Singapore casino complex Resorts World Sentosa has confirmed it is starting this quarter through to 2023 a phased refurbishment that will encompass three of its hotels – Hard Rock Hotel Singapore, Hotel Michael, and Festive Hotel and their aggregate 1,200 accommodation units.
When completed, the Festive Hotel will be refashioned into a “business-leisure” and “work-vacation” hotel “with a variety of mobile working spaces and lifestyle offerings that will meet new work trends,” said the complex’s promoter, Genting Singapore Ltd, in a Friday filing to the Singapore Exchange.
It added: “Importantly, Resorts World Convention Centre will undergo refurbishment to strengthen Resorts World Sentosa’s position as a leading business destination that continues to meet the requirements of future MICE events.”
Genting Singapore’s market rival in Singapore’s casino duopoly is United States-based Las Vegas Sands Corp.
That firm had said – at the time of its fourth-quarter earnings announcement in January – that it had started a US$1-billion “renovation project” of hotel accommodation at its Marina Bay Sands casino resort.
Genting Singapore said an aggregate of SGD400 million (US$294 million) would be spent this year for phase two of its Resorts World Sentosa complex – a project it refers to as “RWS 2.0” – and “related refurbishment works”. The amount had been mentioned in a February announcement, and is part of a pledge to the local authorities to invest SGD4.5 billion in expansion of the existing resort.
Genting Singapore’s Friday filing featured answers to anticipated questions from investors, and that will be relevant to the firm’s annual general meeting to be held this coming Thursday (April 21)
The company said in its Friday statement, referring to its on-site theme park: “The expansion of Universal Studios Singapore is a key component of Resorts World Sentosa’s expansion plan (RWS 2.0) which will add two new themed zones, i.e. Minion Land and Super Nintendo World, to the park with the aim to grow attendance and yield for a positive impact to overall earnings per share.”
Genting Singapore added it was “making good progress” with RWS 2.0.
“Construction works on both Minion Land and Oceanarium will start in the second quarter of this year,” it noted.
The group had announced in August last year it had acquired, for SGD800-million, leasehold land for the 2.0 expansion.
In discussion of other matters, Genting Singapore acknowledged that an increase in gross gaming revenue (GGR) tax rates in the city state – that took effect on March 1 – would have a “negative impact on our net profit”.
The GGR tax rate for premium-player business went up from 5 percent to 8 percent. For other play, the GGR tax rate went from 15 percent to 18 percent.
But Genting Singapore was upbeat on the business outlook under Singapore’s “living with Covid-19” policy.
“With Singapore’s reopening of borders to all fully-vaccinated travellers since 1 April 2022 and further relaxation of Covid-19 related regulations, we are cautiously optimistic of the recovery trajectory in 2022.”
Though the group observed: “Discretionary leisure travel will take time to return to meaningful levels due to limited flight schedules and ongoing Covid-19 related travel rules and restrictions especially on our traditional markets such as China.”
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