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Aztar Reports Q1 Results

20 April 2006

PHOENIX, Arizona – (PRESS RELEASE) -- Aztar Corporation (NYSE: AZR) today reported financial results for its 2006 first quarter, which included consolidated revenues of $228.6 million, compared with $223.3 million in the year-earlier period. Property EBITDA was $62.6 million in the 2006 first quarter, compared with $53.6 million a year earlier. Reported diluted earnings per share were eight cents in the 2006 first quarter compared with 27 cents in the 2005 first quarter. Adjusted diluted earnings per share were 37 cents in the 2006 first quarter, which is after stock option compensation expense equivalent to two cents per share, compared with 29 cents in the 2005 first quarter.

Robert M. Haddock, Aztar Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer, said: "Our properties delivered strong results in the quarter, with a significant rise in Property EBITDA after adjustments for insurance costs and recoveries. Moreover, the favorable comparison of Property EBITDA in 2006 versus 2005 is understated since the fiscal first quarter of 2005 included 91 days and a New Year's Eve from calendar 2004, which we estimated contributed Property EBITDA of approximately $2.6 million to fiscal 2005.

"Our performance in the 2006 first quarter was driven in large part by the strong performance of Tropicana Atlantic City, which posted an EBITDA increase of 32%, net of insurance costs and recoveries, in the first quarter-over-quarter comparison since the opening of the expansion in late 2004.

"Results at Tropicana Las Vegas were hampered by a variety of operating issues, including customer concern and reaction to the potential closing of the property in anticipation of redevelopment. Now that redevelopment has been deferred, we anticipate that Tropicana Las Vegas will be able to resume its normal operating pattern."

Write-off of Tropicana Las Vegas Development Costs

Since we concluded that it was not probable that we would implement our plans for redevelopment of Tropicana Las Vegas, we wrote off our capitalized development costs.

Construction Accident Related Items

Property EBITDA in the 2006 first quarter includes construction accident related expenses of $1.6 million and insurance recoveries of $4.8 million. Other income of $2.6 million consists of insurance recoveries for the rebuilding of the damaged portion of the Tropicana Atlantic City expansion after the construction accident that occurred on October 30, 2003, net of direct costs to obtain the recoveries, compared to $1.6 million in 2005.

Income Taxes

Our results for the first quarter of 2006 include non-recurring income tax benefits of $3.4 million associated with a development credit in New Jersey and with a settlement with the IRS for our last remaining issue for examinations for the years 1994 to 2003.

Capital Expenditures

In the first quarter of 2006, purchases of property and equipment totaled $14 million. Approximately $11 million of the total was spent on routine capital expenditures, and $3 million went for development.

Fiscal Calendar Change

The company changed its fiscal year to the calendar year, effective December 31, 2005. The company previously used a 52/53 week fiscal year ending on the Thursday nearest December 31. The information in this release for the 2006 first quarter reflects the Company's results of operations for a 90-day period beginning January 1, 2006 and ending March 31, 2006. The 2005 first quarter contained 91 days, beginning on December 31, 2004 and ending on March 31, 2005.

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