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  Channel NewsAsia 16 Oct 06
Kerzner CapitaLand puts in S$5.28b bid for Sentosa Integrated Resort
By Johnson Choo

Today Online 17 Oct 06
Robots 'r' us A fantastical futurescape for Sentosa
Val Chua, Deputy News Editor

Business Times 17 Oct 06
The virtual gets real in Atlantis Sentosa
By Uma Shankari

Business Times 17 Oct 06
Genting bets on four world-class attractions
It hopes to attract 10m tourists by 2015, generate $15b in receipts
By Arthur Sim

Channel NewsAsia 16 Oct 06
Eighth Wonder ropes in Banyan Tree for Singapore integrated resort bid

Today Online 17 Oct 06
Royal flush $5.2-billion: Resorts World unveiled
Tor Ching Li chingli@mediacorp.com.sg

Straits Times 17 Oct 06
Showtime for Genting and Kerzner
by Marcel Lee Pereira

Straits Times 17 Oct 06
Bold plans, big investments promised by IR bidders
by Krist Boo

Channel NewsAsia 16 Oct 06
Genting International, Star Cruises reveal plans for Sentosa integrated resort
By Wong Siew Ying

SINGAPORE : The Genting International and Star Cruises consortium has proposed to build four theme parks at a cost of S$5.2 billion at the integrated resort in Sentosa.

It includes a Universal Studios theme park and three water-themed attractions. Spanning 49 hectares, the proposed resort - Resorts World at Sentosa - will feature three water theme parks.

They include the world's largest oceanarium - the Quest Marine Life Park - with 700,000 dolphins, bat rays and open ocean fish.

Jeffery Jouett, CEO, Dolphin Quest, said, "There are all kind of experiences in our park. The opportunity to be in a shark cage and dive in with hammerhead sharks and tiger sharks and to feed them from that shark cage or to snorkel along...There will be restaurants and bars completely submerged where you'll be surrounded by fish of the ocean and whale sharks as you dine, drink and have a meal."

Visitors can also enjoy "water-coasters" and rides that wind through lush greenery and forested areas, or try out the surf pool at the Equarius Water Park.

A centrepiece of the resort will be a Maritime Museum offering a multimedia experience by simulating a shipwreck. It will be built by famous museum designers Ralph Appelbaum Associates.

Genting's proposal also includes six hotels and spa with over 1,800 rooms for both leisure and business travellers. Those looking for more thrills can head for the Universal Studios theme park with 16 rides designed specially for the Sentosa resort. And the fun is set to continue after sundown. The bidder says its experience will come in handy when marketing the resort.

Lim Kok Thay, CEO, Genting Group, said, "Star cruises has been a tourism player here in Singapore for 12 years now. They will have a huge role to play in terms of helping packing the pre-cruise and post-cruise packages with Resorts World at Sentosa, primarily targeted at the base market, which is India and China."

Genting also plans to inject S$200 million every year to reinvent and refresh attractions at the proposed resort. This will ensure the resort remains appealing and encourage repeat visitation.

The resort is expected to attract 10 million visitors and generate S$15 billion in tourism receipts by 2015. Genting is up against contenders Eight Wonder and the Kerzner-CapitaLand consortium for the Sentosa project. The winner will be announced by the end of the year.

Responding to the media, Genting says it could make a gaming revenue of between S$1 billion and S$2 billion a year from the resort, which will open in 2009. - CNA/ms

Today Online 17 Oct 06
Royal flush $5.2-billion: Resorts World unveiled
Tor Ching Li chingli@mediacorp.com.sg

GENTING International-Star Cruises finally showed its hand yesterday, and revealed five world-class attractions in addition to Universal Studios Singapore for its Sentosa IR bid.

Straight after a two-hour presentation to a ministerial committee, Genting Group chairman and chief executive Lim Kok Thay--flanked by 10 other consortium members--went through the components of its $5.2-billion Resorts World at Sentosa proposal at a press conference.

"It will be a resort of resorts. That is why we're calling it Resorts World at Sentosa," said Mr Lim. Other than a $1.6-billion Universal Studios theme park--which will feature 22 attractions and a "live" studio with soundstage and back lots for movie and television productions--the resort will boast the world's largest oceanarium, a water park with innovative rides, an experiential maritime museum, Asia's first fully-integrated wellness spa, and a world-class casino directly beneath its flagship Maxims Residences hotel.

