Yokohama Integrated Resort Plans from Genting, Melco Released
Posted on: July 29, 2021, 09:44h.
Last updated on: July 29, 2021, 02:48h.
Yokohama officials have unveiled the city’s two qualifying integrated resort (IR) bids from Genting Group and Melco Resorts.
Now through August 7, an exhibit at the Yokohama City Hall displays models of the two large-scale casino design pitches. Each would be expected to cost several billion dollars, but only one will be selected by the city and its Kanagawa Prefecture.
Yokohama is one of four cities in Japan vying for an IR license from the central government. Three commercial casino concessions have been authorized in Tokyo by Japan’s National Diet.
Along with Yokohama, Osaka, Nagasaki, and Wakayama are in the bidding pool. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is following in his predecessor and mentor Shinzo Abe’s footsteps in carrying on the belief that integrated casino resorts will fuel tourism to Japan.
Casino Ops Committed Despite COVID
Melco Resorts, headquartered in Hong Kong, reported a net loss of $185.7 million in the second quarter of 2021. But the casino operator’s billionaire founder, Lawrence Ho, says he’s pleased with the recoveries being experienced at Melco’s properties in Macau, Manila, and Cyprus.
Ho declared that COVID-19 will not impede Melco’s ambitions in Japan.
The development of the integrated resort industry in Japan has continued to move forward. We remain convinced that Japan represents the best potential new gaming market globally,” Ho explained.
Genting Group remains steadfast to Japan, too.
The Malaysian-based casino company recently opened its $4.3 billion Resorts World Las Vegas property on the Strip. Controlled by billionaire Lim Kok Thay, Genting says it has plenty of cash on hand to continue its Japanese pursuits.
Genting’s IR consortium in Japan features a partnership with Japan-based Sega Sammy and Kajima. Sega Sammy is in the video game and pachinko businesses but is best known globally for its Sega Genesis platform and Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. Kajima is a Tokyo construction firm that Genting contracted to build its Resorts World Sentosa IR in Singapore.
Melco’s consortium embraces Japan’s Taisei Corporation, a construction and engineering firm.
Inside Asian Gaming was the first to report on the Yokohama IR plans being put on display at the city’s government headquarters.
The exhibits, however, are light on specifics. The models are vague at best, and the developers concede that nothing is set in stone.
Melco’s model features three wavy, curving structures, plus a more traditional hotel tower. Genting’s display is more blocked and rectangular, not too unlike RW Las Vegas.
Yokohama city officials, along with prefecture leaders in Kanagawa, will ultimately decide which scheme to proceed with. Once selected, which is expected to occur sometime over the next eight weeks, the prefecture and city will petition Japan’s central government for one of the three casino concessions.
Gaming analysts have deemed Genting the odds-on favorite to win in Yokohama. With more than 3.5 million people, Yokohama is Japan’s second-most populated city.
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