Hong Kong-listed integrated resort developer Landing International Development Ltd. confirmed on Wednesday that it has completed the sale of Les Ambassadeurs Club in Mayfair, London. The casino is known to be one of the most exclusive gaming spots in the UK capital.
Landing announced its plans to sell the emblematic property last month. It also became known that Les Ambassadeurs Club would be purchased by Paul Suen Cho Hung for a total consideration of HK$2.5 billion (approximately £243.4 million). Mr. Hung currently owns Birmingham City F.C. and is one of the richest Chinese investors in the United Kingdom.
Les Ambassadeurs Club is switching ownership for the second time in less than two years. Landing bought the property in late 2015 for the total amount of £137 million. As it can be seen, the developer is now disposing of the iconic casino, which featured in the 1962 James Bond film Dr. No, at a profit.
Although Landing has not confirmed any official reason for the sale, it is believed that the operator would use proceeds from it to fund its casino development endeavours in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly the KRW2-trillion Jeju Shinhwa World integrated resort, which is currently under construction on South Korea’s Jeju Island.
The first phase of the major project was launched this spring. A second phase, which included the opening of the Shinhwa Theme Park as well as of multiple entertainment and food and beverage facilities, was rolled out late last month. Landing announced that the resort will eventually host its official opening on 8 December 2017. It is believed that a casino venue will also be launched as part of the opening ceremony, although more details about the gaming facility are yet to be released. The whole resort is slated to be completed in 2019.
Reports have emerged that the operator might relocate an existing casino property on the Jeju Island to the new integrated resort, but these have not been confirmed.
Genting Also Disposes of an Exclusive London Gaming Club
Landing has not been the only Asian casino developer to have announced disposal of London gambling assests in recent weeks. Last month, Malaysian integrated resort operator Genting Group announced that it was looking to sell Maxims Casino Club in Kensington, London. The company was reported to have put a £40-million price tag to the high-end property. Genting bought Maxims Casino Club more than a decade ago.
At present, the Malaysian casino group, which also operates or is currently developing properties in Singapore, the Philippines, and the Las Vegas Strip, is one of UK’s largest operators of land-based casinos with over 40 properties across the nation.
The Maxims Casino Club sale was announced shortly after Genting completed a multi-million pound renovation of the property and its three gaming rooms, those being designed to service high roller players.