After months of speculation, the official opening date for Marina Bay Sands was announced last month. April 27 will be the day that the second integrated resort approved for Singapore five years ago will debut.
“Nearly four years ago, we embarked on a journey we believed would define the future of our company and at the same time change the face of tourism in Singapore and the South Asian region for decades to come,” Las Vegas Sands Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sheldon Adelson said in a statement. “It seems both of those ambitions are about to come true.”
Originally slated to open in December 2009, construction delays kept pushing back the iconic project. Owner Las Vegas Sands blamed difficulties in its unique construction-a “one-of-a-kind” project. With 963 rooms, the $5.5 billion project will generate $1 billion a year in profits, according to Adelson. Parts of the shopping mall and convention center and several restaurant outlets will also open on the April date. The “SkyPark,” a three-acre pool and recreation area perched atop the three towers of MBS, will open in June along with the remainder of the shopping center. A theater housing a production of Disney’s The Lion King will open in October. A museum will open in December.
The April 27 opening will be a “soft” opening, with the gala events scheduled for June 23 to celebrate the “official” opening, along with most of the other amenities.
The opening of MBS comes more than two months after Singapore’s first integrated resort, Genting’s Resorts World Sentosa, debuted on February 14. Although Genting won the race to open first, some analysts believe that MBS will have the ultimate advantage.
“Given Marina Bay Sands’ centralized location and possibly a higher quality product offering, Resorts World will likely see challenges in attracting casino patronage,” said Deutsche Bank analyst Aun-Ling Chia in a note to clients. “Resorts World needs to ramp up fast to fully leverage on the first-mover advantage.”