Greek Gambling Reform Coming to a Dead End [...]
Three Bidders Enter the Final Stage for First Cypriot Casino
- February 29, 2016 By Oliver Young -
Lawmakers of the Greek controlled southern part of Cyprus have allegedly shortlisted the number of bidders who had applied for the first Cypriot casino license. It is believed that all three operators have Asian ties.
According to local media, Cyprus officials have picked three casino operators that are going to compete in the final stage of the bidding process for the construction of an integrated casino resort on the Mediterranean island. The casino complex will be the first of its kind located within the borders of Cyprus.
Casino legislation was approved by the local legislators last summer and the government is hoping to give the only casino license by the end of this year.
Who Are the Finalists?
The same local media outlet reported that the names of the three bidders will be announced next week. According to rumors, the unnamed casino operators are coming from the Far East or have been managing gambling revenues in Asia.
Legislators in Cyprus have also reportedly come to a decision to narrow down the list of bidders which has been filed by some of the biggest gambling companies in the Asia Pacific region and around the world. These include Melco Crown, Naga Corporation, Hard Rock International and Bloomberry.
From the eight projects that were submitted in December last year, the officials finally agreed who will be the three finalists. The final stage should start in the near future and the selected bidders will have to submit their finalized casino plans. Afterwards, legislators will review and evaluate each project proposal until the very best is chosen. The candidates will have to provide detailed plans on how the casino complex will look and what it will include including information on where they plan to build the huge resort.
An Integrated Casino Resort
According to the framework of casino legislation, the winner will have to construct a holistic, integrated casino resort which will be the first of its kind on the European continent. It must have at least 500 hotel rooms, over 1,000 slot games and more than 100 table games. It must also include food and entertainment options.
The chosen bidder will be given a 30 year casino license with a 15 year exclusive period during which no other casino will be built on the island. Cyprus lawmakers said that the license will be given during the first six months of 2016 and it will immediately come into effect. Therefore, the winning operator must start with construction as soon as possible and finish the resort fast.
Once the first Cypriot casino opens its doors, it is expected to attract visitors from Germany, the UK, Russia and other countries around the world. The local government might consider giving a second casino license within the borders of Cyprus after the exclusive period ends.