The current Hemingways Casino Resort operator, Tsogo Sun Gaming, has won a heated battle for the sole 15-year casino license for East London, South Africa. The Eastern Cape Gambling and Betting Board awarded the license.
Tsogo Sun’s plans call for a R400-million refurbishment—about US$58 million—of the casino and hotel. A multi-purpose facility will be added, capable of hosting entertainment shows, boxing matches, trade shows and banquets. Also included in the plans is a 3D movie theater.
Rob Collins, Tsogo Sun Gaming managing director, told the Herald that he was “honored” the board trusted the group with the “responsibilities of the license.”
“This is an ambitious project,” said Collins. “More jobs, more construction and an even greater focus on social commitments. Who better to deliver this than the Tsogo Sun team at Hemingways?”
Collins said that the construction component would provide 974 direct and indirect jobs, and that 1061 direct and indirect jobs will be created once the project is completed.
The competing bid from Ubukhosi Leisure called for a R500-million beachfront casino in the run-down Esplanade of East London. The project was billed as the last chance to revive the neglected area, described in the bid as “dirty and unsafe.” The casino would have been built adjacent the new convention center and two hotels.
The new license comes into effect on November 1, 2011.