Genting also pledged to spend an additional $200 million a year on the IR to keep it "fresh" and "cutting edge". It is estimated the resort will attract 10 million visitors by 2010, generate $15 billion in tourism receipts annually and increase how much each tourist spends on sightseeing and entertainment from 2 per cent of their holiday expenditure to more than 10 per cent.

Said Mr Lim: "It will be the tourism hotspot for unforgettable fun, enrichment and excitement, setting Singapore apart from its regional competitors."

Its partners include global pioneer in interactive marine life parks and education Dolphin Quest for the Quest Marine Life Park; Canadian-based design firm Forrec Limited for the Equarius Water Park; and the world's largest interpretive museum design firm Ralph Applebaum Associates for the Xperiential Maritime Museum.

At the 8-hectare Quest Marine Life Park, visitors can snorkel with some 200 species of aquatic animals, numbering 700,000 in total; dive with whale sharks--the largest fish in the world--or take a dip in an "extreme shark pool".

There will also be a centre for marine education and conservation which will bring marine science programmes to local classrooms and offer internships and guest lectures on marine biology.

Part of the park proceeds will be dedicated to clinical research to improve understanding of South-east Asian ocean wildlife.

The Equarius Water Theme Park will employ the world's most innovative automotive technology within the natural tropical environment of Sentosa, resulting in water rides nestled under the natural canopy of Sentosa's original forest, using existing trees as support structures.

There will be a 450-metre "Water Coaster" that winds through the treetops and jungle; a "Snakes and Ladders" ride where water flows upwards; and a surf pool with a variety of wave types so that beginners and surfing experts alike can find their perfect wave on Sentosa.

At the Xperiential Maritime Museum, the Silk Route journey will come alive in a 4D-ride, where visitors board a vessel--so the story goes--that sank near Singapore 1,100 years ago. The deck will roll, pitch, rotate and eventually submerge underwater, where the "wreck" will be revealed for visitors to walk around, with treasures from ancient wrecks and trade goods from Africa and the Middle East on display in an interactive fashion.

All the activity areas will be connected to the six hotels--the six-star ESPA Villas, the designer Hotel Michael, the vibrant Hard Rock Hotel, the flagship Maxims Residences, the Festive Hotel and Equarius Hotel--via a canal that will also be filled with aquatic animals.

An attraction in itself, the ESPA Villas--which will have spa palaces and treatment rooms with decks and lagoon views, fitness pavilions and a spa cafe--will offer a wide range of total wellness programmes for physical and mental rejuvenation, lifestyle coaching and post-operative and rehabilitative facilities for recuperation from injury and surgery.

There will also be a pioneering interactive dolphin spa programme, with Dolphin Quest providing spa therapies with dolphin interaction in specially created spa lagoons. Mr Lim believes the various attractions--developed with world leaders in their fields--are compelling enough for tourists to stay "a minimum of three days" and "even up to a week" in Sentosa alone.

"All the attractions are experiential, people get involved and time flies by because it's so interesting, it's so absorbing, it's so exciting and more importantly, you learn something. The kids are going to have a ball of a time at Resorts World, we guarantee that," said Mr Lim.

Chief Financial Officer Tan Hee Teck was also confident that Resorts World would be able to generate between $1 billion and $2 billion in revenue in the first year of operations.

However, for those making a day-trip to the resort or who want to enjoy the IR without paying any entrance fee, there will be two free attraction areas: FestiveWalk--the world's largest mall of flagship concept retail and dining options--and the Bull Ring, which will be a hive of activity and performances. Every sunset, there will also be a "Crane Ballet" where visitors can marvel at a pyrotechnics and water spectacle along the FestiveWalk waterfront.

Said Mr Lim: "I believe we have come up with something that's so superior that it's a no-brainer."

As for the investment amount, of which competitors Eighth Wonder and Kerzner-CapitaLand have outbid Genting with $5.5 billion and $5.28 billion respectively, Mr Lim said: "It's not just the size of the numbers. You have to look at what is behind those numbers. We have not added any extras to the figure and we expect to spend every last dollar of the $5.2 billion."

