The Playboy, The Penthouse and Donald Trump...




ATLANTIC CITY, March 8, 1978
—Penthouse Ineelciational acquired a multimillion‐dollar gambling casino site on the Boardwalk today a block from a casino site !planned by its publishing rival, Playboy Enterprises.

Penthouse announced that it had taken a 99‐year irrevocable lease on the Holiday Inn. No terms were disclosed.

Robert Guccione, owner of Penthouse, said iri an interview that he also had an option to buy the 392‐room Holiday Inn from the owner, Helmsley‐Spear of New York, and would probably exercise it within a year.

Mr. Guccione said that renovation would begin promptly and that he hoped to have a casino in operation in six months. He said the state's investigation of Penthouse prior to issuing a license should be relatively brief because he and two associates are the only principals in the projected casino operation.

Might Be First Casino

As a result, he said, Penthouse might be the first or second to open a casino in Atlantic City.

Resorts International expects to be first. It has nearly completed renovation of its hotel on the Boardwalk, but it has been ‘linable to get a license because the state's investigation, underway since last year, is expected to take until next fall.

The opening may be speeded if the Legislature acts on a bill introduced in the Assembly Monday to permit temporary licensing while investigations continue.

The only other applicant for a license so far, the Bally Manufacturing Company of Chicago, has a boardwalk site but will not begin construction for some time.

Playboy, Caesars World and others have acquired Boardwalk sites but none has applied for a casino license. All have had difficulty obtaining financing

Resorts International and Penthouse acquired existing hotels that could be renovated, so their start‐up costs are much less. Mr. Guccione said renovation of the Holiday Inn and the Four Seasons Motel and construction to link the two would cost less than $20 million.

Penthouse acquired the entire block from the Boardwalk to Pacific Avenue and Missouri Street to Columbia Place, buying the 122‐room Four Seasons for $2.7 million and leasing the Holiday.

Penthouse also contracted recently to buy two other boardwalk hotels a few blocks away, the Mayflower and the Fredonia, Mr. Guccione said they would be razed and replaced with a $75 million casino‐hotel, to be financed from profits from the first casino.

He said that Penthouse is also seeking additional Boardwalk property for a third casino‐hotel, and that the company's long‐term investment in Atlantic City could reach $200 million.

ATLANTIC CITY, March 8 (AP)—Public Safety Commissioner Edwin Roth announced today that 35 policemen and 60 one fire company and half the city'l beaches would be closed to bring the city budget in line with state‐imposed limits.

Meanwhile, Police Chief William ten Brink called on Gov. Brendan T. Byrne to delay the opening of casino gambling here, contending that the city's police could not guarantee the safety of future gamblers because of the personnel cuts.

Associated Press

The Noileay Inn that Penthouse has leased in Atlantic City

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A version of this archives appears in print on March 9, 1978, on Page B23 of the New York edition with the headline: Penthouse Acquires Site for Casino On the Boardwalk Near Playboy's. Order Reprints| Today's Paper|Subscribe

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