Forget Vegas: Atlantic City Is the Ultimate Bachelor Party Destination

If you’re on the East Coast, there’s no need to fly out west when this classic party town has so much to offer

June 22, 2024 11:00 pm
a woman doing a split on a pole while wearing knee-high platform boots
A performer at The Hook, the best show in Atlantic City

Look, we love Las Vegas (okay, some of us more than others), but Sin City has been in the spotlight for far too long. As East Coasters, there’s another destination that is very close to our hearts for its casinos, restaurants and iconic boardwalk: Atlantic City. Because it’s much smaller than Vegas, it has a more intimate, less overwhelming feel. But it also has that very special, “if you don’t leave the casino you’ll have no idea what time it is” feel, which is one of the great charms of this particular type of party town. Atlantic City is a magical place, and in our opinion, it’s one of the best destinations for a bachelor party or any other kind of epic celebration.

Because some of the best advice we can give you is to take it from a woman, five female InsideHook editors recently took the city by storm to bring you this expertly curated guide. During our weekend trip, we ate, drank, danced and relaxed at some of AC’s finest establishments, and we’re here to remind you that it’s one of the East Coast’s most glittering jewels. Here’s how to have the ultimate bachelor party — or any party, for that matter — in Atlantic City right now.

What to Do

The lounge at Rock Spa & Salon
The lounge at Rock Spa & Salon
Hard Rock

Rock Spa & Salon

Listen, if you’re like us, you’re probably not treating your body very well over the course of a bachelor (or bachelorette) weekend. But after a few days of heavy drinking, indulgent eating and fretting over how much money you lost at the casino, you deserve a little pampering to make you feel human again. The Rock Spa & Salon boasts 31 newly designed treatment rooms, including 20 dedicated massage rooms, four facial rooms, two couples’ suites, three body treatment rooms and two Rhythm & Motion rooms. Treating yourself to a soothing massage or relaxing in the sauna is the perfect way to end your weekend of partying, and with a full-service salon and barbershop, you can ensure you’re not headed home looking too haggard. – Bonnie Stiernberg

a man diving through three hoops
The Hook
Joan Marcus

The Hook

The restored Warner Theater for The Hook makes you feel like you’re stepping back into Atlantic City’s golden age of live entertainment. The show has everything you could want, complete with a charming host, Dick Marlin, and (of course) dancing lobsters. As you watch the performances, you start to wonder if they can’t sustain the level of entertainment, but they do — every single act is either laugh-out-loud hilarious, jaw-dropping or both. I was on the edge of my seat, clutching my pearls for the entire 75-minute show. It’s a brilliant fusion of circus, cabaret and comedy, all wrapped up into a truly captivating experience. After The Hook, you’ll feel like you can run through a brick wall, making it a great spot to kick of an evening on the town. – Elisabeth Chambry

Where to Eat

a bowl of sashimi with cucumber slices and shiso
Sashimi at Kuro
Hard Rock


Kuro, an elegant restaurant inside the Hard Rock Hotel, has some of the best sushi and sashimi you’ll ever have. Led by Executive Sushi Chef Shingo Inoue and Executive Chef Leslie Daniel, it also offers premium A5 Japanese Wagyu beef and robatayaki grilled skewers. Start with the tuna crispy rice and the lobster dumplings, and wash it all down with a hand-crafted cocktail from a drinks menu that’s sorted into five separate sections based on taste — sweet, sour, bitter, salty and umami. – BS

a white plate of chicken parm dusted with cheese, parsley and lemon zest
The chicken parm at Superfrico
Mark Mediana


Last summer, almost exactly a year to the day, Superfrico opened its doors inside AC’s Spiegelworld for the first time. The critically acclaimed Italian American psychedelic restaurant, whose predecessor opened in Vegas in 2021, gives the illusion of having just stepped into a show mid-scene — like, directly onto the stage. It’s whacky but electric. The drinks are good, and the food is better. I still think about the tableside mozzarella — which involves a pound of fresh BelGioioso curd that’s “pulled and stretched before your very eyes” and served alongside seasonal accompaniments — on a biweekly basis. – Lindsay Rogers

a huge plate of seafood paella with lobster, shrimp, scallops and black rice
The lobster paella at Amada
Michael Perisco


There are few better dishes to feed a crowd than paella, and chef Jose Garces’s Amada at Ocean Casino Resort makes two excellent versions to try: Paella Valenciana with chicken, chorizo, mussels and saffron aioli, and Paella Mariscos, packed with sumptuous shellfish, fava bean salad and paprika aioli. The Andalusian Spanish restaurant is also known for its cheese and charcuterie spreads and tapas, featuring classic dishes like pan con tomate, tortilla Española and pulpo. Pair everything with a pitcher of Sangria, or customize a cocktail from the Gin and Tonic bar. – Amanda Gabriele

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Council Oak dining room
Council Oak dining room
Hard Rock

