Rants and raves about burning topics that have caught my attention midweek, be it greedy corporate shenanigans, frustration or joy in regards to the Philly sports teams, a movie, show or DVD that has fired up my imagination, an intriguing personality, or what’s happening in the region. — Lori Hoffman, Associate Editor, Atlantic City Weekly.
When New Jersey governor Chris Christie came to the Boardwalk July 21, called Atlantic City “A dying town” and announced his proposal for the state to oversee Atlantic City’s casino and tourism district, it unleashed a state and local news cycle that wailed away at Atlantic City. As the busy summer season was entertaining guests with great dining, shopping and entertainment, the news about Atlantic City was mostly negative, some of it justified, some of it warmed-up rehashing of old issues.
Well, this week the news cycle got much brighter, topped by the news that Dennis Gomes, a veteran Atlantic City casino executive who was largely responsible for the development of The Quarter at the Tropicana and before that worked diligently for the Trump Taj Mahal, has purchased Resorts. For all the details, check out Mike Pritchard’s story here.
Dennis Gomes returning to town in the casino biz is a godsend. If anybody can turn around the town’s struggling first casino, he can. That perception is held across the industry. Gomes has an excellent track record, and that is what the moneymen and business analysts look for, previous success.
Dennis Gomes is also a kickboxing enthusiast who helped make the Tropicana one of the top spots in town for mixed martial arts events during his tenure there. I brought that up just to reinforce that Gomes is tough when he has to be.
It was announced this week that Atlantic City International Airport is handling a record number of passengers. The South Jersey Transportation Authority, which operates the airport, says more than 688,000 passengers were booked on commercial flights from the airport between January and July. That’s up 29 percent from the first seven months of 2009.