Hard Rock CEO claims Trump Taj Mahal deal was ‘second choice’

  • Hard Rock CEO and partner claim that Revel casino was initial choice for deal
  • Revel owner denies any negotiations or discussions took place over sale of resort

Hard Rock decided to purchase the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort after first attempting to make a move for Revel, it has been revealed.

Hard Rock International were eyeing up the Revel casino before deciding on the Taj Mahal
Hard Rock International were eyeing up the Revel casino before deciding on the Taj Mahal

Jim Allen, CEO of Hard Rock International, confirmed that the company was initially attempting to make a deal for the shuttered Revel resort in Atlantic City, now known as TEN.

“We looked at Revel,” Allen stated. “We are excited for the Taj Mahal. The Taj is one of the great assets in gaming on the East Coast.”

Joseph Jingoli, a partner of Hard Rock in the deal, also confirmed the move. “The Taj thing just kind of happened. We were trying to do the Revel, and then this came up.”

Two sides to the story

However, the comments have now been refuted by the owner of TEN, Glenn Straub, who insisted: “Never talked with anyone about Revel. When I purchased the property, many people made offers.”

Revel was purchased by Straub for just $82 million, a fraction of its $2.4 billion construction cost. However, with plenty of work required on the resort, TEN has remained shuttered ever since, with plans for reopenings so far having failed to come to fruition.

Many in Atlantic City are hoping that the move will go some way to arrest the decline in fortunes of the resort town, which has had tougher times in recent years. However, Steve Norton, a former casino owner, insisted that it would not be a complete solution: “By themselves, they don’t solve the absence of demand for 200 midweek days and nights in the fall, winter and spring.”

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