ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (CBS) – You know that building across from Caesar’s that looks like a luxury liner?   In another sign of Atlantic City’s troubled economy, this popular boardwalk mall will be auctioned off next month.

The owner of the “Pier Shops at Caesars” hasn’t been able to pay its mortgage on the property in the last two years, and the bank will now sell it off.

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So what went wrong? Dan Histon, an agent with the Michael Salove Company, which helped put some of the original stores in there about five years ago, has a theory.

“They came in with very high end when things were booming,” he recalls, “and it busted. The high-end stores couldn’t maintain.  Retail is struggling everywhere.”

The pending debt stands at just under $150 million, but given this economy Histon expects a new owner to pay less than half of that.

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His suggestion for the next owner would be to put all retail shops on the ground floor and use the second and third floors for nightclubs, restaurants, maybe even an upscale bowling alley.

Reported by David Madden, KYW Newsradio 1060



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