The most recent filing by Summit Ascent Holdings LTD with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange confirms a planned October 8th soft opening for Tigre De Cristal and states that Phase I will be in full operation in “approximately three to six months.” Once fully ramped up, the integrated resort and operating company, G1 Entertainment is expected to have approximately 1,250 staff. All key management positions at the operating company are already filled as well as the majority of initially required gaming, food and beverage and other support staff according to a report filed on September 18th.
As reported earlier, the Duma passed legislation signed by President Vladimir Putin that opens four distinct economic zones, one of which is tourism. Summit Ascent’s Friday filing with the HKEx notes that in addition to economic incentives and job creation, the status could make it possible (as the government has indicated it would) for citizens from most countries to enter the area visa-free at several key entry points, which may include the Vladivostok International Airport. The company also said that, “Another positive sign is the agreement of a consortium led by Singapore Changi Airport Authority to acquire a majority stake in and manage the Vladivostok International Airport.”
Some analysts have previously predicted that up to 80% of foot-fall at the casino could come from the Russian market while some 80% of the revenue would likely come from visitors. A rising middle-class in South Korea has a single casino they can visit at home, the remote Kangwon Land Casino & Hotel. Many Chinese VIPs who had previously frequented Macau have moved their custom elsewhere and are seen as potential visitors. Japanese citizens who hunger for more than pachinko are a short flight away. Between Russia and nearby countries, an estimated market of 200 to 300 million potential customers is not out of the question.
Before completion of Phase II, a handful of other casino resorts will make their mark in the Primorye entertainment zone including NagaCorp and Diamond Fortune, with no firm date yet for former Azov City operator Royal Time Group’s project to open.
Phase I for Tigre De Cristal will see a 121 room hotel, several food and beverage outlets, mass market and VIP gaming areas. Phase II will see an additional 500 guestrooms and suites, spa center, retail mall, additional dining and nightlife, conference facilities, and expanded gaming facilities.