Lawrence Ho, the Chairman and CEO of Asian casino operator Melco Resorts, confirmed Thursday that the company has now opened three gaming areas of its Macau-based casinos exclusively to be used by foreign players. Ho told IAG that the company’s City of Dreams and Studio City facilities now include gaming areas designated explicitly for foreign visitors.

Three Foreigner-Only Gaming Areas in Two Gaming Facilities:

The facilities were presented at the Thursday Grand Opening of an indoor water park and new hotel tower at Studio City. These developments represent a part of the $1.2 billion Phase 2 property expansion project. Lawrence Ho, Melco’s Chairman, and CEO reportedly explained: “Both City of Dreams and Studio City have foreign gaming areas, two at City of Dreams and one at Studio City.”

Ho continued: “There are a lot of gaming tables … now that the crowds are increasing and the visa restrictions for visitors have been reduced, I believe there will be more visitors on 1 May.”

Melco Seeks to Offset the COVID Impact:

Expecting the forthcoming holiday to boost revenue figures in Melco’s resorts, the executive revealed some of the company’s plans: ”This year, Melco is not expected to lose money, but the pandemic has caused the company to lose a lot of money in the past three years and the bank debt has increased substantially, so we will have to work harder to pay off our debts.”

The statement may be based on last year’s financial results which saw Melco reporting a net loss of US$931 million and adjusted property EBITDA of $600,000 in 2022, which followed a net loss of $810 million and adjusted property EBITDA of $235 million seen in 2021. The financial situation significantly improved for all Macau operators after the post-pandemic re-opening in January, but the Macau casino operators, including Melco, continue to seek ways to offset the impact of the pandemic as soon as possible.

Expanding The Offerings:

The Grand Opening of the three gaming areas specifically designated for foreign players just in time for the Western holiday season is one of the ways to attract more foreign customers. Ho reportedly announced that Melco would also open new facilities shortly and re-launch its popular show “The House of Dancing Water,” featured at the company’s flagship City of Dreams venue, to compensate for the revenue declines experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Melco CEO said: ”Now that border tourism has been restored we look forward to using the new facilities to attract more visitors to Macau, including international visitors.”