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Alliance Global-Genting JV to invest $650M in Resorts World expansion

Posted on June 13, 2014 07:31:36 PM [ BusinessWorld Online ]

Travellers International Hotel Group Inc. plans to invest $650 million for the expansion of Resorts World Manila, the first integrated resort and casino in the Philippines.

Travellers, a joint venture between Andrew L. Tan’s Alliance Global Group Inc. and Genting Hong Kong Ltd., made the announcement at its annual shareholder meeting in Pasay City yesterday.

“The company has set aside P9 billion in 2014 alone to fund the phase 2 and 3 of the project. We’re quite well-capitalized and there’s no need to raise capital,” Travellers President Kingson U. Sian said.

The second phase involves the establishment of the 2,000-seat Marriott Grand Ballroom, which is expected to be the largest ballroom in the country, as well as an additional 227 rooms in the hotel’s West Wing.

The ballroom and the West Wing will be operational by the first quarter of 2015 and end of 2015, respectively.

Resorts World, which houses three hotels -- Maxims Hotel, Remington Hotel and Marriott Hotel, will create two more in phase 3 -- the Hilton Manila and the Sheraton Hotel Manila, and also expand Maxims by an additional 877 rooms.

Resorts World is across the street from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 3. Five airlines will be transferring their Manila operations to Terminal 3 in August -- Singapore Airlines Ltd, Delta Air Lines Inc, The Emirates Group’s Emirates airline, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines NV -- increasing potential foot traffic in the area.

The third phase, which is set to be completed by 2017, will also include a new gaming area, additional retail space and six basement parking decks.

“We will be doubling our casino space with this project,” Travellers International Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David Chua told reporters on the sidelines of the shareholder meeting yesterday.

Mr. Sian said currently total of over 2,000 slot machines and 420 gaming tables will be doubled by 2017.

He added also said a redevelopment of the car park will someday make up “phase 4,” but he did not provide further details.

Asked about the impact of other integrated resort and casino facilities at Bagong Nayong Pilipino Entertainment City of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp., Mr. Sian said: “Competition makes everybody better because you keep on leveling up.”

The other integrated resort projects are Solaire Resort & Casino of Bloomberry Resorts Corp.; City of Dreams Manila of Melco Crown (Philippines) Resorts Corp.; The Manila Bay Resorts of Tiger Resorts and Entertainment, Inc., a unit of Japan’s Universal Entertainment Corp.; and Resorts World Bayshore of Westin Starwood Hotels & Resorts.

Travellers began trading on the Philippine Stock Exchange in November.

Travellers’ first quarter net income rose 73% from a year earlier to P1.72 billion, while gross revenue dropped 22.3% to P8 billion.

The company’s shares closed at P9.22 yesterday, up 0.99%. -- Daphne Magturo  

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