Fresh retailers will be added during the current quarter to the shopping and dining facilities in Phase 1 as well as Phase 2 of the Studio City casino resort on Cotai, including a branch of Don Don Donki (pictured), the popular Japanese retail discount chain, to create the “right mix” for consumers and help drive foot traffic to the property, said Kevin Benning, senior vice president and property general manager, in an interview with GGRAsia.
Studio City is operated and majority owned by Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd. The company had confirmed to GGRAsia that Phase 2 also has a premium mass gambling zone within its Epic Tower hotel building. The latter saw its room accommodation have a soft opening in April.
In terms of Studio City’s non-gaming revamp, Mr Benning (pictured below) told us: “We will have additional retail continuing to open throughout Phase 1. On the ground level [in December]…we’ve had around a dozen new retail shops open up and… probably another 10 or so… will be opening up” within the next three months. Don Don Donki is scheduled to open in Phase 2 in the current quarter.
He also noted: “We’ve opened up quite a variety of new tenants across the property from an F&B [food and beverage] standpoint and brought in some well-known brands. Recently we opened up Hip Seng [Seafood Hot Pot Restaurant]. We’ve added Zhen Dim Sum, Häagen-Dazs, Godiva…we are bringing in Starbucks,” and in 2024, Five Guys, a fast food chain.
Mr Benning said the new food outlets would be options for visitors to its non-gaming attractions including residency concerts and the new indoor water park. “We’ve seen the need for increased F&B [services] and our tenants have been extremely happy with the outcome,” as various events and facilities “have brought in so many more visitors than we had before,” he stated.
Mr Benning said that even during non-holiday periods, Studio City can now attract up to 25,000 visitors a day. “On weekends, it can be significantly more,” he noted.
The revamp relating to Studio City’s Phase 1 amenities aimed to achieve a “better balance” of premium and mass-market leisure offerings, the property executive stated. “We still have some brands like Omega here. But at the same time, we felt we needed some larger foot traffic drivers,” he said.
A new nightclub, Moon On Planet – known as Club MOP – opened in December. It is at Studio City’s Star Tower and entry to the club includes access to an outdoor pool deck at the property. Club MOP also has a number of karaoke rooms.
Water park expansion, concert residencies
Over the past few years, Studio City has seen the addition of “daytime… assets” including the outdoor water park and latterly an indoor all-weather extension, as well as the “Super Fun Zone”, noted Mr Benning.
“But what do you do at night? Of course, you’ll always have the casino, but there’s also room for some additional offerings at night… so we have Club MOP as well as the W [Macau] hotel’s Blind Tiger on the 40th floor, which is an amazing bar and lounge,” Mr Benning told GGRAsia.
The year 2024 will mark the second year of Studio City’s three-year concert residencies initiative, which features a number of Hong Kong Cantopop stars each performing a string of concerts at the property’s 5,000-seat-capacity Studio City Event Center.
The venue is suitably-sized to fill seats when hosting the “right entertainer”, and offers a “bespoke entertainment experience”, Mr Benning remarked.
He noted: “If you bring in a big A-list international artist for one night, and you have to factor in all the rigging costs, the development costs, the production costs, and the advertising costs…that makes it a little more challenging. But if we do a residency over eight nights with Aaron [Kwok], for example,” Studio City can fill the Event Center across several nights, similar to doing a stadium-level show.
The property operator typically aims for roughly “a third to half” of the residency concert tickets to be reserved for the general public, with the rest “block booked” for the gaming patrons, according to Mr Benning.
“We saw a huge impact from the [residency series] concerts: our hotels were all sold out. F&B was at record highs from a covers standpoint,” said the executive.
“Our casino business definitely benefitted from the additional foot traffic into the building. Our slot business was excellent throughout the concerts, and our mass table business continued to grow,” the Studio City executive told GGRAsia.
Feb 28, 2024Members of Macau’s Legislative Assembly approved on Wednesday the first reading of the draft “Law to Combat Gambling Crimes”, which has been presented by the city’s authorities as a...
Feb 28, 2024
Feb 28, 2024
”Our businesses delivered double-digit growth across the board throughout the year, enabled by strategic investments and strong execution”
President and chief executive of Light & Wonder