The Beijing Imperial Palace Hotel (formerly known as New Century Hotel, and home to the shuttered Greek Mythology Casino) has had its appeal to the Macau Court of Final Appeal (TUI) rejected, meaning the court did not agree that the company had overpaid VIP gaming commissions.
The property, home to one of the first “new” casinos to open in Taipa back in 2004, has seen a deluge of operational issues and vague reports on its status. In May of this year, Chinese language newspaper Macao Daily reported that that hotel operator Empresa Hoteleira de Macau Lda had deeded over the property to Victory Success Holdings Limited, with effect as of October 22, 2015. No details were available but the outlet reported then that property transfer was made to settle bad debt.
In October and November last year, workers at the property staged protests complaining of as many as eight months of unpaid wages.
On New Years Eve, the Greek Mythology Casino closed and did not re-open. Initially, no reason was for the closure was given, but a company spokesman eventually stated that it was closed for repairs and renovation. The casino, operating under a license from SJM continues to be closed, and the most recent court ruling could be an impediment to its re-opening.
The TUI ruling could possibly see the building sold off to pay back debts in the form of unpaid VIP gaming commissions. The ruling came in regard to commissions owed to Macau’s Energy Travel Agency operator, Hoi Cheng Nga. Ms. Hoi could press for a sale of the assets in order to collect money owed, according to a report on TDM News of Macau. However, when the outlet asked her attorney if she planned to pursue that avenue, her lawyer told them that “[she] just wants to get back her money”.
TDM also reported that a lawsuit over ownership of the hotel is ongoing in British Virgin Islands courts. That case is based on a share transfer from Ng Man Sun to his then partner, Chen Mei Huan. Ng maintains the transfer was temporary while Ms. Chen contends it was permanent.
Ng Man Sun acquired Empresa Hoteleira in 1996. He also founded Greek Mythology Casino. In 2012 Ng was the victim of an attack by six men inside the hotel. The hotel was closed for some time after the incident but the casino remained open. Mr. Ng’s Hong Kong-listed company Amax International Holdings currently owns nearly 25 percent of Greek Mythology Entertainment, who operated Greek Mythology Casino under a license from SJM until it closed on December 31.