Two United States-based casino firms with Macau operations are to start reopening their Nevada casinos from June 4, after state authorities gave the go ahead to the market but with safety steps to try to guard against a new wave of Covid-19 infections.
MGM Resorts International, parent of Macau operator MGM China Holdings Ltd, said in a Wednesday press release that it would start on June 4 with Bellagio (pictured in a file photo), New York-New York, MGM Grand Las Vegas and The Signature, all properties on or close to the Las Vegas Strip. But the firm noted: “Days and hours of operation at all venues will vary.”
Wynn Resorts Ltd, parent of Macau licensee Wynn Macau Ltd, said in a Wednesday statement it would from June 4 “offer guests a complete Las Vegas experience by opening every amenity and outlet available”.
The company said both hotel towers and the casino at Wynn Las Vegas, along with the resort’s restaurants would relaunch from that date, “followed by the resort’s newest restaurant, Elio, later in the month”.
Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak who had last week flagged a June 4 relaunch, was reported on Wednesday as saying that a Nevada requirement – introduced during the public health emergency – that anyone coming into the state should self-quarantine for 14 days, would be amended, although the terms of the amendment were not mentioned.
Mr Sisolak had initially ordered all casinos and other non-essential businesses in the state to close for 30 days with effect from March 18. He extended that instruction to run until April 30, and subsequently had said there was no specific date for when non-essential businesses might be allowed to reopen.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board has issued health and safety guidelines to protect casino customers and casino workers. On Wednesday it issued a notice with additional rules and procedures.
Wynn Resorts released a 23-page paper last month detailing safety measures it would put in place for a restart, including taking temperatures of the guests at doors and handing out protective face masks to new arrivals.
On May 12, MGM Resorts issued a “health and safety plan” for resort reopening. It included measures regarding heating, ventilation and air conditioning, and overall air quality, as well as temperature checks on guests and mandatory wearing of face masks for employees and the “strong encouragement” of customers to do the same.
In a May 19 press release, MGM Resorts said that market wide in Las Vegas, gaming and resort properties had linked with University Medical Center, the Culinary Health Fund and the Las Vegas Convention Center to provide Covid-19 testing for gaming employees prior to their return to work.
Moody’s Investors Service Inc said in late April in a report focused on U.S. gaming markets that it thought casino customers would be “slow to return” even after gaming properties resume operations. “It will likely take some time before companies will be able to ramp back up to normal business levels,” said at the time the ratings agency.
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“We see that basically the ‘golden’ periods [for Macau's casino industry] are all concentrated in the second half of this year”
Lei Wai Nong
Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance