Borgata Looks to Bolster Boardwalk Dominance With $14 Million Renovation

Posted on: September 4, 2019, 01:35h. 

Last updated on: September 4, 2019, 02:55h.

Fresh off its best month in its 16-year history, the Borgata in Atlantic City, N.J. is looking to fortify its dominant perch on the Boardwalk with $14 million in renovations to the venue’s lobby and 312 guest suites.

MGM is throwing another $14 million at Borgata, Atlantic City’s dominant casino. (Image: Forbes)

Borgata, the lone Garden State integrated resort operated by MGM Resorts, won $88 million in July across its online, sports wagering, and land-based gaming operations. That was good for the top spot among the nine Atlantic City casinos. The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement’s (DGE) has not yet published data for August.

The newly announced $14 million refurbishments include a bar in the hotel lobby near the VIP check-in area, and sprucing up more than 300 Fiore suites. The lobby bar project is expected to be completed this month, according to a corporate statement.

The reinvention of our business has been a core principle since our 2003 debut, and we are pleased to continue developing the type of engaging product that our guests have come to anticipate,” said Borgata COO and President Marcus Glover in the release. “By enriching our hotel product, we are ensuring each guest enjoys an optimal Borgata experience that begins as soon as they walk through the door.”

Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts operates Borgata while the real estate assets are owned by MGM Growth Properties.

Refurbishment Redux

News of Borgata’s $14 million renovation plans comes after MGM put $12 million into opening the Moneyline Bar & Book, a watering hole and sportsbook, and the Level One Cocktail Bar & Lounge. Several Boardwalk players have been renovating or opening new sportsbooks, as sports betting takes off in New Jersey, with market observers forecasting that the Garden State will soon surpass Nevada on an annual basis in terms of total sports handle.

MGM’s latest financial commitment to Borgata comes as some of the company’s other regional assets, namely MGM Springfield, struggle. Earlier this year, MGM executives noted that while some properties, such as the one in Massachusetts, may be behind expectations, other components in the firm’s regional portfolio are ahead of forecasts.

Data confirms Borgata is one of the stronger names on the MGM regional roster. Its $88 million in July gross gaming revenue (GGR) was more than double the figure posted by its next closest competitor, Hard Rock. In the seventh month of the year, Borgata had a 27.2 percent market share in Atlantic City.

Borgata’s July jump came as five Garden State rivals saw monthly revenue dip.

Renovations Matter

On a year-to-date basis as of the end of July, Borgata has posted GGR of $455 million, more than double the amount of its nearest rival. The 312 suite renovations are expected to be completed by early 2020. Executives did not break out how much of the $14 million will go to sprucing up the rooms and how much is directed at the lobby bar.

In a competitive market such as Atlantic City, which has some properties that are barely more than a year old, capital investments are meaningful when it comes to luring guests and gamblers. Operators that do not keep up with enhancements risk losing business.

For example, Caesars’ Bally’s Atlantic City has fallen behind Boardwalk opponents because, by the company’s own admission, it has not adequately maintained the venue.