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Repeat Performance

Encore at Wynn Macau has bolstered Steve Wynn’s reputation for offering Macau’s glitziest casino resort experience, and set the stage for his next act on Cotai

Friday, 01 October 2010 17:02
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Encore at Wynn Macau

Last month, Hong Kong-listed Wynn Macau Ltd announced its net profit for the six months ended 30th June was HK$1.91 billion (US$245.7 million), more than double the HK$903.7 million recorded in the year-ago period.

The profit surge was driven by sharp growth in Macau’s overall casino—and particularly VIP baccarat—revenue, as well as the opening of a Wynn Macau extension, Encore at Wynn Macau, on 21st April.

The US$550m spent building Encore at Wynn Macau adds a fully integrated resort hotel with 410 luxury suites and four villas along with restaurants, additional retail space (including Chanel, Piaget and Cartier outlets) and gaming space including approximately 37 VIP tables, 24 mass-market tables and 69 slot machines.

Including Encore, Wynn Macau now has 474 gaming tables (239 VIP tables, 224 mass-market tables and 11 poker tables) and 1,193 slot machines at Wynn Macau.

Of all Macau’s casino properties, Wynn Macau and now Encore set the standard for opulence and attention to detail, winning the company a loyal following among VIP players, and helping garner it more direct high rollers—as opposed to VIPs brought in by junkets—than any of its competitors.

Steve Wynn has referred to Encore at Wynn Macau as “the ritziest hotel in China,” and during a recent stay, Inside Asian Gaming was not disappointed. Encore only strengthens Mr Wynn’s reputation for making every detail of his properties memorable—from the immediate wow-factor created by the jellyfish behind the registration desk at check-in, to the sumptuous rooms and spa experience. Dining and entertaining at Encore is also a delight—from the spectacular interior of Bar Cristal to the unrivalled service at Chinese fine dining venue Golden Flower.

With Wynn Macau and the Encore expansion, Mr Wynn has set lofty expectations of his planned 52-acre Cotai property, construction of which is slated to commence next year and be completed by 2014. Free from the space constraints of the Macau Peninsula, Mr Wynn has said the Cotai property will boast lush gardens and landscapes, roomy bars and restaurants, and spacious rooms.

On Cotai, Macau’s casino operators will vie for customers with expansive integrated resorts in the Vegas-mould. While his old Vegas rival, Sheldon Adelson, is building Cotai properties that feature multiple interconnected hotels, Mr Wynn aims to build a single property surrounded by open public areas and to keep the entire development resolutely upmarket.

According to Mr Wynn, with the Cotai plot, “[Wynn] should continue being who we are and exercise more imagination and more creativity and take advantage of the real estate opportunity being presented by a larger piece of property to create a richer experience than we could do in an urban setting, like the downtown peninsula area.”

The rooms, meanwhile, “will be like in Encore,” Mr Wynn has told the media. “By doing so we appeal to people other than gamblers, by creating opportunities at prices that cannot be duplicated in any major city.” Apparently, the idea for Encore came partly from requests of junket operators for more elegant suites for their clients priced at under US$400 a night.

We must wait at least three years to see whether Mr Wynn will really be able to stand out from the rest of the Cotai crowd. For now, these images of Encore at Wynn Macau support the claim that he’s ahead of the Peninsula pack.

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