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Jamaica casino construction to begin this summer

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Work on one of Jamaica's first casinos will commence this summer.

The initial stage of the development from Montego Bay Harmony Cove, a partnership between government-backed Harmonisation Ltd and global investment firm Tavistock Group, will now cost $1bn after its first phase budget was revised, according to local media.

Located near Ocho Rios and Montego Bay, the ocean front resort will be built on a 2,300-acre site.

The first phase of Harmony Cove is planned to feature villas, restaurants, a championship golf course, 1,000 hotel rooms, a water park, convention space and a full service casino with sports book, which will be home to 75,000sqft of gaming space.

The finished project is set to house 5,000 hotel rooms in addition to new facilities.

The Jamaican Government is expected to announce new financial arrangements for the 49% state-owned Harmony Cove, which is expected to include a new Chinese investor.

Executive director of Harmonisation Ltd, Dr Lorna Simmonds said: “Key stakeholders have been secured and we are in various stages of completing the financing.”

Meanwhile, Celebration Jamaica, the only other approved casino bidder, held its launch ceremony last week and confirmed construction will start this year.

Celebration Jamaica is set to build a casino on 90 acres in the greater Montego Bay area.

The company will invest around $1.8bn in the complex, which will include a full service casino, state-of-the-art music studio, 1,200-seat theatre, banquet hall and 2,000 hotel rooms.

Celebration Jamaica founder Robert Trotta said the project would be “celebrating all things Jamaican and Jamaican music in particular”.
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