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Times are Changing in Atlantic City

Discussion in 'North American Land Based Casinos' started by 4 of a kind, Aug 7, 2011.

    Aug 7, 2011
  1. 4 of a kind

    4 of a kind Repeated violations of forum rule 1.16 - troll

    Occupation:
    Trans. Tech
    Location:
    New York
    Thought I would give my personal analysis of the changing times and themes I’m witnessing first hand taking place in Atlantic City land based casinos. I just got home from a short weekend at the Bogata, after playing in a poker tournament and what ever time I had left trying to enjoy the other amenities offered. Just for the record if anyone cares the tournament had 996 entries and I finished a disappointing 136. The pool (77K for first) didn’t start paying till 91st place so my 15 hour effort was a bust.

    Firstly I would like to mention that I’ve been and still presently am a frequent (vip) guest to several different casinos in A.C. dating back to 1978 when Resorts first opened there. With the rush of the new online gaming market and convenience in early 2000, along with many local private (illegal) poker clubs opening up and compounded with my age creeping up on me my visits slowed down drastically both to Atlantic City and Las Vegas during this past decade.

    Since I quit online gaming over a year ago and most of the local (illegal) poker rooms keep getting shut down via police raids, of course my visits once again to land based casinos are back up to par.

    Not sure if my new vibe with land based casinos in Atlantic City are a result of just getting old (59-in October) or that casinos are heading in a different direction which I believe is a direct result of the past few years of troubling economic times.

    When it comes to online casinos I know today we could all read about earnings with the few that publicly trade, but for the most part no one really ever knew for sure how good or bad any might be doing since this was kept a secret just like online regulations, if any, are still a highly classified secret. On the other hand with land based casinos we were always able to follow their markets individually, along with reading endless literature of how bad they actually have been doing, along with the recent regulator rulings offering them a temporary Band-Aid trying to slow down the bleeding.

    With that being said compounded with my more frequent visits over the past year, I’m not sure if I like the changes I’m witnessing recently in Atlantic City. Most of my recent visits have been to the Bogata, and the atmosphere the casino once had in its early days has no doubt taken on a new one.

    For example last night (Saturday) during dinner break from the tourney the casino was literally mobbed with kids. I know they must all be over 21 but at my age I get to call them kids. They weren’t gamblers at all. They were just there for the nightclubs within the casino perimeters causing massive chaos.

    I’m not trying to sound like a grumpy old man, and trust me when I tell you the woman were endless and the view was terrific. The males lucky enough to be part of that mob must have been out numbered by 10 to 1. I’m not sure where they all are coming from but the whole casino floor no matter where you tried to get too, you were forced to deal with this mob. It was like a contest of who had the biggest tits with the best exposed cleavage, wore the highest heels, and who could wear the shortest skirt without revealing anything. Like I said this was a great view but not why I visit casinos.

    At 2am when I got knocked out of the tourney it was actually worse then it was during dinner break. The lines were so deep trying to enter these clubs you could hardly work your way through the mob trying to get anywhere. It was like being in Penn Station (NY) during rush hour. The pounding music coming from beyond the clubs walls was amazing that the walls stayed erected. These kids were all over the place drunk, loud, careless with their language, and half the girls at this hour were lucky they maintained their balance on the stilts they were wearing on their feet. At 5:30am when I finally went to bed it hadn't let up at all, and would have been amazing to know if all these kids actually got home safe. I certainly hope the designated driver tactic was being used.

    I also hear that Harrah’s and a few other casinos in Atlantic City are following the same format recently with wild and crazy young kids only interested in the night life. I know the night life is all about having a good time and letting loose, but this atmosphere inside casinos is taking on a new meaning. It’s like the gambling has been put on the back burner.

    I know many here will say to go to a casino that fits my desires, but poker presently is one of my primary gaming interests and Bogota in Atlantic City has the best and most to offer.

    Of course Las Vegas offers much of the same night life, but it just seems to be more segregated. I certainly would never stay at the Hard Rock there, but places like the Bellagio and many others separate it well leaving the elegant atmosphere in tact for the gamblers.

    My recent impressions with Atlantic City is they are scrambling for survival and are prepared to put gambling in the back of the bus in favor of other more reliable income.

    I know I sound like I'm out of the loop, yet, trust me that I could party as big as the next guy, but think there should be a place to party and a place to go to concentrate on gambling. The tables and slot areas were for a Saturday nigh looking very weak with action.

    Times are no doubt changing in a big way.
     
    2 people like this.
  2. Aug 8, 2011
  3. ksech

    ksech Dormant account

    Occupation:
    yes
    Location:
    Here
    I agree with you. They're definitely looking to cater to the younger crowds. The clothes (or rather the lack thereof), the language and the wads of cash they throw around makes you wonder who taught them manners and self respect.

    Sorry to hear you didn't do so well in this tournament, hope you do better in the next one! :thumbsup:
     
  4. Aug 8, 2011
  5. silcnlayc

    silcnlayc Just one more spin pleez! CAG MM PABnonaccred PABaccred

    Occupation:
    IT Director of Operations
    Location:
    Left Hungary
    You took the words right out of my mouth! We quit going to the Borgata two years ago due to all the partying in the rooms...the kids were spilling out of the lounges/bars...I was amazed to see young kids (21 hopefully) checking in with large coolers in groups of 4-5.

    Showboat was one of our homes along with a few others but they all have gone downhill IMO...or as you said..must be the age thing ...:eek:

    We moved our play to Dover Downs. A Lot quieter and the poker rooms were a lot more fun. I knocked out my own son in one of the tournements and came in the money (Had to give him his share back since I busted him out!)

    You might want to take a ride down there. They do not have as big a tournaments, but it is just much more fun IMO.

    .
     
  6. Aug 13, 2011
  7. nisosbar

    nisosbar Ueber Meister PABnonaccred

    Occupation:
    Other
    Location:
    Right here
    I was there a couple weeks ago, Caesar's, and it also occurred to me how young everyone was. Then again, I am getting older so maybe THAT's the real change going on?
     
  8. Sep 18, 2011
  9. sandykauf

    sandykauf Banned User - violation of posting rules 1.1, 1.6,

    Occupation:
    store owner
    Location:
    fort washington
    I stayed a lot at harrahs and saw exactly what you're talking about. Not only are they
    Going to the clubs, but they get rooms there and pack in 4 or more people. The casinos
    Know this but don't seem to care.

    I think if you're a vip player, they should make sure your room is'nt next to or
    Below one of these party rooms because it can get really bad. These kids as you say, don't even gamble.
     
  10. Oct 5, 2011
  11. pmutts

    pmutts Senior Member PABnonaccred

    Occupation:
    Hotel Sales
    Location:
    North Texas
    AC Blackjack Conditions????

    I haven't been to AC in about 20 years. Back then, it was 6 and mostly 8 deck shoes. There were a few 4 deck games at the Trop.

    Unfortunately, the same is now true of the Las Vegas Strip but worse----the dreaded "continuous shoe." I'll never forget the first time I saw that evil device. It was in Amsterdam of all places. I walked into the only casino in Amsterdam and did my normal sizing up of the playing conditions and I realized what they were doing very quickly.

    I knew at that moment, the 6 or 8 deck shoe was no longer my enemy--but the never-ending shoe. I asked the dealer and the bosses about the devices and I was open about my disdain. One remarked that a "few bad apples had to ruin it for everyone."

    Still, I traded in for about 1000 Guilders and won about 1400. $700 US. I got lucky. I remember on of the bosses said, "So it is possible to win here after all?"

    To that I said---of course it is possible to win under the worst of conditions. "I got lucky." I cashed out and did no more gambling in Amsterdam. Instead, I enjoyed my win on many vices and much fun. :lolup:


    So, the question: Is AC now mostly One to Six, or Shuffle Master King? Do you have to bet $100 a hand for a lousy 8 deck shoe?
     
  12. Oct 5, 2011
  13. samoas

    samoas Senior Member

    Occupation:
    Office manager in fine dining
    Location:
    Philly born & raised 2 traffic lights away
    From my perspective, AC casinos have been hit very hard financially, especially since PA gambling has taken over. The casinos have been forced to market to a different age group. They need to maintain occupied rooms and garner potential gaming revenue.

    I have noticed my comps from various AC casinos have been extremely generous and feel that my play sometimes does not warrant what I have been given. (predominately VP and an ocassional table player) I am not complaining and have taken advantage of some great opportunities.

    Good example: Was just there last weekend for a cousin's bachelorette party. I had used a comped room at Showboat and another at Taj. Chose these venues since there were 8 girls, they are connected properties and saved everyone in expenses. Showboat also gave me a $100 fine dining credit and $125 free play. I am receiving comps that I just don't have the time nor financial resources to jump on at the moment. My last visit was to Harrahs in July for a 2 night stay with the teens since the beach in Brigantine is right over the bridge. Prior to that, was a visit in February for one night. Harrahs properties sends me 4 days of comps any day of the week in all of their properties. I could go every weekend! If only I had a sugar daddy:D.....but I digress....

