For over a year, Aquis Entertainment has been planning its $8 billion casino resort in Cairns – but now the developer has scrapped its plans to include a gambling venue. Now, the project will move ahead as a regular resort; however, it remains a significant project that will attract millions of tourists from around the world.
Aquis Entertainment had run into some problems in securing a casino license for the property. The process of doing so would have delayed the start of construction, and the developer is committed to meeting its deadlines. As such, the new resort project will proceed without a casino.
The local government has backed this plan, especially since the process can be expedited now that there will be no gambling venue included in Aquis Entertainment’s plan. The sooner construction begins, the sooner the resort can open and begin attracting visitors.
Treasurer Curtis Pitt is excited for the resort to get off the ground, as it will be a huge benefit the local economy. It will create tens of thousands of jobs in both the construction phase and once the venue is open to the public. With five luxury hotels, an aquarium, a golf course, an exhibition and more, Aquis Entertainment’s new resort will be a major tourist attraction that will generate valuable venue for Cairns.
“I welcome the proponent’s commitment to progressing with a large-scale integrated resort without a casino element at this first stage”, he says. “It will still retain its status as a project of state significance and I’ll be working very hard to give this development every chance of commencing next year.”
There is still the possibility that a casino will be opened at Aquis Entertainment’s new resort. However, it will be up to another casino operator to secure a gambling license.