The owner of a casino hotel in Clark, on Luzon island in the Philippines, said in a Wednesday filing that its accommodation business was still running despite the month-long ban on bricks and mortar casino gambling – amid the coronavirus pandemic – that had been extended across the whole country following a Tuesday announcement.
Meanwhile in the capital Manila, some casino resorts that had been keeping their hotel and restaurant services running – despite a month-long casino shutdown that took effect in the Metro Manila area after the stroke of midnight early on Monday – announced that they would be stopping all customer operations.
Nonetheless, Australia-listed Frontier Capital Group Ltd, owner of the Stotsenberg Hotel and FortuneGate Casino – the latter formerly known as the Casablanca Casino – located at Clark Freeport Zone, said in its Wednesday announcement, that the hotel would still accept guests.
“Operations at the Stotsenberg Hotel [pictured] continue and are unaffected by the suspension” related to casino gaming, which runs nationwide until midnight on April 14, noted the firm in its statement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
It was only February when the firm had announced the property was making profits again after a long lay-off for casino business for reasons unrelated to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile Philippine entrepreneur Dennis Uy, whose Udenna Corp has announced plans for casino resorts in Cebu and Clark in the Philippines via its PH Resorts Group Holdings Inc unit, said in an open letter to staff that – while heeding President Rodrigo Duterte’s call for a community-wide lockdown against further spread of Covid-19 – the group would speed up some discretionary payments to staff.
“We will advance half of the 13th-month pay as well a portion of our year-end bonus to assist during this critical time,” Mr Uy stated.
In the capital, a follow-up statement on Tuesday from City of Dreams Manila, operated by a unit of Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd, confirmed that the resort was also closing its non-gaming operations.
The property said: “During the integrated resort’s closure, guests are encouraged to check on the service advisory updates on its website, Facebook and social media channels. Stringent social distancing and application of sanitation and hygiene protocols continue to be implemented for the skeletal workforce involved in the maintenance of the property.”
Management at the Okada Manila casino resort in the capital said on Tuesday that the property would “temporarily suspend its property-wide operations” once all guests have checked out of the property starting Friday, March 20, “until further notice”.
Japanese conglomerate Universal Entertainment Corp, parent of the Okada Manila complex, had noted in a Monday filing that all operations – including non-gaming – would cease.
The group said in relation to Okada Manila that “cutting … various expenses including personnel expenses” was a “plan to be executed”. The company further noted it was “looking closely” into what impact “this matter” would have on its consolidated business results for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2020.
The booking engine on the website of Solaire Resort and Casino in Manila, operated by Bloomberry Resorts Corp, showed that the hotel was not accepting bookings from Wednesday (March 18) to April 14. Bloomberry Resorts said in a Monday filing that it expected travel bans and risk of Covid-19 infection to “adversely affect” the group’s business.
Hotels at the Resorts World Manila casino complex were also not available for bookings until April 14, according to their respective websites. The complex is managed by Travellers International Hotel Group Inc, a venture between Alliance Global Group Inc and Genting Hong Kong Ltd.
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”“The Royal Commission finds Crown is unsuitable to hold a casino licence [in Melbourne] on the basis that it has engaged in conduct that is ‘illegal, dishonest, unethical and exploitative'”
Report from the Royal Commission into the Casino Operator and Licence
State of Victoria, Australia