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Atlantic City - How does it compare to Vegas?

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Hotels & Casinos' started by eksantirik, May 21, 2013.

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  1. eksantirik

    eksantirik Low-Roller

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    I've been to Vegas 6 times and everytime, I realized I get bored on my 4th day or so (my last visit was for 6 nights at Caesar's Palace). I love the city and the excitement of the first couple of days, but then it winds down pretty fast. However, since I'm flying from Europe, a 3-day trip is usually not worth it due to looong flight.

    So, I wonder whether I'm going to like Atlantic City. I can travel to NYC much easier and cheaper and stay there 3-4 days and another 3-4 days in Atlantic City and back home. But I'm worried whether I'd like the experience there compared to the Vegas experience.

    Some details: I like gambling (low stakes blackjack, video poker, and slots), chasing promos and hence casino hopping (can't stay in one casino for more than a couple hours), good food and buffets, gawking at sights and sounds while aimlessly walking, the whole "nobody cares about what others do" attitude.

    For your info, I've been to Macau and I didn't like it as much, although the buildings are almost identical to the ones in Vegas. I think it was mainly because it was hard to casino hop and the tables were all focused on baccarat.

    So, for those of you who've been to both cities many times, what do you say? Thanks!
     
  2. jr7110

    jr7110 VIP Whale

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    Atlantic City is nothing like Las Vegas and could never compare- there are a number of hotels/casinos on the Boardwalk, but once you step off the Boardwalk the neighborhood is seedy, decrepit and downright dangerous. Yes, there are sketchy neighborhoods in Las Vegas too, but if you are on the Strip from Mandalay Bay to The Wynn, you generally feel safe walking about at any hour of the day or night.

    Here is an article from 2011 that states Atlantic City has the highest violent crime rate of any casino city in the US. Two men were carjacked and murdered at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City (one early morning and one late at night) and there is a visibly different level of casino security than there is in Vegas. Cabbies in Atlantic City have told me that they have been carjacked and will not drive at night. Last year a mother and daughter from Canada were stabbed to death in the street near Caesars in Atlantic City by an unbalanced homeless woman.

    http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/news/press/atlantic/violent-crime-rate-higher-in-atlantic-city-than-in-other/article_b3e19716-e716-11e0-ac2c-001cc4c03286.html

    My favorite Atlantic City hotel, The Borgata, is away from the Boardwalk (Harrah's is right next to it) and is very nice, but still something is lacking. Atlantic City doesn't have the vibe, the excitement - and the weather - that Las Vegas has.

    It is alright for what it is, but it will never be anything close to what Vegas is as far as I am concerned. Certainly not worth a special trip in from Europe to visit.

    If you can rent a car while you are in Vegas, you will never be bored again. I also started to tire of the limited options on the Strip and renting a car truly expanded my horizons. There are so many destinations that are not too far from The Strip: Boulder City and/or Hoover Dam; Lake Mead (you could rent a boat or jet ski or take a leisurely ride on the Desert Princess on Lake Mead for only $25); Valley of Fire National Park; Red Rock Canyon; Mt Charleston; and off strip casinos like The M and Red Rock.
     
  3. atom

    atom High-Roller

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    You will find decent gambling in Atlantic City, but not much else. The boardwalk is cool to see once, especially if you don't live near an ocean. Borgata has a couple of nice restaurants. Everything around the casinos is rather depressed. It's not worth a trip across the pond. If you happen to be in NYC and have an itch to gamble, you could catch a bus to AC for the day. I wouldn't bother with more than 24 hours. There's little in the way of entertainment, cool architecture, or even promos to chase.

    So, go to Vegas and rent a car. That opens up a world of possibilities. If you don't want to drive, get Dewey or one of the others here to school you on the bus system.
     
  4. undathesea

    undathesea Grandissimo

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    No comparison. I go for a overnight but never stay longer. There's nothing to do in AC except gamble.

    I did see a show there once, but it was a concert I specifically went to AC to see.
     
  5. VegasBJ

    VegasBJ VIP Whale

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    it doesn't compare at all. The Borgata is decent, everything else is like an off-strip property in Vegas
     
  6. VegasBJ

    VegasBJ VIP Whale

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    There are some decent golf courses around the area as well. Off the top of my head (hope I remember the names correctly) - Seaview at the Marriott (used to hold LPGA tournaments here), Blue Heron, and something "Sands..."
     
