We went to an INXS concert 2-1/2 yrs ago and realized how nice it had become. We are about a 7 hr drive away from it so try to go now a couple times a year. I love going in the summer when you can sit at one of the beach bars. Of course, I always hit the outlet shops for a couple hours. We do walk thru the shops at the Pier at Ceasar's for fun. . . too high end for me to buy anything. It has been cleaned up and is really a nice place anymore.
Nice? Pretty? Did you guys close your eyes as you were driving through the abject poverty and tenements to get to the very tiny part of the city that is safe? I guess you didn't venture outside the main strip after dark, or you would have seen all the hookers and drug dealers.
I'm so appalled at the condition of the area surrouding A/C that I rarely go there. Gambling was legalized there with the express intention of revitalizing the city. That was over 30 years ago and it still hasn't happened. Developers were corrupt and the officials accepted bribes, and the money never got to where it was supposed to go.
The part I was in was nice and pretty. But I think a lot of cities are like this: tourist attractions within a certain radius, surrounded by stunning poverty.
I see the poverty areas coming in, but as far as the boardwalk area, it has been cleaned up. That has to help all of AC because it pulls in a lot more tourists and tourist dollars are good for any city.