Caesars Entertainment and HBO are re-teaming for "Boardwalk Empire" as the critically-acclaimed series kicks off its second season Sept. 25. While all four Caesars properties - Caesars Atlantic City, Bally's Atlantic City, Showboat Casino-Hotel and Harrah's Resort - will all participate, Caesars Atlantic City will be the spot where people will see the most tie-ins to the series, which is set in Prohibition-era Atlantic City centering around Nucky Thompson, a corrupt city boss.
For starters, Caesars will be the only place where a public screening of the premiere will take place 9 p.m. Sept. 25 in the Circus Maximus Theater. Invited guests will join the general public, which can obtain free tickets to the screening by just showing up at the box office on the day of the show. Cast members, who have not been announced yet, will be at the premiere screening.
"We are continuing our partnership to be the exclusive place in the market to watch the season premiere," says Jen Galle, Caesars' director of marketing. "It went so well last year, that we decided to do it all over again."
The overall theme this season, according to Galle, is "compliments of Nucky," and all four Caesars properties will play up that tie-in.
"It's about the exclusivity of dealing with Nucky and things being compliments of Nucky," Galle said. "It's a fun theme."
For example, when guests book a room, they might get "extras compliments of Nucky" such as an extra night for free or an upgrade to a suite. Other extras will be offered on the casinos' Facebook page.
There are also room packages that include spa access, dining credit and more at Caesars and Harrah's.
Prohibition pricing will also play a big part of the promotion. At all four properties, $39 three-course prix-fixe menus will be featured 5 to 7 p.m. Mondays to Fridays at most gourmet restaurants, including Luke Palladino, Atlantic Grill, Dos Caminos, Mia, Scarduzio's, The Reserve at Bally's and more.
Canadian Club - the official drink sponsor - will offer specialty cocktails at the different casinos at inexpensive prices. Morton's the Steakhouse will even get in on the promotion with $7 Pimm's Cup cocktails during their happy hour.
The Pier Shops at Caesars will offer a variety of shopping specials, such as $19.20 accessories at Betsy Johnson, penny candy on Sept. 25 at It's Sugar and more.
Caesars will also offer a sweepstakes that is already ongoing where people can instantly win prizes at card kiosks. Players who participate and gamble at Caesars now through Sept. 25 will be entered into a sweepstakes. On Sept. 25, $1,920 in cash will be awarded every 15 minutes from 2 to 7 p.m. At 7 p.m., one person will be selected for a chance to win $1 million.
Caesars will also host an invitation-only bash on Sept. 24 with cast members, with an afterparty at Dusk with the same cast members that will be open to the public.
Patrons will already notice "Boardwalk Empire" marquees at the casinos, and more decor changes will take place now until the premiere, including carnations - Nucky's flower of choice - being placed in the casino's planters.
ZZ Top drummer Frank Beard decided to play a round of golf before their concert at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa last weekend. The rock star enjoyed Atlantic City Country Club in Northfield, where General Manager Charles Fahy and his staff posed for pictures and took care of the rock legend.
'Batman' slots debut at Borgata
Now here's a slot machine that may make me actually bring out my wallet. "Batman: The Dark Knight" slot machines debuted last week at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, which is the first in Atlantic City and on the East Coast to have the new IGT machines.
Located near Noodles of the World, the five "Batman" slot machines offer group play on a 103-inch plasma screen with graphics, fan-favorite icons, villains and everything else you would expect in the "Batman" movies and comics.
To celebrate, Borgata has a huge bat logo on the side of its parking garage. And it is also holding a "Batman" sweepstakes, in which customers have a shot at $50,000 in prizes, including a "grand-prize package fit for Bruce Wayne himself," according to a press release.
Through Sept. 30, all My Borgata cardholders who play slots and/or table games will be entered into the sweepstakes. The grand prize includes round-trip limo service to and from Borgata, two-night stay for four guests in a Borgata suite, butler service, dinner for four at any of Borgata's restaurants and a $1,000 Borgata gift card.
An additional 24 players will be awarded $35,000 in cash prizes ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.
Trinity, Game On! close
I was as shocked as anyone on Labor Day when I got a call at home telling me that the Lyons Group's two remaining restaurants - Trinity Irish Pub & Carvery and Game On! - closed their doors for good at The Pier Shops at Caesars.
What a shame for employees as well as Atlantic City visitors. First, both of those establishments did really nice jobs offering the experiences they promised.
Trinity was a cool Irish pub with a great brew selection and good food, while Game On! was my favorite sports bar in Atlantic City - hands down.
The Lyons Group, a Boston-based restaurant group, just never seemed to gel with Atlantic City visitors. Its signature restaurant, Sonsie, was the first casualty, closing after numerous concept changes.
The closings leave the restaurant level at The Pier looking like a ghost town. Luckily, Stephen Starr's Continental and Buddakan had great summers, according to people I have talked to there, and Phillips and its sister sushi restaurant Souzai always seem packed. George Siganos' mini food court will hopefully continue to do well, but considering there will be hardly any foot traffic near there now that Trinity and Game On! are closed, they might have to step up their marketing to shoppers on the lower two levels to remind them they are there.
'Contagion' opens in IMAX
The viral thriller "Contagion" from Academy Award-winning director Steven Soderbergh opens in IMAX at the Tropicana Casino and Resort on Friday, Sept. 9.
The movie has been digitally remastered to meet IMAX standards.
Starring Matt Damon, Jude Law, Lawrence Fishburne, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Winslet and Marion Cotillard, the film follows the progress of a lethal airborne virus that infects the world in days.
Go to www.Tropicana.net/imaxtheater for showtimes.