While billionaire Stephen G. Adelson may have decided not to build the highly anticipated mega resort and casino named Euro Vegas in Madrid, that does not mean that the Spanish will not be gathered around the blackjack tables gambling.
In December, Stephen Adelson announced that he had decided not to build his $30 billion luxury resort and casino in the area outside of Madrid, Spain. The resort was to be known as EuroVegas, and contain six casinos. Once the Spanish government made it clear that Mr. Adelson would not receive his financial concessions, the plans were abandoned. This does not mean that Spain gave up on their casinos, in fact two small casinos recently opened after the plans for EuroVegas were scrapped.
They were on shaky ground for months, and where warned they may lose the project due to small things like allowing smoking indoors. While the EuroVegas project may not have given Madrid anything tangible directly, it did finally allow supporters to lift the 100 year ban on gambling. While other Spanish cities like Barcelona have been enjoying the profits from legalized gaming, Madrid has been steadfast in its prohibition until now.
Thanks to the cancellation, Madrid now has two licensed casinos in the heart of the bustling city, the new Casino Gran Madrid that has an online version, and the slightly smaller but breathtaking Casino Gran Via (pictured above). While these two new casinos may be different in style, they have both made considerable investments in into the local economy in a short time. (15 million Euros from the Grand Via and 20 million Euros from the Gran Madrid.
With the recent economic problems in Madrid, these casinos are beginning to fill a much needed financial void. This is even after the Gran Madrid reported a “weak start” during the Christmas season. In comparison, the Casino Gran Via, which is located ideally on an ancient avenue, reported that they expect to report a profit this year.
Even with the financial bailout two years ago Spain is currently facing what appears to be an ongoing economic crisis, and many are beginning to look to the gaming industry to not only put much needed income back into the economy, but to also help lower the frightening unemployment rate. In response to this, the Gran Via reportedly added 270 new jobs, while the Gran Madrid boasted 200 jobs plus bringing 250 employees from other casinos to Madrid semi-permanently. What makes this even better for the employment rates is that the casinos are hiring and training non experienced personnel increasing the skill level of the workforce.
These and other Spanish casinos are now trying to reach out to the international tourists. With tourism numbers falling, gaming authorities are hoping to draw visitors back to Madrid with these smaller casinos.
To increase their potential profits and stay competitive with the larger establishments, Madrid casino operators are trying to negotiate some of the same financial concessions that derailed the building of EuroVegas. While this does not seem likely, there is no denying that these small casinos are beginning to make an impact on Madrid’s financial future in a positive way by helping to revitalize a beautiful country and its economy.