In our latest gambling news, we are taking a look at the potential for casinos in the UAE. Given how financially attractive the Middle East is for business, gaming is one sector that could generate a lot of income for operators. And while there are no casinos yet, the infrastructure to house a casino is well on its way.
According to MGM Resorts International CEO Bill Hornbuckle in the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) in Las Vegas, they are developing a hotel in Dubai that could have a casino. The development is in partnership with the Wasl Asset Management Group where they have a sort of island. There, it has an MGM, a Bellagio, and an Aria on it. And in this property, they are keeping 150,000 square feet of space that can be used as casino space as soon as the UAE allows gaming.
When Will We See Casinos in the UAE?
MGM is not the only player investing in this potential. You can get updates on popular gaming operators in this Bookie Pay Per Head Blog, such as Wynn Resorts. Wynn Resorts is another operator that is already underway with constructing a development in the UAE as well. They have plans in the Wynn Al Marjan Island. And while there are no final announcements of allowing casino gaming, the space for such could also be there. The Wynn development is slated to open in 2027.
Given the popularity of gaming internationally, countries have been forming legislation on both casino gaming and sports betting. One look at a bookie’s customer profile through their online bookie software, and you may see quite an international presence from bettors and players from around the world.
These operators are open to the idea of either running a gaming operation in the UAE, or maybe even lease it out to whoever the UAE allows to operate gaming services. The UAE does, after all, control a very lucrative sovereign wealth fund, and they easily directly own a casino. The options are many, and it does not hurt to be prepared for any eventuality. Something MGM is doing now.