Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, director of the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO), says her office has processed all the paperwork needed to license Macau hotel project The 13 (pictured). She added the bureau was now waiting for the scheme’s promoter, The 13 Holdings Ltd, to request a site inspection in order to complete licensing formalities.
“All the paperwork is ready, we are just waiting for the developer [of The 13] to request the site inspection,” the MGTO director told reporters on the sidelines of an event on Wednesday. “After that, we can issue the [hotel] licence,” she added.
The venue promoter has in the past mentioned plans for a casino at the property, but has made no reference in its more recent releases about the possibility of gaming facilities at the venue.
In an emailed reply to GGRAsia on Wednesday, The 13 Holdings stated: “The 13 is in the final stages of bringing the project to the market. If there are any major updates, we will announce to the public accordingly.”
The company had said in June that it expected to open the hotel – a project on the border of the Cotai and Coloane districts in Macau – in the second half of 2017. At that time, the company said it was in the process of obtaining the necessary licences “for the operational and soft-opening phase of The 13 hotel”.
In June, the company had said that it would negotiate with its creditors certain loan covenants of its bank borrowing of approximately HKD3.02 billion (US$387 million), which required the opening of the hotel “to be no later than 31 July 2017”. The company has not made public information regarding any amendment to the loan covenants.
In a note in July, brokerage Union Gaming Securities Asia Ltd had raised doubts about the possibility of The 13 opening this year. “Under the assumption that the company is able to raise sufficient capital we would not be surprised if the opening [of The 13] were to slip into early 2018 given the time-consuming process of restarting what has become a stalled project,” stated at the time analyst Grant Govertsen.
The 13 Holdings said in its latest annual report that some “material uncertainty” casts “significant doubt on the group’s ability to continue as a going concern”. The Hong Kong-listed firm announced in June that it had agreed to sell its majority stake in its construction arm Paul Y. Engineering Group Ltd for a consideration of HKD300 million. The company said the disposal was in order to fund the completion of the hotel property.
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Amount that each Macau casino operator paid for the circa six-month extension of their respective contract