    When I stayed at the Taj, last Sat.(party girls were at Showboat), after putting my 17 yr old up in the room for the night, I went down to play for a bit. Grabbed a drink and struck up a conversation with a floor host. Their business is signifigantly down! The shut down in late August (Thanks Irene!) made it even worse for them. It was around 12:30 am, on a Saturdy night, prime action time, and the place looked like a morgue! Even tables were sparse! Kind of depressing. Borgata and Harrahs have successfully monopolied the party scene. I am curious as to how much of that overflows into their gaming handle.

    Take comfort 4oak, you are not out of the loop! You hit the nail when you said scrambling for survival. Just a case of desperate times in the casinos calls for desperate measures. I am not old and get irritated myself with the chaos of the younger crowds flocking there even though I was among them Saturday night!:p
     
    1 person likes this.
  14. Oct 5, 2011
  15. jstrike

    jstrike Dormant account

    Occupation:
    Programmer & Designer
    Location:
    Europe
    I don't know AC well, but I think the same thing's true in Vegas. I have a theory about it. At the risk of sounding a lot older than I actually am, or grumpy, or both, I just don't think kids in America have much class. Not that they had a whole lotta class when I turned 21 a decade ago, but I think there was more. The Hard Rock was actually my favorite place to stay around that time, obviously for the pool and the club and the girls. But -- not sure how to put this because it wasn't like we were on our best behavior, I mean there was plenty of bad behavior going on in the bathroom and upstairs and just about everywhere, but at least we dressed nice and we knew we had to show some class. I think the casino environment at that time was just a lot more respectful, demanded a lot more respect and better behavior from guests, than it does now. And I think that's got something to do with the way kids are brought up now. There's a huge generation gap between people my age and kids who are 21 now. We were bad, but we were bad in a smart way. Hell, to most of my friends, calling in sick on a Friday and taking your paycheck to Vegas with a pile of drugs and some girls you just met was bad, and part of what made it so much fun was that you were going to live it up in style, spend as much money on food and as little money on booze and roll as high as you could, as long as you could. And whether you wanted to ditch everything and spend 36 hours at a poker table, or you wanted to just party, you'd be accommodated and we knew we'd be taken care of as long as we showed some class.

    The definition of style itself has changed. The girls still wear stiletto heels and some of the better kinds of guys in that age group definitely take good care of their personal appearance, but there's something almost malevolent about how bored they are and the kind of chaos they consider to be fun. Maybe it's from how kids cartoons changed into these flashing, epilepsy-inducing nonsensical brainwashing tools in the last 20 years, or maybe it's the economy, or maybe they're modeling themselves on movies about super-rich, nihilistic american-psycho-style teenagers who play tricks on each other where someone ends up dying (actually, less than zero was probably the first of those films, and that was closer to my generation, and we did kind of imitate it, but still that movie was a lot more introspective and meaningful than the crap that's been fed these kids for the last ten years. I mean, at least it had something kind of like a moral).

    Anyway, I don't expect it to get much better. And the other option is, well, Laughlin. Oddly enough, I have some friends who love going there to bet sports and play in the smaller poker tournaments, but to me it's kind of like choosing to spend your weekend in a retirement home, except the grumpy old men are liquored up and take their hospital food at the poker table instead of the cafeteria.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. Oct 5, 2011
  17. silcnlayc

    silcnlayc Just one more spin pleez! CAG MM PABnonaccred PABaccred

    Occupation:
    IT Director of Operations
    Location:
    Left Hungary
    It sure has. We took my son up there with his wife for their anniversary (2nd one) and they went to a dinner and show all dressed to the nines. They looked adorable at the ripe ole age of mid 20's. They looked truly classy and elegant all dressed up. I was a very proud momma watching them stroll through the casino after their dinner/show still dressed up (looking for me). :rolleyes:

    Moving forward 4 years...

    I just got an invite to The Borgata for free room and $250 in cash to come back and play. I have not been there in YEARS! I decided to take them up on it the end of this month, October (room already booked). I will let you all know the scenery there in todays world.

    .
     
    1 person likes this.
  18. Oct 6, 2011
  19. pmutts

    pmutts Senior Member PABnonaccred

    Occupation:
    Hotel Sales
    Location:
    North Texas
    Yes, Yes, and Yes

    jstrike,

    There is no question the crowd has changed. When I started playing in Vegas in 1982, I got in on just the tail end of the old mobbed up vegas. I have stories you wouldn't believe. No, take that back--you WOULD believe them because it takes one to know one. :)

    Back then, there weren't a bunch of kids clubbing. Hell, there weren't even any clubs in the casinos or directly on the strip. There were lounges, hookers, hustlers, and gamblers.

