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Billion Dollar Boost to New Zealand GamblingPublished January 7, 2010
Despite the moratorium on issuing new casino licenses, one enigmatic developer is forging ahead with a massive project.
New Zealand is home to a handful of stellar bricks and mortar casinos and judging by recent news, this is set to continue. It recently emerged that a developer is planning on developing a billion dollar casino in the heart of Wellington, in Shelly Bay.
Gambling laws not an issue for now
A thorn in the side of new casino developments is the issue of no new licenses being issued according to current New Zealand gambling laws. With only a few casinos in New Zealand in operation in cities like Queenstown, Dunedin, Christchurch, Hamilton and Auckland, a new casino in Wellington is certainly not on the cards. But that certainly hasn't put a damper on the spirits of the intrepid developer.
2010 looks to be the year of change
The addition of the Shelly Bay casino would entail a dramatic change to the present gambling laws. As recently as the late 1990s a proposal to build a casino in Wellington was put under pressure from locals and then scrapped 7 years ago. Shelly Bay is a magnificent locale and one which has long courted the inquiring eyes of entrepreneurs.
From prison to palace
The venue for the new mega-casino is a 4.5 hectare grid which is presently occupied by Wellington Prison. Architects and developers are looking to transform the penitentiary into a luxury casino, perched atop a steep hill overlooking the picturesque surrounds. Despite the proscribed legal tenets regarding new casino licenses, the developers are marching on - full steam ahead.