UAE’s first gaming resort to cost $3.9 billion, open in 2027

Published April 29, 2023
A depiction of Wynn Al Marjan Island resort’s exterior view from the beach. — Wynnresorts
A depiction of Wynn Al Marjan Island resort’s exterior view from the beach. — Wynnresorts

DUBAI: The United Arab Emirates’ first gaming resort will open in four years and cost $3.9 billion to build, US casino operator Wynn has said, unveiling new details of the project.

The resort in Ras Al-Khaimah, one of the UAE’s seven emirates, will feature “exceptional entertainment and gaming amenities”, Wynn Resorts said on its website.

Gambling is generally prohibited under Islamic laws in the oil-rich Gulf state. But Ras Al-Khaimah’s tourism development authority last year announced a new body to regulate “integrated resorts”, including gaming facilities.

Preliminary construction work has begun on Wynn Al Marjan Island, set on a man-made and hotel-studded promontory, Wynn Resorts said on Thursday in a statement.

The resort, with 1,500 rooms, 24 dining and lounge areas, spa facilities, “high-end” shopping and nightly laser and light shows, will open in early 2027, Wynn said, revising an earlier schedule of 2026.

Artists’ impressions of the site, about an hour’s drive from the commercial hub of Dubai, showed a brown-gold high rise towering above a beach area and circular marina, as well as a luxuriously appointed lobby.

“We have spent the past year meticulously programming and concepting Wynn Al Marjan Island, carefully considering its unique location,” Wynn Resorts CEO Craig Billings said in the statement.

Wynn operates casinos in Las Vegas and Boston as well as Macau, a Chinese territory close to Hong Kong.

The UAE, whose population is 90 per cent foreign, has made a series of liberalising moves as it faces increased regional competition for talent and tourism, notably from neighbouring Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Published in Dawn, April 29th, 2023

Opinion

Editorial

What next for PTI?
Updated 23 Feb, 2024

What next for PTI?

THE incoming government has been carved up. With the major offices apportioned between the PML-N and PPP, the...
Tackling debt
23 Feb, 2024

Tackling debt

MANY would tend to describe a new report warning that the country is headed for “inevitable default”, which will...
Imprisoned abroad
23 Feb, 2024

Imprisoned abroad

THE issue of Pakistani prisoners imprisoned in foreign jails crops up regularly, particularly during parliamentary...
On a leash
Updated 22 Feb, 2024

On a leash

Shehbaz will not find it easy to introduce the much-needed major changes to the economy without running into resistance.
Shameful veto
22 Feb, 2024

Shameful veto

THE US has scored a hat-trick by vetoing, for the third time, a resolution in the UN Security Council calling for an...
Truth under threat
22 Feb, 2024

Truth under threat

AS WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange mounts a last-ditch effort against being extradited from the UK to the US, one...