The City of Manchester has been chosen as the location of Britain’s first ever Las Vegas-style super casino. American gaming analysts were surprised by the decision, as the city beat London and popular candidate Blackpool in the bid.
The independent Casino Advisory Panel recommended Manchester, the city situated 195 miles northwest of London, as a way to bring in much needed economic development to the city. Manchester is best known for its industrial heritage and the popular soccer club, Manchester United.
The exact location for the super
gambling casino is still subject to the approval British lawmakers and Culture Secretary, Tessa Jowell. According to the office of Prime Minister Tony Blair, the decision would very likely be agreed upon by Jowell and lawmakers, on the basis that it was “an honest assessment of the various criteria.”
The super casino will be Birtain’s largest, with a minimum floor space of 54,000 sq ft and the housing of 1,250 slot machines.
It was initially thought that US gaming giants would be interested in bidding on the super casino, but it now seems that their interest has waned.
According to Deutsche Bank gaming analyst, Bill Lerner, in a note to investors, “US operators were once eager to participate in the United Kingdom opportunity, however we believe enthusiasm has tempered somewhat as the size and scale of the projects has been diluted”.
As Lerner further stated, “Gaming operators have been previously linked to certain locations, but the winning city is expected to invite companies to bid for construction and management of the casino.”
However, nothing is final as of yet.
Furthermore, Las Vegas Sands spokesman, Ron Reese said, “We’re familiar with Manchester and it’s an excellent marketplace. We are evaluating the level of investment required to make it a true integrated resort experience.”
February 20, 2007