A strip club will open for the first time inside an Atlantic City casino as gambling venues try to halt a decline in revenue worth billions of dollars.
Scores, the famous New York strip club, will open a satellite establishment inside the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort next month.
Although burlesque nights are regularly held in the resort city, it will be the first strip club to open inside one of the world famous casinos since gambling was legalized 35 years ago.
Bob Gans, the Trump Taj Mahal’s managing partner, said a strip club is a ‘natural’ next step.
He said: ‘We feel this is the third leg of the Atlantic City triangle: gambling, alcohol and adult entertainment.’
Atlantic City has suffered from a drop visitor numbers since 2006 when the first casino opened in Pennsylvania.
In the past eight years revenue has fallen from $5.2billion to just over $3billion as it has struggled with new competition.
Thousands of jobs have been lost in the decline that shows no signs of ending.
In addition to family-friendly attractions like a revamped Steel Pier amusement park, the return of the Miss America pageant and free outdoor light shows on Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City has been looking for other ways to separate people and their money.
The seaside resort has a century-old reputation as an adult playground, so it’s somewhat surprising it took this long for strippers to make their way inside the gambling halls.
Mr Gans is investing $25million in the newest Scores, which will open September 12 with five private VIP rooms, 11 stripper poles and an ultra-VIP room for celebrities and high-rollers.
Cover charges will range from $10 to $30.
The club’s Diamond Dollars, which cash-strapped customers can charge to their credit cards, come with a steep 20 per cent markup: $100 worth of club dollars costs $120.
New Jersey laws governing casinos prohibit total nudity so strippers at Scores can only undress to G-strings and pasties – small fabric patches that cover nipples.
Lap dances are prohibited, as is any simulation of sexual activity.
Mr Gans is confident Scores will succeed, even in a city with four other strip clubs, including one with all-nude dancers.
‘There are 30million people who come to Atlantic City every year.
‘You have the safety of a hotel casino, and we have the right brand and the know-how to do something that hasn’t been done before. We can be the Pied Piper here.’
While Las Vegas is known for its racy offerings, there are no strip clubs inside any Sin City casinos.
One pool venture did not fare as well. The Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino partnered with a strip club to run a topless pool at the casino, but the casino shut it down in 2009 after an undercover bust resulted in 11 arrests for various prostitution charges.