The signing of the contract for Melco Hardrock Resorts’ Limassol, Cyprus casino resort will take place today at the Filoxenia Confernece Centre in Nicosia.
Christos Mavrellis, president of the National Authority for Gaming Supervision and Casinos and representatives of the Melco-Hard Rock Resorts Cyprus consortium, which in addition to the Lawrence Ho-led Melco International Development Ltd, includes Seminole HR Holdings LLC, owner of the Hard Rock International brand; and local conglomerate CNS Group – Cyprus Phasouri (Zakaki) Ltd., will according to news agency, Cyprus Mail, all be on hand to sign the contract for Cyprus’ first ever casino resort.
Energy, Tourism, and Commerce Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis will reportedly be addressing the signing ceremony.
In September, the competition for a single casino license in Cyprus came down to one candidate when NagaCorp Ltd., stated in a filing with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that it would not be proceeding to the final bid stage. That decision was immediately followed by a confirmation from the Melco-Hard Rock Resorts Cyprus consortium that it would be submitting a final bid for the single Cypriot casino concession. Not too long after, the consortium announced that it had received approval from the Cyprus government to build and operate the continent’s first large scale Integrated Casino Resort (ICR).
The 30-year casino license will be exclusive for 15 years and allows for a satellite casino in Nicosia. The districts of Famagusta, Paphos, and Larnaca will host the other three satellites which will only offer electronic gaming, no Las Vegas-style table games.
The proposed casino, which officials say will be the biggest casino in Europe, will reportedly include 136 gambling tables and 1,200 gambling machines, while an adjoining 500- room luxury hotel will have a health spa and 1,500-seat concert hall, an is to be located next to “My Mall” in Limassol.
The government reportedly estimates that the project will attract 300,000 more tourists a year. According to the news agency, during the construction phase around 4,000 people will be employed and somewhere near the same number once all four of the casinos are up and running.
A temporary casino in Limassol is expected to open by October and will reportedly shut down when the main casino opens. The news agency indicates that the temporary casino’s likely location will be on Amathus Avenue, the current premises of the Monte Caputo nightspot.
Construction on the resort, which at build-out is estimated at some €500 million ($558 million), is expected to be completed late in 2019 or in early 2020, according to the report.