In this episode of TropCast, Anthony and Maureen get the inside scoop on one of Tropicana’s newest attractions, Escape AC! Listen in as creators and owners, Steve Peto and Lisa Benninger tell their story from stumbling upon the idea in Bratislava to making it come to life in Atlantic City! Then stick around as Anthony has some great promotions from TropicanaCasino.com that fit in perfectly with our Beach Bash celebration on property!
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00:00 Anthony: We have a special, special treat going on, it’s called Escape AC, which is such a great concept. You told me about it because…
00:10 Maureen: I did. I’m in the know.
00:12 Anthony: You are in the know, I am not.
00:14 Maureen: Correct.
00:15 Anthony: I know nothing.
00:16 Maureen: You’re kind of a loser.
00:17 Anthony: I am a loser.
00:18 Maureen: A little behind. Should I keep going? No?
00:20 Anthony: Sure, why not? I don’t know if that really matters. [chuckle] You can’t insult me. It’s true, you’re right, I’m behind. But here’s what I do I like to go back and I love to get lost into something. When you told me Escape AC, I was like, “Oh my God, this is right up my alley.” And so we have the founders of Escape AC, Steve Peto who’s an engineer by trade. And Lisa Benninger who is an interior designer. They’re geniuses these people. Alright, we got them on the line. I love creative people, I love people that think about things. And then, they make their great ideas come to life. See, I have a lot of great ideas but they just don’t come to life. [chuckle]
01:08 Maureen: They’re in a holding pattern.
01:09 Anthony: Right, yeah. How are you Steve and Lisa?
01:12 Steve: We’re great.
01:14 Lisa: We’re great Maureen and Anthony, thank you for having us.
01:16 Anthony: Oh, it’s a pleasure, and I was joking around about how… It’s one thing to have an idea, but it’s another thing to have an idea and a vision and have execution and be able to bring that idea to life. So, tell me the genesis of Escape AC and like the…
01:36 Steve: Escape AC.
01:38 Anthony: Yes.
01:38 Steve: Actually Escape AC, Atlantic City.
01:41 Anthony: And tell us about Escape Atlantic City in which you went, “You know what? This would be a great idea.”
01:47 Steve: Alright. About a year and a half ago, Lisa who is my partner in business and in life, we were on vacation in Eastern Europe. We were traveling from Poland eventually to Budapest, Hungary because we found out in dating that we were both partially Hungarian. So, we were in Poland…
02:11 Anthony: Wait a second, that is so cool. So, you guys find out you’re both part Hungarian, you go, “You know what? Let’s go to Budapest.”
02:20 Steve: Correct.
02:21 Anthony: By the way, Budapest is an incredible country.
02:25 Lisa: Oh, it’s beautiful.
02:25 Anthony: I mean Budapest, Hungary is a great city, world-class city, and Hungary is a beautiful country. It’s kinda cool that you guys chose that to go there. It’s alright, I don’t wanna interrupt anymore. Tell me about it. Go ahead Steve, so you guys were in Slovakia at this point.
02:46 Steve: No, in this point, we went to Poland then we made our way over to Prague, and we were going to… Next stop was Vienna, Austria and then eventually Budapest, Hungary and fly home from there. Our problem was that four or five days into the future, we had no place to stay on Friday night and it was still maybe Monday. And we were in Prague and we found ourselves at this restaurant on top of the Aria Hotel and our waiter came over, it’s beautiful. Prague is actually known as the city of a thousands spires, or 10,000 spires, I think a thousand spires. And we’re looking at all this, enjoying the church bells throughout dinner. Our waiter comes over, we ordered a bottle of wine and we asked him. We said, “Hey, have you heard anything about Bratislava, Slovakia?” And he’s like, “I’m from there.” And we were like, “Wow, we have no place to stay.” We told him what was going on and, “Would it be great to spend one night?” He goes, “Most definitely.” We were like, “Okay, maybe that seals the deal.” Maybe we’ll go for that Friday since there was a music festival in Vienna, and we couldn’t get a room. So he disappears, comes back maybe 10 minutes, 15 minutes, it was just kind of starting to get a little bit weird how long he took, he came back with our bottle of wine and he said, “My cousin owns a restaurant in Bratislava, Slovakia, you two have reservations for 7 PM with him.”
04:18 Anthony: Get out.
04:19 Lisa: I swear to God.
04:21 Anthony: Ah, that’s cool.
04:22 Lisa: Supposedly his cousin has the number one rated restaurant in Bratislava, so we made it our destination.
04:29 Anthony: Oh, how cool. See, I like free-spirited people. When you guys travel, you guys do it well. You go, “Alright, you know what?” Because you never know when life becomes a journey. It becomes more of a “Let’s go have fun and let’s go be free spirited about things.”
