Samuel Dorsi - Sep 5, 2016
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After two years of decline, the casinos of the former Portuguese colony Macau have seen their incomes rise in August by 1%, to more than 2 billion euros. The strategy of mass tourism seems to pay off, as compared to focusing exclusively on high-end clientele.

The casinos of Macau have been revived with good luck in August, with gaming revenues increasing for the first time in 26 months, thanks to mass tourism and to the opening of huge complexes which offer new activities.

Since mid-2014, the casinos have been suffering from the anti-corruption campaign launched by Beijing and from the slowing down of the Chinese economy.

Gigantic Hotel Complexes

The paradise of gambling had set the goal of replacing Chinese VIP clientele with the well-stocked wallets of mass tourism, through diverse activities proposed by gigantic hotel complexes. A series of new complexes have opened their doors, offering its visitors fine dining, shopping centers, and theme parks.

According to analysts, this bet seems to have worked:  gambling revenues rose in August by 1.1% to 18.84 billion patacas (2.06 billion euros) a year. “This growth was driven by an increase in the number of tourists and a better market,” said Aaron Fischer, an analyst specialized in gambling. “We have reached the bottom and things should begin to improve next year.”

The Largest Wheel of Asia

The Wynn Palace, a project costing 4 billion dollars and equipped with a giant lake, musical fountains, and cable cars, opened in August. Melco Crown opened Studio City, a complex with the largest and the most imposing wheel in Asia. The Galaxy Phase 2 has a water park on the roof. In September, the Las Vegas Sands will open the Parisian with a replica of the Eiffel Tower.

Despite this month's rebound, the cumulative revenue over the first eight months of the year suffered a low of 9.1% to 144.39 billion patacas, compared to the same period in 2015. “This year, we might see a decline in annual revenue, but next year, we expect an increase,” added Fischer.

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