Tropicana Atlantic City Review for May 2024

Matt Bridger

Updated by

Matt Bridger

Writer

Michael Graham

Fact Checked by

Michael Graham

Content Editor

Last Updated on 13th May 2024, 11:23 AM

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Tropicana, also known as The Trop, is the third largest hotel in Atlantic City, and the largest that is located directly on the Boardwalk, a five-and-a-half-mile promenade which runs adjacent to the Atlantic City beachfront.  

Now, the term ‘resort’ is banded about regularly when describing America’s casino hotels, sometimes without merit. However, it is a term that truly befits The Trop as this property boasts six hotel towers, more than 30 restaurants, 30 shops, four swimming pools, an IMAX theatre, a showroom, and two 2,500-space parking garages. In fact, it is a property that you could quite happily spend a long weekend in and never feel the need to leave. 

In this review I’ll explain all the various options on offer, along with the pros and cons, to help you decide if The Trop is the resort for your next Atlantic City adventure.  

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♦️ Tropicana Hotel and Casino Overview

The Ambassador Hotel was the original structure built on the parcel of land now occupied by The Trop. It opened in 1919, at a cost of $4 million, and closed in the 1970s.

In 1978, the Ramada hotel chain purchased the derelict Ambassador building for £35million, with a view to renovating it into The Phoenix Hotel & Casino. However, they had to alter their plans when the design was denied by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission, who preferred casino operators to build new properties from scratch rather than converting existing buildings. 

Ramada was therefore ordered to demolish the existing hotel and start from the ground up. However, following the threat of an appeal an agreement was reached whereby they could use only the steel framework of the old Ambassador building.

Ramada bought the now-closed Tropicana Resort & Casino in Las Vegas in December 1979, and following this they decided to call their new East Coast project Tropicana Atlantic City, with the property opening under that name on 23rd November 1981.

Various expansions and changes followed, including a renaming to TropWorld in 1988 before changing back to Tropicana in 1996. Things eventually turned sour, though, and the renewal of its casino licence was declined in 2007 due to poor regulatory compliance.

The property was bought out of bankruptcy by a group of creditors in 2010, and Tropicana Entertainment Inc. were approved by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission as the new owners, with the casino licence reinstated.

In 2018, Gaming and Leisure Properties (GLP) acquired the real estate of The Trop, with Eldorado Resorts (later Caesars Entertainment) acquiring its operating business. All that makes obviously makes Tropicana more suitable for those who enjoy more vintage style gambling venues rather than brand new casinos

Location

When deciding on the location for your Atlantic City getaway, you can either opt for a resort on the Boardwalk or one further inland in the Marina District. Both of these areas are independent of each other, and a taxi is required to travel between them. As this was my first visit, plus the fact that I adore beach resorts, I opted to stay on the Boardwalk and I am pleased to say that I definitely made the right decision. 

Tropicana Atlantic City is located at the south end of the Boardwalk, slightly further down from Caesars and Bally’s. It is therefore extremely convenient for the beach and marks the last pick up/drop off point for the Boardwalk Tram Service. 

I found the tram service to be the most convenient way to explore the Boardwalk area, with it running from The Trop to Ocean Casino throughout the day and early evening. Tickets are $4 for a single fare ($2 for children under 12) and $10 for an all-day pass. Operating hours vary by season.

My visit to Atlantic City was over a weekend during early summer and I found it to be the perfect summer getaway. The Boardwalk was vibrant, with an extremely friendly vibe, it was well patrolled by Security staff, and any reservations I had about the area being unsafe were quickly dispelled. Granted, there are some shuttered buildings and old casinos now closed but it did not detract from my enjoyment in any way. 

Quick Info

🪪 Membership required:❌  No, but encouraged 
👔 Dress code:❌  No
🏧 ATMs:✔️ Yes, but with fees
🚘 Parking:✔️ Yes
♿ Wheelchair accessible:✔️ Yes
🛏️ On-site accommodation:✔️ Yes
🍴 On-site restaurant:✔️ Yes, multiple
🍹 Free drinks and snacks:

✔️ Yes, via waitresses (table games) and automatic ordering (slots)

🚬 Smoking:✔️ Yes, but only in certain areas

🎰 Tropicana Casino Review

Tropicana Atlantic City boasts 125,935 square feet of casino space, filled with more than 3,000 slot machines and 132 table games. It has been part of Caesars Entertainment’s recent $400 million Las Vegas style makeover of its three Atlantic City properties, which in terms of the casino space included a refresh of the main casino floor and a revamped players club area. 

