Revel Owner Straub also wants Showboat Casino

Is Glenn Straub trying to be the white knight for Atlantic City? Just weeks after moving another step closer towards completing his purchase of the shuttered Revel casino, Straub has announced his intention to buy the closed Showboat casino for $26 million.

Combining this with the $82 million that he’s paying for the Revel, that makes for $108 million spent on revitalizing Atlantic City this year. But the Florida real estate developer doesn’t plan to stop here because he also wants to spend a half-billion dollars on redevelopment projects in the struggling East Coast gambling mecca.

But if Straub is going to add Showboat in his real-life game of Monopoly, he may have a legal fight on his hands. After all, Stockton University was previously set to buy Showboat, until Trump Entertainment Resorts intervened. Trump Entertainment, which owns the Taj Mahal casino, signed a 1988 binding agreement that states how Showboat can’t be used for anything other than a casino. When Trump Entertainment moved to reinforce this agreement against Stockton, which bought the casino from Caesars for $18 million, the college began talks with Straub.

The company’s main problem with Stockton University is that they don’t want a college satellite campus located right next to the Taj Mahal, which could encourage students under the age of 21 to sneak in and gamble/drink. So it’ll be interested to see if Straub’s proposal for the Showboat – whatever it may be – appeals more to Trump Entertainment’s vision for the Taj Mahal.

As the Courier-Post reports, Showboat fits into Straub’s $500 million plan to revitalize Atlantic City, which has been dubbed “The Phoenix Project.” He described the interesting name by saying, “As the name of the project signals, the Phoenix rises out of the ashes to be reborn and will evolve to include diversified collection of projects including eight parts designed to show that the American dream is still alive and well.”

Some of the proposed ideas thrown out for Showboat and Revel include a water park, an extreme sports complex and a poker room/entertainment facility. There’s a strong chance that Straub has other non-casino visions in mind for diversifying various Atlantic City properties. In all, he expects Project Phoenix to take three years to complete, at which time he can hopefully help spark a turnaround in Atlantic City.