In the City of Las Piñas, an integrated resort and casino will be established as the project has been officially announced by business tycoon and former Philippine Senator Manny Villar, according to a Manila Standard news report. The project has the potential to make the city a hot spot for tourism, entertainment and gambling.
To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Standard report. Some parts in boldface…
Billionaire Manuel Villar is betting on the recovery of the gaming business as he plans to start developing a $1-billion integrated resort and casino in Las Pinas City next year.
Villar said in an interview with reporters he would convert Vista Mall Global South mall, which sits on a 80-hectare property, into a casino with hotels.
The group will initially develop nine hectares where the mall, which has 18,000 square meters of gross floor area, is located.
Villar said he was looking at the Las Vegas model where the casino would have other attractions like theme park, theatres, restaurants, retail, hotels, condotels and non-gaming components.
The group is now in talks with potential foreign partners for the venture, he said.
He said the planned casino would be adjacent to the international airport just like the four other integrated resort and casinos in the government-sponsored Entertainment City in Paranaque.
The casino industry was one of the hardest-hit sectors during the pandemic following the closure of international borders and the implement of quarantine restrictions. With the easing mobility this year, the gaming industry began to slowly recover, but has yet to get close to pre-pandemic levels as China, the country’s second top source market for tourists, continued to implement strict border controls because of its zero-Covid policy.
Villar said that aside from the casino, he is also bullish on the real estate sector, as his listed property Vista Land & Lifecapes Inc. is set to launch 41 projects next year. This would be an all-time high for the company in terms of project launches.
“We have not done this before. We have not launched this scale,” Villar said.
He said nearly all Vista Land’s businesses including retail, office and property development were back to pre-pandemic levels.
Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a resident of Las Piñas City, what is your reaction to this development? Do you think the planned integrated resort and casino will add significantly to the economy of the city? How many new jobs do you think the project will create for the city?
You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.
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