Darryl McEwen

{standaloneHead}Darryl McEwen{/standaloneHead}

With Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort closing, it would seem that Atlantic City’s casinos have one less competitor. However, 200 miles away in Oxon Hill, Md. — across the Potomac River from the nation’s capital — a new $1.4 billion casino resort has opened that potentially could draw some of that business.

MGM National Harbor Resort & Casino is an hour from Baltimore, two hours from Wilmington, Del., and two and a half hours from Philadelphia — not too far from A.C. It’s conceivable that residents of Baltimore, Wilmington and Philadelphia may check it out.

And those in cities and towns in the Washington, D.C., area who used to travel to New Jersey, may choose to stay in their own backyard.

With a 300-room hotel, three acres of gaming space (which includes 3,300 slot machines, 124 table games and 39 poker tables), a 3,000-seat theater, meeting facilities and a spa, salon and fitness center, MGM has made it a very attractive alternative.

In addition, there are six full-service restaurants — three helmed by celebrity chefs José Andrés, Marcus Samuelson and “Top Chef” stars Bryan and Michael Voltaggio, as well as three bars and lounges.

For more casual dining, MGM offers the National Market — a food court concept that includes everything from Starbucks and Shake Shack to a taco stand, pizza kitchen, deli, ice cream shop and more.

Once you tire of gambling and eating, you can turn to their eight retail outlets, including the only stand-alone SJP — as in Sarah Jessica Parker — shoe store.

To enrich your cultural side, there are art installations inside and out. The MGM National Harbor Heritage Collection features pieces from more than a dozen artists working with aluminum, clay, stainless steel, bronze, watercolors, photography and more. Objects range from large-scale sculptures and paintings to photography and LED light boxes.

Players can earn comp dollars and tier credits in MGM International’s M life Rewards program, the same program that will be in place later this year at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, and already in place at MGM’s casinos in Michigan, Mississippi and Nevada.

For more information visit MGMNationalHarbor.com or Mlife.com.

Resorts increases fee

At Resorts Casino Hotel the resort fee — including a state-imposed 14 percent tax — has increased from $11.40 to $13.67. Star cardholders can use comp dollars to cover the fee.

Recreational gambler Darryl D. McEwen, a former professional journalist, is president of his own consulting firm that manages several small national and international trade associations, and provides public relations and fundraising services for a number of charitable organizations. Have a comment on this or a question specifically related to an Atlantic City casino, players club or other promotion? Email Darryl at MrACCasino@gmail.com and he’ll try to respond to you personally. Your question — without your name — may appear in a future column.

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