CJSC Shambala given green light for resort in Russian Entertainment hotspot

  • The Primorsky Krai Development district is expected to attract a host of Chinese tourists
  • The Shambala resort is planned to take five years to fully build at a cost of $170 million

Only yesterday news surfaced that the Primorsky Krai Development Corp had reported receiving no official bids for plots in its Primorye casino development area in the South-Eastern tip of Russia.

The region’s close proximity to North Korea was given by some as a possible reason for this. However, in business things change quickly with reports now suggesting that Russian gaming operator, CJSC Shambala, has been given the green light after presenting plans to build a casino resort in the development area.

the Primorsky Krai Development

Russia’s integrated entertainment zone has had mixed fortunes in its short lifespan. The area on the South-Eastern tip of Russia has the potential to be a casino hotspot, being just a short flight from China.

In July, an auction launched by the federal government offered up three plots of land for casino developers. However, the deadline was extended to September 28 after receiving no ‘concrete offers’.

The region was set up in a bid to coax foreign operators into a foothold in the country in an area that, despite being close to North Korea is also in a prime location to attract Chinese high rollers.

The area also appeals as it benefits from some hefty tax breaks in the industry but, despite this, it currently only houses one resort, ‘Tigre de Cristal’ hence the three-plot auction.

Shambala Casino project on the move

On Tuesday, the state-owned Development Corporation of the Primorsky Territory announced that it had given the green light to the Shambala casino project in its entertainment district, in a meeting where Shambala CEO Maxim Smolentsev presented his plans to regional Vice Governor Yevgeny Polyansky.

The approval is important for Shambala, which operates the Shambala casino in the Azov-City gaming zone in Krasnodar. However, this area has been ordered to close in January 2019 so that another gaming district in Sochi can open instead.

The new Shambala project in Primorsky Krai is expected to include a five-star hotel boasting 250 rooms, a shopping area, bars, nightclubs with the exact details of the casino as of yet unknown.

The resort is planned to take a total of five years to complete, but will be split into two phases with the first element taking two years and comprising of the building of the casino with a total expected cost of $170 million.

Big potential

Shambala CEO, Maxim Smolentsev has highlighted his delight and interest in the Primorsky Krai Development district by reportedly saying at the meeting that the area “has great potential to become a world-famous entertainment resort”.

The only minor snag to the project was Vice Governor Polyansky suggesting a few ‘adjustments’ to the proposed plans to ‘pay more attention to the entertainment part of the project to improve its ability to draw tourists’.

When work will commence is as of it unknown but it is now hoped that Shambala’s approval will see a raft of late bids before tomorrow’s deadline.

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