Hong Kong-based real estate developer Melco International Development, which was selected to build the first casino resort in the Republic of Cyprus, presented plans for its ambitious project to the President of the Mediterranean island nation, Nicos Anastasiades.
Melco, which currently operates integrated resorts in Macau and the Philippines through its subsidiary Melco Resorts & Entertainment, will be working with local partner Cyprus Phassouri Ltd. on the construction of a €500-million hotel and casino complex in the city of Limassol. The property, whose name was revealed to be City of Dreams Mediterranean, is expected to welcome its first visitors in 2020.
Talking to media, President Anastasiades said that the casino resort holds the potential to generate around €700 million in revenue during its first two years of operation (which represents 4% of the country’s gross domestic product) and to annually attract 300,000 visitors to Cyprus. The nation’s top official further pointed out that they want the resort to be one of the largest in Europe and one of the best in the world.
In a meeting with President Anastasiades, which took place earlier today, Melco officials revealed more comprehensive plans for its resort. The property will feature an 80,000-square-foot casino with 1,200 slot machines and 136 gaming tables, a 500-room hotel, and a number of dining facilities. Convention and event center will also operate as part of the resort.
Timetable for the Resort’s Opening
Melco said during today’s meeting with the President of Cyprus, which was also attended by the Hong Kong developer’s Chairman, Lawrence Ho, that the resort will be completed by 2020. A temporary casino will open doors in Limassol by the end of this year’s first half and will remain operation while the main resort is under development.
Four other permanent gaming facilities are slated to be launched in the capital Nicosia and three other cities across the nation. These will, too, open doors sometime during the first half of the year. They will feature slot machines only.
Melco said during today’s presentation that the construction of the Limassol-based resort would create around 4,000 temporary jobs. The property will employ around 2,500 people, once fully operational.
It was last summer when Melco, together with its local partner, signed an agreement with the government of Cyprus that officially gave the developer the green light to construct its integrated resort. The casino property will be the first of its kind in the Mediterranean republic, after Las Vegas-style casino gambling was legalized by its lawmakers.
Melco had originally applied for Cyprus’ sole casino license with fellow casino operator Hard Rock International. However, the Florida-based company announced its exit from the ambitious project last summer, on the very same day when the group of developers was officially granted the necessary approval to proceed with the resort’s development.
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