A South Korea casino hotel complex – developed and operated by mainland Chinese real estate firm Landing International Development Ltd – had its initial-phase “grand opening” on Tuesday, the promoter announced.
The resort, called Jeju Shinhwa World, on the holiday island of Jeju, opened on Tuesday 344 units of accommodation called Somerset Jeju Shinhwa World. The latter facility (pictured in part) is operated by The Ascott Ltd, a wholly-owned unit of Singapore’s CapitaLand Ltd.
“Somerset Jeju Shinhwa World is the first international-class fully-serviced resort condominium in Jeju, offering 344 units of three-bedroom resort condominium units with thoughtfully furnished and designed interiors,” Landing International said in a Tuesday filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
“Somerset Jeju Shinhwa World also provides a wide range of modern amenities such as a clubhouse with a spacious lobby lounge, and a fully-equipped gymnasium, a restaurant offering international cuisine, as well as an indoor playroom and a large outdoor play area for children,” the document added.
Landing International said it expected to open further accommodation – branded under the “Marriot” trademark – at Jeju Shinhwa World “in late 2017”.
The filing did not provide details on gaming facilities planned for Jeju Shinhwa World that have previously been announced. Under present South Korean law, gaming space at Jeju Shinhwa World will only be accessible to foreign players.
South Korea currently has 18 casinos but only one – Kangwon Land in a remote upland area – is allowed to serve South Korean nationals.
A March press release from Landing International said that other facilities would open at Jeju Shinhwa World from “late 2017″. The entire development is expected to be completed by 2019, according to previous company statements.
The firm already owns and operates a casino on Jeju Island, branded Landing Casino, located at the Hyatt Regency Jeju Hotel. In April 2016, Landing International acquired Les Ambassadeurs Club and Casino, an upmarket gaming venue in London in the United Kingdom.
Genting Singapore Plc, operator of the Resorts World Sentosa casino resort in Singapore, had announced in November 2016 it was disposing of its rights to participate in Jeju Shinhwa World – a project previously under the working title of either “Myths and History Park” or “Resorts World Jeju” – in order to focus on other projects, including a potential investment in Japan.
According to some investment analysts, the South Korean market for inbound tourism is currently facing headwinds due to a political row between that country and China over the siting on South Korean soil of a U.S.-supplied missile system – known as Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) – designed to counter North Korea’s ballistic missile programme.
Reuters news agency said in a recent report that the number of Chinese visitors to South Korea fell 39 percent year-on-year in March. The Korea Tourism Organization had previously announced that – respectively in January and February – the tally of such visitors had risen by 8 percent from a year earlier.
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