In the Commonwealth Of The Northern Mariana Islands, the temporary Best Sunshine Live casino on Saipan ended its first year in business in October by recording a second highest monthly VIP chip turnover of $3.84 billion.

Operated by Hong Kong-listed Best Sunshine International Limited, which is a subsidiary of Imperial Pacific International Holdings Limited, the training facility located in an upscale Garapan shopping mall began operations in November of 2015 with its most recent results representing only a 2.8% decrease from September’s all-time record of $3.95 billion.

Imperial Pacific International Holdings secured an exclusive casino license for Saipan in August of 2015 and subsequently spent $25 million to open its Best Sunshine Live casino. The company is investing some $500 million to construct The Grand Mariana Casino And Hotel Resort on the same Pacific Ocean island and expects this more permanent 350-room development to open in February offering more than 400 slots and 200 gaming tables alongside 15 private villas, several restaurants and a nightclub.

Mark Brown, Chief Executive Officer for Best Sunshine International Limited, declared in September that profit and rolling chip volumes at The Grand Mariana Casino And Hotel Resort are conservatively expected to be double the figures recorded by the Best Sunshine Live facility with the new development to additionally feature as many as 180 VIP-only gaming tables.

The operator had been relying on direct relationships with its VIP clientele but September saw the local Commonwealth Casino Commission regulator issue its first junket operator license to South Korean firm Big Bang Entertainment while more than a dozen other firms are currently awaiting similar approval.

According to a recent report from brokerage and investments firm Credit Lyonnais Securities Asia, Chinese nationals account for over 80% of Best Sunshine International Limited’s gambling revenues in Saipan, which is about the same ratio as reported by casinos in Macau but much higher than the 60% from venues in South Korea or the 25% seen in the Philippines.