Singapore’s “integrated resorts” offer theme parks, high-end shopping, hotels, convention centres and casinos. Casinos are a magnet for tourists in Asia.
Visitor arrivals have soared since the resorts opened and a record 14.5 million tourists are projected to visit Singapore this year, 10% up on last year’s total. Tourism receipts are expected to grow 8% to exceed SGD23 billion (about AUD18.35 billion).
Yet the Singapore Retailers Association (SRA) says the proportion of tourist retail spending is unchanged. It accounted for one quarter of total retail sales before the opening of the resorts and the same proportion since, Singapore publication Today Online has reported.
Perhaps the visitors are spending their discretionary cash in the casinos.
To date, casino licenses have been awarded to two integrated resorts, Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa, the first casinos in the country. Resorts World Sentosa opened in January 2010 while Marina Bay Sand began operation three months later.
Retailers are now counting on domestic consumers instead of tourists, Today Online reported.
Written by : Peter Needham