UAE: 'Gaming activities' in RAK's new integrated resort are in design phase, says top official

'It will be a modern facility with games designed specifically based on the visitors’ preferences'



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Dhanusha Gokulan

Published: Wed 26 Jan 2022, 1:54 PM

Last updated: Wed 26 Jan 2022, 11:42 PM

The ‘gaming activities’ within the upcoming multi-billion-dollar integrated resort in Ras Al Khaimah is currently in the design phase, an official with the RAK Tourism Development Authority (RAKTDA) confirmed to Khaleej Times.

The facility will be purposely built on the guidelines set by the newly formed Department of Entertainment and Gaming Regulation within RAKTDA.

On Tuesday, tourism authorities and master-developer Marjan announced that by 2026, Las Vegas-based hotel and casino operator Wynn Resorts Ltd plans to open a 1000- room resort off the coast of Ras Al Khaimah.

The ‘integrated resort’ will have at least ten restaurants and lounges, a large convention Centre, and a gaming area. Without providing clarity on what constitutes a gaming area within the integrated resort, an official spokesperson for the Ras Al Khaimah government department said these facilities will be built, taking into consideration the culture and societal norms of the UAE.

“Gaming is just one element of the integrated resort,” the official spokesperson for RAKTDA told Khaleej Times. “It will be a modern facility with games designed specifically based on the visitors’ preferences,” added the statement.

Moreover, the Department of Entertainment and Gaming Regulation is authorised by local laws to regulate the gaming activities within Integrated Resorts in the Emirate, explained the spokesperson.

“The regulatory structure will address the entire gaming enterprise, requiring compliance with all applicable laws (including financial crime laws) and regulations by operators, suppliers and employees,” the statement read.

Additionally, the regulations will cover marketing, advertising and financial transactions, ensuring that these areas comply with the Department of Entertainment and Gaming Regulation.

The multipurpose integrated resort marks the largest-of-its-kind foreign direct investment in RAK. On Tuesday, Eng Abdulla Al Abdooli, CEO of Marjan, said in a press release, “By leveraging Wynn Resorts’ expertise in developing luxury hospitality destinations, the new development will raise the benchmark in luxury hospitality in the region. It will also create exceptional value to the Ras Al Khaimah economy and boost the leisure, business, and MICE tourism sectors.”

Founded in 2002, Wynn Resorts has developed at least six properties as of 2020, including Wynn Las Vegas and Wynn Macau.

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Craig Billings, the newly appointed CEO of Wynn Resorts, said, “The region offers tremendous potential for the hospitality and tourism industry, and we are excited about the prospect of developing an integrated resort in Ras Al Khaimah.”

dhanusha@khaleejtimes.com


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