Melco propositions Japan with bold ‘City of the Future’ integrated casino resort concept

  • Melco CEO outlines plans for an integrated resort in Japan
  • The proposed casino facility will employ biometric intelligence

Asia casino giants Melco Resorts has announced further details of its plans to expand its activities into Japan, as Japanese lawmakers debate the legalization of land-based casinos.

Lawrence Ho is propositioning to Japan Melco's City of the Future concept
Lawrence Ho is propositioning to Japan Melco’s City of the Future concept

The market is expected to be one of the most lucrative to open up in recent times.

Licences for casinos in Japan cannot be issued until the Japanese parliament passes further legislation, which is expected to occur some time during 2018. But Melco like a number of other international gaming operators, is preparing to take advantage of any expansion opportunities when they arise.

The company has set up a Japanese division, headquartered in Tokyo, and at a recent event, the Chairman and CEO of Melco, Lawrence Ho, along with the president of the Japanese office, Ako Shiraogawa, discussed the company’s plans for the Japanese market.

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Emphasizing that there was still a long road ahead to the potential construction of an Integrated Resort (IR) in Japan, he said that the company was committed to working with local partners and to incorporate state of the art technology in any project.

IRs are essentially big holiday and entertainment complexes incorporating a range of attractions, from restaurants, theatres, cinemas, sports, as well as casino gaming.

City of the Future

The company revealed their concept for the IR, which has been described as the City of the Future, and which aims to feature some of the most advanced gaming and entertainment products available, whilst remaining in keeping with Japanese culture and heritage.

The Melco team from left Shumpei Kumagi, Director of Development; Maki Hiromi, Director of Marketing and Communications; Lawrence Ho, Ako Shiraogawa, Japan Office President; Geoff Davis, Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, CEO & Representative Director, Melco Resorts & Entertainment Japan
The Melco team from left Shumpei Kumagi, Director of Development; Maki Hiromi, Director of Marketing and Communications;
Lawrence Ho, Ako Shiraogawa, Japan Office President; Geoff Davis, Executive Vice President & Chief
Financial Officer, Melco Resorts & Entertainment, CEO & Representative Director, Melco Resorts &
Entertainment Japan

A team of architects and environmental experts have been working on ways to ensure that the IR is aesthetically interesting and ‘energy neutral’, focusing on creating a futuristic structure that fits in with the surrounding environment.

The proposed Melco IR will also incorporate cutting-edge face recognition technology, with the aim of ensuring that the site is as safe and protected as possible.

Melco have also committed to share access and data with the Japanese government in order to address concerns about security and the social impact of gambling.

Indeed, the company that convinces lawmakers and politicians that their package will bring the biggest economic benefits coupled with minimal societal damage is likely to be the one who gets the nod.

Ms Shiraogawa said that the company’s proprietary technology answers both security and social concerns.

She said: “Its back-end technology can be updated as regulations evolve and on the front-end, the state-of-the-art biometric interface eliminates nearly all risk of human error.”

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