04:47 Steve: Wherever the wind blows.
04:48 Anthony: Oh, very cool.
04:50 Steve: So yeah, Friday, the train pulls up at Bratislava, we looked around and we were like, “Are we really getting off this train?” [chuckle] Bratislava is not exactly tourist-y, it is very Eastern European. We got off the train and during the whole trip, it was the first time we got ripped off coming out of the station.
05:06 Anthony: Oh, no.
05:07 Steve: Yeah, it was raining and it was a long walk to where the hotel area was. And when I was in college, I actually drove a taxicab for a while, and this guy that was offered to take us, we knew that he was totally charging us too much, but Lisa was in the rain and our hair was getting wet and I said, “Okay.”
05:27 Lisa: Still a girl.
05:30 Steve: Yeah. Other than that, it was an amazing city to spend the night. We went and we had dinner at the restaurant that Stefan had booked for us and that night when we got done with dinner, it was about 10:00 PM.
05:47 Anthony: Now, was that in old town, Bratislava? Was that in the…
05:51 Lisa: Yes.
05:51 Anthony: Where there’s no pedestrians?
05:54 Steve: You mean no vehicles.
05:55 Anthony: I mean, excuse me, only pedestrians, yeah.
05:58 Steve: Exactly, yes. They say that Bratislava is very windy, they were not lying. We lost an umbrella within a half hour. It just folds inside-out.
06:09 Steve: Unbelievable.
06:10 Anthony: So is it right on the Danube? Are you right on the river?
06:13 Steve: Yes, yes. Bratislava is interesting because everyone knows Czechoslovakia, and I think in the ’90s the country was split. And Czech Republic had Prague, the capital of what used to be Czechoslovakia, now went to Czech Republic. Slovakia had no capital, so they just picked Bratislava. So it was actually a city that was never supposed to be a capital, but they just decided to make the capital. So it’s weird.
06:41 Anthony: Wow, that’s wild. So, you’re in this town, you’ve already gotten ripped off a little bit…
06:48 Anthony: It’s raining. Now Lisa you were…
06:51 Lisa: I was gonna lose my hair. [chuckle]
06:55 Anthony: So now you have this dinner and you meet… How was he? How was it, what’d you guys have? How was the guy?
07:05 Steve: Victor, the guy’s name was Victor and it was amazing. We ordered a bunch of little things, and he gave us a bunch of little things to try, and I mean I…
07:18 Lisa: Yeah, we were treated very well and it was delicious. I mean everything was so delicious. In Eastern Europe, all of our meals are great, so…
07:26 Steve: Food is outstanding, yep.
07:28 Anthony: What is it known for, though? What’s the, what’s the cuisine?
07:34 Steve: Hearty, right? Would you say?
07:35 Lisa: Yeah, hearty. Like the stuffed cabbage was everywhere, no matter [chuckle] where you go. There was pierogies, stuffed cabbage.
07:42 Steve: Pierogies was another big one.
07:44 Anthony: Stuffed cabbage, the pierogies, see, Maureen and I are big Anthony Bourdain fans.
07:49 Maureen: Mm-hmm.
07:49 Lisa: Oh yeah.
07:50 Anthony: So I was like… When he went to the Czech Republic, I always remember it was one of my favorite ones. So, the fact that you guys are seeing this, experiencing this, is really cool…
08:00 Lisa: It was great.
08:02 Steve: Anthony Bourdain, this is kind of a side-story, but he had gone to this, like meat house for…
08:07 Lisa: Like a butcher shop.
08:08 Steve: Yeah. In Budapest, Hungary, and, when we were there we retraced Anthony Bourdain’s steps and we found the place, and we went in.
08:16 Maureen: How cool!
08:17 Anthony: Get out! I remember the episode.
08:21 Steve: Yeah. Yeah, he went in and he ordered from the window, and it was really great. Hungarian, I must say this. Soon as we got there we were tired, it was late. The first restaurant we went to, we ate out on tables siting on the sidewalk and we told… It was late. The restaurant, I don’t know, closed at 10 pr 11 o’clock and it’s like 10:30. We told them our story a little bit and that we were both Hungarian. And when anybody in Hungary found out that we were Hungarian, I mean it was…
08:52 Lisa: You were family. [chuckle]
08:53 Steve: Yeah, it was unbelievable.
08:54 Anthony: Very cool.
08:54 Steve: They were like, “Have you ever heard of Palinka?” We’re like, “No!” And they’re bringing us out Palinka and all this stuff, and…
09:00 Lisa: It’s just like Hungarian Grappa.
09:02 Anthony: Oh, very nice.
09:04 Steve: Yeah, so it was just, it was… We felt like family, it was really touching.
09:10 Lisa: Oh, so back to our story in Bratislava.
