After deciding to repurpose the casino on its second floor in the wake of the June 2 shooting and arson attack that left 38 people dead, Resorts World Manila has now reportedly revealed that it will soon soft launch a replacement gaming area as part of its third expansion phase.
According to a report from the Manila Standard newspaper, the disclosure came from property owner Travellers International Hotel Group Incorporated and will involve the inauguration of a 129,166 sq ft casino offering approximately 4,000 slots alongside some 650 gaming tables.
The newspaper reported that the Manila complex closed its heavily-damaged second-floor casino after the attack and subsequently decided to amalgamate the 64,583 sq ft area into an adjacent shopping mall. However, it re-launched gaming on its first and third floors from June 29 and now intends to inaugurate its replacement casino early next year.
“We are rushing the phase three expansion of Resorts World Manila, which we target to open by the first quarter of 2018 but there could be a slight chance that we will be able to soft open by late-December this year,” Kingson Sian, President and Chief Executive Officer for Manila-listed Travellers International Hotel Group Incorporated, reportedly told the newspaper. “That should be enough to augment what we have lost.”
The Manila Standard additionally reported that Resorts World Manila footfall has almost totally recovered with daily average visitors numbers recently hitting 26,000, which compares to around 28,000 before the attack, while hotel occupancy rates are now back to levels of around 90%.
Sian reportedly told the newspaper that the third expansion phase at Resorts World Manila was already 90% complete and will involve the premiere of three new hotels to take its total room offering to 2,400. The latest development project, which could cost as much as $216.8 million, is moreover set to see the inauguration of 34,444 sq ft of retail space to transform the venue into the largest integrated casino resort in the Philippines.