Enjoying cool beverages, quality pub fare and summer sun at the beach bars has become an Atlantic City tradition.
In the days when keeping clients at the casino gaming tables was top priority, Atlantic City’s making the most of precious non-casino resources like its beaches and Boardwalk was a secondary concern.
Then when the initiative was made to create beach bars — enclosed sections of the beach connected to the Boardwalk where guests can eat, drink and be entertained al fresco — bureaucratic red tape stopped any from coming to fruition for years. And this was at a time when Atlantic City’s East Coast gambling monopoly still remained relatively unthreatened.
Through a special-permit program, what was then called the Hilton was able to create a private beach bar for its preferred customers. That set the template, and in 2002 the green light was given to allow other bars on the beach in Atlantic City.
Trump Plaza and Bally’s joined Hilton in summer 2003, and at one time as many as seven beach bars existed off the boards until the state D.E.P. forced closure of some where the beaches were deemed too narrow, and infringed on other beach activity.
Today the original beach bar is still in place — now called the Beach Bar at the Atlantic Club Casino Hotel — along with the Beach Bar at Trump Plaza and Sammy’s Beach Bar at Bally’s. The latter two are disassembled after Labor Day, while the Atlantic Club — the only one tucked in between the dunes and the Boardwalk — remains a seasonal operation but a permanent fixture.
Beach bars have been a seasonal boon to a casino property’s bottom line since they first appeared, and sort of foreshadowed the need for Atlantic City to expand its tourist options before that need became critical. Revel has plans for a 45,000 square-foot outdoor adjunct property called the HQ Beach Club, but thus far has kept the club’s opening date under wraps.
Meanwhile the existing beach bars are off to another strong start with spectacular Memorial Day weekend weather followed by a mild first weekend in June.
“We were packed all [Memorial Day] weekend,” says Joe Hager, food and beverage manager of the Atlantic Club, whose beach bar remains open weekends only until June 25, then daily from noon through Labor Day weekend.
Atlantic Club will have live bands every Thursday through Sunday nights during the summer, and will do a 5-7pm Happy hour highlighted by half-priced Shake-n-Takes, its signature series of 22-ounce specialty cocktails served in souvenir glasses.
“[Shake-n-Takes] are very popular,” says Hager. “People prefer them because they’re big enough that they can sip on one for a while without having to get another drink.”
A revolving slate of popular local cover bands play the Atlantic Club most Fridays through Sundays, and every Thursday night will feature an Irish-themed party with the trio Flip-N-Mickeys, who include singer/guitarist Mike Illich, singer/bassist Mick Michaels and drummer Marc Lewis.
Attention all! Atlantic City is back in business and has been since last fall. The Boardwalk is intact and open. All 12 casino properties are open. Most of the area’s businesses are open.
What it will be called is anyone’s guess.
Sammy’s will be open the weekend of May 18-20, in tandem with Hagar’s band Chickenfoot playing the House of Blues that Friday night, May 18, then the Wailers will kick off Sammy’s summer season and daily schedule through Labor Day with a special Friday, May 25, performance at 8pm.
There was a swirl of controversy surrounding the decision to allow bars on Atlantic City’s beaches for what seemed like at least a decade, the keynote complaint being that bringing alcohol onto the beach might compound criminal activity. ...
A lot was at stake at the annual Trump Plaza Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest on May 28 at 2pm, namely the title of New Jersey Hot Dog Eating Champion and the right to compete in the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest in Coney Island, NY.
It’s sort of hard to believe that this is the ninth summer for beach bars in Atlantic City, and a big part of that dubiety may hinge on diversity. New concepts and configurations seem to spring up every summer that add elements of freshness to the whole beach-bar scene, and this year is by no means an exception.
Although Sammy Hagar wasn’t in attendance yesterday to launch his new enterprise at Bally’s, Sammy’s Beach Bar, the Red Rocker’s ambiance was all over the former Bally’s Bikini Beach Bar as it opened for the season.
“It’s going to be the best food and drinks in the most casual environment with some rock ‘n roll thrown in, Where else can you come out of the ocean, sit down, grab a drink and something to eat and listen to good music? It’s gonna be a fun hang.”
This summer marks the eighth since Atlantic City first gave the green light to beach bars, spawning in the process more open-air entertainment options that only seem to improve from year to year, ...
When the idea was first proposed years, perhaps decades, before it actually came to fruition, common reaction might have been, "Bars on the beaches? Brilliant!" But there were issues that delayed any...
Sometimes a great idea reaching fruition requires a lot of patience on the part of many people, and a good deal of fine-tuning to make it assimilate. Such is the case with Atlantic City's thriving beach-bar scene. It is a subject that was talked about a lot before it actually happened, then, with as many as seven beach bars on the Boardwalk at one time, it nearly all disappeared due to a Department of Environmental Protection ruling. The DEP forced some beach bars to close due to an encroachment issue, but the three that remain have continuously modified their layouts, tweaked their menus and amenities, and experimented with various combinations to the extent that even the most persnickety shoobie would have a hard time finding fault with any of them. They are immensely popular summertime stomping grounds, and most certainly key components to Atlantic City's revitalization. The largest of the three, and one of the originals dating back to 2002, is The Beach Bar at Trump Plaza, which encompasses over 15,000 square feet. It features a full-service kitchen that affords the most extensive food menu of the three, and has a summer-long entertainment slate that includes Bob Pantano's Dance...
� THIS WEEKEND MARKS THE beginning of beach bar season 2004. After many years of failing to capitalize on the fact that Atlantic City is located on a beach, last year, the casino industry and city fathers collectively worked to make it possible to serve alcoholic beverages on the beach. An ordinance was passed by City Council and signed by Mayor Lorenzo Langford enabling public bar service. Three casinos -- Caesars, Trump Plaza and the Hilton -- acted quickly to open beach bars and delighted guests with cocktails served amidst the most amazing views that can be offered anywhere: the sand and surf along the Atlantic Ocean. This year, those three are back and they'll be joined by Bally's new Bikini Beach Bar. This year's controversial beach replenishment program has been a blessing and a curse for the beach bars this year. On one hand, every beach in Atlantic City has been made wider by the pumping of additional sand onto the oceanfront. Considering the quality of our clean, white beach sand, this is a very good thing. Trust me, compared to other "beach resorts" I've been to in the Caribbean and Mediterranean seas, in Mexico and in other parts of the...
LAST YEAR, ATLANTIC CITY began a new era with permits allowing casinos to put beach bars on the beach. Three casinos took advantage of this opportunity and the visitors and residents were glad they did. The Atlantic City Hilton was the first to get into the act. They put their beach bar just a few feet from the Boardwalk and provided their clientele and boardwalk strollers with musical entertainment. They also staged a couple of free beach concerts that drew several thousand people, many of whom were dancing on the sand. The Trump Plaza built a large area for their beach bar and had plenty of room for their bar customers, tables and chairs for their clientele and a large dance floor with excellent bands, keeping people on the beach until after midnight. Caesars put together a nice site, but due to the small beach, they were limited in space. However, that did not stop them from providing some outstanding entertainment for their beach bar crowd. All the casino beach bars said they did well and that the new experience for their clientele -- enjoying their favorite beverages and musical entertainment while sitting out under the moon and stars; hearing the crashing...
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