I found the casino to be very well maintained and exceptionally clean with palm trees, Havana inspired colours and highly polished floors. The slot selection is spread over two floors, with a smaller slots area located down the escalators and adjacent to the Marketplace food area.  

Table Games Selection

Table game players are well catered for at Tropicana Atlantic City, with over 130 games on offer. 

Blackjack, Craps, Roulette, Baccarat, and various carnival poker games can easily be found, and The Trop also hosts the only open poker room on the Atlantic City Boardwalk, located next to the Boogie Nights nightclub.

The main game in The Trop’s poker room is 1/2 no-limit Texas Hold’em and only cash games are dealt as tournaments are currently suspended. Poker tables seat up to nine players and the room opens at 11am Monday to Friday and closes at 5am Sunday to Thursday. It’s open 24 hours each weekend.       

Buy in for the main cash game of 1/2 no-limit Texas Hold’em is $60-$300, although busier hours of the day may see 1/3 no-limit Hold’em with a buy in of $100-$500, or a 2/5 game with buy ins of $200-$1000. 

Tropicana offers four promotions within its poker room:

  • Bad Beat Jackpot: Four of a kind qualifier that gets lower as the jackpot grows.
  • High Hands: Running from noon until midnight, the prize is $300 per hour and the minimum qualifying hand is aces full of kings. Should no player make that hand during the hour, the prize is rolled into the next hour’s prize.
  • Any player that makes a royal flush using both hole cards receives $100 at any time.
  • Players receive a ‘rakeback’ depending on the number of hours played during the month. 50–89 hours earns you $75, 90-129 hours earns £150 and 130+ hours is $300. Awards are available from the second of the following month.     

In the main casino area the following table games are available:

Classic table games:

  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Craps
  • Baccarat
  • Poker
  • Big Six Wheel

Variants:

  • Three Card Poker
  • Four Card Poker
  • Caribbean Stud Poker
  • Texas Hold’em Bonus
  • Let It Ride
  • Criss Cross Poker
  • Hi Card Flush
  • Double Attack Blackjack
  • Spanish 21
  • Pai Gow Poker
  • Pai Gow Tiles

In terms of table minimums, it can massively vary according to the time of the day and whether or not you are playing at weekends. This is quite standards in casinos, though, so if you’re looking for low table minimums, I’d recommend avoiding peak times such as weekends and evenings. 

As a rough guide though, here is what you can expect at The Tropicana. 

 MinMax
Eight Deck Blackjack$10$500
Six Deck Blackjack$25$1000
Double Zero Roulette$10$2000
Single Zero Roulette$50$5000
Three Card Poker$5$1000
Four Card Poker$5$200
Caribbean Stud$5$500
Texas Hold'em Bonus$5$500
Let It Ride$5$500
Criss Cross Poker$5$500
Hi card Flush$5$500
Double Attack Blackjack $10$500
Spanish 21$10$500
Craps (5x odds)$10$200
Mini-Baccarat$25$10000
Pai Gow Poker$25$3000
Pai Gow Tiles$25$3000
Big Six Wheel$2$50

Slots Selection

Slots are my game and I wasn’t left disappointed at The Trop!

Fans of old school reels should head to the second level casino floor by the Il Verdi restaurant for a good selection of multi-denom, three-reel machines. Your traditional slot needs will also be met in the slots area located down the escalator adjacent to the Marketplace food court.

Fans of new slots such as Huff N’ More Puff, Dragon Link, Luxury Line, Golden Fire Link and Dancing Drums Power Trio will find an excellent selection throughout the entire casino floor.

The slots at The Trop are roughly in line with that offered at its sister property Caesars, with 3000 machines spread over two floors and, overall, my experience over a couple of sessions was very positive. I enjoyed the casino space a lot with its Cuban type feel and the place was pretty lively. Casino staff were plentiful, very attentive, and everyone seemed to be having a lot of fun. My luck was also pretty good, particularly on Huff N’ More Puff, and I left with a small profit.

With me being a loyal Caesars Rewards players card member, I also found it convenient that Caesars has two properties located on the Boardwalk adjacent to each other (well, a five-to-ten-minute walk apart). 

For me this meant I could be loyal to the Caesars brand (and make the most of the rewards program) yet enjoy the benefit of being able to casino hop between properties depending on my luck and general mood. This has always been important when considering my overall gaming experience.

