MGM to Delay Opening of Cotai Strip Resort to January 2018
MGM Resorts International announced on Friday that the grand opening of MGM Cotai, a new integrated resort in the Chinese casino mecca of Macau, will be delayed until late-January of 2018. The property was previously scheduled to open for the first time near the end of 2017.
It’s not the first time this particular project has suffered a setback. MGM Cotai was first expected to open its doors during the fourth quarter of 2016 before construction delays pushed that tentative date back into the first quarter of 2017. Further construction delays have continued to plague the project, so another rescheduling was necessary.
The most recent delay is likely a result of the recent Typhoon Hato, which caused massive flooding, death, and destruction to the South China area. The storm hit the coast on August 23 and smacked Hong Kong and Macau. MGM Resorts also said today that all of their properties that sustained damage during the storm and floods will be covered by insurance.
MGM additionally announced that the budget for MGM Cotai will be increased from HK$26 billion to HK$27 billion.
MGM’s Plans for Japan
This will mark MGM’s second property in Macau, and its first on the Cotai Strip, which is essentially Asia’s answer to the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada. The new resort will include a hotel, plenty of gambling options, restaurants, entertainment facilities and business centers.
MGM already manages a number of properties in the United States, including locations in Nevada, New Jersey, Maryland and Michigan, among other states. MGM is also set to open a brand new project that cost nearly $1 billion in Springfield, Massachusetts in 2018.
MGM’s interest in Asia isn’t stopping with their new property on the Cotai Strip, either. MGM is expected to be among a number of interested bidders vying for a license to operate a casino resort in Japan, which recently legalized gambling. Japan officially legalized betting in 2016, which is expected to open the floodgates to the construction of new properties and casinos akin to what is going on in Macau.
Hard Rock International, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, and Hard Rock International are expected to be among the competitors to MGM for the rights to get the first gaming licenses in Japan. Each of the other three corporations has already publicly expressed interest in doing business.
Unfortunately, progress in Japan won’t be happening as quickly as expected. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently called for a snap election, which will delay a vote on how casinos will be regulated by the Japanese government. The vote on a second casino bill was supposed to set new rules under which Japan’s gambling industry would be regulated.
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