Philippine hospitality and gaming operator Bloomberry Resorts Corp. announced this week that it had to delay the completion of its Quezon City casino project to 2023 due to delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Enrique Razon Jr., Bloomberry’s CEO and Chairman, stated that construction of the Quezon City casino resort was delayed by last year’s prolonged lockdown in Metro Manila. He also mentioned recent restrictions imposed by the Philippine government to stop the spread of Covid-19.
Mr. Razon stated Thursday that, despite the difficult construction conditions, they are looking forward to “delivering high-quality products by 2023, just in time for a possible strong economic recovery which usually follows a crisis, and the return of international tourism.”
Bloomberry manages Solaire Resort & Casino in Entertainment City. This complex is a multi-purpose building on Manila’s waterfront.
In 2016, the company announced its plans to build a resort at Quezon City. A few years later, Bloomberry announced that it would increase the Solaire brand by purchasing this new property. When it opens, the resort will be known as Solaire North and will be part city’s larger Vertis North compound.
Company expects a long and difficult road to recovery
Solaire North was originally planned for completion in 2022. It will include a casino and hotels as well as food and beverage outlets and entertainment facilities. It will be spread across a 1.5-hectare area within Vertis North.
The resort was built by Bloomberry in the summer 2019. Construction was halted at the resort in the summer of 2019. Construction was resumed in June 2020. However, Mr. Razon stated back then that the period of lockdown could be reasonably added to completion date.
This week, the billionaire businessman stated that he expected Bloomberry’s recovery will be a “rocky” one. Last year, the company posted net loss PHP8.3Billion. This is down from PHP9.9Billion in 2019. The company’s flagship property in Manila was shut for six months in 2018.
Bloomberry’s gaming revenue was PHP22.7 Billion in 2020. This is 62% less than the PHP60.4 billion earned a year prior.
Solaire Resort & Casino is currently operating at a limited capacity. Broomberry’s South Korean operation remains closed. Mr. Razon stated that they would continue to be prudent in managing operating costs and balance sheets, by accounting for the worst case scenario, which could include “remaining under a prolonged pandemic condition for the remainder of the year.”