Taj Mahal no more
The resort and casino went through with announced plans to close its doors on Monday. One of the iconic AC casinos opened 26 years ago.
For weeks, the casino’s website included this message: “Trump Taj Mahal will close and cease casino and hotel operations on Monday, October 10, 2016 at 5:59am.”
It joined the growing list of AC properties that have shuttered in recent years:
- Showboat (although it has reopened as a hotel only)
- Revel (which has plans to reopen)
- Trump Plaza
- The Atlantic Club
Current Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was behind the property when it opened in 1990, but is not involved with the Taj Mahal anymore, other than his name.
Taj owner weighs in
The plans to close came during contentious negotiations with a union representing Trump Taj Mahal workers.
Trump Taj Mahal owner Carl Icahn offered the following statement on his website this morning:
Today is a sad day for Atlantic City. Despite our best efforts, which included losing almost $350 million over just a few short years, we were unable to save the Taj Mahal. I am extremely grateful to all of the almost 3,000 employees for their hard work, especially those that stayed loyal to us during this trying period.
After our last offer, which included medical, was rejected, it was simply impossible to find a workable path forward that would not have required funding additional investments and losses in excess of $100 million over the next year. Like many of the employees at the Taj Mahal, I wish things had turned out differently.
Icahn had saved the property from bankruptcy, officially taking over when a deal was finalized in court earlier this year.
The final hours at Taj
NJ.com was on the scene as the property wound down:
As the casino entered its final hours Sunday, few guests remained on the casino floor.
An hour before the Taj Mahal was scheduled to close Monday morning, fewer than 10 gamblers could be seen on the floor. They had their pick of slot machines, except for those which had already been turned off.
The music blared through the loudspeakers, helping to mask the silenced slot machines.
What’s next for Taj, AC?
Things remain in flux for the troubled casino town. Revenue was down in August for AC, although much of that was due to the languishing Taj Mahal.
Nearby properties, however, are ramping back up. Showboat, which closed in 2014, reopened earlier this year as a resort only, with no gambling. Revel, which had designs on being the jewel of AC, is also reopening as TEN in the first quarter of next year.
One less casino should help the bottom lines at the remaining seven casinos in the city. And New Jersey online casinos have helped the gambling properties still in the market to create a new revenue source.
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