Bloomberry is eager to start building a third casino in the Philippines

Posted on: August 22, 2022, 11:51 a.m.

Last update on: August 22, 2022, 12:12 p.m.

Next year, Bloomberry Resorts Corp. hopes to open its second Integrated Resort (IR) in the Philippines. If successful, the casino operator will almost immediately begin building another project.

Skyline of Manila City and Manila Bay, Philippines
The skyline of Manila City and Manila Bay, Philippines at dusk. Casino developer Bloomberry hopes to build a third casino, choosing Manila Bay as its destination. (Images: Dreamtime)

Bloomberry announced several months ago that it was considering a third IR in the Philippines. He already has the chosen spot, southwest of the capital city of Manila in the city of Cavite on Manila Bay.

In an update it provided to investors last week, the company reaffirmed its commitment to the latest project. However, Solaire Resort North is due to open first, and Bloomberry expects that to happen next year.

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Bloomberry Director of Investor Relations Jonas Isaac Ramos revealed the plans to investors, according to the Manila Standard. He explained that the company will not begin construction until Solaire Resort North opens. However, he pointed out that there are plans to cross off some items from the checklist by then.

Among these, he said, are site surveys, environmental approvals, impact studies, and more. This way, everything will be in place once Bloomberry is ready to innovate.

However, innovating requires another step. The company is still in the process of securing the land it wants for IR. Bloomberry buys 280 hectares (691.9 acres) for $134 million. For that to happen, he needs to make sure the money is in place and the titles are legit.

If he manages to overcome all the obstacles successfully, Bloomberry is planning a very lucrative project. He thinks he might be even bigger than Solaire.

Bloomberry wants to make the Philippines the go-to destination for gamers and travelers. He even announced in May that he would provide financial support to the Emerald Bay Casino Resort in Cebu.

Enrique Razon, chairman of Bloomberry, has already signed a term sheet with Emerald Bay developer PH Resort Group. However, in an update from Inside Asian Gaming, the project is reportedly on hold due to ongoing financial issues.

The Philippines continues to rebound

By the time the various IRs are operational, the Philippines should be in a good position in terms of tourism. Travel is on the rise and continues to improve steadily.

Daniel Cecilio of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp (PAGCOR) predicts that the Philippines will need several more years for their casino revenues to reach pre-COVID-19 levels. The head of the licensing and regulation group acknowledges that the industry is bouncing back, but adds that progress is slow.

However, things are improving rapidly. A new update from Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) Executive Director Carmelo Arcilla should give casino operators some optimism.

Arcilla said Friday that inbound air travel was around 70% of the 2019 level. Domestic travel, on the other hand, is almost 100%. As a result, the Philippines is rapidly developing its international tourism market.

However, there is still much to do. Where there used to be more than 100 flights between the Philippines and China, there are now just six.

China was responsible for more than 1.7 million tourist arrivals to the Philippines in 2019. The country received 8.26 million in total that year, according to Statista.

Arcilla is convinced that the Philippines are ready. Airlines are ready to start meeting increased demand and airports are able to handle more traffic. Now the only thing the country needs is for people to start traveling more.

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