  7. undathesea

    undathesea Grandissimo

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    No one has mentioned the Revel. I haven't been yet, but it's supposed to be as nice as the Borgata.

    The Borgata is obviously the class of AC... but Harrahs isn't bad. I actually thought it was a nice place.

    The overhauled Taj is pretty decent too. I've stayed in a nice suite there and had a great time.
     
  8. AndyAkeko

    AndyAkeko Time magazine's 2006 Person of the Year

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    If you get bored of Las Vegas after four days, AC will be excruciating after two. In alphabetical order, there's the beach, the Boardwalk and the casinos. That's about it. The Boardwalk takes a couple of hours, maybe four or five if you really slow it down. And there's only a couple of places where the casinos are plunked together within walking distance ... and even then I wouldn't walk it at night.

    AC is okay for a day trip or a weekend, but it's no international destination. And as more casinos open up along the east coast, it's not even becoming an interstate destination. It probably better compares to Laughlin than Las Vegas, only in a worse neighborhood.
     
  9. zeekm

    zeekm Tourist

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    Like the others posted above, AC is no Vegas. Nevertheless, it's not without its charms and attractions. If you are coming in the summer, there is always the beach. If you have a car, you can check out some other beaches and boardwalks nearby. You can take a side trip to Victorian Cape May (for a great meal maybe) or the boardwalk at Wildwood (for a ride on the Great White Roller Coaster).

    The Southern Jersey Shore is very colorful and relaxing in the summertime and Atlantic City is a good home base. You certainly won't find anything like it in the desert.
     
  10. npom

    npom High-Roller

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    Based on what you say you like, don't waste your time.
     
  11. Kickin

    Kickin Flea

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    What everyone else said. Its no Vegas by any means. I wouldn't fly all the way here just for AC but if you're coming to NYC for a few days then adding an overnight in AC is fine idea. I wouldn't bother with doing 3 days unless you really love to gamble. Spend the extra day in NYC or go to nearby Philly for the day.

    But based on what you've said you like you may just want to skip it. I've been to Macau as well and AC is honestly more similar to Macau in terms of feel than it is to Vegas.

    Like others said the Borgata is like a nice Vegas casino in terms of quality and vibe. Harrahs is close, less so in terms of quality but definitely in terms of vibe. Revel is very nice but had a dull vibe based on my brief visit and what others always tell me.

    None of those except for Revel are on the boardwalk. If you want to stay on the boardwalk stay either there or Caesars. Since you like to hop around you can do that easily on the boardwalk. Though I'd still recommend staying at the Borgata or Harrahs and just cabbing/driving over to the boardwalk side when you want to see it.

    Now that its like summer time the boardwalk will be more active as will the beach. But don't expect the beach to be nice.

    It really is just a gambling destination for the NYC/Philly/DC metro areas. So it brings in a lot of revenue, about twice as much as Vegas in terms of gaming revenue per square foot of casino floor. But it's not a tourist destination and despite their efforts its not becoming one.
     
  12. buttnugget

    buttnugget Tourist

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    Drew Cary once said that the difference between Las Vegas and Atlantic City was like the difference between being conned by a beautiful call girl and being mugged by a crack head. You're out money both ways, but maybe you don't mind the former so much...
     
  13. eksantirik

    eksantirik Low-Roller

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    OK, I see what you all say. Then I won't bother, unless I happen to be in NYC and have a day to kill.

    Thing is, I've done Vegas both with car and without. Been to Grand Canyon / Hoover Dam, have done many road trips including Salt Lake City, Reno, San Francisco, Yosemite, Sequoia etc. Also visited almost all strip, downtown, off-strip, boulder casinos as well. Btw, Reno felt very depressive, I wonder how it compares to Atlantic City.

    I'd still love to go and walk on the strip for hours, doing casino hopping, but wondering if I go for 6-7 days again, that I'd be bored. Maybe I should pair the trip up with SFO and LAX and maybe San Diego as well as I've never been there. Kinda like a beach + desert vacaation.
     
  14. 44inarow

    44inarow VIP Whale

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    It's aesthetically very nice, but the vibe is confused at best. You know how sometimes the Cosmopolitan casino floor is completely dead, because everyone is off at the nightclubs? It's even worse than that at Revel, but compounded by the fact that there isn't much else to do -- there are no reasonably-priced restaurants, only a couple of bars, and the no-smoking thing has been keeping people away as well (although they're supposedly fixing that in the next couple weeks). It's just a strange place to be in overall. I would pick Borgata over Revel any day of the week if I was going there to gamble.
     