Waitress Service

Now, we all know that one of the perks of gambling in person rather that at the best online casinos are the free drinks on offer while you are playing. However, one of the frustrations with this almost everywhere is the regularity, or lack of, waitress service in most casinos. This is not a problem at The Trop, though, as for slot players the drinks are ordered at the machine once the player has qualified for one.

I was incredibly impressed with this system during my stay at Caesars, and it is no different at The Trop. Play is tracked via your Caesars Rewards players card and once you qualify for a free drink it is indicated via a green light on the system. This allows you to select a drink from a number of beers, wines, spirits and cocktails.  

During my sessions at The Trop, I was gambling around $5 a spin and qualified for a free drink every half a dozen spins or so, with the only other restriction being that you are only able to order one drink every 20 minutes. It is however worth noting that the system only allows you to order a single drink at a time which is not ideal if you are a couple playing a machine together.

Overall, however, I love this system and it certainly beats the frustration of hunting down an available waitress, only to sit down on a machine you don’t necessarily want to play while you wait for her to return. We’ve all been there, right?

An additional benefit of this system is that you are able to save your favourite drinks for easy selection next time, and once the order has been prepared the system is updated to advise you that the drink is on its way.

This, in my opinion, is the best way for casinos to manage the whole comped drinks process. Players are left happy, the casino is comfortable that they are only rewarding genuine gamblers, and hopefully it results in higher tips for the waitress staff. 

In terms of table games, waitress service is offered in the traditional way, although in my experience this tends to be far more regular due to the volume of orders the waitress is able to accumulate during a single visit.

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Upstairs for old-school

Old-school three-wheel slots are becoming harder to find in casinos nowadays, but Tropicana Atlantic City has a big selection of them on the second floor.

Bar-Top Gaming

As with most US casino resorts, bar-top gaming is available at Tropicana Atlantic City.

If you decide to sit at a bar-top game, you don’t have to play it. However, you should consider it, particularly if you initially sat down simply to order a drink, as you can receive comped drinks in return. As with the slots, this works on the same green light system, with the machine telling you when you have qualified for a drink. 

Bar-top games are limited to Video Poker, Blackjack, Keno, and some older slot games, although it can still be a lot of fun and a very sociable way of spending a few hours, with regular interaction between bar staff and players often the norm. 

If you are into your bar-top games I would recommend heading to the 10 North Lounge, which is a favourite with players.

Tropicana Atlantic City Sportsbook

The Caesars Sportsbook at Tropicana, which like many is operated by William Hill, is one of the largest in Atlantic City. 

The main betting and viewing lounge is 5,000 square feet, with over 1,654 square feet of LED screens. The main spectator board can display up to 16 games at one time and the opening hours are: 

Monday: 10am – 12am, Tuesday and Wednesday: 12pm – 8pm, Thursday: 10am – 12am, Friday: 10am – 1am, Saturday: 9am – 1am and Sunday: 9am – 12am.    

High Limit Gaming at Tropicana Atlantic City

Tropicana Atlantic City features a High Limit Slot Room which was introduced in 2016 and is located just off Palm Walk. It features more than 175 machines spread over 11,000 square feet of gaming space.  

The slot selection is comprehensive and includes a wide selection of games, both old and new: Smokin’ Hot Stuff Wicked Wheel, Fortunes Ablaze, Mayan Chief, Festival of Riches, Triple Coin Treasures, Red Hottie, Dancing Drums Power Trio and even Triple Top Dollar.

Minimum bets on many machines are $5 upwards, so you don’t necessarily need to be a high roller to play, and as with many high limit rooms the gaming is a lot quieter than on the main casino floor. This makes for a great place to relax, enjoy a drink, and gamble without any distractions.

For high limit Blackjack players, there are eight tables in the table game area offering six-deck Blackjack at a minimum bet of $100 up to $6,000. 

Cash and Payment Options

When it comes to gambling in Atlantic City, cash is required, and whilst most shops and restaurants prefer you to pay by card these days this is not the case on the casino floor. It is therefore important that you bring enough cash to gamble at the level you are planning to, plus a bit extra for emergencies.

Of course, ATM services are offered, and cash withdrawals in excess of your daily ATM limit are available at the Cashier Cage. However, be warned that these come with fees which can sometimes run to $100 or more so should be avoided wherever possible.  

