Deputy Minister of Tourism of Cyprus, Savvas Perdios, said the creation of the Mediterranean City of Dreams is of particular importance to improve the tourism brand of the small island nation and to combat seasonality.
Mr. Perdios entered the newly established Deputy Cyprus’ Ministry of Tourism of at the beginning of this year. The agency was tasked with overseeing the tourism industry of the Mediterranean republic and helping the sector develop the right tactics to combat seasonality successfully.
Melco Resorts & Entertainment, a gaming and hospitality giant listed in Hong Kong, began construction last spring on its multi-million City of Dreams Mediterranean venture. When completed and operational, the property will be the first integrated casino resort in Cyprus and the country.
Mr. Perdios visited the construction site in Limassol on Friday, accompanied by media members. Project progress has also been briefed to the tourism official. City of Dreams Mediterranean is expected to finish by August 2021 and open doors by the end of that year.
Deputy Minister of Tourism of Cyprus said he was pleased with the scale of the project, adding that “on paper everything seems smaller than it actually is.” Mr. Perdios went on to say that everyone should understand the importance of the mega-system for the economy and tourism of the country.
When it opens doors in one of the busiest areas of Limassol, the City of Dreams Mediterranean will include a 16-story five-star hotel with more than 500 beds, suites and villas, about 9,600 square metres of conference and exhibition space, various food and beverage facilities, and a 7,500 square-meter casino with more than 100 gaming tables and 1,000 state-of – the-art slot machines.
Last summer in Limassol, a temporary casino was introduced and will remain operational until the main resort is completed.
Mr. Perdios said during his recent tour at the construction site that Melco’s decision to invest directly in Cyprus caused the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cyprus to change its approach to the National Tourism Strategy.
He clarified that the Mediterranean City of Dreams and Cyprus as a whole should be marketed not only to tourists from European countries, but also to visitors from Middle East countries and the Persian Gulf.
Mr. Perdios said the launch of the integrated resort development was “the impetus that helped us integrate these countries into our National Tourism Strategy.”
It is hoped that the City of Dreams Mediterranean will help Cyprus combat seasonality and eventually become a tourism centre throughout the year.
City of Dreams Mediterranean property president Craig Ballantyne, welcomed the guests from the Deputy Ministry of Tourism, thanking the tourism officials and the Cypriot government for their efforts.
Mr. Ballantyne added that their ambitions are closely intertwined with those of the Mediterranean nation’s government to make Cyprus a full-time destination for travel and to ensure sustainable economic growth.
It is estimated that the City of Dreams Mediterranean will create 4,000 jobs during construction and around 2,400 permanent jobs during operation.
Mr. Ballantyne said that “Melco will not sacrifice quality for the sake of timing” and that the resort will be built to the highest environmental and other standards.
Melco Vice President, Construction Will Cornish, briefing Mr. Perdios on the progress of construction, said that significant foundation work as well as earthworks and hotel facilities were completed in September