09:12 Anthony: Yeah.
09:13 Anthony: So, let’s go, alright, dateline: Bratislava.
09:14 Maureen: Sorry, we could talk about food all day.
09:15 Anthony: Yeah, food, and drinks, and travel. And it’s part of what makes Atlantic City so cool because you can go here close to home, and you can experience this wonderful kind of getaway, so…
09:30 Steve: Absolutely. There’s so many restaurants and places to go and walk in Atlantic City, it’s…
09:36 Anthony: So Lisa tell me, so you guys are having dinner and when does the idea of Escape AC start to come up?
09:46 Lisa: Well, we didn’t, actually. Not at that point. We were having dinner and it was a rainy night, and after dinner we decided, “Let’s find something to do.” So, I quickly took out my cellphone and looked up number one things to do in Bratislava, Slovakia. And we came up with an escape room. That was the number one thing to do.
10:09 Anthony: Really?
10:10 Lisa: Yeah, we had both heard of them before, but never did one and we knew it would be right up our alley, so, we decided to just go. We didn’t even call, we just went. And I’ll let Steve take the rest of this because this is really a funny story.
10:25 Lisa: And he tells it much, much funnier than me. [chuckle]
10:27 Steve: So we walked maybe a couple of blocks outside of Old Town and really into the neighborhood so to speak. And we end up in this gated building. We walk in, the gate was undone, we knew we had to go to the fourth floor. So we’re walking up the staircase, the building is dark, it’s 10 o’clock at night, we’re in a foreign country, it’s just her and I. And all I’m thinking to myself is, “What did I get us involved in here?” [chuckle] We go down the end of the hall on the fourth floor, and the lady that was there she gives us a little briefing. And turns out this was an old gestapo house, where they interrogate spies and stuff. Yeah, yeah it was pretty crazy.
11:13 Anthony: Wow, that’s wild!
11:13 Steve: And she blindfolds us, and leads us down to the start of this escape room experience. And I still remember, as we’re marching along, blindfolded, I’m listening behind me to see if I hear the creak of floorboards, and I’m like, “I’m grabbing Lisa, and we’re diving out the window.” [chuckle]
11:34 Anthony: Oh, man.
11:36 Steve: Nobody’s ever gonna hear from us again!
11:37 Anthony: Sure!
11:38 Steve: The craziest thing. And, so, they put us in this room, and we were blindfolded.
11:43 Anthony: Look at the, real quick, look at the circumstances in which you wind up there. You’re having dinner, you meet this person who sends you to basically, sends you to that city. Right?
11:56 Steve: Exactly.
11:56 Anthony: You weren’t even thinking about it, and it…
12:00 Steve: Correct.
12:01 Anthony: And the next thing you wind up there and I’m sure, but as you’re blindfolded, walking, you’re going “Huh, could this all be a setup?”
12:09 Steve: Exactly, but there’s no way…
12:11 Anthony: Is this a David Lynch movie?
12:13 Steve: Yeah, right, you see it on a movie, that’s great. [laughter] Exactly. So anyway, we take the blindfold off and there’s like this old record, like giving us not really instructions but a background story, and we were in there an hour and we did not escape. [chuckle] Came close, but we had a great time. And we finished, and it was funny. When we got done, the lady had said to us, “Our payment system is actually broken.” And she’s like “Can you email me when you guys get back to the States and arrange payment?” And I’m like, here I’m not trusting them going down the hallway, and in the end, we left without paying, and they were trusting us to pay them. So it was kinda weird…
13:00 Anthony: What a cool story.
13:02 Steve: Yeah, so we finished our trip, it was amazing. We came back to the United States and, go ahead Lisa.
13:08 Lisa: Yeah well, and then when we came back here, we really enjoyed that experience so much that, I have grown kids and when they came back for a visit, we decided to do an escape room with them, and we did. We had a great time, we did a couple of them here, all local like in the Philadelphia area, and we had a great time. And so Steve and I, we just one day looked at each other, and he and I we are, we were partners in life but separated by many miles because Steve works up in North Jersey and I work down here, we both had professions that were separating us during the week and we only saw each other on weekends basically, so we had always been looking for something that we could do together, and eventually, we started to put two and two together and thinking that “Hey, he’s an engineer and I’m a designer and we are both really clever… “
13:56 Anthony: Oh my god. Perfect.
13:57 Lisa: “And creative people.” We’re like “Hmm, we think that we could do something like this”, and it was sort of the start of it. And we were thinking a little bit more seriously about it and…
14:10 Steve: The biggest question was where do you open something like that?
14:14 Lisa: Yeah.
14:14 Anthony: Sure.
