The comeback is underway, as companies and casinos are returning one step at a time. Borgata Atlantic City became the latest to weigh in on resumption plans on Tuesday.
Reservations will also be accepted for July 6 and beyond, though at last look, the reservation system had yet to be updated.
And as is the case for all casinos in Atlantic City, Borgata is only allowed a 25% capacity.
What Borgata’s July 6 opening will look like
Borgata’s safety plan, which had been well established and waiting for Murphy’s green light, will spring into action.
- Screening, temperature checks and employee training.
- Mandatory masks and personal protection equipment (PPE).
- A six-foot physical distancing policy in place wherever feasible.
- Hand washing and enhanced sanitization.
- Heating, ventilation and air conditioning controls and air quality.
- Incident response protocols.
- Digital innovations.
When it comes to the casino, every other slot machine will be disabled in an effort to encourage physical distancing.
Many table games will have polycarbonate barriers installed as well. Poker will not be available at first.
In fact, Borgata announced the cancellation of:
- MGM Resorts East Coast Poker Tour
- Borgata Summer Poker Open
- Borgata Poker Open
- WPT Borgata Poker Open Championship
There will be stand-alone handwashing stations located along the casino floor, polycarbonate barriers where physical distancing is difficult and digital menus at restaurants that can be accessed by scanning QR codes.
The Borgata is also engaging in increased and enhanced cleaning procedures.
Murphy indicated Monday that safety measures will be strictly enforced. Anyone refusing to comply will have to leave.
What about the Borgata sportsbooks?
The ramifications of the coronavirus pandemic have spread beyond health considerations.
NJ sports betting fans keenly await the reopening of the racebook and bar dear to the hearts of every gambler: Moneyline.
The racebook is a state-of-the-art facility with individual televisions, large screens, self-service kiosks and tellers. It is one of the finest places to watch horse racing on the East Coast.
Horse-racing enthusiasts hope it will be back up and running in time to handle action for the July 18 Haskell Invitational Stakes at Monmouth Park.
The Moneyline Bar & Book is a nightlife extension of the gambling vision. The 8,000-square-foot space opened officially last summer and features a 40-foot-wide LED video wall and six betting windows.
Like all sportsbooks, they have been affected by unfinished seasons, which affect betting. But pro sports are in the works for making a comeback in July.
Add that to 100+ days of closed AC casinos, and it is no surprise that the books will be a prime attraction during the reopening.
How do you get a bet refund at Borgata?
Customers who have placed bets on an individual or upcoming game and/or event that is ultimately canceled or one that has already been canceled will receive a full refund.
For bets placed at Moneyline Bar & Book or the Race & Sports Book at Borgata, guests can bring their bet slips back to either location upon reopening to receive a refund.
Tickets can also be redeemed by mail. The instructions and mailing address appear on the back of wagering tickets.
For bets placed within the BetMGM or Borgata Sports mobile NJ betting apps, customers have already been refunded for games that have been canceled.
Mlife Rewards benefits changes and updates
Customer loyalty program plans reflect Borgata’s intent to continue benefits.
Mlife Rewards tier status earned in 2019 and 2020 will be extended through January 2022.
Borgata also is changing the earning year to Jan. 1–Dec. 31 from what’s historically been Oct. 1–Sept. 30. This extends the benefits three additional months and makes it easier to track the calendar earning year.
Certain Mlife Rewards offers, such as promotions, events and entertainment, have expired or been canceled during the time the property was closed. They will be rescheduled.
Borgata has also suspended Points and Express Comps expirations through Sept. 30, 2020.
How long before casinos are open at full capacity? That’s TBD
Soon, Atlantic City’s biggest revenue winner will reopen and the slots will once again sing on the Borgata casino floor.
And soon, the real sports betting will resume.
In that lighthearted spirit, here’s some conjecture with hypothetical odds on the next operations phase.
Will Murphy extend casinos’ capacity from 25% to 50% or higher before the end of July? Practically even money.
Murphy is meticulous, yet also aware that Atlantic City casinos could secure a substantial rebound with a higher percentage capacity. That means more people back at work and more tax revenues. He wants that.
The unspoken sentiment from his Monday briefing was: Don’t mess this up and there will be more good news.
I’m betting yes for the extension, with an announcement during the third week.