Guests play electronic table games on the casino floor during the first of three invitation-only “play days,” as a dress rehearsal for the April 2 opening, at the Revel Casino in Atlantic City, N.J., on Wednesday, March 28, 2012. (AP Photo/The Press of Atlantic City, Anthony Smedile)
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Minor glitches like a balky escalator, a few dozen slot machines that jammed, and a petulant credit card machine surfaced on the first night of real gambling at Revel, Atlantic City’s newest casino.
But thousands of invitation-only guests seemed not to [auth] notice, focusing on the luxury all around them in the $2.4 billion resort that’s being counted on to help revive the flagging fortunes of the nation’s second-largest gambling market.
“How did they do this? How did they do it?” wondered Randolph Currie, who lives across the street from Revel, and who quickly won $18 on his first spin through the slot machines. “It’s fantastic.”
“I’m in awe of what I’m seeing,” added his wife, Elonda, an Atlantic City school teacher. “I watched this place rise up from nothing. I’m really happy with what we have.”
“It’s breathtaking,” said Ashley Frankel of Margate, as she sipped a drink and looked out over the ocean from the resort’s Ultra Lounge, just off the casino floor. “It’s so different. You never see a casino that allows you to see what time of day it is.”
Kevin DeSanctis, Revel’s CEO, said the first night seemed to be going well, but said the 5,000 guests they invited weren’t enough to really test the equipment and systems. Thursday night’s crowd will be twice the size: 10,000 guests.
David Rebuck, director of the state Division of Gaming Enforcement, said his agency had 60 employees on the premises testing slot machines and watching how systems and personnel procedures worked. About 50 slot machines showed some level of malfunction, a level he called minor since the casino has 2,450 machines.
“It’s going well,” he said. “I’m pretty happy with what we’ve seen so far.”
Revel will open its doors to the public at sunrise Monday. It is Atlantic City’s 12th casino, and the first to open since the Borgata debuted in 2003.