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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Jeju Shinhwa World Casino Thrives Despite Chinese Boycott

Casino News Daily
Jeju Shinhwa World Casino Thrives Despite Chinese Boycott

The Jeju Shinhwa World integrated resort located on South Korea’s Jeju Island has raked in KRW369.4 billion (approximately $327.7 million) in revenue since its grand opening in February, local news outlets report. The property features one of the island’s nine casinos as well as a number of non-gambling options.

The reported figure places Jeju Shinhwa World well ahead of its local rivals. According to official data, Jeju Island’s other eight casinos generated the total amount of KRW136.5 billion during the same reviewed period. In addition, the Jeju Shinhwa World resort took in around five times more than South Korea’s biggest casino, Paradise City located in Incheon.

The Jeju Island-based resort was developed and is operated by Hong Kong-based real estate developer Landing International Development. The company commenced construction on what turned out to be a KRW2-trillion mega-scheme in 2014 and began opening the property in phases from April 2017. Aside from a gaming floor, the resort also features a hotel, a convention center, retail space, theme and water parks, a concert hall, and multiple food and beverage facilities.

Jeju Shinhwa World welcomed some 350,000 international visitors since it launched and around 115,000 played at its casinos, the resort has revealed.

Jeju Shinhwa World Shines amid Rivals’ Struggles

The Jeju Island has long been a popular hub for Chinese tourists. However, the island was among the places around South Korea to be hit the hardest last year by the economic cost of China’s unofficial but wide-ranging boycott of South Korean goods.

Among other things, Beijing banned group tours to Korea which saw the number of Mainland China visits to Jeju fall steeply. As a result, the island’s casinos, which relied heavily on Chinese VIP customers, experienced sharp declines in their gaming revenues.

Jeju Shinhwa World, on the other hand, appeared to have adopted a different model that eventually helped it mitigate the consequences of China’s ire. Instead of relying solely on Chinese customers, the resort stepped up its efforts to attract visitors from other countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

Serena Eng, Vice President of Marketing at the casino, said that they assembled teams that had to draw and cater to VIP guests from Japan, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan and hired more staff that spoke Cantonese and Taiwanese Mandarin instead of relying solely on Beijing-style Mandarin-speaking staff members. That helped Jeju Shinhwa World reduce the proportion of its guests from China to just 50%, compared to up to 90% at other resorts across the Asia-Pacific region.

In addition, the resort’s casino paid special attention to VIP marketing as it derived 80% of its revenue namely from high roller players. The gaming floor at Jeju Shinhwa World currently features 165 gaming tables and half of these are dedicated to VIP players. In comparison, other resorts across the Jeju Island use just about 15% of their tables for high roller gaming action.

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