The official property name of Entertainment City’s most recent and largest integrated resort and casino in Parañaque (Metro Manila) in the Philippines is Okada Manila, announced developer Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc.
The first phase of the gaming zone’s third integrated resort, and namesake of Japanese billionaire Kazuo Okada, is expected to have a soft opening towards the latter part of this year, and according to Tiger Resort’s CEO Takahiro Usui, its investment could reach $4 billion upon completion of the project’s four phases. In an interview with news agency Manila Bulletin, Usui said, “The $2.4 billion is just for the development only, probably if we include everything, phase 1 will be close to $3 billion,” and “the first phase is soft opening this year while the grand opening date will be announced later. Phase 2 would take another year or two. (The project) probably (would comprise) three to four phases.”
Touted as a “game-changer,” the development, which will occupy 44 hectares (108 plus acres) on the shores of Manila Bay, will include a gaming space of more than 26,000 square meters (about 279,861 sq ft) and house 3,000 electronic gaming machines and upwards of 500 table games. One of four permits issued by PAGCOR for Manila’s “Entertainment City,” a comprehensive gaming and entertainment complex and the country’s version of the Las Vegas Strip, Okada Manila’s gold glass-plated Y-shaped hotel will consist of two 15-floor wings, which will house approximately 993 deluxe rooms and villas.
The resort will also be home to the country’s biggest dancing fountain and The Cove, a glass dome enclosed 8,361 square meter entertainment venue, complete with 33 cabanas and amenity-laden bungalows. Touted as Southeast Asia’s most luxurious indoor night club/beach club complex, The Cove will have a 4,500 guest capacity, white sand, daybeds, lily pads, and well-appointed locker and shower room facilities. In addition to a 700-sqm butterfly pool, Okada Manila will offer world-class spa facilities, two entertainment stages, five bars, 21 restaurants, and an 8,409 square meter shopping area featuring 50-plus luxury brands.
Tiger Resort’s President, Steve Wolstenholme, said the decision by the Okada group to exceed the gaming regulator’s usual $1-billion commitment standard, was the company’s vote of confidence in the Philippines. Wolstenholme said, “Okada Manila has the potential to compete with the entertainment and gaming giants from across the region with its best natural resources—its hospitality and warmth. Here, expect an effortless integration of the Japanese omotenashi—people’s respectful demeanor, passion for creativity and hunger for innovation—and the Filipinos’ hard work, hospitality and cheerful spirit, in terms of quality service,” according to the news agency. Philippine businessman and Tiger Resort’s board member, Antonio Cojuangco, echoed Wolstenholme’s sentiments and added that Okada Manila’s hotel facilities should attract both local and foreign tourists.
Universal Entertainment Corporation, Okada’s umbrella company, which owns Tiger Resorts Leisure and Entertainment, recently secured an $809.9 million, five-year loan from BDO Unibank to help finance the Manila Bay development.