The biggest upside of it being a cash venue is that you can get your winnings quicker than even fast payout online casinos. Just take your TITO or chips to the cashier’s cage or one of the TITO redemption terminals.

126K Sq. Ft Venue
130+ Live Tables
2 Entertainment Spaces
3K Slot Machines
24/7 Always Open

💰 Tropicana Casino Bonuses and Promotions

Tropicana is one of three properties in Atlantic City run by Caesars Entertainment, the others being Caesars Atlantic City (also on the Boardwalk) and Harrah’s (located in the Marina District). One benefit of this is that all of these properties operate under one reward programme, called Caesars Rewards.

If you are a regular gambler then you would be very short-sighted not to join Caesars Rewards as it provides great benefits, depending on your play and tier level. The higher the tier, the better the rewards:

  • Gold (0 - 4999 Reward Credits): Free or discounted room stays
  • Platinum (5000 – 14,999 Reward Credits): One free night for every 5,000 points earnt
  • Diamond (15,000 – 24,999 Reward Credits): No Resort Fee on any hotel stay
  • Diamond Plus (25,000 – 74,999 Reward Credits): Complimentary access to the VIP Laurel Lounge (where available)
  • Diamond Elite (75,000 – 149,999 Reward Credits): $600 airfare credit to Las Vegas
  • Seven Stars (150,000+ Reward Credits): $1,200 airfare credit to any Caesars Rewards destination, transportation to and from the airport, plus $500 dining credit

To sign up you need to be at least 21 years of age and have some photographic ID. Just go along to the Caesars Rewards desk at any Caesars resort to register. 

Once registered, simply inset the card into any slot machine before you play or hand it to a dealer when you play at a table game. Reward credits can also be accumulated by showing your card in participating shops and restaurants.    

Tropicana Atlantic City features a VIP Laurel Lounge which offers complimentary food and drink and is open to all members at Diamond level and above. Access is complimentary for Diamond Plus and Seven Stars members, with Diamond and Diamond Elite members charged 1,000 Reward Credits per hour. The Diamond Lounge is a great benefit for Caesars Rewards members and I highly recommend taking advantage of it.     

Should you join Caesars Rewards?

For years I never joined any reward programmes and told myself that I jumped between casinos too much to make being loyal to a particular brand worth my while. At the same time, I happily paid for every hotel room I ever booked and thought nothing of it. With hindsight, that was a big mistake.

Even if you only gamble moderately there are benefits to be had. I find Caesars Rewards particularly generous with their offers of free hotel rooms, although you will still need to pay Resort Fees unless you are at Diamond level or above - $39 including tax at The Trop. However, based on play it is sometimes possible to get these fees waived at the end of your stay with a visit to the Caesars Rewards desk prior to check out.  

With Caesars Rewards you receive one Reward Credit for every $5 you play at their slot machines. Credits at table games are based on your average bet along with how long you play. You can also earn bonus Reward Credits for achieving certain daily targets. In addition, you receive one Reward Credit for every $1 spent at participating restaurants and shops, with everything tracked on the Caesars Rewards app and updated in real time.  

Ultimately, reward programmes are designed to entice you back to a property and Caesars Rewards is no exception. Personally, I would avoid chasing tier status and just gamble normally using the card at all times. Then just sit back, relax, and see what offers come your way. 

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Become a Caesar

Caesars Rewards is one of the best casino rewards programs you can join because of how many venues it covers. It's definitely one you should be signing up to. 

🛏️ Tropicana Hotel and Resort

Tropicana Atlantic City Rooms

The Trop is the third largest hotel in Atlantic City and offers almost 2,400 rooms spread across six towers:

  • North Tower: The original tower, with 521 rooms and last renovated in 2014/15
  • South Tower: 379 rooms and last renovated in 2018
  • West Tower: 604 rooms and last renovated in 2013
  • Havana Tower: Opened in 2003 with 502 rooms and last renovated in 2016
  • Chelsea Tower: Formerly the Chelsea Hotel and connected to The Trop by a skybridge. The smallest tower at 358 rooms
  • Annex Tower: Low rise building within the Chelsea Tower

In my opinion, the best rooms can be found in the Havana and South Towers as these are the most recently renovated and are maintained very well. The North and West towers can be somewhat hit and miss, with clean and worn rooms in equal measure. I would however avoid rooms in the Chelsea Tower and Annex at all costs as these are by far the most worn in the entire hotel.

Overall, I would recommend an ocean view room in either the Havana or South Towers. 

