Hard Rock Announces Complete Overhaul of Taj Mahal with $375 Million Investment

Posted on: April 6, 2017, 12:00h. 

Last updated on: April 6, 2017, 02:59h.

The Trump Taj will undergo a major revamp in order to become the Hard Rock Atlantic City. The minarets have got to go. And the faux Mughal architecture, that’s out too.

Steven van Zandt and Chris Christie support the Hard Rock Atlantic City
“Little Steven” van Zandt and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie were both present at the Hard Rock press conference on Wednesday where it was announced that the Taj would be changed completely before it reopens as a Hard Rock property. (Image: Getty Images)

That vaulted dome, the one that moved a 40-something Donald Trump to proclaim he had created the “eighth wonder of the world” … well, forget about it. It’s coming off. It’s so 1990.

Instead, there will be refreshing straight lines, lots and lots of electric guitars everywhere (because you can’t have too many of those, right?) and neither a dome nor a decorative spire in sight.   

This is the $375 million redesign of the Taj, announced by its brand new owner, Hard Rock International, at a press conference Wednesday.

“There will not be one… and underscore the word ‘one’… piece of design, architecture, minaret or anything left over from the Taj Mahal,” Hard Rock CEO Jim Allen said. “We are removing it all.”

E-Street Band to Play

The Florida-based Hard Rock brand is eager to embrace the culture of New Jersey, its musical history in particular, and you can’t get more “New Jersey” than Steven van Zandt, who was a star guest at this week’s press conference.

Not only is van Zandt a longtime member of Bruce Springsteen’s E-Street Band, but he also played Silvio Dante in the Sopranos. In order to hammer the point home, Hard Rock also laid on a Bruce Springsteen tribute band. Van Zandt promised the real thing will play at the Hard Rock Atlantic City once it opens its doors.

The Hard Rock Atlantic City will feature two separate arenas with seating totaling 7,000, a spa, and more than 2,400 slot machines on the gaming floor. The property is expected to open in the summer of 2018.

Atlantic City Still a Big Player

“If we can’t do it right, we’re not going to do it,” said Allen, chairman of Hard Rock. “Our commitment to Atlantic City has never been stronger and we look forward to being a catalyst for further growth and development of the area. Atlantic City, no doubt, has had some challenging times. I think that it’s very important to understand that it’s still the second biggest gaming market in the United States.”

Also present on Wednesday was New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who said he believed that the Hard Rock’s investment pledge would revitalize Atlantic City and make it “even more exciting.”

“We have confidence Hard Rock will do this in the right way, and to take a property that has a great tradition in this city and create an absolutely new tradition for the people of Atlantic City and the people who come here,” he said.