ECONOMY

Pharaonic plan starts in 2021

pharaonic-plan-starts-in-2021

The countdown for an investment with a net worth of 1.1 billion euros started last Wednesday with the Hellenic Gaming Commission’s opening of the financial bid by the consortium of Mohegan-GEK Terna for the Elliniko casino. This will also kick off the entire development of the plot of Athens’ old airport on the southern coast.

The implementation of the pharaonic investment in the Integrated Resort & Casino is expected to start in mid-2021, after the concession contract is ratified by Parliament and construction permits are issued.

The complex, which the consortium has named “INSPIRE Athens,” will be developed within and around two main towers, one 200-meters and the other 100-meters tall. According to the consortium’s bid it will include a super-luxurious hotel of 3,450 beds. This corresponds to some 1,700 rooms, market sources estimate. That would be by far the largest five-star hotel, not only in Attica but also in the country, and among the biggest in Europe.

Besides the 120,000-square meter hotel, the consortium will develop a conference and exhibition center of 23,700 sq.m. and a sports and cultural center with a capacity for 10,500 people that could host anything from concerts to soccer games.

The casino itself will cover 15,000 sq.m., the maximum surface allowed by the presidential decree. There will also be shops, entertainment facilities, restaurants, etc.

Although the ongoing pandemic raises questions about the course of tourism in general, the winning consortium is drawing confidence from Mohegan’s significant clientele, which according to the US company chooses to visit its facilities around the world through the right incentives and initiatives, from North America, Asia and Europe.

Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment chief Mario Kontomerkos, who is expected in Athens over the coming days, told Kathimerini in an interview that his company can bring to Elliniko over a million foreign travelers in the first few years of its operation and many more in the medium term.

According to the plan, “Greece’s Monte Carlo,” as the market has already started calling INSPIRE Athens, stands to rank among the world’s biggest integrated casino complexes.