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A New Casino for Adelaide

Adelaide’s SkyCity Casino has been the subject of rumours for a good few months now, as we’ve reported in these pages more than once.

But we’ve never seen the pictures before, and we get the impression looking at them that this will be an ambitious project of redevelopment that will see South Australia get a casino that’s the match of any casino resort in Australia or anywhere else in the world.

The most recent reports are telling us that SkyCity will be permitted to double the number of gaming tables that cater to visitors to Adelaide’s casino (and to the locals, too, of course), and to install as many as 500 new casino pokie machines. That brings the total number of tables to 200 and the offering of pokie machines to an impressive 1500.

All the indications are that the State Government wants the casino to be central to a riverbank precinct with a new lease of life breathed into it. SkyCity’s plans include a hotel that will provide six-star luxury, and their gambling permit prevents other casinos from muscling in on their business in Adelaide until at least 2035 – so with the expected hordes of visitors drawn to the new Adelaide Oval, things are looking pretty rosy for the SkyCity Entertainment group.

And it looks like the arrangement has given the company the confidence to dream big – the pictures we have seen are of genuinely ambitious project whose centrepiece will be an ultra-modern glass building offering incredible views over Adelaide and its surroundings. The resort – which we assume has been designed to compete with existing casino resorts in Australia and throughout the Pacific – will boast, in addition to the hotels, a selection of VIP suites, restaurants, bars, a spa and a rooftop pool.

Importantly, the new designs make allowance for the current heritage building, which will remain untouched by the redevelopment.

It’s worth pointing out that the deal will be beneficial to South Australians beyond giving them the chance to enjoy an internationally-competitive casino resort on their doorstep, and even beyond the economic benefits a steady stream of gambling tourists will bring to Adelaide – a deal has been done that increases SkyCity’s tax contributions to the tune of an AU$60million contribution over the next four years.

We’ll leave SkyCity’s own statement to sum the project up – they’re every bit as excited as casino fans in South Australia will be: ‘while development concepts are still being finalised, we will be building Adelaide's first six-star boutique hotel, celebrity and signature restaurants, new car park facilities and world-class VIP gaming experiences. After two and a half years of negotiations we are delighted to reach agreement with the South Australian Government which levels the playing field with our regional competitors and allows us to offer a competitive and contemporary gaming and entertainment offering.’

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