Russian media outlet PrimaMedia is reporting on the internal progress of Tigre de Cristal as the first casino in Primorsky Krai is set to open their doors to the public in a little over a week. There are reportedly over 50 different technological systems coming together to ensure smooth operations at the state of the art casino. Representatives reportedly told the outlet, “The technical infrastructure will include two Cisco Nexus 7000 switches, IP-phones for guests and staff, more than 800 digital cameras for video surveillance and access control, IPTV, as well as a 100% wireless network covering the whole building.”
The investment in technical infrastructure alone at Tigre de Cristal will be about $20 million.
Included in the technological infrastructure are secure banking systems including ATMs. General banking partner, “Seaside Bank” will have two offices operating 24 hours a day. Most customers are expected to access money via an integrated ATM system at the resort. Sberbank and Alfa-Bank (Russia’s largest retail and commercial banks) will reportedly handle ATM transactions for VISA, Mastercard, China UnionPay, and American Express at the casino.
Tigre de Cristal will be the first of four casino resorts to open in the Primorye Integrated Entertainment Zone (IEZ) which is expected to be fully realized by 2022. The IEZ, located around a lake and on the bay about 50km from Vladivostok will cover an area of some 620 hectares (over 1,500 acres, nearly 2.4 sq miles). In addition to 8 casinos, the zone will feature a seven star hotel with 12 guest villas, 4 five-star hotels, 7 four-star hotels, 4 three-star hotels, a yacht club, multi-function trade and exhibition center, multiple cinemas and theaters, a promenade and various theme park attractions and other family-centric venues. When fully operational the IEZ is expected to directly and indirectly employ as many as 100,000 people.
Massive infrastructure work has already begun and before the completion of the first phase of the overall development, should be completed including engineering, water works and waste treatment, road and bridge construction, and a 6-lane highway. Some reports indicate that all “objects” of engineering and road infrastructure have been completed.
In addition to Tigre de Cristal (Summit Ascent Holdings, Meclo International, G1 Entertainment) three other projects have been authorized, and at least two of them have begun work. NagaCorp Russia (subsidiary of Malaysian company NagaCorp Ltd, operators of NagaWorld in Phnom Penh, Kingdom of Cambodia) broke ground in May on their development under the current working name of Primorsky Entertainment Resort City (PERC). Phase I of PERC will include a Casino Hotel Complex with at least 100 gaming tables, 500 gaming machines, a multi-purpose international-class MICE/theatre facility with at least a 2,000-persons capacity, 10 Food and beverage outlets, and entertainment outlets such as Karaoke and spa etc.
Diamond Fortune Holdings, a Russian company, announced in early July that work had begun on Selena World Resort & Casino. A full timeline for development of this integrated resort shows completion before 2022.
Royal Time Primorye LLC (subsidiary of Royal Time LLC, developers of former Azov City casino “Oracle”) signed agreements in early February for their “Phoenix” integrated resort in the zone and were expected to have begun site work in Q3 2015. Phase I of the Royal Time project is expected to open by November 2017 with a casino, 320 room hotel, and 47,500 square meter entertainment complex.
Regulatory requirements and a stringent inspection regime have contributed to several delays in the inaugural casino opening. Tigre de Cristal expects that all requirements will be met before October 8 and a “soft launch” will occur on that date along with a full launch of the property by month’s end. Visitors can expect mass market and VIP gaming areas, several food and beverage outlets, and a 121 key hotel with guestrooms and luxury suites in the coming weeks.