Gaming tycoon Kazuo Okada’s new casino resort Okada Manila is facing yet another delay.
This time, the oft-delayed integrated resort has pushed back the date for its grand opening to “the end of March 2017.”
If you recall, Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) chairman Andrea Domingo announced several weeks ago that the $2.4-billion property “is slated to have its full opening on Feb. 17,” while Philippine-based developer Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment Inc. previously stated that the formal opening would take place at the “end of February.”
Okada Manila opened its doors to the public last December 21—an event referred to by the venue’s promoter as a “preview period.” The resort launched its casino operations on December 30, after it secured the approval from the state gambling regulator.
“Since that time the construction focus has been on the VIP casino floors, restaurants, world-class fountains and other facilities in preparation for the grand opening,” Okada Manila said in a statement. “We hereby announce that we have now reached the stage wherein we are targeting to hold the grand opening at the end of March 2017.”
This isn’t the first time that Okada Manila’s launch has been delayed. The project has suffered numerous delays over the years, the most recent of which was in late 2016, when “worse-than-expected weather conditions” forced the soft-opening of the sprawling resort to be pushed back a month.
Okada Manila is set to become the largest integrated entertainment resort in the country, joining Bloomberry Resorts’ Solaire Resort & Casino and Melco Crown Entertainment’s City of Dreams Manila. The fourth and final Entertainment City project, Travellers International’s West Side City Resorts World, is targeting a 2020 launch.
The casino resort’s first phase is expected to create between 8,000 and 10,000 jobs—a figure that is likely to rise to 20,000 within two years as Okada Manila’s new phases are completed. The first phase of Okada Manila covers 21.55 hectares of the 44-hectare property within PAGCOR’s Entertainment City awarded to Tiger Resort. Of this land, the casino operator has allotted 41,000 square meters to build a casino with 500 table games and 3,000 electronic games, as well as two hotels with a total of 993 rooms, a beach club, a high-end retail area, a 3,000-square-meter spa, and several food and beverage outlets.