Hong Kong-listed Melco International Development Ltd has confirmed in its annual report filed on Monday that “work has begun” for Phase 2 of the group’s Studio City casino resort (pictured) in Macau. Melco International, via its subsidiaries, is the majority owner of the casino complex located in the Cotai district. The scheme’s daily operations are managed via Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd.
According to Melco International’s report, Phase 2 of Studio City will include two hotel towers with an aggregate of 900 rooms and suites. The expansion plans also involve the construction of a cineplex, “one of the world’s largest indoor water parks”, and facilities for meetings and exhibitions.
The Melco group has earmarked “US$1.35 billion to US$1.4 billion” for the extension of the Studio City property, exclusive of any pre-opening costs and financing costs, according to the 2019 annual report of Melco Resorts, filed in late March.
As of December 31, 2019, the group had incurred approximately US$80.7-million project costs in aggregate, relating primarily to the initial design and planning costs for the expansion of Studio City.
Construction conglomerate China State Construction International Holdings Ltd said in a filing last week to the Hong Kong bourse that it had been granted the contract for the “main works” of Phase 2 of Studio City. The infrastructure conglomerate stated the contract value was HKD6.48 billion (US$836.0 million).
The Melco group has said the Macau government granted further extensions on the development deadline for the public land concession where Studio City sits. The brand now says it must “fully develop” Studio City’s land by May 31, 2022.
The group has stated however there was “no guarantee” that it could complete the development of the remaining project for the land of Studio City by the revised deadline.
“Prior to the Covid-19 outbreak, we estimated a construction period of approximately 32 months for the remaining project. With the disruptions from the Covid-19 outbreak, the construction period may be delayed and extend beyond the estimated approximately 32 months,” said Melco Resorts in its latest annual report.
It added: “In the event that additional time is required to complete the development of the remaining land of Studio City, we will have to apply for an extension of the relevant development period which shall be subject to Macau government review and approval at its discretion.”
The Melco group on Monday announced the appointment of Kevin Benning as senior vice president for operations at Studio City.
In separate developments, Melco International said in its latest annual report that it had begun the renovation works of the Nüwa hotel tower – at City of Dreams Macau – in early 2020. The firm is also adding more villa-type accommodation at the Morpheus tower at City of Dreams Macau.
The Countdown hotel – also at City of Dreams Macau – will also be “redeveloped in the future and rebranded as Libertine”, said the company, without disclosing a schedule.
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