ATLANTIC CITY-The Revel Casino Hotel owners filed for bankruptcy protection Thursday – the second time in 15 months – warning employees the facility will close without a buyer by Aug. 18.

Revel AC Inc. filed a Chapter 11 petition in US Bankruptcy Court, seeking sale of its assets in the event a buyer is not found by that date. The company, which has been seeking a buyer for the last year, said it expects to continue normal business throughout bankruptcy proceedings.

“Today’s announcement follows an extensive strategic review,” said Revel’s CEO Scott Kreeger in a statement. “We will work to reach an agreement with a new owner who will help ensure Revel’s long-term financial stability and who shares our commitment to providing Revel’s guests and players an exceptional experience in lodging, gaming, entertainment and recreation.”

The $2.4 billion Revel opened its doors two summers ago, after a long hiatus in construction and then a jumpstart to completion with the strong backing of Gov. Chris Christie‘s administration, which promoted it as a way to help revitalize Atlantic City.

The casino faltered out of the starting gate, amidst a general decline in Atlantic City gaming revenues. State regulators have reported data showing Revel has lost more than $260 million since opening.

The first bankruptcy filing occurred in March of last year, resulting in an arrangement by which investors exchanged debt for equity. That cut the casino resort’s $1.5 billion debt by 80%.

The letter to employees Thursday disclosed the new Aug. 18 deadline and it said: “If Revel is unable to complete such a sale promptly, Revel expects to close its entire facility.”

In its news release, ownership said it has obtained a $125 million debtor-in-possession loan from an existing lender, which will finance operation of the casino resort during the bankruptcy process.