Times Are Looking Good in Macau, VegasPublished December 9, 2009
Shares and revenue up in Macau, CityCenter set to open in Las Vegas.
If recent events are any indication, an economic upswing is taking place in both Macau and Las Vegas, the two casino meccas that were stung harshly by the global financial crisis.
In Macau, shares of casino operators rose on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange last week on the back of reports that gambling revenues in the Chinese territory rose an impressive 59 percent from 12 months earlier to $1.55 billion.
Shares of Sands China rose around 5 percent, while shares in Wynn Macau climbed up to 7.3 percent. Local tycoon Stanley Ho's flagship firm, SJM Holdings (SXE), clime up to 5.1 percent for a three-week high.
Things are also looking up in Las Vegas, where the MGM's new CityCenter project is expected to start bringing gamblers back. The center's main attraction, the Aria Resort and Casino, is scheduled to open in under two weeks, on December 16.
For now, the Vdara and Mandarin Oriental hotels have already opened. The Vdara is the larger of the two, with 1500 rooms, while the Mandarin has more than 225 condominiums and a little less than 400 hotel rooms. Restaurants and shops in the CityCenter's Crystals mall also opened up last week.
The project did not always look like coming to fruition, given the uncertainty caused by the financial crisis - MGM's joint venture with Dubai World looked likely to go bankrupt at stages last year, but has since recovered miraculously.