Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sentosa IR 60% Ready By 2010

Source : The Straits Times, Nov 4, 2008

Casino, four hotels and many attractions will be up by then; hiring starts next year

THE steel frame for the first ride at the Universal Studios theme park in Sentosa, the Revenge of the Mummy, was winched into place last week.

It is one of the 21 attractions that will be ready to roll when the 49ha Resorts World at Sentosa has its soft opening in the first quarter of 2010. The theme park is part of the Resorts World integrated resort (IR).

Three other rides, including the Transformer one, will be added later.

The picture is much the same in the rest of the resort: About 60 per cent of it will be ready for visitors when it debuts in March 2010.

Of the six hotels, four will be opening then. Maxims Residences, Festive Hotel, Hotel Michael and Hard Rock Hotel will make available 1,400 rooms.

Also slated to open then are the casino and the half-kilometre-long Festive Walk with its shops and restaurants.

Resorts World's head of communications Krist Boo said negotiations with the Government to fix the opening dates for the remaining 40 per cent of the resort are ongoing. These include its Marine Life Park, the Maritime Xperiential Museum and the remaining two hotels.

Giving an update on the construction yesterday, Ms Boo and executive vice-president of projects Michael Chin said more than 2,000 people are working round the clock on the project.

Construction cannot begin on the western end of the project because the area is now being used as a staging ground to hold the containers of equipment coming in for the construction and fitting-out of the theme park.

Before The Revenge of the Mummy ride could be assembled on site, for example, space was needed to store, lay out and put together the 20 container-loads of equipment making up the ride.

Resorts World had not reckoned on needing this much space.

Mr Chin said that the original plan was to manage the staging within the Universal Studios' site, but because the park and other properties had to be at least mostly ready by March 2010, this was not possible.

The west end of the resort thus came to be where the theme park attractions were laid out and assembled.

After construction of the four hotels is completed by March next year, their interiors will be fitted out, said Mr Chin.

In the theme park itself, work has also begun on the other attractions such as Jurassic Park and Waterworld. Mr Chin said that by the middle of next year, the exterior of the attractions will be completed, leaving six to eight months to fit out the rides and test them.

Hiring of the 10,000 staff for the resort will also begin then.

Ms Boo also said application for the casino licence should take place 'some time next year' once half the gross floor area and half the $6 billion budget have been committed.

She said: 'By late 2009, we should be very comfortably ready for our soft opening in 2010.'

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