Hard Rock faces hearing for Atlantic City casino license

David Madden
May 08, 2018 - 9:56 pm
Hard Rock Cafe

David Madden | KYW Newsradio

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ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (KYW Newsradio) — The New Jersey Casino Control Commission votes Wednesday on a license for the soon-to-open Hard Rock facility inside the old Taj Mahal. 

Hard Rock is set to open June 28, the same date as the Ocean Resort, known as the former Revel. 

Roger Gros, who publishes Global Gaming Business Magazine, said it's unique for two competitors to open on the same day. Unique, but not surprising, at least in this case.

"Certainly in Ocean's case, it's just a revamp of a property," Gros said. "It makes sense they're trying to piggyback on the excitement that's going to be created when the Hard Rock opens."

Hard Rock already has preliminary approval for a license, having cleared most of the investigative hurdles from the Division of Gaming Enforcement. They're expected to be approved for a full license. 

Then again, the owners of Ocean are already licensed in Nevada, which should go a long way toward their approval in New Jersey as well.

If he had to guess which entity might do better, Gros gives the edge to Hard Rock given their brand name and Ocean's more subdued approach.

"'Ocean Resort' doesn't tell you anything. Doesn't tell you what it's going to be. Doesn't suggest that there's going to be any kind of special experience beyond what Revel offered," he added. "I hate to use the 'R' word, but it's going to be compared to Revel at every step."

But they are teamed up with Hyatt, which should help on the marketing front.