Galaxy Entertainment Group (GEG) held a formal ceremony today to mark the completion of its Phase 3 expansion project, almost two years after it announced the end of construction in February 2022.
Phase 3 consists of three buildings – the 700-room Andaz hotel, the 450-suite Raffles hotel and the 40,000-square-metre Galaxy International Convention Centre (GICC). The two hotels were soft-opened in September and August respectively. The GICC meanwhile held its inaugural MICE event in April this year and served as the venue for concerts by K-pop bands BlackPink in May and Treasure in April.
Today’s opening ceremony was attended by 750 guests, including several senior government officials and former Chief Executive Edmund Ho. The afternoon also featured a performance of Mozart’s overture to Le Nozze di Figaro by the Macao Orchestra, conducted by Lio Kuokman, as well as a performance by the acclaimed Chinese soprano Hui He.
Addressing guests, Galaxy’s chairman, Lui Che Woo, said “We hope to…become a developer in the building of Macao’s society, as well as a beneficiary.”
He added: “We hope we can continue to cultivate even more outstanding talents from different industries, and continue passing Galaxy Entertainment‘s principles of a cosmopolitan worldview and Asian-centricity down the generations.”
The full opening of the development – at over a million square metres in size – was held up due to the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.
In early 2022, GEG’s vice chairman, Francis Liu, told media that “the commissioning date is not within our control entirely. We have to see the return of visitors, which is something the [Macao] government also wants.”
Recruiting additional employees for the extension also proved to be an issue, given the labour shortage in Macao.
Work on the Phase 4 project is meanwhile underway and is slated to be completed by 2027. According to a statement from the gaming concessionaire, the 600,000-square metre expansion “will have a strong focus on non-gaming, primarily targeting MICE, entertainment [and] family facilities.”
Both Phase 3 and 4 are expected to play an important role in Galaxy Macau’s future development. Analysts Kenneth Fong and Saradoona Fong told gaming media that “We believe Phase 3 and 4 should underpin Galaxy’s long-term growth, when the cluster effect continues to build among Galaxy Macau properties.”
Overall, the two projects are estimated to have a total cost between HK$40 billion to HK$50 billion, according to the company’s management.