Tropicana Atlantic City Pool

The Trop has a great pool scene, both in and out of season. There are three pool areas in total, including one indoor pool for use during the winter months. The two outdoor pools are as follows:

Blue Parrot Pool: Located on the 6th floor of the North Tower and family friendly. Whilst the pool itself is fairly small the sunbed area is large and the vibe very relaxed. 

Chelsea Pool: Located over the skybridge in the Chelsea Tower and adults only (21+). This pool area is compact and has a much more upbeat vibe with DJs often in residence. However, the main issue here is that the hotel tower blocks the sun from about 2:30pm so by mid-afternoon the whole area is under shade. It is certainly worth bearing this in mind if sunbathing is high on your list of priorities.         

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Choose your Tower wisely

Try to avoid the Chelsea and Annex Towers if you can. The rooms are okay, but not up to the standard of the rest of the property. 

Bars

The Tropicana has a great selection of bars to suit all tastes.

  • 10 North Lounge: A lounge with a double-sided fireplace and bar-top gaming
  • Anthem: A Vegas style nightclub with a Miami vibe
  • Boogie Nights: Featuring music from the 70s and 80s every Friday and Saturday night
  • Firewaters Saloon: Featuring live music and a western theme
  • Gin Rickey’s: Cocktail bar with live music
  • Kiss Kiss Nightclub: Rotating DJs and live performances
  • Planet Rose Karaoke Bar
  • Purple Zebra: Daiquiris to go
  • Tango’s Lounge: Cocktails, live music and dancing
  • The Royce: Craft cocktails, bar snacks and old school games

Restaurants

Tropicana Atlantic City boasts a huge selection of restaurants, with the higher scale establishments situated in The Quarter, an undercover Havana themed dining and shopping complex located within the resort. There are also plenty of quick bites available at The Marketplace food court area located down the escalator from the main casino floor. 

The Quarter offers the following dining options:

  • Carmine’s: The food here is homestyle Italian cuisine, which is absolutely delicious, and Carmine’s is without doubt the standout restaurant at The Trop. However, be warned, the portion sizes here are insanely large so you will certainly be taking home a box full of leftovers after your meal!
  • Cuba Libre: Authentic Cuban cuisine
  • The Palm Steakhouse
  • Broadway Burger
  • La Petite Creperie
  • PF Chang’s: Authentic Chinese food and Asian cuisine

Shows and Entertainment

Tropicana boasts a 2,000-seat showroom within the resort, although there is no long-term resident show on offer. Instead, one off musical and sporting events are hosted so be sure to check the listings before your visit.

In addition, The Trop has an IMAX Theatre showing the latest movies, which is the only Giant Screen Certified IMAX Theatre in Southern New Jersey as well as the only movie theatre in Atlantic City.    

💭 My Tropicana Verdict

The offering at Tropicana is up there with the higher-end Atlantic City resorts such as Borgata, Ocean and Caesars. The casino space is excellent, and offers a great slot selection, which is probably comparable with Caesars but not quite up there with Ocean or Borgata in terms of comprehensiveness. I especially enjoyed the automated drinks service on the casino floor which worked as well at The Trop as it did at Caesars next door.

Bar and restaurant choice is excellent with multiple options available. I especially recommend Carmine’s for plentiful homestyle Italian cuisine. Simply delicious!

Accommodation wise, whilst you have six towers and many room types to choose from, I can only really recommend a stay in either the Havana or South Towers, ideally with an ocean view.

Overall, there is a lot to like at Tropicana Atlantic City and I look forward to returning during a future visit.     

What I Liked and Didn't Like

Liked
Great location right on the Boardwalk
Well maintained casino space with a great slot selection
Excellent comped drinks service via the green light system
Multiple restaurant and bar options to suit all tastes
Carmine’s outstanding Italian cuisine
Good three-reel slots collection
Didn't like
The standard of accommodation can be below par in the North, West and Chelsea Towers and Annex
The Chelsea hotel tower blocks the sun from the Chelsea pool area from mid-afternoon onwards

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Meet The Author

26 Years
Experience
Matt Bridger
Matt Bridger
Writer Writer

Matt Bridger has been a regular visitor to Las Vegas since 1998 and has enjoyed over 50 trips to Sin City since then. He is an experienced slot player in both the UK & US, and recently completed a three-week gambling road trip frequenting casinos across America from the east to west coast. Matt also has a successful YouTube channel and has been vlogging his gambling trips in Las Vegas since 2014.

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