Every year millions of people flock to Atlantic City to enjoy pristine beaches, stroll along the iconic Boardwalk and experience the thrill of its glamorous casinos. It caters to everyone, from sun worshipers and culture vultures to foodies and hedonists, providing an intoxicating blend of excitement and relaxation. Optimism abounds among the local population as legalized sports betting has given the seaside city a massive shot in the arm and the casinos are doing a roaring trade. This is a gambling mecca, but there is so much to do besides that, with world-class entertainment venues, restaurants, nightclubs, hotels, shopping malls, museums and amusement parks.
Channel Your Inner Steve Buscemi
The first thing to do when you arrive in Atlantic City is saunter down the world-famous Boardwalk, stretching along six glittering miles of New Jersey beachfront. Crime boss Enoch Johnson ruled this area with an iron fist during the Prohibition, inspiring Steve Buscemi’s iconic character Nucky Thompson in hit HBO show Boardwalk Empire. The Boardwalk is steeped in history and it is a nostalgic delight to imagine the characters that have graced these hallowed boards over the years. You will enjoy spectacular views of the roaring Atlantic Ocean on one side and an extensive collection of shops, bars, restaurants and arcades on the other. Breathe in the crisp sea air, enjoy the people watching and immerse yourself in this glorious slice of Americana.
Roll The Dice
Casinos are the bedrock of this city and it would be rude not to enjoy a cheeky flutter in one of the glitzy halls. You can choose from a wide range of famous names, including Bally’s, Borgata, Caesars, Golden Nugget, Hard Rock, Ocean Resort, Resort Atlantic City and Tropicana. You can play blackjack, roulette, poker, craps, slots and many more games of chance and skill. Tuxedos and Martinis are optional, but you are just as welcome in casual attire as you drift in from the Boardwalk or the mall. It is also worth noting that these resorts offer so much more than simply casinos. Enjoy Greco-Roman architecture, replete with fluted columns, fountains and statues, at Caesars. A 2,400-seater music hall at Borgata has played host to stars like Aerosmith, Kings of Leon and Rihanna, and you will always find superstars rolling into town as part of US-wide tours. There are spas, IMAX cinemas, bars and all manner of nightclubs.
Shop Until You Drop
Head over to Tropicana Casino and Resort and you will find a 200,000 sq ft Old Havana-inspired shopping and entertainment complex called The Quarter. Shop for fine wines and cigars at A Time For Wine, edgy attire at AKA, high-end costmetics at Blue Mercury Apothecary and souvenirs at Boardwalk Corner Store. The Old Farmer’s Almanac General Store embodies old-fashioned, down-home charm and James’ Saltwater Taffy is not to be missed. Across Atlantic City you can find outlet stores featuring designer brands like Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger at knockdown prices, plus high-end, boutique stores offering elegant clothing, and everything in between. There is something for everyone in Atlantic City, which caters to all budgets and serves you with a smile.
Eat Your Heart Out
Celebrity chefs such as Wolfgang Puck and Bobby Flay have restaurants at Borgata, Gordon Ramsay is at Caesars and Guy Fieri is at Bally’s. The city is a gourmand’s dream, offering everything from sumptuous tacos to fresh lobster. Classic Italian food meets white-linen elegance at Il Mulino, the family-owned Dock’s Oyster House is a legendary eatery and Kelsey & Kim’s Southern Café is a wonderful spot for brunch. Asian food lovers should head over to Buddakan, a phenomenal pan-Asian restaurant with amazing dishes like cornucopia of wok-tossed rib eye steak. From hidden dining rooms like Chef Vola’s and fine dining at Capriccio to fantastic cheap eats and street food, you are sure to find plenty to whet your appetite in this culinary hotspot.
Chill Out In Style
Atlantic City can be as fast-paced and dizzyingly frenetic as you want it to be. But it is extremely easy to step away from the hustle and bustle of the Boardwalk or the assault on the senses that is the casino floor and escape to a place of pure relaxation. Sip cocktails and zone out to chilled beats while lounging in a rooftop hot tub overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Treat yourself to a massage or a bit of pampering at one of many spas, or simply head down the beach a little way to find a secluded spot and enjoy the white sand, the azure ocean and the cooling sea breezes. And if you want a day trip, you can find all manner of fun beach towns along the coast. There’s also a rather interesting metropolis you might have heard of, called New York City, just down the road. All in all, Atlantic City is the perfect destination, offering everything you could possibly wish for in a thrilling break.
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