If it's not Vegas, it must be … Macau? This tiny Chinese peninsula 37 miles southwest of Hong Kong, which includes the city of the same name, surpassed the gaming revenue of the Las Vegas Strip in 2006 and saw the opening August 28 of The Venetian Macao, billed as the world's biggest casino.
Expanding on the excesses of its sister property, The Venetian, and other Vegas resorts, The Venetian Macao features replicas of St. Mark's Square, the Grand Canal (complete with gondola rides), and two additional canals (the original Venetian has only one), as well as plenty of gold leaf and marble. All of the resort's 3,000 suites have more than 750 square feet of space. The gaming area features 1,150 gaming tables and enough space for 7,000 slot machines. The development also has space for 350 shops and features an 1,800-seat conference center, a 15,000-seat stadium, and about a million square feet of meeting and exhibit space. At 10.5 million square feet, the resort is twice the size of the Las Vegas original, and is touted by its developers as being the largest building in Asia.
Analysts say that the $2.4 billion project, headed by Sheldon Adelson, 75, chairman of Las Vegas Sands, could double Macau's gaming income to $13.7 billion by 2010, according to a report in USA Today.
The Venetian is on Macau's Cotai Strip, a 1.5-square-mile area created by filling in the space between the islands of Taipa and Coloane. The Cotai Strip was first envisioned as a Las Vegas—style development in 2002; more than a dozen more projects are planned for the area, and those developers are watching the Venetian closely.
Adelson's first Macau casino, the Sands Macao, opened in May 2004 and has been hugely successful. Based on that experience, Adelson says that he expects to recoup his investment in the Venetian within three to five years, according to Reuters Ltd. The Las Vegas Sands group is reportedly investing a total of $12 billion in the Cotai Strip.
Troy Longwith has joined Tulalip Resort Casino in Tulalip, Wash., as director of sales. Longwith previously was vice president of Conference Direct on the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Wash.
Judy Parker, previously with Marriott Global Sales, has joined the newly reopened Chicago office of the San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau as national sales manager. She will handle the Midwest territory for all markets.
Ken Tippie, CMP, has been named director of group sales for InterContinental Los Angeles Century City, where he will focus on pharmaceutical and financial markets. Tippie comes to the InterContinental from Doubletree Hotel & Executive Center at Berkeley Marina.
The Hyatt Regency DFW at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport has appointed Michael Rader as director of sales. Rader previously served as director of sales at Hyatt Regency Cleveland at The Arcade.