On Wednesday MJC Investments Corp (Manila Jockey Club) announced a ceremonial opening of their new Winford Casino on the ground floor of a 5 star hotel at the site of the former San Lazaro Hippodrome racetrack in Metro Manila’s Santa Cruz. The entertainment center is part of a much larger renovation of the “greater Chinatown” area. In addition to the ground floor casino, now in operation by PAGCOR with MJC taking in 40% of revenues, two more levels of entertainment space will be offered including shops, restaurants, and beverage outlets.

The 20 story, 5 star hotel offers 128 deluxe guestrooms, swimming pool and spa, a ballroom, and multi-level parking structure among other amenities.

The Winford development joins high-end residential condominiums in the San Lazaro Tourism and Business Park being developed jointly by MJC Investments, Ayala Land, Inc., and SM San Lazaro (shopping mall). MJC Investments is a real estate associate of the Manila Jockey Club.

In an article dated May 29, 2015 local media, interaksyon quoted MJC Investments project proponent president, Alfonso Reyno Jr., as saying, “The hotel’s entertainment hub will fill a critical need for luxury accommodations, meetings and event facilities as well as creative and innovative entertainment concepts targeted to the expanding and affluent Chinese and Filipino-Chinese communities in central Mega Manila, where no new luxury hotel has opened in the past ten years,” said the president, chief executive, and chairman.

The Binondo district has been a center of trade and commerce in the Philippines since before the arrival of Magellan in 1521, and officially for over 420 years. The district was established by Spanish Governor General Luis Perez Dasmarinas in 1594. The new casino will give a quality entertainment venue for Santa Cruz and Balintawak gamblers who may not want to deal with Manila’s legendary traffic jams and crazy drivers on their way to Solaire or City of Dreams.