A luxury casino resort is expected to be created in Greece, at the spot of a former airport in Athens. Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment is the casino operator behind the project, a company based in the United States. This week, a company executive announced that the casino should be ready by 2026. The announcement is the first time that a time frame has been provided for the project.
Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment and its partner construction group GEK Terna will be working together to see the casino come to fruition. The next step in the project is to sign a contract and clear the project with auditors and parliament.
During the Delphi Economic Forum in Athens, interim CEO for Mohegan, Ray Pineault, stated that the company anticipates that once the contract negotiation process is complete, the permitting process along with design will take one year to 18 months. The resort is expected to launch by 2025 or 2026.
The casino resort is part of a redevelopment plan by Lamda, a Greece-based developer. The plan costs 8 billion euro ($9.68 billion) and will be home to not only a casino but also hotels, shopping malls, and homes.
Back in 2014, Lamda won a government tender for the site but years of delays have led to the project not moving forward. When government control changed hands in 2019, and the new leaders have said that the project will be sped up.
Greece relies on tourism to spur the economy and the airport project is one that would help to grow international tourism in the region. According to Pineault, the tourism rate should grow by 10% or more once the casino is operational.
The Winning Bid
The Mohegan Tribe in the United States decided that it wanted to seek the option to create the gambling facility in Athens when the bidding process began. The tribe used its casino-operating arm, Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment, to bid on the project and won.
The company will work with GEK Terna to create the casino resort and they look forward to creating thousands of jobs for the region as well as helping to benefit the local economy. When the company won the bid, its CEO Mario Kontomerkos commented that they believe their construction company partner will help them fulfill the vision of creating the casino in Ellinikon.
The objective of the Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment Group is to complete a sizeable investment that will be a game-changer for the local and national tourism industry.