Council Oak Steaks & Seafood

Council Oak serves the most spectacular brunch in AC. I admit I’m not even a brunch person — call me old-fashioned, but lunch is far superior — but if I had this affair at my fingertips every week, I’d be a changed woman. Council Oak’s dining room is light-filled and plush, exactly what you need to nurse yourself after a weekend of partying. The morning we sat down for our meal, a solo guitarist was doing his thing, and it was the perfect backdrop for sipping Bloody Marys and Mimosas. And then there’s the food: a spectacular raw bar with oysters, prawns, tuna tartare and smoked salmon; a salad bar with all the fixings; sushi; a carving station with 28-day dry-aged steak and a rack of pork; and everything you could possibly want for breakfast like bacon, brioche French toast and made-to-order omelets. Don’t sleep on the a la carte menu, which has an excellent crab cake Benedict that’s a must-order for the table. – AG

Where to Party

a man wearing a disco ball on his head in a dance club with a disco ball
The emcee at Boogie Nights working the crowd
Amanda Gabriele

Boogie Nights

As a Philadelphia native, Atlantic City was just a hop, skip and a jump away for me and my friends each summer. I was the last of the group to turn 21, and for my big celebration, all I wanted to do was stay at the Borgata and go to Boogie Nights, a nightclub at the Tropicana I had seen advertised on a billboard along the AC expressway. But this isn’t just any nightclub. This is a time machine to the good ol’ ‘70s. There are go-go dancers, a giant disco ball and an elevated dance floor that changes colors. You’ll have your own Saturday Night Fever fever dream, dancing all night long to the Bee-Gees, ABBA, Whitney Houston and the rest of those iconic, groovy artists under the beautiful lights of a massive mirrorball. Safe to say, my friends and I had the time of our lives then, and five years later, had the time of my life yet again. Boogie Nights was exactly how I remembered it — good vibes, good people and good tunes. – Logan Mahan

an indoor swimming pool with a domed window ceiling, cabanas and laser lights
Pool After Dark
Visit Atlantic City

The Pool After Dark

When I was 24 and broke, I was charged with planning a bachelorette party for one of my oldest friends and the first of our group to get engaged. I selected AC for our rendezvous as it was, at the time, within driving distance for all. We stayed at Harrahs and so The Pool After Dark — effectively a massive late night, poolside party — was all but a requisite itinerary item. We had so much fun that we canceled our plans for the following night to go back. Admittedly I had reservations about returning as a 32-year old, mostly because my nightclub days are in the rearview. But if I am a moth, The Pool After Dark is the flame. It was every bit as fun eight years later. Think cabanas, hot tubs and a DJ all positioned around a 3,500 square-foot, 86,000-gallon pool. It is, perhaps, the single greatest place on Earth. – LR

Nola’s Bar & Lounge

If you want to turn up with some live music in a more intimate setting, Nola’s Bar & Lounge in Ocean Casino Resort is a perfect venue. The last time I visited, one of the best cover bands I’ve ever heard took the stage, and the entire place was dancing. The Spicy Margarita here is excellent, and Nola’s also offers bottle service if that’s the vibe you’re into. – AG

a blue pool surrounded by palm trees and red umbrellas
A quiet moment at Borgata’s outdoor pool
Visit Atlantic City

Borgata Pool

“Sunbathe, swim or party” — we did all three at the Borgata outdoor pool. You don’t have to stay at the premiere hotel and casino to enjoy this 3,200-square-foot Roman-style outdoor pool, either. While you can post up at one of the many lounge chairs, we’d recommend renting a VIP cabana for the afternoon. On top of receiving convenient table service, these spacious private areas include canopy coverage, comfortable wooden furniture for up to 10 people, TV and two lounge chairs. Each canopy also comes with a refrigerator stocked with non-alcoholic beverages, water spritzers and sunscreen. – LM

Where to Stay

the giant ceiling guitar above the lobby stairs at the hard rock hotel in atlantic city
Music is the theme at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City
Daniel Newcomb

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City

Located right in the heart of the action on Atlantic City’s boardwalk, the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is perfectly situated for an AC adventure. The casino floor is electric, with thousands of slots and 130 table games at which to try your luck. The property houses two of our favorite restaurants in town (see above), and there’s always something happening at Dueling Pianos and the lobby bar, where you’ll often see crowds drinking and dancing to the live music du jour. 

The rooms are spacious and comfortable, perfect for spreading out after a day at the beach or pool and to rest up after a night at the club. As noted above, Rock Spa is one of the best we’ve been to, and it even features private rooms where you and your party can sip Champagne before or after your treatments. 

As with all Hard Rock establishments, music is the main focus, and the memorabilia around the property is quite simply amazing — think costumes from Kurt Cobain, Beyonce and Prince, Elvis Presley’s Rolls Royce Phantom V, Slash’s Harley Davidson, and scores of instruments belonging to famous musicians. You can also catch your favorite band, comedian and even magician come through at one of Hard Rock’s two venues, Etess Arena and Sound Waves. Atlantic City is definitely a rock and roll kinda place, and Hard Rock Hotel captures that vibe perfectly. – AG


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