Channel NewsAsia 16 Oct 06
Kerzner CapitaLand puts in S$5.28b bid for Sentosa Integrated Resort
By Johnson Choo

SINGAPORE : Kerzner CapitaLand has put in a S$5.28b bid for the integrated resort on Sentosa. And the highlight of its proposal - the ability of human visitors to mingle and interact with next-generation robots in a natural environment. Kerzner CapitaLand unveils an artist's impression of their version of the integrated resort on Sentosa.

From across the water, Atlantis Sentosa will feature glass structures that resemble sails, with F&B outlets and viewing points sitting on top of the existing jetty of the defunct ferry terminal.

"Sentosa island is beautiful already, so we try not to damage the character of it but fit a family-oriented, entertainment, and exciting place that adds to it and becomes part of it," explains principal architect and designer Frank Gehry.

The integrated resort will feature the theme of Atlantis - an underwater world - with some 150,000 marine life of 1,500 different species planned to be introduced to the property.

A new coral reef will also be created. "Even within the coral reef, people who wish to snorkel can do so and people who wish to dive may go ahead. There are specific sections," says Sol Kerzner, chairman of Kerzner International Holdings.

But marine life will not be the only thing in abundance; robotic animals with artificial intelligence will also be found next to their living counterparts. "People can interact with fish when they swim. But people can also interact with the underwater robots through the glass; they can watch them and interact with them through the glass," says Professor Rodney Brooks, Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

"And in the garden, they can interact with the robotic plants. There will also be walking creatures walking around the Robotanical gardens," he adds.

Having just presented the proposal to the government on Monday, Kerzner CapitaLand says over the course of the next few days, it will release more details to the public. - CNA /ls

Today Online 17 Oct 06
Robots 'r' us A fantastical futurescape for Sentosa
Val Chua, Deputy News Editor val@mediacorp.com.sg

WHILE its rivals trumpeted established theme parks and brand names, the inspiration behind Kerzner International's Sentosa IR bid lies in the future.

Dangling a mega-bid of $5.28 billion and a cutting-edge concept built on robotics, the Bahamas-based casino player promised a look into what its flagship resort--Atlantis--might look like in the year 3,000, complete with robotic fishes and plants.

"It's Atlantis as it would be, in the year 3,000. It will be one of the great wonders of the world," said chairman Sol Kerzner, in unveiling the Atlantis Sentosa, in a hastily-arranged press conference last evening.

The conference--held straight after the team presented its bid to the Government--was sombre and symbolic because of last week's tragic accident involving his son, CEO Butch Kerzner. Putting aside personal grief, the stoic Mr Kerzner, 71, turned up in Singapore, though it was initially thought he would stay away.

Yesterday, even though the loss was never mentioned, the support for the elder Mr Kerzner from his key executives and local partner CapitaLand was palpable, as he offered a glimpse into the vision that his son played a key role in shaping.

Visitors, for instance, can swim alongside some 1,000 species of fish, some of which are actually next-generation robots. On land too--such as in the Garden of Robotanica, robotic plants will be on display, alongside the bona fide ones, while walking robots will interact with guests.

In all, there will be some 150,000 animals, real or otherwise.

In addition, the two giant key structures--that resemble "sail" flaps that are made of glass --will constantly change their look, due to a dynamic technology-driven system that runs through the architecture and its contents.

Even the keys to the resort's 1,800 rooms will "interact" with the building's design, said the consortium's architect Frank Gehry. "It's not been seen before, and we won't repeat it, ever again. It was designed specifically for Sentosa, for Singapore," said the renowned Mr Gehry, who counts among his creations Bilbao's Guggenheim Museum.

If Atlantis Sentosa sounds too futuristic for you to picture, you're not alone. Even Mr Kerzner initially resisted the idea, thinking that it was "way off the board" and he "needed convincing" at first.

But the credibility of the specialist team--which includes Massachusetts Institute of Technology robotics expert Professor Rodney Brooks--won him over eventually, he told reporters yesterday.

There are other, more imaginable bits, to the project: The world's largest manmade coral reef, the biggest jellyfish exhibition in the world, a shark tunnel, deep-sea scuba diving sites within the resort, as well as 10 renowned chefs who will be running the restaurants dotting the resort. There will also be the quintessential rides, all integrated within the resort.

