Genting Singapore says its stalled casino project on South Korea’s Jeju island will hopefully break ground in the second quarter of 2015. The $2.2b Resorts World Jeju was supposed to break ground this June but the company was forced to cancel the ceremonial earth-turning after the newly elected governor of the self-governing province objected, saying the joint venture with Hong Kong’s Landing International Development had never received official clearance from the government.
This week, Japanese financial analysts Nomura issued a note saying Genting execs had told them they were “actively discussing” the project with Gov. Won Hee-ryong to address concerns over the “socio-environmental impact and size of the project.” In October, the governor said the project would have to wait until a casino regulatory body could be established and a proper tax system devised. But Genting says it is “still hopeful” that the new Q2 2015 target can be met.
A little further south, Melco Crown Entertainment will soft-launch its new City of Dreams Manila on Sunday (14). The integrated resort will join Bloomberry Resorts’ Solaire in the Philippines’ Entertainment City gaming zone in Manila Bay. Solaire opened in March 2013 and has until now had the zone all to itself.
Melco Crown co-chairman Lawrence Ho told GGRAsia that the $1.3b City of Dreams Manila soft-opening is for the benefit of the “local market” and thus won’t be a “media event.” The official launch is set for February, timed to coincide with the lunar new year celebrations, a particularly lucrative period for Asia’s casino operators.
The two other Entertainment City projects – Tiger Resorts Leisure & Entertainment’s Manila Bay Resorts and Travelers International’s Bayshore City Resorts World – aren’t scheduled to open until 2016 and 2018 respectively. Caesars Entertainment has proposed building a $1b casino three miles from Entertainment City on property adjacent to Manila’s international airport although regulators have suggested that the four Entertainment City venues may be all the market can handle.