Making restaurant meals affordable without sacrificing quality is the mantra that the Atlantic Club Casino Hotel is standing behind.
While breaking news this spring has emanated from the northern end of Atlantic City’s boards, there is another story — no less compelling — being written from the opposite terminus.
That would be the rebranding/repositioning of the Atlantic Club casino.
All this is taking place in a structure that once housed the original Golden Nugget (then owned by gaming industry legend Steve Wynn,), which is largely responsible for defining an earlier era in our seaside resort. Or, as Atlantic Club COO Michael Frawley enthuses, “This building has great bones.”
Working daily in the same office occupied during those years by Wynn, Frawley’s energy and enthusiasm are understandable. Beginning an interview with the declaration that “We want to be the best deal in Atlantic City,” you tend to believe him. And when asked about the building’s new moniker, he’s quick to note that “My input on this was ‘Club’— it signifies something intimate, smaller.”
With 800 rooms and a newly refurbished 75,000 square feet of gaming space, the Atlantic Club has become a sort of de-facto “boutique” property. Visiting on an unseasonably muggy June afternoon, we were immediately struck by improvements already completed to the site. This starts, unexpectedly, with parking. Or more accurately, free parking.
You heard right, just like that prized corner spot on your Monopoly board, the Atlantic Club offers completely free parking. It’s a bold, entirely novel concept, which seems to be working.
On this weekday the check-in area was buzzing with patrons, many of them including younger children in tow. This may have something to do with the fact that their end of the Boardwalk provides some of the most fabulous beach frontage on the entire East Coast.
More likely is that Frawley’s “value-centric” concept has begun to resonate with area residents. Another clear indicator is the casino’s “Locals” program.
“We see ourselves as a small business [and] we will continue to seek out opportunities to award business to local enterprises,” he says.
This has translated directly into contracting with nearby food vendors Minos and Formica bakeries, Seashore and Paris produce and Rastelli Meats and Seafood.
But that’s only half of a two-tiered approach.
Amazingly, Atlantic City’s golden age of dining just keeps getting better.
Cavallino Nero is a home-style Italian restaurant run by the Cassara family, celebrating 20 years in the business.
There are some events in life mandatory in attendance and others that remain optional. Then there are those rarest moments, to paraphrase Marlon Brando’s Don Corleone in The Godfather, when you are made an offer you simply cannot refuse.
Renaming the venue North End American Grill, they soon recognized that it would need until the following summer to fully complete their revitalization. Friday, June 1, will mark a milestone for them, with an invite-only Grand Opening event scheduled for 5-7pm.
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