14:15 Steve: And Lisa wanted to do something more financially reasonable and open locally, [chuckle] and I kept saying to her “You can’t open a rollercoaster two miles from Disney World.” Atlantic City gets 30 million tourists a year even on a bad year, and that’s where people are coming. Nobody knows Egg Harbor Township, nobody knows Linwood, no one knows these towns.
14:41 Anthony: Right.
14:42 Steve: You go anywhere in the world and you mention Atlantic City…
14:44 Anthony: It’s iconic.
14:45 Steve: Yeah, absolutely it is. I don’t know what it is, maybe it’s because everyone knows the Atlantic Ocean and this is the one and only Atlantic City, I don’t know what it is. There’s a lot of nostalgia in the city. People, especially away from here… I’m from far North Jersey, like New York area.
15:04 Anthony: Sure.
15:05 Steve: And everyone up there has nothing but love for Atlantic City. They’ve been coming here since they were kids and they don’t see, I think, what locals see, that the city’s hurting a little bit. All they see is the memories and stuff that they’ve had since they’ve been kids. And so I thought the decision was clear, we had to go to Atlantic City. We looked around at some properties there, and we quickly realized, especially Lisa being a local, you can’t open just anywhere in Atlantic City. You really, with the wintertime and the parking and safety, exactly, you had to really get to one of the large hotel casino buildings to really be “in Atlantic City.”
15:49 Anthony: That makes perfect sense. I wanna circle back for a second.
15:51 Steve: Sure.
15:52 Anthony: I’m really fascinated by this escape concept. And so Lisa, ’cause you booked it, had you heard of escape before?
16:05 Lisa: Yes, I’d heard of escape rooms and escape games. I’m trying to think of really how I first heard of it.
16:11 Anthony: And what made you think of, like when you’re there like “Huh, why don’t we just do this?”
16:19 Lisa: Well maybe because they were around locally, like in Philadelphia, nothing within about 60 miles from here.
16:26 Anthony: Right.
16:26 Lisa: But I had heard of them, they started to pop up, and I was intrigued by the idea of being locked in a room and you have to figure out… I’m really I love puzzles, so solving puzzles and things of that nature really appeal to me, so I did know of a concept. And when we were out there just looking on TripAdvisor and finding out what’s the number one thing to do in Bratislava, Slovakia just out of curiosity, and this popped it up, it was just sort of a no-brainer that Steve and I had to do it because we both we love puzzles, we love to solve things.
17:02 Steve: I grew up watching MacGyver, what can I say? [laughter]
17:05 Anthony: Oh, I can make sense, that makes perfect sense. [laughter]
17:10 Lisa: So we just decided to give it a try, and actually Eastern Europe was where this whole concept of escape rooms was born.
17:19 Anthony: Oh, was it really?
17:20 Steve: Yeah.
17:21 Lisa: Yeah, absolutely. There’s controversy whether or not it was Budapest or Asia somewhere, but…
17:28 Steve: It started as video games, escape room video games, and then somebody had the brilliant idea “What if we built a real life one?”
17:37 Anthony: Sure.
17:38 Steve: And that’s kinda how it all began. And that was years before it started in the United States. I think in the United States they’ve been out what now, maybe three years? Four years?
17:48 Lisa: Yeah. Some of the older ones maybe four or five even.
17:51 Steve: But in Europe they were definitely around an extra maybe three or four years before it actually caught on here.
17:57 Lisa: Yeah, exactly, maybe like nine years or so it’s been around.
18:01 Anthony: So it’s all about different themes. Is that correct? Is it all themed?
18:06 Steve: Not all escape rooms are created equally, unfortunately. A lot of escape rooms, unfortunately, are just retrofitted into a strip mall or something like that, where they put some decorations on a wall and give you a back story and you go in. Some of them you’re not even actually locked in. You just do a couple of things and they say “Okay, you’re done.” And then others, hopefully like ours, they’re built from the ground up. You don’t think of a small box of a room, you think secret doors, you think trick passages and a room that’s so immersive that you don’t even need a back story. You just go in and it unfolds as you’re in there.
18:54 Steve: I always like to describe it as going to a movie that you’ve never heard of and you arrive at the movie theater 20 minutes late. You sit down on your seat and you’re like “Who’s that? Who’s that? Is this a horror? Is it a comedy? What’s this all about?” And then the longer you sit in your chair, the more it starts making sense, what it’s about, who the characters are. Escape rooms, especially our escape rooms, are exactly the same thing, they’re a mystery. We’ve turned down television interviews because they wanted to see inside the rooms. The only one who sees inside our rooms besides us are guests that come there. And as soon as they open the door, they’re like “Oh wow.” Boom, the door is closed. Your time starts. [chuckle]
19:36 Anthony: Wow, man. I’m looking at Maureen, and Maureen and I are going, “Huh.” That is really interesting.
19:42 Maureen: What else can you tell us?
