Madrid has beaten off competition from Barcelona to be selected as the location for EuroVegas, a multibillion-dollar mega casino resort, which is the brainchild of gambling billionaire Sheldon Adelson.
The Las Vegas-style casino strip will be Europe’s biggest gambling centre and brings with it the promise of tens of thousands of jobs to the Spanish capital, at a time when unemployment in the country is at 25 percent.
The project is expected to be half the size of the Las Vegas strip and will be built in phases over the next 10 years. When completed EuroVegas will contain six casinos, 12 hotels with 36,000 rooms, a convention centre, three golf courses, bars, restaurants and shopping centres.
Adelson is hoping to attract visitors from around Europe and countries of the former Soviet Union and it is hoped that the project will be a boost to property investment in the region. Potential obstacles to the project, however, include Adelson’s decision to fund only 35 percent of the resort and a demand in changes to local laws.
Meanwhile Barcelona, which lost out to Madrid in the bid to host EuroVegas, has promised that it will build its own casino development. ‘Barcelona World’ will be located next to Port Aventura, cost €4.74 billion and create 20,000 jobs. The plan will include a casino, six large tourist complexes with 20,000 hotel rooms, shopping centres, a theatre and offices.
Both parks are expected to attract 10 million visitors a year.
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