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Aztar Results Down

20 April 2005

PHOENIX, Arizona – (PRESS RELEASE) -- Aztar Corporation (NYSE: AZR) today reported financial results for its 2005 first quarter, which ended on March 31, 2005; the fiscal 2004 quarter had ended on April 1, 2004. Consolidated EBITDA for the 2005 quarter was $45.7 million versus, in the first quarter of 2004, EBITDA of $46.7 million which was after $3.5 million of insurance recovery related to business interruption applicable to the fourth quarter of 2003. Diluted earnings per share in the 2005 first quarter were 27 cents, which included three cents associated with other income and which is after five cents related to a loss on settlement of retirement plan benefits, versus 10 cents in the 2004 quarter, which included six cents attributable to insurance recovery and which was after 31 cents associated with an adverse court ruling regarding income taxes in Indiana.

"Our Nevada, Indiana and Missouri properties had strong results in the first quarter, with each of them posting all-time record levels of EBITDA and, in the aggregate, producing EBITDA growth of 17%. At Tropicana Atlantic City, EBITDA before construction-accident-related items was $21.2 million in the first quarter of 2005 versus $20.0 million in the first quarter of 2004. The Quarter and related expansion facilities at Tropicana Atlantic City were the catalyst for property revenues that were 22% higher than in the prior year, but increased expenses resulted in only a 6% improvement in property EBITDA. Over the near term, we expect to see further increases in casino, hotel and other revenues and a reduction of the initial costs associated with the opening of the expansion which, in tandem, should produce significantly higher levels of EBITDA at Tropicana Atlantic City.

"Since the opening of the expansion at Tropicana Atlantic City, our top priority has been to achieve an enthusiastic response to our new product from existing and first-time customers. All of the evidence seems to show that we have been very successful in that goal," said Robert M. Haddock, Aztar Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We are also pleased that the Tropicana produced a substantial increase in revenue in a flat market during the first quarter, even though revenue growth from our new hotel tower was inhibited by our inability to pre-book rooms because of the uncertainty following the construction accident about the opening date for the expansion. Now, with all of the restaurants, clubs and stores in the Quarter open and generating customers for the casino, and with management able to plan for full utilization of our new hotel rooms, Tropicana Atlantic City has significant operating leverage potential. Accordingly, we continue to be optimistic that in the fiscal quarters ahead we can expect to see substantial growth in cash flow from the property."

Tropicana Atlantic City Expansion

The Tropicana Atlantic City expansion includes a new 502-room hotel tower; The Quarter at Tropicana, which is a 200,000-square-foot dining, entertainment and retail complex; a 2,400-space parking garage and 20,000 square feet of meeting and conference space.

Other Income

Other income 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.

Capital Expenditures

In the first quarter of 2005, purchases of property and equipment totaled $39 million. Approximately $10 million of the total was spent on routine expenditures, and $29 million went for development.

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