Visitors can take their pick of four hotels--a family resort which will comprise over 50 per cent of rooms, an all-suites hotel, a luxury resort and villas on water. All will be managed by Kerzner.

The bidder--which has been tight-lipped about its proposal until now--hopes to attract 10 million visitors in its first year of operation, and is projecting the number to increase by 30 per cent in five years.

The resort, which is 90 metres above sea level, will use the maximum floor space of 343,000 square metres.

Stressing his team's capability in terms of building mega-water structures, Mr Kerzner said: "We've done it before. Not only do we have the genius of Frank Gehry, we also have folks who can build it and deliver."

Channel NewsAsia 16 Oct 06
Eighth Wonder ropes in Banyan Tree for Singapore integrated resort bid

SINGAPORE : Las Vegas firm Eighth Wonder has roped in Singapore luxury resort operator Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts to strengthen its bid for a Singapore integrated resort license, the companies said Monday.

Should Eighth Wonder win the bid for the project on Sentosa island, Banyan Tree will manage and operate a high-end resort that will feature exclusive private villas set in a lush tropical garden setting, a joint statement said. Banyan Tree's sister brand, Angsana Spa, will also be incorporated into hotels within the "integrated resort" complex, the statement said.

Although it is a Singapore company, Banyan Tree has yet to set up its signature brand on home soil. Its operations are spread out in 19 hotels and resorts, 51 spas and two golf courses worldwide.

"The project presents a great opportunity for Banyan Tree to return to its roots by establishing its signature brand of hospitality on home ground," said Paul Chong, assistant vice president of business development at the company.

Eighth Wonder chairman Mark Advent added: "Our vision for the Sentosa integrated resort is to make it truly world class and yet uniquely Singapore." Eighth Wonder has also tied up with Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide Inc in its bid for the Sentosa integrated resort project, a concept that includes hotels and other facilities alongside gaming.

Starwood, whose brands include Sheraton, Westin, and Le Meridien, will manage and operate four hotels if Eighth Wonder wins the bid. Eighth Wonder is undertaking its bid with Australia's Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd and Hong Kong's Melco International Development Ltd, and Isle of Capri Casinos Inc.

They are competing against two other contenders: a partnership of Bahamas-based Kerzner International and CapitaLand, Southeast Asia's biggest property group, and a team from Genting International-Star Cruises, part of Malaysian casino operator Genting Group. A winner is to be announced by the end of the year.

If it wins, Eighth Wonder has vowed to invest 3.5 billion US dollars in the Sentosa project.

Las Vegas Sands in May won the right to build Singapore's other integrated resort on downtown Marina Bay. Marina Bay Sands, as the project is called, will open in 2009. It will feature a casino and other facilities like hotels, convention areas, retail shops and restaurants. - AFP /dt

Today Online 17 Oct 06
Hometown help

EVEN as its competitors Genting and Kerzner revealed their hands yesterday, Las Vegas firm Eighth Wonder has roped in Singapore luxury resort operator Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts to strengthen its bid for an integrated resort (IR) licence.

Should Eighth Wonder win the bid for the project on Sentosa, Banyan Tree will manage and operate a high-end resort featuring exclusive private villas set in a lush tropical garden setting, a joint statement said.

Banyan Tree's sister brand, Angsana Spa, will also be incorporated into hotels within the IR complex.

Banyan Tree has yet to set up its signature brand on home soil. Its operations are spread out in 19 hotels and resorts, 51 spas and two golf courses worldwide. The project is an opportunity for it to establish "its signature brand of hospitality on home ground", said Mr Paul Chong, its assistant vice-president of business development.

Eighth Wonder has also tied up with Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide Inc and is undertaking its IR bid with Australia's Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd and Hong Kong's Melco International Development Ltd, and Isle of Capri Casinos Inc. It has pledged to invest $5.5 billion in the IR should it win the bid. -- AFP

Business Times 17 Oct 06
The virtual gets real in Atlantis Sentosa
By Uma Shankari

(SINGAPORE) Sentosa integrated resort (IR) partners Kerzner International and CapitaLand unveiled their $5.28 billion bid for their proposed Atlantis Sentosa yesterday - and what the partnership has in mind is a resort where the real and the virtual will be blurred to create a one-of-a-kind experience for visitors.

