A proposal has been made to build a new casino for Chinese tycoon Tony Fung in Cairns, Australia, at the projected price of A$4.2 billion. The resort would be close to the Great Barrier Reef and would certainly bring a whole new level of competition to the casino industry in Australia, particularly with the recent decisions over the future of gambling in Sydney.
Fung’s casino idea was declared a coordinated project on the 1st of August, which is the first step in the government’s approval process and means that the Queensland state authorities will begin looking into the idea and whether or not they support it. “Basically it’s declared a coordinated project because of the size and complexity of it,” a spokesman for the Queensland state government told Reuters. “It’s the first step in a comprehensive assessment of the approval process. The proponent has to prepare an environmental impact statement.”
Fung is the son of one of the founders of Sun Hung Kai and Co Ltd, making him a billionaire, and while there is no real indication as yet that he knows anything significant about casino games it is known that he maintains several homes in Queensland, and owns businesses such as a cattle ranch, a Wagyu beef breeding farm, and a sugar cane plantation. His integrated resort will be thirteen kilometres north of Cairns and will include one of the world’s largest aquariums and a twenty five thousand seat sports stadium as well as the casino. It will target wealthy Chinese tourists, with a proposed seven hundred and fifty tables and one thousand five hundred machines – making it slightly larger than the Crown Casino in Melbourne.
The venue will be named the Aquis Resort, and is set to include many other features such as two large theatres and huge high end retail spaces. Their target opening date will be in 2018, and it is estimated that when it is fully operational it could create twenty six thousand seven hundred jobs – not including those which will be available during the construction phase of the project, which will take years.