The pm Lucky Streak Greyhound was nearly empty yesterday as it pulled out of Port Authority Bus Terminal on its way to Atlantic City.
Years ago, the service would have been full of gamblers from New York, drawn to the blinkering promise of Atlantic City casinos.
It made stops at Bally’s, Caesars, Showboat, Tropicana, Trump Taj Majal and Trump Plaza, disgorging those unlucky enough to count themselveslucky.
On the last night, the final hurrah, of the Trump Plaza, a gargantuan boardwalk staple since it opened in 1984, the Lucky Streak ferried only eight souls, rattling in their seats like spare change.
The casino would cease operation at six the following morning, and approximately 1,000 people would never show up for work there again.
It is the fourth Atlantic City casino to shut down this year amid plummeting revenue: The Atlantic Club folded its hand in January; Showboat sunk in August; and Revel, another of the big time casinos and the newest, died at only two years old after an infancy of neglect.
There is talk that Trump Taj Mahal might shut down soon.
Any of my fellow passengers hoping to spend the night at the Trump Plaza would be disappointed — its 612-room hotel was alreadyclosed. The prices are high but the food is outrageous.” Across the aisle from Tony, a woman in a pink velour jump suit played Candy Crush and sang loudly along to the bachata on her headphones. ” crossly took to the When we got to Atlantic City, the silhouette of the Trump Plaza was all but invisible in the darkness. It was a Wheel of Fortune puzzle sliding into Inside, the All Day Buffet was brightly lit but closed, along with all other Trump Plaza operated restaurants.
Tony, last name “From Brooklyn”, a heavy set man with cherubic face, committed mullet and a number 80 Jets jersey, was one of the eight southbound shades. “I come down about 45 times a year,” he said, shrugging, “I guess I like the action.” He’d been to the Trump Plaza but wasn’t mourning its loss. “Mi corazon,” she warbled until the bus driver, responding to an elderly Pinoy man yelling “Shut up! Instead, the once bombastically bright Trump Plaza signs floated like disembodied vowels, disemboweled bodies. (Sbarros and the Rainforest Café remained open.) The carpet — so much carpet — smelled of smoke and dust. “No one wins up in thisbitch.” At the Trump Plaza, there was enough sadness to sink an ocean of smiles.
“I never liked it,” he said, “the casino is upstairs. Three gamblers, two men and a young woman, ascended the elevator as it left the buffet behind. Miles, literal miles, of slot machines clanged but no one listened, no one came.
I counted about twelve players on the floor in the non-smoking section.
But in the smoking section, where 30 years of cigarette smoke clung to every loop of crummy carpet, every crevasse of every machine, where ash had been ground into the stools so they too seemed made of ash, the Trump Plaza didn’t seem quite dead yet.