In Uruguay and officials have reportedly signed off on the $450 million plan from luxury hospitality firm Cipriani SA that is to see the historic San Rafael Hotel transformed into the much larger Cipriani Ocean Resort, Club Residences and Casino.

According to a report from G3Newswire, the approval from the offices of Tourism Minister German Cardoso and Economy and Finance Minister Azucena Arbeleche means that work on the coming project for the seaside resort city of Punta del Este could now begin as early as June. The source detailed that this development is initially expected to encompass a new 70-room hotel designed by New York-headquartered architect Rafael Vinoly alongside 75 private apartments and a casino before being joined at a later date by a convention center, gym, theater, spa, hair salon, restaurants, further residences and a pair of underground parking garages.

Perfect position:

Located at the extreme southern tip of Uruguay overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, Punta del Este is already home to a trio of gambling-friendly facilities in the Nogaro Casino, Enjoy Punta del Este and Conrad Casino while Luxembourg-based Cipriani SA is responsible for multiple luxury properties in the United States, Hong Kong, Spain, Mexico, Monaco and Saudi Arabia.

Overseas appeal:

Built in the late-1940s as Punta del Este began its journey towards becoming one of its country’s premiere tourist destinations, the San Rafael Hotel has reportedly been closed since 2011 and was purchased by Cipriani SA in February of 2018 as part of a deal worth approximately $40 million. Arbeleche purportedly stated that his approval is all part of a plan to attract foreign investment into Uruguay and that he is optimistic the local tourism sector will continue its upwards trajectory once the ongoing threat of the coronavirus pandemic comes to an end.

Reportedly read a statement from Arbeleche…

“We continue to make progress in attracting the large investments that our country needs.”