MGM Mirage to build 975 million dollar hotel-casino in Macau - Tuesday 12th of April 2005

MGM Mirage said the Macau government has approved its joint venture with a daughter of Asian gaming tycoon Stanley Ho to open a major hotel-casino resort there.

Las Vegas-based MGM Mirage said in a statement that its 50:50 partnership with Pansy Ho Chiu-king will jointly develop and operate a resort which will cost 975 million US dollars.

The resort, to be called MGM Grand Macau, will be built on a prime waterfront site destined to become the former Portuguese colony's casino "Strip".

It will have 600 rooms, suites and villas, a casino including 300 table games and 1,000 slot machines, several restaurants and entertainment facilities, MGM said.

It will also have 50,000 square feet available for future expansion.

Construction will begin in the second quarter of 2005 and the resort is scheduled to open in 2007.

"The combined experience of these two partners brings a dynamic energy to this project which we anticipate will become the leading property in Macau," said MGM Mirage chairman Terry Lanni.

"While our focus is on our initial project, both MGM Mirage and Ms Ho believe in the strength and long-term potential for growth in Macau and we expect to jointly develop other projects in the Macau marketplace."

Pansy Ho is a managing director of Shun Tak Holdings Ltd, a Hong Kong-based conglomerate with interests in shipping, property, hospitality and investments.

She is also a director of her father's company, Sociedade Tourismo de Macau (STDM), which is estimated to control two-thirds of Macau's 7.5 billion US dollar gaming business.

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