19:45 Anthony: It’s so cool because the analogy of going into a movie 20 minutes into it and then try to figure it out is really interesting, because you’re right, it becomes a game to try to get up to speed as quick as possible.
20:03 Maureen: Exactly.
20:03 Lisa: Yeah, that’s very good. Yes. ‘Cause people always wanna know like, “What do we do when we get in there?”
20:09 Maureen: “Do we need an actual key to get out?”
20:11 Lisa: They ask you all these questions, and we’re like, “It’s an escape room. You have to figure that out.”
20:15 Maureen: That’s what it’s all about.
20:16 Lisa: And, bam, that door closes. [laughter]
20:18 Maureen: Exactly.
20:20 Anthony: That is so cool.
20:21 Steve: Yup. And you are definitely locked in our escape rooms, for sure.
20:25 Lisa: Yup.
20:26 Steve: That took a little convincing. Casinos are Class A buildings. Any architects and engineers out there will know what that means. They are the highest life safety standards in the world. And when we first told the fire inspectors, “Hey, we wanna lock people in the room and not tell them where the keys are,” they literally laughed at us and said, “You can’t do that.” And being in a casino-hotel, the way it works in Atlantic City, not only do you have to go to the city of Atlantic City, you must go to the state because gambling is a state activity. So we had to get permission from the state as well. So it was a long process. We actually started over a year ago, and to get all the permits and to seal the deal with Tropicana, so to speak, it took us a year.
21:18 Anthony: Wow! [chuckle]
21:20 Lisa: But well worth it.
21:21 Steve: Oh yeah.
21:22 Anthony: Yeah. Let’s start with, why Atlantic City?
21:30 Steve: Why Atlantic City? As I mentioned, you can’t build the rollercoaster two miles from Disney World. No one’s gonna actually leave Disney World to go to your roller coaster. They’ve come to Disney World, they wanna stay within Disney World. All the people that visit this area, they’re visiting Atlantic City, they’re not visiting these local towns. We knew we had to get in Atlantic City somewhere, and just due to the structure of Atlantic City we knew that we had to get in one of the… At that time, what, the big seven, big eight, buildings. I think it was the big eight buildings at that point.
22:05 Lisa: Yeah. Tropicana increasingly became our number one just because of how much they’re putting into their property. And they’re thriving and it’s really noticeable, and they have our demographic. It’s just hopping. You go in there on a Friday and a Saturday night…
22:27 Steve: It’s unbelievable.
22:27 Lisa: Even some Sundays, Mondays. It’s always busy in there.
22:30 Steve: Rivers of people.
22:31 Lisa: Yup.
22:32 Maureen: Yeah, we’re there on Thursdays and it’s mobbed.
22:34 Lisa: It’s mobbed.
22:35 Steve: Yup. Anybody that hasn’t been to Tropicana in the last four years or so, they need to go there. Because while other casinos are making it by trimming excess fat and maybe laying people off and really watching loose ends, Tropicana is doing the opposite. Tropicana is doing more. It’s unbelievable. You walk around that place, it is a world-class building. And just from the years that we’ve been going there, it’s changed so much. They are moving forward, and we just wanted to be a part of that.
23:09 Lisa: Now we have something that we can offer, and Tropicana has something that they can offer to their guests. It’s very different and it’s a lot of fun. As we say, it’s ‘sports for clever people’, and it’s being received wonderfully well.
23:25 Anthony: I love that tag line, ‘sports for clever people’. Lisa, that’s brilliant.
23:31 Lisa: Oh, well, I didn’t exactly make it up. It was a team effort with Steve. [laughter]
23:36 Anthony: Steve and Lisa, together, that’s brilliant. [laughter] It really is, I love it. That’s very smart.
23:41 Lisa: Well, we call ourselves ‘The Dynamic Duo.’ [laughter]
23:45 Anthony: Very cool.
23:46 Steve: I solved problems for a living, she made things pretty, so why not make problems…
23:50 Maureen: Oh, that works.
23:52 Steve: Yeah, so it’s pretty good.
23:54 Lisa: Yeah, you’ll have to come visit us, guys.
23:56 Maureen: Yeah, we wanna come. Is there a time limit on getting through it, getting through the game?
24:03 Steve: You get an hour. As soon as we put you in the room, you have one hour basically, to end up back in our facility. On your own…
24:12 Maureen: On your own meaning with your group, or, on your own, on your own.
24:15 Steve: On your own meaning that Escape AC does not facilitate escapes at the last two minutes. That would be a great business strategy, and a lot of places choose to do that, our escapes are real. You have to escape from our rooms; we are not going to sneak you out at the last minute, so-to-speak. We do not get a lot of escapes, but when they happen they really mean something. Sometimes it’s so exciting, it’s like your team won the big game.
