Wahlbergers. If cocktails are on the schedule, head over to Entourage. The HBO-series-themed bar is the first of its kind for Wahlberg.
6. Pools, cabanas, and views
Ocean Resort will open with six pools including one saltwater pool to celebrate being oceanside. The variety of locations include both indoor and outdoor pools all with spectacular views and poolside cabanas.
While not confirmed, there is a rumor that Ocean Resort will bring back one of the few Revel successes — the HQ Outdoor Pool and Nightclub.
7. Live entertainment at Ovation Hall
Ovation Hall is a 5,500-seat entertainment venue that’s hosted the likes of Beyoncé, The Eagles, and Maroon 5. Guests can expect an entertainment lineup with a wide variety of live acts worthy of a luxury destination.
There is just one little thing left …
While Hard Rock Atlantic City has secured its casino license, Ocean Resort Casino has not.
The earliest date to obtain a license is June 6, the next meeting of the Casino Control Commission. As of this writing, the meeting doesn’t have any notices attached, and its agenda is not available yet.
The June 6 meeting is the last before the scheduled grand opening day. If Ocean Resort Casino fails to get on the June 6 Casino Control Commission agenda, it will most likely still open. It will just be without the sounds of slot machines permeating the air.
Casino or not, during its grand opening, Ocean Resort Casino will have plenty of attractions to put guests in a celebratory mood.