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Atlantic City is Stepping Up Its Game This Summer—Where You Need to Go

September 17, 2015
Wolfgang Puck's American Grille
Wolfgang Puck's American Grille

Wolfgang Puck’s American Grille in Atlantic City. (Photo: The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa)  

Now that Revel — Atlantic City’s $2.4 billion mega-hotel and casino that opened two years ago — may shut down operations this summer, a traveler might think warily of visiting Atlantic City.

Nonsense. Put Revel behind you, like the bad beat you got on the river.

There’s plenty happening around Atlantic City. Here are our three picks of ways to enjoy AC without a thought given to gambling or bachelorette parties.

Wolfgang Puck Atlantic City
Wolfgang Puck Atlantic City

Wolfgang Puck is an Atlantic City veteran. Soon visitors will able to try dishes from Buca di Beppo, right.(Photos: The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, Buca di Beppo)

1. Get in touch with a celeb chef

Two weeks ago, nearly every person at Borgata not at a blackjack table was clutching dishware emblazoned with a photo of Wolfgang Puck. Puck was signing books, hosting lunches and gamely posing for photos with any fan who shouted, “We love you!” at him.

Of course, Wolfgang has been in AC for years — but there’s a lot more celeb-chef sighting to do. Along with the Sixth Annual Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival beginning July 25, which includes some really non-AC type celebs (Martha Stewart and Marcus Samuelsson), the spiky-haired Guy Fieri himself is opening up shop at Bally’s with Guy Fieri’s Chophouse. (Because if there’s one thing AC needs, it’s more steakhouses.) And that’s not the only place opening on the 4th: Martorano’s Italian-American Kitchen and Buca di Beppo are opening inside Harrah’s.

Related: The Most Sought-After Casinos in Vegas

saltwater taffy
saltwater taffy

Saltwater taffy on the boardwalk. Photos: (Left) AP, (right) Angel Chevrestt

2. Go directly to Boardwalk

In this non-walker’s town, the Boardwalk is still the best spot to amble. If you need a reminder of the Atlantic City of yesteryear, one only needs to stop by Fralinger’s for some saltwater taffy. (Saltwater taffy was invented in AC when a candy shop got flooded in the 1880s.)

While you’re on the Boardwalk, hit the Pier Shops at Caesars to spend all those jackpots you hit. There’s everything from an Apple store to fashion outfits like AX Armani Exchange; there’s a Victoria’s Secret, a Michael Kors, a Gucci, Tiffany & Co., and Swarovski.

Related: Get Your Groove On This Summer With These Seriously Sweet Music Cruises

Borgata Event Center
Borgata Event Center

The Borgata Event Center is featuring the likes of Santana. (Courtesy: The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa)

3. Rock out

There was a full moon on Friday, June 13, so it was perhaps fitting that the Latin rock legend, Santana, had command of the 3,000-person venue at Borgata strumming “Black Magic Woman.”

It’s one thing that AC will never lack — there will be entertainment. Avril Lavigne was at Borgata on June 27; Crosby, Stills & Nash is coming July 12, followed by Lionel Richie (Aug. 3). But that’s just one casino. Steely Dan will be hitting Caesars on Sept. 12. And that’s not even mentioning the free beach concerts this summer like Blake Shelton on July 31 and Lady Antebellum on Aug. 3.

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