24:45 Steve: We’re standing outside the door “Are they gonna do it? Are they gonna do it?” And sometimes people do. Our rooms are really difficult, but people have a great time, and I know when they get out they know that it matters because they’ll look on our Facebook site, Escape AC Tropicana, and they see dozens and dozens of people before them that did not escape. So that they know that it really matters. And when they come back, and try a different room, they know what to expect, and it’s just… It’s a lot of fun. Where else are you gonna go, as an adult, where it doesn’t involve, drinking, it doesn’t involve gambling, you just go to this room that you don’t know what to expect, you get to snoop around and puzzle your way through, and figure out a way to get out? Young people, old people, professional people, couples, bachelor/bachelorette part… Everybody loves it. It’s such a good time. Even us, we feel so bad we don’t ever get to play our rooms because we know everything.
25:45 Anthony: So, this is really cool. So there’s three rooms, right? You have…
25:50 Steve: Six.
25:50 Anthony: There’s six rooms!
25:51 Maureen: Six? So if you fail, you can come back and try another room, and still fail again, basically. You can keep coming back.
25:56 Steve: Or, or… Our rooms are so challenging people come back and try the same room again. Seeing if they can actually find the answers.
26:04 Anthony: Ah that’s cool.
26:06 Steve: We have three rooms that are open now, and one room that we are in the process of building. So, there’s the Poker Room, the Boardwalk, the Casino Cage, those are open. And Backstage, which is gonna be a little Ms. America.
26:22 Anthony: Oh wow, cool!
26:23 Lisa: Yeah, I mean if you haven’t noticed, our rooms are all Atlantic City themed. So, that’s something that we can do because we’re a state AC. And that was our way to drive the point home that we are in Atlantic City, the greatest place on earth, and we’re bringing fun back to AC.
26:41 Anthony: Oh that’s brilliant. You know what you gotta do? Then they got my eyes… Then they got my wheels turning, here. It would be cool to do a Boardwalk Empire theme too… Room.
26:50 Steve:We have the Boardwalk!
26:52 Lisa: Yeah. Well, it’s not exactly an Empire theme, but…
26:54 Anthony: Well, you know the show on HBO. Whenever I say Boardwalk Empire that’s just the title of the show. More of, like, an homage to, old Atlantic City.
27:04 Steve: Tom Sierpoka wrote it.
27:06 Anthony: Oh, already! See, the smart people already did it, man. [laughter] I love it! Oh that’s so cool. That is so awesome. It sounds like a blast, man, oh my God. You guys… It sounds so cool. So, by the way, people wanna get a hold of you, what’s the best way to do it? What’s the best way, because it’s…
27:30 Maureen: Do you need reservations? How do you go about it?
27:32 Steve: Yes, reservations are great www.escapeac.com, if you click ‘Book Now,’ you can see our reservations that exist and you can make your own.
27:43 Anthony: Oh, very good.
27:44 Lisa: Yeah, there’s a whole scheduling site up on our website; also we have… We’re on Facebook, we’re on Twitter, we’re on Instagram. We’re Escape AC Tropicana on Facebook, we are on the Tropicana website.
27:58 Steve: Just click Entertainment at the top, there we are.
28:00 Lisa: Yep, exactly. And also, you call, it’s 609-7… What the…
28:07 Steve: 246.
28:09 Lisa: Scratch that one. [chuckle] Yeah, you can give us a call at 609-246-7772, that’s directly to Escape AC. You guys have to come and play one day.
28:23 Anthony: Oh we’re there. Definitely, we’re gonna come and check it out. It sounds awesome.
28:26 Steve: Come with at least six to eight people.
28:30 Lisa: Yeah, come with a team.
28:31 Anthony: Okay, alright. It’s a deal! [laughter] I love it, I love it, man this is a very, very cool thing. I love the genesis of your idea, I love you guys bringing it to life at the Tropicana, it just is another reason to go to Tropicana, Atlantic City.
28:47 Lisa: Absolutely, they’re the best.
28:49 Anthony: Steve and Lisa, thank you, and good luck. I love it. Keep it going, okay? Keep building rooms.
28:56 Lisa: Okay, we will! Thank you.
28:57 Steve: We will, thank you Anthony.
29:00 Lisa: Thanks Maureen.
29:00 Anthony: Thank you.
29:00 Steve: Thanks Maureen.