The partners are seeking to establish the entire resort using technology on a large scale to create an interactive marine world - one where visitors can swim side by side with fish, both real ones and robotic versions, and wander amidst a garden filled with both real and robotic plant life.

'This is not what Atlantis as Atlantis was years ago . . . This is Atlantis as we'd like it to be in the year 3000,' said Kerzner's founder and chairman Sol Kerzner, comparing the upcoming Sentosa resort to his Atlantis resort in the Bahamas.

Mr Kerzner, who was speaking at a media conference after presenting the partnership's proposal to the government earlier in the day, previously said that he expects the Sentosa IR to eventually eclipse revenue from its counterpart in the Bahamas.

Kerzner expects the IR to draw 10 million visitors in its first year of operation and thinks that the number will increase by 30 per cent in five years, Tobin Prior, Kerzner's head of international operations, told reporters.

To meet the anticipated tourist arrivals, the partnership has plans for four hotels with a total of 1,800 rooms. 'We are targeting primarily family visitors and the broader tourism market,' said Mr Prior. The four hotels will comprise a family resort on the west side of the island (tentatively named Atlantis West), a five-star luxury hotel (Atlantis East), an all-suites product (Atlantis Suites) and a bunch of villas (Atlantis Villas).

The highlight of Kerzner-CapitaLand's offering is its distinctive glass-encased 90-m-tall main building. Changing images will be projected onto the glass facade using fibre optics, and the visuals and parts of the building itself will constantly move, said architect Frank Gehry.

'We can do something that is very special and that we won't repeat, ever again,' said Mr Gehry. His team, he said, has been working on the design for 18 months. The building will also use energy-conserving technology.

Kerzner has engaged a technology specialist team which includes Rodney Brooks, a professor from Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. With his help, the resort will have attractions such as the Gardens of Robotanica, which will have both real and virtual flora.

But that is not to say that more 'traditional' attractions will be overlooked in Kerzner-CapitaLand's bid.

As much as 24 million gallons of water will be used to create a habitat for the marine wildlife brought in. In addition to a huge oceanarium, there will be a tank with a variety of shark species, something Kerzner promises will be the biggest jellyfish exhibit in the world, and the world's largest man-made coral reef, where dive aficionados can go deep-sea scuba diving.

Family-friendly entertainment rides and water slides are also on the cards. All 343,000 sq m of the allocated resort space for the Sentosa IR will be put to use, said Kerzner. The casino, which is expected to bring in the big dollars, will take up the maximum 15,000 sq m of space allowed for it by the authorities, Kerzner added.

Business Times 17 Oct 06
Genting bets on four world-class attractions
It hopes to attract 10m tourists by 2015, generate $15b in receipts
By Arthur Sim

(SINGAPORE) Genting International and Star Cruises have laid their cards on the table, revealing an impressive hand.

The $1.6 billion Universal Studios theme park was thought to be Genting/Star Cruises' trump card, but yesterday the consortium said that it would have not one but four world-class attractions at Sentosa if it won the bid to build the integrated resort there. The whole development would be known as Resorts World at Sentosa.

Genting/Star Cruises hopes to attract 10 million tourists there by 2015, generating $15 billion in tourism receipts, half of the target for the whole of Singapore.

It plans to do this with attractions including the world's largest oceanarium - Quest Marine Life Park.

Giving more details, CEO of oceanarium creator Dolphin Quest Jeffrey Jouett said that there could be up to 700,000 aquatic animals, including bat rays, dolphins and the world's largest collection of coral reef and open ocean fish. The marine park will be spread out over 8 hectares, with areas where visitors can dive with whale sharks and hand-feed tiger sharks from submerged cages.

Resorts World at Sentosa will also feature the Equarius Water Park, a water theme park with water rides integrated within the natural tropical environment. Designed by Forrec Limited of Canada, its president Gordon Dorrett, a pioneer in the business, said the water park will feature among other attractions, a 450 m water flume winding through tree tops, a surf pool that offers a variety of wave types and a water-based adventure zone.

