Happy birthday Trump Taj

I somehow missed celebrating one of the biggest milestones in Atlantic City gaming history earlier this month: on April 2, the Trump Taj Mahal celebrated its 20th anniversary. But I did write a little about the road to opening in this month’s Casino Connection:

Even before Atlantic City’s first casino, Resorts International, opened in 1978, its owners planned to build a second, 1,000-room building on the site of the old Chalfonte Hotel. They even built a bridge to the site—a bridge that still goes nowhere.

In 1980, Harrah’s bought the Chalfonte land. Resorts President James Crosby then turned his sights to Pennsylvania and Virginia avenues, envisioning a 38-story hotel atop a massive convention complex. A sky bridge would link it to a renovated Steel Pier, whose attractions would bring back the glory days of Atlantic City.

The enormous resort—more than twice the size of the average casino—needed a theme. A Venetian theme was considered, as was a Byzantine look. Architect Francis X. Dumont finally decided to model it after a marble mausoleum built in India in the 17th century. The Taj Mahal was a curious inspiration for a casino, but its onion domes and minarets became Dumont’s design signature.

via The Crown Jewel | The Crown Jewel | Casino Connection Atlantic City.

As I’ve probably said before, I used to work at the Taj, so this was a fun one to write. As usual, there was way too much to include for the article space, so a few things have been cut between my last draft and the published article.

I guess it’s appropriate to remember the opening at a time when Trump appears to be ready to rebuild his casino empire, yet again.

Spread the love