UDC casino resort to put Cebu at par with Asian gaming cities
Carlo S. Lorenciana (The Freeman) - August 18, 2017 - 4:00pm

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu will soon rival Asian cities in the gaming world.

Three years from now, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR) expects the completion of The Emerald Resort and Casino, the integrated casino-resort to be developed by Udenna Development Corp. (UDC) of Davao businessman Dennis Uy.

UDC finally broke ground the project late last month.

In a statement, PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo said she hopes this will be a precedent for all integrated resorts that will be built outside of Entertainment City in Manila.

"[Because in Cebu] there will be a world-class resort casino that is worth taking a look," she said.

The Emerald is the very first integrated resort that the new PAGCOR board has approved.

The Emerald Resort and Casino, estimated to cost US$341 million, is designed by American visionary designer and architect Paul Steelman, whose works include The Mirage Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and The Sands in Macau. PAGCOR quoted Steelman as saying he is fortunate to be working on the project which has so much potential.

“This resort-casino can be a lot different from everyone else. It will have grand suites, five-storey aquariums, retail malls that will rival the best in Asia, among others. It will have gaming areas but we designed it to be family-friendly. The palatial aspect of this building will certainly attract more tourists. Besides, this site is one of the most beautiful in the world,” Steelman said.

The project sits on a 12.5 hectare prime beachfront in Mactan Island in Lapu-Lapu City.

Once completed -- estimated to be three years from now -- it is set to make the Philippines at par with other premier regional destinations such as Singapore and Macau designed for leisure, gaming, MICE (meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions) and other commercial and residential investments.

The project is expected to play a vital role in transforming Mactan into a premiere tourist destination with a vibrant and thriving economy.

“We break ground for thousands of jobs that will provide countless opportunities and brighter future for local businesses and entrepreneurs. It is also about showing the best of what Filipino talent and hospitality has to offer,” Uy said. (FREEMAN)

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