One would never surmise that Macau is stuck in a multi-year gambling revenue decline based upon the latest offering by Las Vegas Sands Corp. Last reported on this website in July, 2016, the Parisian was scheduled for a Sept. 13 grand opening, and they have accomplished just that, opening today, Sept. 13, 2016. The new casino and resort is visually stunning, both inside and out. With a price tag of $2.9 billion, Sheldon Adelson, Sands chairman and CEO, must know something about the world’s economy that the rest of us don’t. Justifying such a lavish expenditure in a down economy is either gutsy or foolhardy. But regardless of that, the resort will attract a crowd and it will make money. For how long is anyone’s guess.
Less than a mile away, the new Wynn Palace resort and casino just opened on August 22. With a $4.2 billion price tag, it’s just as lavish as the Parisian, if not more so. How can competition like that be good for the Parisian, not to mention the existing Macau casinos? There’s only so many gambling dollars available in one location. Granted, Macau is a worldwide gambling hub that is also trying to become a worldwide tourist destination as well. Macau will need every dollar it can get to support those two resorts.
The Parisian had expected to open with 410 table games and 1600 slot machines, but Macau’s economy and finance secretary, Lionel Leong, announced just last week that they would receive the same table game allocation as was granted to Wynn Palace — 100 tables on opening day, an additional 25 at the beginning of 2017 and a final 25 at the beginning of 2018. Rather than targeting the high-end rollers that were chased away by China’s gambling corruption crackdown, the majority of the Parisian’s table games will feature the game of choice in Asia, baccarat, with betting limits that will be adjusted lower to appeal to China’s middle-class tourists.
The Parisian expects to cater not just to casino players but also to families for an affordable luxury experience. With a 1200 seat theater, 170 retail outlets, and an outdoor pool deck with an Aqua World water park, there’s plenty to keep people entertained. Business conferences can be accommodated with 56,000 square feet of meeting space. Much like the Bellagio and its fountains in Las Vegas, the Parisian will be recognizable by its iconic centerpiece, a 525-foot tall, free standing half-scale replica of Paris’ Eiffel Tower, which is now the tallest structure on the Cotai Strip.