Hard Rock Atlantic City’s debut outshines Ocean Resort Casino


hard-rock-atlantic-city-ocean-resort-casinoAtlantic City casinos had a solid month in July, driven by new venues, new products and a record online performance.

According to the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, AC’s nine gaming venues generated brick-and-mortar gaming win of $272.3m in July, a 10.1% improvement over July 2017’s result.

The year-on-year growth figure improves to 11.9% once you factor in the record $25.9m earned by the state’s online gambling operators last month along with the $1.6m in sports betting revenue generated by the three casino sportsbooks that were open for business in July. Throw in the $3.8m earned by sportsbooks at two state racetracks and the total gaming win jumps 12.8% to $302m.

Focusing on the brick-and-mortar aspect, July’s slots revenue was up 8.8% to $194.3m, while table games improved 13.7% to nearly $78m. For the year-to-date, brick-and-mortar win is down 1.9% to $1.39b, with slots flat at $1b and table games down 6.4% to $389.7m.

AC’s two newest properties – Hard Rock Atlantic City and Ocean Resort Casino – had decidedly different debuts since their simultaneous late June openings. Hard Rock reported land-based gaming revenue of nearly $32.4m – the third highest tally in July – while Ocean Resort (the former Revel) managed only $15.8m, the lowest score of all nine casinos, presumably due to its off-Boardwalk location.

All eyes will be on the Ocean Resort’s performance over the next few months, as skeptics wait to see if the Revel curse that led to two bankruptcies in a little over two years of operation remains in full effect.

As ever, the Borgata was the month’s big winner with $71.1m, although this was down 6.8% from July 2017. In fact, all seven of the casinos that were open prior to the two new arrivals were in negative territory for the month, with Resorts Casino Hotel suffering the biggest fall, down 12.7% to $17.8m.

The Tropicana ranked second on the revenue chart with $33.7m, despite a 10.1% year-on-year decline, while Harrah’s and Caesars fleshed out the top five with $31.4m (-14.1%) and $29.3m (-10.3%), respectively.

Both the Golden Nugget and Resorts plan to add a retail sports betting component to their offering on Wednesday, which will bring the state’s total number of land-based books to eight, joining the Borgata, Bally’s, Harrah’s, Ocean Resort and the Meadowlands and Monmouth Park racetracks.