Rivals picking at soon-to-close Atlantic Club

Associated Press Updated: January 7, 2014 at 5:31 pm • Published: January 7, 2014 0

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Competitors are already picking at the soon-to-be-closed Atlantic Club Casino Hotel, trying to lure customers and employees to their own casinos.

The Atlantic Club will close next Monday.

At least eight Atlantic City casinos are aggressively courting the Atlantic Club's customers. They're offering free slot play, free comp dollars, tickets to shows and parties, free buffets and parking, and other inducements.

The Atlantic Club was sold in a bankruptcy sale last month to Tropicana Entertainment and Caesars Entertainment. They will divvy up its assets and shut it down at 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 13.

The Tropicana hopes it gets first dibs on Atlantic Club patrons, since it is buying all the casino's table games and slot machines, and customer lists. President Tony Rodio said the Tropicana will match all Atlantic Club offers, and apply past play toward new Tropicana card benefits.

"For Atlantic Club players, this means we know you, and we know what you like," Tropicana senior vice president Eric Fiocco said. "We're ready to start rewarding you with services and offers that are special, relevant and meaningful to you."

But the competition is already fierce.

Like many other casinos, Resorts Casino Hotel will match Atlantic Club offers to players if they sign up for a Resorts players' club card, admit them to player lounges and slot tournaments, and let them park free in January and February.

The Golden Nugget Atlantic City is offering a trade-up players' club promotion for Atlantic Club customers, who will get a card whose rewards are one level higher than those they had gotten at the Atlantic Club. The Golden Nugget is offering free buffets and parking to customers who switch from the Atlantic Club, will match an offer from any Atlantic City casino over the next three months, and will extend new promotions to them.

The Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort and Trump Plaza are offering Atlantic Club customers $100 to switch: $50 in free slot play and $50 in comp dollars.

The four casinos owned by Caesars Entertainment— Caesars Atlantic City, Harrah's Resort Atlantic City, Bally's Atlantic City and the Showboat Casino Hotel — will match players' club card levels for Atlantic Club customers, and will extend a series of offers to them including free parking, buffet coupons, concert tickets, and invitations to parties at the casinos' nightspots.

Meanwhile, the Maryland Live! casino is in its second day of on-site recruiting at the Atlantic Club for workers to staff its casino. The casino has more than 100 openings across all departments, and says it will eventually need even more workers than that.

Michael Frawley, the Atlantic Club's chief operating officer, said the company is working with several firms to try to find jobs for as many of the 1,600 casino-hotel workers as possible.

"Our goal is to provide as many new employment opportunities as quickly as possible," he said. "Our employees represent an amazing group of professionals. Any company would be lucky to have them join their organization."

Atlantic City will have 11 casinos after the shutdown.

___

Wayne Parry can be reached at http://twitter.com/WayneParryAC

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