Burlesque Is the Word at Atlantic City’s Revel



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For those who frequent clubs and entertainment venues and think they have their finger on the pulse of all that's new and edgy, think again.

Enter Ivan Kane's Royal Jelly Burlesque Nightclub. Entertainment producer Ivan Kane has taken up residence in the Revel hotel and casino with his modern-classic burlesque club that features highly choreographed performances with a live, three- piece jazz band. It's a warming and inviting space for both men and women, where there is the option of snagging a private table with bottle service or hanging out at the upstairs bar with a group of friends waiting to catch the next live performance.

The club features two live shows a night where dancers perform provocative and tantalizing dance numbers. The three-piece jazz band that plays behind the entertainers is a true highlight of the club.
If burlesque isn't your thing, try catching a live show at Ovation Hall — a 5,500-seat event center. Maroon 5 graced the stage during the week of previews for the hotel and christened the space by performing a full repertoire of their hits. Front man Adam Levine put on quite the show, singing new releases like "Payphone" and performing a duet to "Man in the Mirror" with The Voice winner Javier Colon. Ovation Hall has the best of both worlds in terms of seating arrangements. If standing and jumping up and down with every move of Mr. Levine's hips is your thing, there is standing room at the stage. But for those who want more of a theater-like atmosphere, complete with a full view of the stage, there are plush seats with stadium seating.

Entertainment can come in many forms and perhaps after a long weekend of clubbing and drinking, a trip to the Bask Spa may be just what the doctor ordered. With 32 therapy rooms, a fitness studio, a coed bathhouse complete with multiple hot tubs, pools, saunas and the like, as well as customized fitness classes and programming by SurfSet, the Bask Spa may be a destination unto itself.

The warm and relaxed atmosphere makes it a perfect getaway from the noise and commotion found on the casino floor. Here, the aromatherapy scents and friendly staff allow you to be immersed in a Zen-like world. For the fitness guru, the classes by SurfSet may offer a new and interesting physical challenge, while the core fusion yoga may be another person's cup of tea. And don't forget the custom tea blends crafted by Exhale Spa that can help promote healthy digestion and an overall sense of well-being.

And Revel isn't finished just yet. Coming soon is the grand opening of HQ Nightclub and HQ Beach Club from Angel Management Group. The 40,000-square-foot nightclub will boast four levels, while its daytime counterpart, HQ Beach Club, will feature a signature pool party. Break out the bikini and pop open the Cristal — we'll be waiting for the unveiling.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


We stayed at Ocean Resort Casino: Full review of Atlantic City's (sort of) newest hotel

If you were to stumble in off the Atlantic City boardwalk — without noticing the new signage — and ride the glass escalators up to the casino floor, you’d be sure Revel had simply just reopened after four years of closed doors.

Considering the structure, the decor and the general chic grandiosity all remain mostly the same inside the 60-story locale gleaming at the north end of the strip, you probably wouldn't assume the building had just undergone a $175 million renovation, nor had it been rebranded the Ocean Resort Casino.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

But then you begin to wander around and realize there is, in fact, quite a bit of change inside the 138,000-square-foot space: new entertainment, new restaurants, new attractions and, oh, a brand new sports book just in time for the legalization of sports betting in New Jersey.

The rebranded Ocean Resort officially opened Thursday, alongside the new Hard Rock (replacing Trump Taj Mahal), and while my colleagues handled the news and ceremony of the day — and Mark Wahlberg betting the Eagles to win another Super Bowl — I was behind the scenes, wandering around with no media credentials, staying the night and comparing A.C.'s (sort of) newest casino to its predecessor Revel, where I visited often in its two years of operation, between 2012 and its filing for bankruptcy and shuttering in 2014.

Here’s a breakdown of what’s new, what’s good and what you need to know before you book a room at the Ocean Resort Casino.

Before you visit, know this

While most of Ocean Resort is open to the public, certain shops and amenities are still being constructed. For instance, if you were excited to bring the kids to make-your-own breakfast nook Cerealtown listed on the website, know that it’s currently just an empty room. Same goes for the e-sports-friendly The Den. That’s not ready or meeting its online description just yet either. Other lobby areas were still being set up Thursday, with ladders and construction teams working away among the guests.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

If you stayed at Revel, and dug the minimalist modern decor — blacks, whites, grays and geometrical patterns — your room at the Ocean will be a blast from a past. In other words, the rooms are the same. The 1,399 rooms have been cleaned and polished up for the big reopening, but there’s been no renovation, considering the spacious rooms were only two years old when they went dark. That being said, if your carpet had stains on it then, it has stains on it now (mine did, anyway). And a millennial pet peeve: There was no Wifi information in the room.

If you can snag a north-facing room, the floor-to-ceiling windows provide an epic view of the water and nearby Brigantine. Weeknight rates start at $149 — a relative bargain on the A.C. strip — while weekends start around $300 a pop.

Lori M. Nichols | For NJ.com

What's new: The Sports Book

The William Hill Sports Book — the first of its kind in Atlantic City — will be a major selling point for Ocean Resort as it hopes to poach gamblers away from competing casinos. The Book, located dead center on the enormous casino floor, was in full swing on Thursday, as folks wandered in, picked up some odds sheets and made their first legal sports bets in the Garden State. I was one of those patrons, dropping a whole $5 on the Cowboys to win less than eight games this year, because screw the Cowboys.

The Book had a few helpful employees on hand to explain the overwhelming pile of odds sheets — ranging from the night’s baseball game first-inning scores all the way to who will win the Super Bowl next year — to newcomers like me. It’s a big, open and inviting space with a bar and TVs to watch the freaking Jets blow a lead and, in turn, your life savings.

Bobby Olivier | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

What's new: Amada and other restaurants

The Ocean Resort touts 16 eateries, some of which — like Wahlburgers, owned by Paul and his famous bros Mark and Donnie Wahlberg — aren’t yet open for business, or even finished being built. Still, there’s already plenty to eat here, from quick casual up through fine dining, and let’s start at the top.

Not far from the main escalators on the casino level lies Amada, an extension of the acclaimed Philadelphia tapas restaurant owned by Iron Chef Jose Garces. This was my dinner Thursday night, in an open, rustic dining room overlooking the ocean as the Spanish olives, patatas bravas, cheese plates, quinoa salad, clams and chorizo, and Pernil Asado (roasted pork) kept on coming. Garces was on hand Thursday to assist with the opening, and two of his subordinates were kind enough to roll me back onto the casino floor when I was finished gorging myself.

Amada, which returns after originally opening with Revel in 2012, immediately becomes one of the most desirable resort restaurants on the strip and is an excellent spot for a special occasion. Just know it ain’t cheap high-end tapas usually means a lot of little plates to fill you up, and that takes some serious coin.


Watch the video: ROYAL JELLY @ Revel AC 52012 Part 6


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