Management at City of Dreams (CoD) Manila (pictured) has confirmed to GGRAsia that a “trial run” of casino operations is ongoing at the resort in the Philippine capital.
But Kevin Benning, chief operating officer of the venue, which is run by a local unit of Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd, told GGRAsia in an emailed reply following our enquiry, that City of Dreams Manila “still does not have a reopening date” for full operations.
At the end of last month, the country’s casino regulator the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp (Pagcor) confirmed to GGRAsia that some casino resorts in that country had been allowed to reopen “limited to a maximum of 30 percent capacity” and with strict health countermeasures against Covid-19.
The information had first been disclosed by Melco International Development Ltd, the Hong Kong-listed parent of Nasdaq-listed Melco Resorts.
Mr Benning told GGRAsia: “The trial run, as permitted by Pagcor, with invited guests at 30 percent capacity, continues, enabling us to fine-tune our services in compliance with government guidelines.”
According to the second-quarter results of Melco Resorts, filed on August 20, City of Dreams Manila had an average of 301 table games – i.e., the count prior to application of capacity constraints on use of inventory – in the three months to June 30. Additionally in that reporting period, it had an average of 2,273 gaming machines.
A research paper issued last week by Singapore-based Smartkarma Innovations Pte Ltd, described as an “independent investment research network”, suggested Melco Resorts was “well positioned to speed its revenue recovery cycle because it has strong footprints in both Macau and Manila”.
City of Dreams Manila’s Mr Benning noted that when an actual reopening did occur, four restaurants – Crystal Dragon, Red Ginger, Noodle 8, and Wave – would return “at 30 percent capacity too,” with more food outlets “to open in ensuing weeks”.
The resorts’ three hotels – Nuwa, Nobu and Hyatt Regency – and their respective gyms and swimming pools would, upon the venue’s reopening-proper, “likewise be available”. So would shops and on-site banks.
He added: “The DreamWorks-inspired family entertainment centre DreamPlay, The Garage VR Zone, and food park, and our two spas, will subsequently follow”.
Mr Benning also noted: “In compliance with government regulations, we have stringent measures to maintain the safety and health of our guests and colleagues against Covid-19.”
Steps included: a requirement for face masks and face shields to be used; the use of physical distancing in the gaming areas and other public places; use of distance markers; employment of thermal-temperature checks; and frequent disinfection of high traffic areas “with the use of high-level and globally-trusted hygiene brands”.
Mr Benning added: “Our colleagues are provided with hygiene kits and vitamins,” while being asked to observe “distancing” in the workplace and staff-dining areas.
Checked-in guests are also to be provided with “an amenity kit consisting of two, 3-ply face masks, disinfectant wipes and alcohol, along with two face shields,” added the COO.
The executive said that what were termed “Health Safety Ambassadors” would be “closely monitoring, and guiding guests” at all hours, regarding “the practice of physical distancing and other hygiene measures”.
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