29:02 Anthony: Wow, that was incredible MCW, how about it. Escape AC. We gotta get doing that, man, it’s a lot of fun. But what we’ll do is, we’ll go hit a Tango’s, or a 10 North, hang out for a while, and then we can do an Escape AC, and it sounds incredible. I’ll tell you while we’re at Tango’s or 10 North, as always, tropicanacasino.com. Gimme your laptop, I need your laptop because we could play for real money at tropicanacasino.com because we’re in New Jersey, and I like to do it over a cocktail, at 10 North. Which is really cool. Hey by the way, when you’re playing, for real money at tropicanacasino.com, I got a great tip for you. You’re gonna notice a treasure chest at the top of the screen. And sometimes you’ll see a key appear. Alright, you click the key, and what that does… You unlock a jackpot for yourself. And for everyone else who’s currently playing at tropicanacasino.com. Now how cool is that? So any real money wager by any player on any game can trigger a community jackpot. So it’s like you’re getting an extra chance to win on every bet on the site. So if you’re playing Cleopatra slots. MCW, you like the Cleopatra slots. You can win on the slot machine, plus you can also hit the community jackpot. Alright, the community jackpot, I’m going to stop right here for one second because I’m not a solo guy. Are you a solo girl? Meaning you would do things by yourself.
30:46 Maureen: Independent?
30:48 Anthony: Say the movies. I don’t wanna go to the movies by myself.
30:53 Maureen: Yeah, sit at a bar by yourself.
30:55 Anthony: If you think about going to the movies by yourself, I like the movie, I like watching movie…
31:01 Maureen: You like company.
31:01 Anthony: Right, but I wanna go with you and say “Hey, let’s go to see this movie” and then we can talk about it, like go get a cup of coffee…
31:09 Maureen: You break it down.
31:10 Anthony: You break it down, but it’s just more fun. It just feels like you’re not alone, you’re next to someone and you have popcorn. You share the popcorn. I would rather be with someone at the movies. I talk to people all the time and I have this argument. They go, well it’s a solo experience.
31:28 Maureen: Right, you can’t talk, it’s quiet.
31:30 Anthony: It’s almost like the same thing with, if you look at tropicanacasino.com, I could play and have fun by myself. You do your thing and I’m at Tango’s. It’s way more fun with somebody else. So it’s way more fun with the community. I don’t know. Let’s think about this, stuff that you would do by yourself. Which is better and which is more fun with other people. So going to the movies, I think of other people.
31:54 Maureen: Solo.
31:55 Anthony: Alright, you say solo, I say other people.
31:56 Maureen: No, I like ’em both, both ways.
31:58 Anthony: I say that way. Going to a game.
32:01 Maureen: Oh, with other people.
32:03 Anthony: Now trust me, I’ve gone to games and dropped my sports career.
32:06 Maureen: Yeah.
32:08 Anthony: And I’ve been in many games by myself. Not many, but I’ve been to games by myself and I hate it. Who are you supposed to talk to the game about?
32:16 Maureen: No, you need…
32:16 Anthony: You’re just watching it and you’re sitting there…
32:19 Maureen: You need someone else.
32:19 Anthony: Right. And I used to do this all the time with all kinds of stuff and I didn’t… When I would go to a game… When I was a sportsman, they would send me some place. I would watch the game or do a story. And I’m alone watching it and it is completely… I don’t know, It doesn’t feel right. I’m drumming up conversation…
32:42 Maureen: Yeah, with strangers.
32:44 Anthony: That’s what I’m doing. And this is like the same thing. We are all here to play and so we have our own community. I kinda like chatting ’cause I’m a chatty person.
32:54 Maureen: You’re chatty Cathy.
32:55 Anthony: I am a chatty Cathy. Could you eat by yourself?
32:58 Maureen: Probably, yeah.
33:00 Anthony: At a restaurant?
33:00 Maureen: At a bar, not at a table.
33:02 Anthony: So you could go to a bar and eat alone?
33:05 Maureen: I prefer not to, who do you talk to? You run out of things to look at on your phone.
33:11 Anthony: I knew somebody who used to do that, I used to work with and he used to do that. Oh yeah, I can go to a… And eat by myself. I can’t.
33:20 Maureen: Yeah, I don’t wanna.
33:21 Anthony: I don’t want to eat by myself.
33:22 Maureen: I probably could. I have not.
33:25 Anthony: I couldn’t sit at a table alone.
33:28 Maureen: No.
33:28 Anthony: And have dinner at a restaurant.
33:30 Maureen: No. Yeah, you need company.
33:32 Anthony: If you were out of town… If you travel…
33:34 Maureen: Yeah, that’s different. You sit at the bar. You get room service.
33:37 Anthony: Right, room service. I would do the room service with TV. I can not do anything like… Going out to dinner, I don’t understand. Like this happened to somebody to… If I’m at a game and… If I’m not working and I’m at a game, I don’t know but you wanna share a beer with somebody.
33:54 Maureen: Of course.
33:55 Anthony: Don’t you wanna high-five somebody.
33:56 Maureen: Yeah.
33:57 Anthony: And this is the same way.
