Way back in 2015 Travel Daily reported that Laguna, along with its managing partner Banyan Tree, had submitted a Request for Concepts (RFC) document to the Vietnamese government in order to develop and run a casino at Laguna Lăng Cô.
Now almost exactly three years later, the two companies have permission to go ahead with their plans when they were issued the first new casino license in a decade, in time for the glamorous fifth birthday celebrations taking place this weekend, 25 to 27 May.
“With the commemoration of Laguna Lăng Cô’s 5th anniversary, the issuance of the casino license is a good start for our second phase. Many hotel investors and development funds have been awaiting the casino license and the selection of a casino operator before finalising their investment into our Phase 2.
Existing infrastructure, including transportation, electrical, water and environmental management systems, will allow the rapid development of Phase 2 and future phases,” said Mr Ho Kwon Ping, executive chairman of Banyan Tree Holdings.
Phase one of the of Laguna Lăng Cô development saw US$285 million invested into the project, which included an 18-hole championship golf course designed by golf legend Sir Nick Faldo, private villas, meetings and events facilities plus enough beachfront real estate for an additional six hotels – along with the Banyan Tree and Angsana hotels. All funded through the Banyan Tree Indochina Hospitality Fund set up by Banyan Tree Holdings.
Phase two, which includes building the casino, will also focus on boosting accommodations, expected to be completed by the end of 2022, has seen funding rise from USD$875 million to USD$2 billion.
Banyan Tree will not be involved in the operations side of the casino and will be instead inviting experienced ‘world class’ gaming organisations to run the project. According to Steve Small, managing director of Banyan Tree Capital, who said the company would not be “in any way associated with the operations of these facilities, but plans to identify companies to run the casino independently.”