Walk through Revel, and the most common word you will probably hear is, "Wow!" And for good reason: Revel is magnificent, not just in an architectural sense, but in its ability to deliver a true resort experience.
This is not a casino with a resort. This is a resort with a casino. Here are five things that will absolutely "wow" you when you step into the resort that has the ability to change the way some people may think about Atlantic City. It's a game-changer.
This is kind of cheating, because when Revel officially opens Memorial Day weekend, there should be about 14 of them open. But the "wow" factor particularly pertains to three: Jose Garces' Amada, Robert Wiedmaier's Mussel Bar and Marc Forgione's American Cut steakhouse.
Of the three, Mussel Bar will be the most fun and approachable. With Wiedmaier's chopper hanging from the ceiling, a stage for live rock bands, an unbelievable beer and wine selection and food that will blow your mind - the flatbreads and pan-seared pork belly with black pepper biscuit are ridiculous - Mussel Bar will be the place to hang with friends and drink, share food and revel in a true, fun culinary experience.
Iron Chef Garces' famous Philadelphia Spanish tapas restaurant may open this week, and it is one of the most striking spaces at Revel with beautiful wood everywhere, an open kitchen, floor-to-ceiling ocean-view windows and even a stage for flamenco dancers. Amada, known as one of the best restaurants in Philadelphia, will now be one of the best in Atlantic City.
Iron Chef Forgione makes his first major foray out of New York City with a steakhouse that should wow people with its great meats and seafood, but the room itself is one of the most amazing restaurants I have ever seen. Once again, floor-to-ceiling ocean-view windows lead you to an amazing copper-top bar that will also feature a raw bar. The rest of the room screams masculine steakhouse with dark woods, open kitchen, wine walls and black leather banquettes. If the food is as superb as the restaurant's design, American Cut will be dynamite.
Ivan Kane's Royal Jelly Burlesque
The coolest looking club in town also possesses a unique concept: beautiful, half-naked burlesque girls sporting hot lingerie and pasties dancing to a jazz band in the early evening and rock band at night. This is no sleazy strip club. Everything is choreographed with amazing precision, and the dancing is on par with national touring acts. With three tiers, catwalks, a rotating DJ/band wall, awesome light show and hip servers and bartenders, Royal Jelly changes the way people may think of Atlantic City nightclubs forever. And the lounge, complete with a dancing pole, bar and table games, may be the coolest - and hottest - place to gamble in town.
Finally, a large Atlantic City casino concert venue that was actually designed to be a concert venue. This isn't a retrofitted ballroom or small theater; this is a state-of-the art, 5,000-seat theater designed to host the biggest and best touring acts in the world. Comfortable seating, great acoustics, balcony boxes, an unbelievable white lobby with striking bars and a design scheme that makes the venue capable of offering everything from Beyonce to UFC make Ovation Hall THE place to see a show in Atlantic City.
Bask may not be the nicest spa in town - Borgata Hotel casino & Spa's Immersion in The Water Club and Red Door Spa at Harrah's Resort are also top-notch - but Bask is definitely in the top three for a variety of reasons. For starters, its co-ed bath house is simply awesome, offering heated mineral pools and a Himalayan salt grotto. But its programs sound innovative and unique as Bask will incorporate the ocean theme into its therapy programs that will be as luxurious as they will be active, offering beach boot camp, sunrise yoga and even surfing.
Revel is really the first casino to truly take advantage of the beautiful Atlantic City beach. The casino's outdoor Skygarden offers luxurious seating and a very cool bar. People can stroll along the outside of Revel and take in the views or enjoy one of the resort's 10 pools, indoor cabanas, bars and more. And the InOut Pool is exactly as it sounds: enter the pool indoors and doors automatically slide open to allow you to swim outside. It's very cool.
Although they didn't bare it all, The Naked Cowboy and Cowgirl turned some heads at Resorts Casino Hotel last weekend when they made an appearance at the Night Fever Dance Club, with the cowboy wearing a tight bathing suit and his guitar and the cowgirl wearing a bikini.
DJ Pauly D. started his residency at The Pool at Harrah's Resort. The "Jersey Shore" and "The Pauly D Project" star packed the house and impressed with his spinning.
Also at The Pool, Audrina Patridge, star of reality series that include "The Hills" and "Audrina," also hosted a party at The Pool recently. She hung out in a cabana and met with guests and took photos with fans until after 2 a.m., when she headed to the casino floor to play some craps.
Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher was recently seen at Caesars Atlantic City having dinner at Mia with Babyface, who performed with Toni Braxton at the resort. Urlacher also showed up at The Pool later that night.
'Wrath' on IMAX
If you didn't do it last weekend, you may want to check out "Wrath of the Titans," the sequel to the 2010 smash "Clash of the Titans," in IMAX at the Tropicana.
Sam Worthington, Ralph Fiennes and Liam Neeson star as gods at war in the sequel. The film has been digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of The IMAX 3D Experience. The movie is rated PG-13 and is the kind of flick that just resonates better on the huge screen.