Las Vegas and Atlantic City.
No two cities in the US are compared as much as these two- and for a good reason. Both places are, without a doubt, capitals of gambling and tourism in their own right. Deciding on the best is subjective and a matter of personal taste.
While Atlantic City and Las Vegas both have their charms and flaws, geographically, they are a world apart.
Atlantic City or AC, as it's popularly known, is located on Absecon Island on the Atlantic Coast, while Las Vegas is in Nevada, a desert area. Climate-wise, Atlantic City comes off at an advantage with its sea-side breeze. But if hot weather and sand in your boots is your kind of jazz, Las Vegas is your city.
There is no arguing that Las Vegas is way ahead when it comes to casinos, with the top two famous casinos, MGM Grand and Bellagio casino, being situated here.
AC was initially designed as a resort town, but in 1976, the city legalized casino gambling to revive a dying city. So much so that it inspired the US version of the monopoly game. Atlantic City was going to be the next Las Vegas when its first casino opened in May 1978. However, Las Vegas is still the gambling capital of the world, with nearly thirty casinos. Atlantic has only nine active casinos.
Straight out of the movies
Both Atlantic City and Las Vegas cater to tourists; therefore, lavish hotels with spas, restaurants, and fitness centers are typical. But in all fairness, the sandy town in Nevada takes the win here. Las Vegas is synonymous with dazzlement and over-the-top appeal. The place of ultimate glamour.
But Atlantic City is not far behind in breathtaking architecture. The two places that rank top in AC are The Hard Rock Hotel Casino and Ocean Casino Resort. These places are close to being in the same league as Park MGM (formerly the Monte Carlo).
The Borgata is a close contender with tasteful furnishings and boasts of games and slot machines to satisfy the curious bunch. It is also home to the only racebook in Atlantic City.
Nailing the Vegas entertainment scene is like hitting a moving target. Beyond mob glorification in pop culture, it's easy to write off Las Vegas as a party city and convention town and nothing more.
But Las Vegas has done a good job of adding entertainment options. The arts scene is growing, and it hosts some of the world's best shows. The city is bordered by some of the best hiking and climbing spots in the west.
The only attraction that Atlantic City has that gives the city an edge is a boardwalk. Atlantic City has failed to diversify and use innovative ideas to make it the go-to place. Atlantic City's number of visitors has been declining every year since 2005.