    The movie Casino was so brilliant in that final shot of the Dunes implosion. Good riddance IMO, but it truly did personify the end of an error an the start of a new one. Laughlin, although I have not been in several years, is not my choice. I look at playing conditions on the tables FIRST and payoff tables on Video Poker second. Also, no matter how inviting a blackjack game may be, if the joint is going to lay heat on me when I pressing up to $200 - $300 I won't play there.

    There are things I miss about old Vegas and things I love about new Vegas. There are also things I hate about new Vegas. I have my favorite places. Wynn is a win, but I do NOT play at the Venetian or Palazzo. The Mirage was the start of a new Las Vegas Strip & it remains IMO a best place to play. Off strip, Red Rock and Green Valley Ranch are excellent. I was never a fan of Hard Rock (I'm probably 10 years older than you) but they have lost their crowd to the Palms. I like the Palms but for VP, not BJ. I could go on but I'll stop.


    Samoas,

    So, tell me, in AC, are most blackjack games dealt from Automatic/Continuous Shoes now? I know that NJ state law prohibits them from denying a skilled player on their tables but it does not prevent them from taking measures to ensure that those skills are meaningless on their games.

    I have experienced the exact same thing with all the Harrah's properties. They beg me to come and I get mail 3 times a week on average from at least one Harrah's casino. They are definitely not getting the action they did a few years back because of the economy, the incredible proliferation of Indian casinos all over the US (Oklahoma taking untold millions from the riverboats of Shreveport and Bossier City, LA.) Just 60 miles or so from where I live is "Winstar World Casino." They claim to the the 4th largest casino in the world. It is convenient, however, their machines are so tight it is truly unbelievable. Their Video Poker is fair. To play blackjack, due to an OK state law, there is a required ante of $.50 - $1.00 to play a hand of blackjack depending on bet size. It amazes me how many people are willing to play under such conditions. I figure 5 shoes at 20 hands per shoe with avg ante of .75 per hand is $75. That is more than enough to cover gasoline costs to drive to Shreveport were a complimentary room always awaits. But the slots--which I also do not play at Winstar are so unbelievably tight. You simply do not see winners in this place.

    Apparantly the North Texas market is tightening up on them as well. They send me free room invites for their "Resort Hotel" and I have been there twice in the past year playing moderate VP with minimal losses.

    Silcnlayc,

    I hope you enjoy your return to AC. I haven't been in 20 years. Back then, the casinos seemed SO big to me because I was so accustomed to Las Vegas. Now of course, Vegas has definitely caught up and surpassed AC in terms of anything size wise. The culture was so different, the crowds, etc. Still I enjoyed my visits (2) there and hope to return one day.

    My favorite casino in the world . . . Drum Roll ....


    Beau Rivage, Biloxi, Miss. It is like a smaller and friendlier version of Bellagio on the Gulf Coast. If you ever get an opportunity---go to Beau Rivage. Also, the Hard Rock is right next door and it is also very nice.
     
    1 person likes this.
  20. Oct 11, 2011
  21. samoas

    samoas Senior Member

    Occupation:
    Office manager in fine dining
    Location:
    Philly born & raised 2 traffic lights away
    Hi Pmutts!

    To answer your BJ question I believe yes, you are correct. It's my understanding that all Harrahs properties play an 8 deck shoe whereas other AC properties tend to use 6. I also believe that if you are playing at a higher limit table they opt to play a 6 shoe deck from what I have been told. $50 to $100 a hand is way out of my league.;) I usually only play to relax, have a cocktail or two and kill time when my VP funds seem to be dwindling.

    I cannot believe you must "pay" to play! That is ludicrous! I share in your disgust.:what:

    Good article here explaining why table gamers are heading to PA instead of AC:
    You must register/login in order to see the link.

    Christine
     
    1 person likes this.
  22. Oct 11, 2011
  23. pmutts

    pmutts Senior Member PABnonaccred

    Occupation:
    Hotel Sales
    Location:
    North Texas
    Sounds like I need to plan a trip to PA!

    Hey, thanks for the info. AC has always been extremely tough for Blackjack. I imagine the continuous shoe is used at the majority of tables with limits below $50 - $100. Those limits are way above my means these days. I played in to bad conditions at high limits for too long... and that was mostly in Las Vegas.
     

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