  15. Funkhouser

    Funkhouser In Charge of the Big Door

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    I wouldn' take all the negative comments to heart. For a straight up comparison, AC falls behind as a destination. However as a gaming destination, I found it a plesant experience. I make frequent trips to las vegas, and found the gambling odds and service horrible now in Vegas in comparison to what it was.

    Yeah the surrounding area is suffering and sketchy, but so is Koval lane in LV, areas to the east of strip, etc. North of Encore. I stayed in the touristy areas of the boardwalk and took a cab back to Marina area and never felt unsafe.

    The gambling I found odds much better than vegas, friendly dealers, and people who appreciated my gambling business.

    Would I go to AC for the clubs, shows, or dining that Vegas has become known for? No.
    But for a weekend gaming destination, shops, and the boardwalk I found it perfectly enjoyable.
     
  16. broncofn

    broncofn VIP Whale

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    Ac is great for a weekend. I would only stay at borgata, harrahs, caesars, revel, taj, and golden nugget (former trump marina). They have cleaned up the beach somewhat but I still wouldn't get in the water. If you are expecting extravagant pools, etc forget about it. Not many ac hotels have outdoor pools besides water club at borgata (2 small outdoor pools but nice), golden nugget (also nice with outdoor gaming), Caesars (not worth it), Tropicana (not worth it), revel (haven't been to the pool).

    If you are going to do NYC, I would do a weekend in ac but nothing more than that. You will see and do everything in ac in 2-3 days which is enough.

    Now, NYC is another story. Worth the visit and tons of fun!!
     
  17. rustytrombone1027

    rustytrombone1027 Tourist

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    Agreeing with all so far.

    Except: If you play poker (which from your post, I am guessing you do not), the Borgata poker room (especially during one of their "opens") is actually better then any room in LV IMHO. The Borgata as a whole is a fine casino/hotel offering some great restaurant and shopping choices. They are pretty liberal with their room comps, and I go down once ever two or three months from Long Island and enjoy two nights free rooms just from playing 1/2 poker. But no way in HELL would fly across "the pond" to do that.
     
  18. undathesea

    undathesea Grandissimo

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    Yeah... I was going to mention that as well, but it seemed that the OP casino hops and isn't much of a poker player. AC poker is happening and worth going for. The Borgata poker room has more action happening at all time than any other casino that I've ever been in. It spreads more games as well.

    It has to be one of the largest poker rooms in the US (I've not been to the California poker rooms).
     
  19. jerseyguy

    jerseyguy VIP Whale

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    Not really a fair comparison

    A city of maybe 2 million with how many hotel/casinos with a city of 40k and 12 casino/hotels.
    To foreign visitors,a fairer comparison would be Vegas vs NYC for a vacation .
    The US is more than Vegas the same as GB is more than London,France more than Paris etc.
    I would encourage people to go to AC,go to Miami, New Orleans ,SF see our country.
     
  20. NickyDim

    NickyDim VIP Whale

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    If you are in NYC and you are thinking for going to AC it's a 2 hour drive, so make sure you take a room for 2 nights. This way you can have one full day without worrying about checking out and leaving just hours after you get there. Harrahs is a great place to game. They have loads of low limit tables and plenty of VP and slots, although the VP paytables in AC arent very good, about equal to the strip hotels of Vegas.

    We take 2 or 3 trips a year to LV, we also take about a 1/2 dozen shorties to AC. Services in AC is pretty good. Drink service in Harrahs, Showboat, Ballys are great. Borgata is nice but your gaming is the most expensive there. You won't see $5 tables.

    However there is really nothing outside of the hotels. There is no downtown, no Strip, not many clubs. Really just gaming.

    Stay away from the Atlantic Club. It's a low limits place but very limited in the gaming. Few choices of table games and even less choices of VP, and NO reeled slots to speak of.

    Trump Taj is nice, Golden Nugget is ok, Bally's has gone downhill.

    Our choice is usually Harrahs, with tons of rooms a beautiful pool and a really nice casino.

    But to answer you question...nothing compares to Vegas.
     
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