I’m a long-time, seasoned Las Vegas traveler who found himself volunteering to stay and gamble in Atlantic City this past week. I normally try to get to Vegas two or three times each year in a combination of solo outings and trips with my wife and occasionally other family members. This year, we’ve had to stay close to home due to some family events, so when I saw an ad in our local newspaper for a 3-day junket to Atlantic City for a cheap price – and it included a single occupancy option – I decided to take a three night trip there to satisfy my gambling bug for the summer.
As a personal challenge I had it in mind to do a “casino crawl” while there – to gamble at every casino in the city on the same day and to get a dated receipt for a drink or meal at each place. My son didn’t think I could do it, but since I’ve always been able to out-eat, out-drink, and out-gamble him every time we’ve been to Vegas or Tunica, I was surprised that he could possibly doubt my ability to accomplish my goal, however dubious it might be.
So, here’s a Vegas junkies impression of Atlantic City:
Left Tampa at about 1:45PM on a Sprit Air Charter. My wife had flown Spirit out of NYC and just HATED the experience, which included two cancelled flights and an overnight stay in Miami. My flight, however, was fine with one free checked bag through the junket charter. They allowed my carry-on backpack as a “free personal item,’ so all was well. Standard coach class seat was as expected. The notice of a $100.00 per checked bag charge made me think that I’d probably fly Spirit again…if I could wear ALL of my clothes on the plane!
Bus to Bally’s for check-in after a stop at Harrah’s to drop off about half of the group there. Check-in was friendly and efficient. My room (#741 Dennis Tower) certainly met the requirement for “single occupancy.” A tiny room with a king-size bed taking up almost all of the space. A weirdly shaped window with a custom shade that stopped 8 inches above the sill contributed to the general feeling of distortion that the room gave. Still, it was clean and serviceable for my needs, so I could really find no cause for complaint.
After wandering around trying to figure out the hotel’s layout and were to get a meal, I finally was able to wander out onto the Boardwalk and passed Harry’s Oyster Bar. After walking in through the outside seating I found myself right back in Bally’s! Had a decent fish sandwich with some clam chowder and a glass of sangria. Hit the spot, if a bit pricey.
Gambled there at Bally’s for a while and then decided to check out the Boardwalk. It was a pleasant eventing and I notcied the Resorts casino to the north. I figured I could walk there easily, play for a while and then figure out what I wanted to do. After a while I realized that it was much further away than it looked and I finally dragged my aching feet into the joint and had a seat at the nearest bar. After recovering somewhat, I shot craps at a $10.00 dollar table and ended up with about a $60.00 profit.
I was worn out at this point and decided to take a cab back to Bally's rather than walk. I didn't much care about the expense, either.
I'm in bed by midnight reconsidering whether the "casino crawl" was such a good idea. As I dozed off I realized that my credibility was at stake, so we'd see what the next day would bring.....