Las Vegas casino boss Sheldon Adelson yesterday unveiled plans to build a scaled-down replica of the Eiffel Tower as part of a new US$3 billion gambling resort in Macau.
The Las Vegas Sands Corp chief spoke publicly for the first time about the new development as he opened a Sheraton hotel in the second phase of his latest US$4.4 billion resort, the Sands Cotai Central, itself only five months old.
The Parisian, as it will be known, will add hundreds more gambling tables and hotel rooms to the former Portuguese colony at a time when China’s economy is contracting and revenue from high-rolling gamblers is slowing.
Adelson dismissed concerns that the southern Chinese territory’s boom days were over, saying: “We would not be expanding if we did not think there was a future here.”
Sands China already operates three casinos in Macau, the world’s biggest gambling center and the only place in China where casino gambling is legal.
Adelson gave no indication of when the Parisian would be built, but said it would cost between US$2.5 and US$3 billion, include 3,000 hotel rooms and feature a “50 percent scale-to-scale” replica of France’s most famous monument.
Las Vegas already boasts a replica of the 320m tower, but Adelson said his creation would be better, as its legs would be free-standing, instead of passing through other buildings.
The Parisian is one of several major resorts on Adelson’s drawing board, with further expansion planned in Europe, Japan, South Korea and Vietnam. He said he would also invest in Taiwan if the government legalizes casino gambling.