Wakayama prefecture announced Friday that it has closed submission for its Request for Proposal (RFP) to develop an integrated resort, with only the two previously confirmed candidates – Suncity Group Holdings and Clairvest Neem Ventures – taking part.
The prefecture plans to select an operator by March, leaving Wakayama and its chosen operator partner more than a year to prepare their joint bid to develop an IR. The national government last year delayed the application period by nine months, with the new timeline to run from 1 October 2021 to 28 April 2022.
Wakayama hopes to open an IR facility in Wakayama Marina City around spring of 2026.
Suncity Group has been particularly active in the casino and integrated resort space in recent years, having last year held a soft opening of its Vietnam development Hoiana as well as taking a majority stake in Russia’s Tigre de Cristal and revealing plans to develop a US$700 million casino and hotel in the Philippine capital city of Manila. It’s Japanese entity also announced this year that it would develop non-gaming resorts on Miyako Island, Okinawa and Niseko, Hokkaido.
The Clairvest Group, which owns Clairvest Neem Ventures, is a Canadian investment company involved in the investment and operation of casino and resort developments in Canada, the United States and Chile.
Wakayama is one of four locations currently in the race for up to three IR licenses, alongside Osaka, Yokohama and Nagasaki.