Upon arrival in Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, it doesn’t take long to discover that live entertainment plays a big part in the property’s identity. The hallmark 30 feet tall Guitar model Gibson Les Paul (or similar) directly in front of the valet and self parking entrances is a sure sign.
Aside from offering the quintessential Atlantic City casino experience, those who frequent Hard Rock know the obligation to offer Live music 365 days a year. This includes at the Lobby bar located steps away from Elvis Presley’s Rolls Royce and the 120,000-square-foot casino floor.
And the formula works, as Hard Rock’s casino revenue is #2 out of AC’s nine arcades. Despite high gas prices and inflationary factors, Hard Rock draws large crowds week in and week out. This includes sold out shows inside Hard Rock Live at the Etess Arena.
Here’s a closer look at why the live entertainment gambling model is a summer hit for Hard Rock AC.
Book big names at Hard Rock Live Etess Arena
mike wooden side, vice president of entertainment and marketing at HRHCAC, is the man behind the scenes who books the stacked live entertainment program. This also includes the opening in August with a sold-out Alicia Keys Weekend. But the multiple grammy Winner is one of the big names performing at Hard Rock this summer. Some of the names yet to come are:
- Rod Stewart (August 19th)
- Tom Segura (27 Aug)
- let it be (19-28 Aug)
The latter is a Broadway-style show presenting the music of The Beatles.
It’s hard to forget Lionel Richie and Andrea Bocelli Performance on the weekend of July 4th.
And while there remain factors beyond Hard Rock’s control, concert ticket sales are still going strong.
“We’ve been very fortunate that most of our shows this summer at Hard Rock Live at the Etess Arena have sold out,” Woodside said.
“Our advance ticket sales have been great, but we’re also seeing strong walk-in sales on the day of the show, thanks in large part to all the energy and excitement on site. We offer a wide range of headlining entertainment, and there really isn’t a specific genre that’s doing better than all the others this summer.”
Implementation of the entertainment model “365 Live”.
Remember that live entertainment extends beyond the Etess Arena. During a recent Thursday night visit, the lobby bar was still bouncing when a band performed their set after 10 p.m. Background music was provided by many of the 2,100+ slot machines.
sound wavesthe intimate, theater-style venue inside the Hard Rock, is the place for entertainment like “Let It Be.” Frank Stallone with John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band (Sept. 2) and Wanda Syke (8.10.) is booked. However, it does not offer 7,000 seats like the Etess Arena.
In addition, the lobby bar and Council Oak, the upscale steak and seafood restaurant, are other places where bands perform. Plus the Hard Rock Cafe Stage includes dueling pianos.
And whether you’re visiting Hard Rock AC to play or see a show, it’s hard to miss the vast collection of music memorabilia, which is one of the largest in the United States. Own from New Jersey Bruce Springsteen and Bonjovi are included (if you time the visit properly you may see kiss or prince walking impersonators).
It’s free to walk around Hard Rock and admire the outfits hanging in showcases. However, when the blackjack or roulette tables are freezing, it can become extremely expensive to visit.
Woodside said entertainment planning is built around Hard Rock 365 lives Model.
“Our team does a great job of creating energy on all of our stages, so there are many different musical experiences to enjoy whether you’re in Council Oak, the Lobby Bar or the Hard Rock Cafe,” said Woodside .
What about the summer residence “Beyond Van Gogh” in the Hard Rock Casino?
So while many people associate the Hard Rock brand with A-list singers, bands, and comedians, Hard Rock isn’t afraid to think outside the box.
And this summer is a perfect example. That “Beyond Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience” The summer residence lasts until August 28th. Yes, we are talking about the works of Vincent van Goghthe famous Dutch painter who died in 1890.
However, for those who think, this will be like visiting the Philadelphia Art Museum, you are wrong. The key word is immersive, as Van Gogh’s work is brought to life using state-of-the-art 3D technology and music.
So far, says Woodside, Hard Rock is very pleased with the development of sales of Beyond Van Gogh. More importantly, the team sees this as a “great opportunity to introduce new clients to the property.”
“We’re constantly looking for ways to redefine what entertainment is like in the Atlantic City market, and we’re definitely open to bringing in more entertainment that’s not just music and comedy,” Woodside said.
This includes bringing in people like fanny Curtat, an art history consultant for the Beyond Van Gogh project. During the opening reception last month PlayNJ spoke to Curtat about how the exhibition appeals to a wider audience.
“A lot of people are intimidated by museums, and rightly so,” said Curtat.
…”It’s really about involving people… There’s something very playful about it, but there’s also the depth of Vincent’s work. You really mix those two worlds and that appeals to more people.”
How entertainment carries over to Hard Rock AC’s casino floor
Addressing a wider audience helps increase foot traffic. Sure, many visitors come to enjoy the shows. Combine it with a nice dinner at Council Oak or Sandpiper Coastal Bar & Grill and an overnight stay complete the entertainment experience. Those on tighter dining budgets have cheaper quick service options like ordering from a White House sub.
No matter what the reason for the visit, many Hard Rock guests clearly also spend time playing slots and table games. One look at Atlantic City’s 2022 revenue results is enough to see that the property’s land-based revenue for June was at $44.5 million. And that’s good enough for a nearly 27% year-over-year increase.
Only the MGM-in possession Borgata fared better with $54.2 million. However, that number fell by 4%.
Keep in mind that these numbers do not include NJ gambling revenue from mobile apps such as Hard Rock online casino.
So the HRHCAC brand continues to be a hit with Atlantic City audiences. Even with property president Joe Lupo Hard Rock goes to Las Vegas and remains committed to providing an overall fun experience for AC customers.