Adding a bit of culture to the mix, there will also be a museum called the Maritime Xperiential Museum, said to be the only museum in the world dedicated to the maritime heritage of Asia, the Asian voyages of discovery and the history of global trade as revealed through marine archaeology. One of the centrepieces of the Maritime Xperiential Museum will be its unique theatre, a 360-degree multimedia experience where visitors board an Arabia-bound vessel that sank near Singapore 1,100 years ago. Created by museum designers Ralph Appelbaum Associates, the Maritime Xperiential Museum is described as an interactive, educational venue.

As for Universal Studios Singapore, besides 22 feature attractions, there will also be a 'live' studio, with soundstage and back lots for movie and television productions. Universal Parks and Resorts CEO Tom Williams also suggested that rides could be tied into movies like King Kong, Jurassic Park and The Mummy. He said that when Universal opened in Japan, it attracted 11 million visitors in its first year.

Resorts World at Sentosa will also be home to the world's largest collection of 'flagship concept stores' with brands like Cartier, Nike, Zara, Massimo Dutti and Bershka. Hamleys, the hugely popular toys retailer, will have its first store outside Europe at the resort. The main landmarks of the integrated resort will be the Hotel Michael and the Maxim's Residences hotel and casino.

Genting/Star Cruises will have six hotels with a total of more than 1,800 rooms, including a Hard Rock Hotel and a six-star hotel cum spa. Architect Michael Graves said it was important that the resort's architecture was 'accessible'.

For Genting, group chairman Lim Kok Thay said that the proposed resort would be 'well designed but not edgy'. He said the group would be 'putting our money where our mouth is' by continually re-investing more than $200 million every year to ensure that the resort remains 'fresh, appealing and at the cutting edge of tourism innovation'.

The Straits Times 17 Oct 06
Showtime for Genting and Kerzner
by Marcel Lee Pereira

WATER will be central to the large-scale attractions at Genting International's Sentosa integrated resort (IR).

It will play dual roles to entertain visitors through wet-and-wild water rides and chances to dive with the fish; and also educate them on marine conservation and Asian maritime history.

Genting, a front runner for the Sentosa IR bid, yesterday unveiled its $5.2 billion proposal: Its Resorts World at Sentosa will feature the world's largest oceanarium, a maritime museum and a water theme park where getting drenched on fun rides will be the norm. Half the entire resort will be taken up by Universal Studios, which offers movie-themed rides.

The 8 ha oceanarium, called Quest Marine Life Park, will house a staggering 700,000 marine creatures, including bat rays and dolphins. Visitors will get to snorkel with whale sharks, the world's largest fish, in a 6.6 million-gallon lagoon. Each day, dolphins will frolic in the water canals connecting the resort's attractions.

The oceanarium will be operated by Dolphin Quest, a leading marine-encounter company. Mr Jeffrey Jouett, its chief executive officer, sees the attraction becoming a regional centre for marine education and conservation. To this end, it will host field trips for students and build careers in marine biology through internships and guest lectures. Mr Jouett also pledged to give a portion of the attraction's proceeds to fund research into the region's marine wildlife.

The Maritime Xperiential Museum, dedicated to celebrating Asia's maritime heritage, will give visitors a multimedia insight into what it feels like to be a seaman caught in a typhoon while sailing for Arabia. The 'deck' of the vessel will roll and pitch; the vessel will eventually be submerged, so that visitors can catch a view of a shipwrecked vessel.

And at the Equarius Water Park, expect thrills and spills at a 450m-long 'water coaster' ride, which is a giant water slide. Another ride features 'upward flowing water' which carries riders upstream and lets them choose the nature of their descent.

The project's architect, Mr Michael Graves, who talked about his work in a recorded statement yesterday, said he set out to make it 'a warm and friendly place that makes people comfortable'.

The result: A resort which has been designed to blend in with the surroundings, with the attractions linked by canals and covered walkways. The resort is divided into seven zones. Besides the water theme park, oceanarium, maritime museum and Universal Studios, it will also have a central retail and restaurant area, six hotels, a luxury spa and a carpark with 4,100 lots.

The hotels, with a total of 1,800 rooms, are each designed with a specific market in mind. They include the exclusive six-star ESPA Villas, the Hotel Michael which showcases Mr Graves' designs and the Hard Rock Hotel for families. Luxury spa brand ESPA is also proposing the region's first fully integrated wellness spa with rehabilitative facilities for people recovering from surgery and injuries.

