Atlantic City will have one less casino along the city’s glamorous boardwalk as of January 13 in the new year. A New Jersey judge confirmed the sale of the Atlantic Club Casino to two rival operators in the city for a total of $23.4 million, which will see the venue closed and thousands of employees out of work.
The Atlantic Club, originally known as the Golden Nugget when the casino opened in 1980, has struggled to remain competitive with other casinos over the last several years. The owners of the casino even filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier in the year, and began a long process of finding new ownership.
The ownership saga stretched on for months with several contenders bidding for the rights to the casino, including a dramatic failed bid from online gambling operator PokerStars. However in the end, the Atlantic Club was sold to two of its principle competitors in New Jersey – Caesars Entertainment and Tropicana Resorts.
Caesars will pay $15 million to take ownership of the Atlantic Club Hotel along with the rest of the property, but is expected to demolish the ailing casino. Tropicana will pay $8.4 million to take possession of the Atlantic Club’s slots and table games, which will likely be distributed throughout Tropicana’s many casinos across the country – including Tropicana Atlantic City.
With the sale officially final, Atlantic City will have only 11 casinos along the boardwalk in 2014. The sale is also the first blow to New Jersey’s revitalization plans for the boardwalk by using newly legalized online gambling to support the Atlantic City casinos. The Atlantic Club was one of two casinos without an online gambling partner, which now has no need for one.