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Seminole Tribe Pursues Hard Rock on Atlantic City Boardwalk


The Seminole Tribe of Florida is seeking an environmental permit to build a new $275 million casino hotel on the Atlantic City Boardwalk in New Jersey through its Hard Rock International franchise, reported the Associated Press and CBS New York.

A Hard Rock Cafe would extend onto the public beach, reported The Press of Atlantic City, and connect to the main casino complex by an enclosed pedestrian walkway along the boardwalk.

The tribe's application for a New Jersey coastal construction permit notes the project would start small scale and gradually build out to a fully realized gaming resort with new casino space and a second hotel tower in construction phase two.

The project would be the first of two new "boutique" or smaller casinos recently authorized by New Jersey law. Previously, New Jersey regulators mandated casinos offer at least 500 hotel rooms. One of the newly permitted smaller casinos could feature as few as 200 rooms, while the other could start at that size but would be required to expand to 500 rooms within five years, reported the Press. Hard Rock intends to create the larger of the two hotel destinations.

“The addition of 850 hotel rooms and associated retail, dining and entertainment facilities to the Atlantic City economy will enhance the city’s ability to attract conventioneers and tourists as part of an overall regional effort to increase the average length of stay for visitors to Atlantic City,” Hard Rock said in its permit application, reported the Press.

The Seminole Tribe of Florida purchased the famed Hard Rock business for $965 million from a British company in December 2006. A world-renowned casino and entertainment brand with 134 music-themed cafes and 15 casino hotels in 50 countries, Hard Rock's potential new project is expected to rejuvenate the ailing Atlantic City casino market by attracting a younger customer base with more disposable income. “The Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos brand brings with it world-class hospitality, gaming, dining, retail and entertainment,” the application said, reported the Press. “The Atlantic City property will offer first-rate cuisine, exhilarating gaming experiences, high-profile entertainment and high-energy night life.”