What Happened to You, Revel?

This past weekend I went to the Revel Resorts and Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, for my birthday. I went there last year to celebrate my graduation and I was thoroughly impressed with the entire place and said I would excitedly come back (please check out my previous reviews on the Revel’s style, food, entertainment, etc.). However, upon my return I was honestly disappointed.

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Back in March of 2013, The Revel filed for bankruptcy due to their high debt– $1.5 billion to be exact– and not enough customers. However, as of two days ago, the Revel filed that they have paid off $1.2 billion of that debt and will be changing their marketing technique. Previously they marketed themselves as a high-class resort that happened to have a casino– rather than how the Borgata, Taj Mahal, Tropicana, and Ceasar’s (some of the more iconic resorts and casinos in AC) market themselves as casinos that have other amenities. And while I still love the style of the Revel– it’s pool, Skygarden, and the style of the overall resort are impecable– there were some things that just disappointed me. I could see where things had expanded– such as the stores in the Rowe and elements of the casino– but then there were areas that had been cut back on– the flowers were gone and the food was not as good (too much salt and flour).

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The Revel has announced that they are improving their casino in order to attract more customers. Already, they have added a section for their “Pearls” (high rollers, or million dollar gamblers) and they added a whole new section of slot machines and a bar to the casino. That should definitely be on the top of the Revel’s list since their casino was relatively empty, while Ceasar’s and the Borgata’s were full, even in the off-season. As well, they have expanded their nightclub to where you can enter through the casino and the Skygarden.

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The Revel also says they are going to expand their restaurant options– allowing for more consumer friendly options along with the celebrity chef (and high priced) restaurants they already have. While I was there, I tried a few of the other restaurants I had not on my last visit. I tried the taco truck, Distrito Cantina, with my parents and boyfriend and we were all thoroughly disappointed. The portions were incredibly small– my boyfriend’s order of salsa, which cost almost $20, was in a container the size of a scotch glass and had two chips and two avocado slices, and we were charged for more chips– or not made correctly– instead of getting tomatos on the nachos my mother and I ordered, we got onions. We also tried Luke’s, which is a new restaurant that is similar to a European market with food out everywhere and ready to go, and I was impressed with it overall. It was very good (although my boyfriend said his hot dog tasted like rubber) and had many options. It is still fairly new and still has time to improve.

I think what the Revel is doing is great and it is improving their reputation amongst the places on the boardwalk. It just needs to keep in mind both its customers and location. My only suggestion is that they add more things for the people under 21 to do. I am still two years from the legal age to gamble and drink in most states, including New Jersey, and my boyfriend and I got fairly bored in the resort after a while– thank god for a boardwalk and other resorts. The Revel has said that is trying to emulate the casinos and resorts in Las Vegas, but those places accomodate for all age groups and provide entertainment for everyone. The Revel runs out of things to do after some time. So, maybe allow for 18, 19, or 20 year olds to come into the nightclub, or construct an area for children and teenagers to go to. It would make it easier on parents and families to come to the resort and casino since they do not need to worry about their children.

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So, will I be returning to the Revel? The answer is most likely. I will probably come with my friends in 2 years, when we are all 21, so we can go to the club and casino and bars. It will make it easier for all of us to have fun and enjoy ourselves when we have everything open to us. Until then, I wish you the best of luck Revel and I look forward to seeing where you go and expand.

All photos are taken by me.

What do you think? Have you been to the Revel Resorts and Casino? Do you plan on going?

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