33:58 Maureen: You wanna talk to someone.
34:00 Anthony: This is why I love the community jackpots. It’s unbelievable. So think about this, with anything else winning is more fun with friends. I don’t know, I want to celebrate with someone. Like you and I, we play the Wheel of Fortune.
34:18 Maureen: Yeah, it’s much better when you win, you talk to somebody else about it. High-five.
34:22 Anthony: We celebrate!
34:23 Maureen: Yeah.
34:24 Anthony: Oh my god! We gotta spin!
34:25 Maureen: Yeah, let’s go spend our money!
34:27 Anthony: When we gotta spin for Wheel of Fortune on the slots, that’s fun.
34:29 Maureen: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, we’re having fun.
34:31 Anthony: You celebrate.
34:32 Maureen: Yeah, you enjoy with someone else.
34:32 Anthony: You think by yourself, yeah it’s great, you won, but I don’t know. To me it’s more fun if you play with friends. And you know what? You can’t high-five yourself.
34:44 Maureen: No. Uh-huh, you’ll look pretty weird.
34:46 Anthony: If you just… I just high-fived myself.
34:48 Maureen: That doesn’t work that way.
34:50 Anthony: They’re gonna put me in an insane asylum.
34:51 Maureen: Yeah, they’ll take that money right away.
34:55 Anthony: [chuckle] And the other thing too is if you did hit it big, what would it feel like somebody, otherwise people go “No, I don’t think so” and they won’t believe you.
35:02 Maureen: Yeah.
35:03 Anthony: I got a witness.
35:04 Maureen: Exactly.
35:05 Anthony: Somebody’s got a witness. It’s just so cool. I just love it. I really do and see the more people who win it once, the better, and tropicanacasino.com knows this. That’s why they have the community jackpot promotion. I mean I love it, I love it, I love it. Same thing with video poker, blackjack, bingo, any… It’s an extra chance to win on every wager you place, everyday, everywhere on the site. Now this isn’t a special promotion. I’ve seen that. You don’t need a code. You don’t need the code say win or the code MCW. It’s just the feature of tropicanacasino.com. So when one person hits the jackpot, more than just the winner is rewarded. If you played within the last hour, you will be paid a share of the community prize even if you’re not online at the time. How about that?
36:05 Anthony: That is community jackpots like the platinum is 10 grand, the gold five grand, copper is 1,000 and green is $500. So in addition to the jackpot reward, every time a jackpot is won, up to an additional $20,000 is shared out amongst the community, the lucky key holder that unlocked a chest, gets paid twice. The primary jackpot award plus the community share as well. So this is awesome. The best part about these jackpots is that you don’t even have to find a lucky key to be a winner. Just keep an eye on the top bar of the site to see if anyone has found a key. Now as long as you have placed a bet within an hour of a jackpot being won, you’ll be awarded a share of the community jackpot, even if you have already logged off the site. I’ve logged off and next thing you know 15 minutes later there’s a winner, I’m a winner, alright? That’s how it works. If you win a key and didn’t have a chance to click it, sometimes your life gets in the way, you know what I mean? Sometimes. Well, we’ll automatically check the key against the chests after five minutes, we don’t want anyone to lose out on their chance at striking it rich.
37:30 Anthony: This is really cool. And don’t forget when you’re playing for real money online at tropicanacasino.com you’ll notice that treasure chest, it’s just so cool. You gotta do it. It’s awesome. It’s a lot of fun. Again, that’s why, before we go to Escape AC, I’m hitting 10 North, I wanna get one of those tequila grapefruit lime drinks and play a little tropicanacasino.com ’cause I’m in New Jersey and I’m over 21 and I wanna look for my treasure chest and the key. What a deal? Don’t forget tropicanacasino.com treasure chest. So ultimately, you don’t have to win to actually win.
38:19 Maureen: Well, sign me up.
38:20 Anthony: How great is that?
38:21 Maureen: Yeah.
38:22 Anthony: I want you to take this away from all we just talked about here at this promotion, you don’t have to win. You personally don’t have to win, aright? To win. So again, I win you don’t win, you win. You win, I don’t win, you win.
38:40 Maureen: Again, sign me up now.
38:41 Anthony: Who’s going first?
38:44 Maureen: Everybody. Everybody wins.
38:46 Anthony: It’s like, contributing nothing to a group project and getting an A plus, alright? So I’m sure you did group projects but then you worked. And some sketch…
39:00 Maureen: Cheated off of me.
39:01 Anthony: Right, like me said, “No, whatever,” and look, I got the A plus. So that’s what it’s like contributing nothing to a group project and getting an A plus.
39:10 Maureen: Perfect. Sign me up.
39:11 Anthony: Alright. Signed up, we’re in. Stay tuned for our next TropCast coming to you soon.