12 August 2022
United States

Mohegan Gaming puts Inspire Korea opening back to the latter part of 2023

(United States).- Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment has put the opening date for its US$1.6bn Inspire Korea resort, being built close to Incheon International Airport near Seoul, back to late 2023 instead of the second quarter of 2023 as earlier envisaged.

Mohegan CEO Ray Pineault said: “We anticipate a projected completion and opening in the latter part of 2023. Obviously there is a challenging environment when you think about the supply chain issues. It’s something we are in constant contact with our general contractor in monitoring our pre-opening expenses and we continue to look at ways to make sure we keep that project on track and on budget.”

“The concrete structures for the three hotel towers continue to develop at various stages between Levels 8 and 12 and installation of the aluminum curtain wall has commenced,” he added. “The steel structures for the casino, convention center, retail, pool dome and parking garage are at various stages of progress up to Levels 3 and 4. Level 3 of the arena has also been completed and Level 4 is underway.”

The first phase of Inspire Korea will include a five-star hotel with 1,256 rooms, a 15,000-seat arena, convention halls, and a foreigner-only casino, costing an investment cost of $1.29bn. The gaming floor will boast 150 table games and 700 slots. There will also be a hemispherical dome featuring over 48,000 sq. ft. of climate-controlled indoor pool space with rides, dining and retail. The second phase will include a Paramount Picture-branded theme park due to open in 2025. The fourth and final phase won’t open until 2031.

Mohegan’s International President, Bobby Soper previously said: “It’s been a rollercoaster, we’ve had our ups and downs, and COVID certainly threw a curve ball. But we’re in the ground, we have significant investment in the ground. We need to finalise some of the final financing and I just spent two and half months in Korea pursuing that. I think we are far along. It’s a tremendous opportunity. It is gaming but let’s keep in mind greater Seoul is 28 million people. This is really the first truly integrated resort in the area. Paradise opened in Incheon too with a MICE, hotel focus, but we’re entertainment focused. That’s our brand.”

Mohegan expects the player base to be driven locally through the Greater Seoul area but there is still great opportunity for the international gamer, especially from China and Japan. The tax rate will be less than half of what it is in Macau.

The announcement came as Mohegan reported a 271 per cent jump in net revenues to US$417.1m and 134 per cent increase in income to US$59.4m in the June quarter at its seven casinos in the US and Canada. Adjusted EBITDA came in at an all-time quarterly record for the company of US$120m.

Mr. Pineault added: “This was the first full fiscal quarter of operations without COVID-19 restrictions at MGE Niagara Resorts since the pandemic first closed the property in March of 2020, and Mohegan Digital continues to execute a strategy that is focused on profitability. These results reflect the success of Mohegan’s diversification strategies.”