Bally’s Atlantic City ready to start $100-million renovation
By Bob Garcia
The massive project will allow the property to up its status in the city
The paperwork necessary for the renovation of the Bally’s hotel in Atlantic City to begin has finally been put in order, receiving approval from the state. According to a company official at a recent New Jersey Casino Control Commission public hearing, the new look at the famed casino is scheduled to break ground on September 17. The $100 million renovation comes as an investment to give hotel guests an experience never before seen in the city.
During the day-long hearing, many Bally’s executives took the time to respond to some excellent remarks made by various commission leaders. “This is a building that’s over 40 years old. I don’t say that with any disrespect. It was opened in 1979. I know over the years improvements have been made, updates, etc. But it’s still 40 years old. It’s a big building. My concern is, moving forward, do you have sufficient resources to – if you run a little short on the capital expenditures that – you know, it’s not, ‘Okay, we’re only going to carpet this section or we’re going to paint this?’ Is there money there … if you run a little short … in regard to the Atlantic City property?” noted Alisa Cooper, Vice Chair.
Both Cooper and Nick Polcino, GM of Bally’s Atlantic City, admitted that the property was depressed and many people did not want to visit it because of the state it was in. Both say that many improvements have started to be seen every time they decide to inject a little more capital. According to initial indications, there was a budget of $90 million, however, the company decided to invest $10 million more recently. This includes 85% of the expenditures to be made over the next three years, with $35 million in hotel room upgrades.
Also included in the plans are an upgraded reception area, a lobby bar and a $1-million upgrade of the high-limit slot area. The massive renovation will also include a $9-million spa and fitness center, as well as $8 million for garage improvements and a convention, banquet and meeting space.