revel new year prep

Tia Hailey, of Delran, chats with William Mellette, of Brooklyn, N.Y., as Catherine Tella, of Philadelphia, waits for his help with a final costume fitting before a show Monday night at Revel in Atlantic City.

Danny Drake

Amid aerialists serving wine and models in chocolate-covered evening gowns, Revel executives were viewing the New Year’s Eve celebration as a sort of rebirth for the resort.

Revel’s hotel rooms, restaurants and entertainment venues were completely booked for what executives were predicting would be the resort’s biggest night yet.

“We’re expecting between (20,000) and 30,000 walk-in,” said Darlene Monzo, senior vice president of marketing. “The hotel is sold out. We have all of our top players in. We’ll probably expect 5,000 in the nightclub.”

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Also, about 6,000 people were expected to participate Monday night in the Life in Color NYE Bash with Steve Aoki, an outdoor festival at Bader Field in Atlantic City featuring electronic dance music and cannons that spray paint on the crowd as they dance.

Organizers billed the show as the “World’s Largest Paint Party.”

DJs Aoki, Tommy Trash, Adventure Club and David Solano were scheduled to perform in a heated tent set up for the event. Acrobats, aerial performers and people dressed in custom-made 10-foot LED robot costumes were scheduled to entertain the audience in addition to the DJs.

Monzo started with Revel in November, and she is one of several new marketing executives who are refocusing Revel’s strategy on gambling.

“We got off to a little bit of a rough start in the beginning,” she said. “We’ve repositioned all of the marketing. We’re definitely in the game. We want to cater to all the gamblers out there, as well as make it a full property experience.”

On Monday morning, casino workers and performers of all kinds were busily preparing for the sold-out night. A dance group from Los Angeles practiced a routine scheduled to be performed in the VIP portion of the New Year’s Eve celebration.

Marcello Guevara, the resort’s pastry chef, was working on all kinds of different New Year’s Eve-specific desserts. His favorite, he said, was not finished yet, but he showed off his second favorite: mint-colored and -flavored marshmallows.

An aerialist practiced acrobatics on her wine-serving apparatus. Models tried on evening gowns. In the VIP section, which was expected to entertain about 600 people, one gown was used in one of the “Chronicles of Narnia” movies.

Monzo is looking forward to several 2013 additions. Revel Beach is scheduled to open this year. Pearl, a slot lounge, will be added. And Ocean Cards, which will recognize top gamblers, will be available.

“I personally am considering it a brand new opening for Revel. A brand new start. We’re looking to get in the game, go after the players. It really should be the launch that Revel deserved in the beginning.”

Staff writer Joel Landau contributed to this report.

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