March 23, 2015 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Al Callejas had a quick explanation for how he was able to top a field of 750 competitors in Borgata's free-throw contest Saturday. "I'm a coach's son. I've had a ball in my hands since I was 3 years old," Callejas, 37, of Archbald, Pa., said after winning the grand prize of $10,220 with his score of 16 in the final round - the first-grade teacher's own bit of March Madness. Answering the question of whether the tournament was a winner for Borgata would take longer, because it depended on how many of the participants and their friends spent money gambling, eating out, or staying at the hotel.
March 22, 2015 |
Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa sued Friday to block Atlantic City from borrowing $43 million in the bond market to repay a state loan due March 31. The lawsuit, filed in Superior Court in Atlantic County, claims that the borrowing plan, endorsed by Atlantic City Council on March 4, violates a September ordinance allowing the city to borrow up to $140 million to pay property-tax refunds, such as $88.25 million owed to Borgata. The Borgata lawsuit came just days before the city's emergency manager, appointed Jan. 22 by Gov. Christie, is expected to issue recommendations on stabilizing Atlantic City's finances, and it sets up a three-way fight among the state, the city, and Borgata, Atlantic City's most successful casino.
February 20, 2015 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Financial pressure on Atlantic City will intensify this year as taxable real estate values are expected to plummet to $7.35 billion from more than $11 billion last year. But instead of sharply raising the tax rate as the city has done in each of the last two years to keep revenues stable, the city is taking a sharper scalpel than ever to its operations, Mayor Don Guardian said Wednesday evening in his State of the City address before the City Council. "This year we have no intention of doing that," Guardian said, referring to boosting the property-tax rate.
February 14, 2015 |
Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, Atlantic City's highest-grossing and most profitable casino, logged excellent fourth-quarter financial results, Boyd Gaming Corp., its managing partner, reported Thursday. "We set all-time quarterly records for market share in every single metric, including table win, slot win, poker, and gross gaming revenue," Keith Smith, Boyd's president and chief executive, said on a conference call with analysts. "We're seeing growth in our non-gaming business as well.
February 3, 2015 |
Comedian Hannibal Buress deserved to sell out the Music Box at Atlantic City's Borgata on Saturday - just on the merits of his sharply incisive talents. Anyone making topics such as toilet paper, racist babies, and sports heroes on steroids ("Thank you for ruining your long-term health for our short-term entertainment") funny should be celebrated. But face it: Buress owes much to Bill Cosby. Before Oct. 16, Buress was a silly, observational stand-up known mostly for acting bits on 30 Rock and Comedy Central fare like Broad City . At September's end, I caught Buress opening for Aziz Ansari at the Wells Fargo Center with Seinfeld-ian parking shtick: Cranky stuff, but nothing innovative or memorable.
January 28, 2015 |
It didn't take long for the massive downgrade of Atlantic City's debt last week by Moody's Investors Service Inc. to have an impact on the city's finances. Atlantic City's revenue director, Michael Stinson, said Monday that the city might have to change gears on the refinancing of $12.8 million in debt due next Tuesday. "It may become a negotiated sale rather than a competitive sale," Stinson said, as consequence of the Moody's downgrade on Friday. "It's another complication in the whole situation.
January 25, 2015 |
Following Gov. Christie's appointment of an emergency manager to deal with Atlantic City's financial crisis, Moody's Investors Service on Friday downgraded the city's debt to a level that warns investors of a high risk of default. Moody's cited the authority of Christie's restructuring specialists "to consider debt restructuring, which could involve a loss to bondholders. " "This is a rapid, dramatic change from the State of New Jersey's . . . prior policy of preventing default or bankruptcy of Atlantic City or any New Jersey local government," Moody's said.
January 22, 2015
WHAT, NO watermelon? Excuse the sarcasm, but I'm still looking side-eyed at a laughable attempt by a restaurant inside the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa to celebrate the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday by serving fried chicken. Wait, there's more: The Metropolitan restaurant also dished up collard greens and macaroni and cheese in honor of the slain civil-rights leader. Advertised as the "Martin Luther King Jr. Special," the $24 meal consisted of fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, sweet potato casserole, collard greens and homemade pecan pie. Joe Lupo, senior vice president of the Borgata, told me that the restaurant chose menu items that were among King's favorite foods as a way to honor him and that the menu was put together by the restaurant's African-American general manager.
December 15, 2014 |
VINELAND, N.J. - You could call the Bay-Atlantic Symphony the unlikeliest of orchestras. Operating in deep South Jersey - amid some of most economically depressed and rural parts of the state - the symphony has served a range of audiences for three decades, even though it has no performance home base. The orchestra offers an ambitious calendar of 12 symphonic programs annually, performed by a cadre of musicians hired from throughout the Philadelphia, New York, and Baltimore regions on a "per service" basis.
September 29, 2014 |
The renovation of the Rittenhouse Hotel is now complete, with the new Rittenhouse Spa & Club-Hair by Paul Labrecque. Of the nearly $12 million invested in overhauling the hotel, $5 million was spent on the spa and fitness center, which counts among its competition spas at the Four Seasons and the Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia, the Borgata in Atlantic City, and Woodloch in the Poconos. Even if they aren't hotel guests or residents of one of the 125 condos at the Rittenhouse, spa customers will be able to use the new locker rooms, sauna, and an indoor swimming pool that leads to an outdoor deck and lounge.