Initially set for Monday, on Wednesday Melco Crown will announce the opening date of its Studio City, according to ggrasia.com, but Bernstein Research estimates that it will be 100 days before it is ready to open.
The Studio City Casino will likely receive 150 new live gaming tables from the Macau government for its new casino resort. Studio City Casino operator Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd, “will be a Base Mass focused property with abundant unique non-gaming features that may attract incremental visitation,” according to Bernstein analyst Vitaly Umansky. Melco Crown owns 60 percent of Studio City.
In January, co-chairman and chief executive of Melco Crown, Lawrence Ho Yau Lung, said he had “no idea” how many gaming tables the casino would receive from the Macau government at its opening, and while no public announcement has been made, the company “hoped” t0 receive as many as 400 during the casino’s opening days. That number of gaming tables is close to the amount given to the casino’s rival, Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd, by the Macau government in May during the opening of their Galaxy Macau, casino resort, also on Cotai.
Effective since 2013, any new to market gaming tables allocated within Macau is subject to a cap system. The system is designed to limit the growth of new gaming tables in Macau to three percent through December 2022, which is calculated by the local casino regulator from the 5,485 tables ending the fourth quarter of 2012. According to Macau government officials, the anticipated 2,000 new market gaming tables within the system guidelines for the Macau market between January 2013 and December 2022 could be dispersed among new openings rather than according to specific numbers annually.
Deutsche Bank’s team of analysts, Carlo Santarelli and Danny Valoy, said that the casino is likely to open the last week of October, after China’s “Golden Week” period beginning the first week of October. Typically, gambling revenue increases during the national holiday for the People’s Republic of China. Tourists from the mainland frequently travel to Macau to celebrate the festivities. However, last year during the holiday period that wasn’t the case when the city experienced a decrease of approximately one third of the average daily intake for gambling generated by Macau’s casinos for the year.
Located on Cotai, the property has been promoted heavily among the new casino resorts in China, and it is believed the casino will have a successful opening. Studio City Macau is Asia’s first leisure resort to integrate television and film production facilities, retail, gaming and hotels.