It will work with Dolphin Quest to run a programme for people to interact with dolphins as a form of therapy.

Among the retailers will be Hamleys, a popular British toy store, for which this would be its first outlet outside Europe. The open public area will also feature street performances and a waterfront light show featuring 48m-tall mechanical cranes.

Asked why Genting had chosen a water theme for its resort, its chairman, Mr Lim Kok Thay, said it is because Sentosa is an island.

The question remains, however, as to how Sentosa's existing attractions such as the Underwater World and Dolphin Lagoon can survive with the IR's offerings. Sources say that Underwater World was approached by bidders to be a partner but no announcements have been made. Its management could not be reached for comment.

Straits Times 17 Oct 06
Bold plans, big investments promised by IR bidders
by Krist Boo

THE courtship began in earnest yesterday, with the consortiums looking to build the Sentosa integrated resort (IR) unveiling bold plans and making bold promises about what they can offer Singapore.

The Genting-led consortium said it would put in $200 million every year, on top of its $5.2 billion initial investment. Its plan, it said, will create 45,000 jobs and make $15 billion in revenue by 2015 - which is half Singapore's tourism dollar target.

Present in Singapore yesterday despite the recent death of his son, Kerzner founder Sol Kerzner revealed for the first time that his team would sink $5.28 billion into the venture. Riding on its famed Atlantis resort in the Bahamas, Kerzner and its Singapore partner - property developer CapitaLand - are naming their Singapore venture Atlantis Sentosa.

It was the first comprehensive show-and-tell for both groups, which took care to unveil their line-up of partners - seven for Genting and four for Kerzner - to the media. They presented their plans to a ministerial panel in Sentosa yesterday afternoon and will be going for Round 2 next month, when top-level civil servants will be dissecting their plans.

The third consortium led by Eighth Wonder, which will go before the same panel today, announced yesterday that it had roped in home-grown resort group Banyan Tree as a partner. This raises the prospect of having the Singapore brand set up its first resort on home ground.

Genting International, which is partnering Star Cruises, is banking on a water theme, besides Universal Studios, for its proposed Resorts World at Sentosa.

Among its four gated attractions will be a water theme park, where visitors can go on thrill slides or people-watch from tree-top pavilions.

It will also build the world's largest oceanarium, where guests can swim with the dolphins, sea horses and clown fish, feed tiger sharks and dive among whale sharks.

Universal Studios will take up about half the 49ha plot, with rides and shows based on movies such as Shrek, King Kong and Spiderman.

Gambling will go underground: Genting's casino will be located below its high-rollers' hotel suites in its upscale Maxims Residences.

Star Cruises will woo its international customers with tour packages that include stops at the Sentosa IR.

The Kerzner camp, which is making a pitch to Singapore on the back of its Bahamas resort, designed to look like an ancient paradise city, unveiled for Sentosa an Atlantis of the future, in the year 3000.

Its famous architect Frank Gehry has designed a mostly-sheltered resort with two iceberg-like glass structures. At night, the glass walls, which will be wired up in fibre-optics, will beam images of a strange menagerie of hybrid sea creatures.

Kerzner's plans also include the world's largest jellyfish enclosure, a man-made reef for snorkellers and divers, and a collection of 10 famous chefs.

It will reveal more details today.

Analysts expect the Kerzner team to score well in the design segment, which could take up a quarter of the total marks. In importance, it ranks second to tourism appeal at 45 per cent. The bidders' investment amount gets 20 per cent of the marks and the strength of the consortium, 10 per cent. The judges will pick a winner by year's end.

Have something to say about the project?

Genting International plc
Corrinne Ling
Tel: + 60 3 2333 6073
Email: corrinne.ling@genting.com

Weber Shandwick
Ivan Tan
Tel: +65 6825 8027
Mobile: +65 9635 9765
Email: itan@webershandwick.com

Kerzner International (Singapore)
Hill & Knowlton (SEA) Pte Ltd
Amy Kong DID: (65) 6390 3376 HP: (65) 9452 7626
Email: akong@hillandknowlton.com.sg

Julie Ong DID: (65) 6823 3541 HP: (65) 9734 0122
Email: julie.ong@capitaland.com.sg

Government Feedback Channel


Kerzner Capitaland press release (PDF file)
Genting Star Cruise press release (PDF file)

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