Kangwon Land is making another run at a post-COVID-19 recovery. The only casino in South Korea that can allow locals to gamble was repeatedly forced to shut down last year because of the coronavirus pandemic, the latest occurring at the beginning of December. As it appears that COVID-19 is waning, or at least ebbing once again, South Korea is hoping it can try to put some type of normalcy back in place and Kangwon Land is going to see what happens, as well. The casino reopened yesterday, but not without serious precautions meant to avoid yet another shutdown.
Kangwon Land began operating yesterday at 10 AM. For now, only as many as 1,200 locals will be able to hit the gambling floor, but the property will remain-ultra vigilant to avoid any recurrences of the coronavirus. The casino shares ground with a ski and golf resort in the Gangwon Province and, as South Korea relaxes its COVID-19 restrictions, greater amounts of local foot traffic could bring greater risks of another outbreak.
According to South Korean health officials, the number of daily coronavirus infections has dropped substantially over the past five days. Where there were, on average, 1,000 new daily infections, there are now just 375, a sign that, perhaps, the country is winning the war against the seemingly indomitable virus. As a result, the South Korean national health alert level has been dropped to 1.5 to 2 around the country, except for the Seoul metropolitan area. It has seen more coronavirus cases and was operating under level 2.5, which has now been dropped to 2.
Kangwon Land took a major hit last year because of the pandemic and is anxious to get things running again. It was shut down three times before 2020 closed out and reported consistent losses throughout the year. In November, when it released its third-quarter performance, it reported a loss of $36.6 million that followed a loss of about $38.4 million in the previous quarter. In its latest update, Kangwon Land acknowledged that it took it on the chin last year, suffering a 2020 loss of about $250.2 million. The hit came as the casino saw its annual revenue fall 68.5% from what it recorded a year earlier.