The race to gain the corner of Macau’s booming international casino market has seen Sheldon Adelson’s Venetian announcing this week that they have signed well over 100 premium retailers to come onboard their $3 billion international casino project.

This puts James Packer’s $1.5 billion international casino proposals into a position of tight competition, with the enormous Venetian Macau going up directly across the road from Packer’s planned City of Dreams international casino.

Packer’s corporation, in partnership with Hong Kong-based Melco announced last month that they planned to pay Steve Wynn, famed Las Vegas international casino operator $1.2 billion for a Macau fully licensed international casino.

International Casino Development Makes Macau the Las Vegas of Asia |

The purchase will be in addition to current plans to build the Crown Macau international casino, set to open next year with a price tag of $300 million, and City of Dreams, due for its ground-breaking ceremony on 10th April.

While the City of Dreams wont be ready for opening for another two years, the under-construction Venetian will be considerably larger, featuring three interior Venetian Canals lined with lavish shopping arcades should be opening next year.

Chairman of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, Sheldon Adelson reportedly confirmed this week that retailers had already signed almost a third of the shops planned for development. Although specific retailers were not named, rumors believe the list to include such big names as the Body Shop, Benetton, Dunhill, Montblanc, Nine West, Roger Dubois, Mikimoto Pearls and Godiva Chocolates to compliment the international casino complex.

The Venetian is planned to include 3,000 luxury hotel rooms as well as a major convention center, a small 2,000 seat show hall set in a tropical oasis replete with waterfalls, wave pools and gardens, and a 15,000 seat arena. The Venetian is also seeking Australian retailers to display in the high-class international casino resort-hotel complex, with 1.2 million square feet of retail space ready to be signed before the summer opening.

Steve Wynn, rival Las Vegas international casino operator is rivaling the construction, with his firs Macau development, the $1 billion Wynn Macau international casino resort due to open later this year, pushing Macau into the spotlight as Asia’s Las Vegas.

The developments are moving fast along both sides of the Cotai strip, and area of land reclaimed between Macau’s two islands on China’s southern tip, creating an incredible 3 million square feet of total retail space.

The Sands group controls a total of eight property lots around the City of Dreams site, as well as the newly-opened Sands casino at the ferry terminal. All the Sands lots will be linked by air-conditioned covered walkways without allowing access to the casinos run by other operators.

While the complete details of the City of Dreams development were yet to be released, the company has stated that two four-star hotels and one five-star hotel will be included as well as an up-market retail arcade.

Announcements regarding the exact hotels and retailers signed for City of Dreams will be made sometime later this year.