Suncoast Casino Given the Go Ahead for Massive Expansion.
Tsogo Sun is about to embark on a 3 year R1.8 billion expansion of Durban’s landmark Suncoast Casino. This approval which has has been given the go ahead, will be double the size of the existing complex.
This historical project by Tsogo Sun, who own SunCoast will be the biggest single investment in the history of the Durban beachfront.
All the necessary regulatory approvals are in place, now allowing detailed planning.
The news is very exciting for both locals and tourists. This follows the company’s R220 million upgrade of the re-launched Southern Sun Elangeni and Maharani Hotels into one complex last year, with another R100m face-lift under way at the hospitality group’s 33-year-old Marine Parade Garden Court.
Some of the exciting plans include:
– a 2 000-seat multi-purpose venue
– a 22 000m2 retail mall
– additional restaurants
– a new entertainment area
– banqueting facilities.
-tenpin bowling arena for children
– resort style rooftop swimming pools
What does this mean for Durban?
Over above the excitement of a world class venue on our doorstep, this development will create jobs, employment and skills transfer. The benefits from a Tourism perspective are also phenomenal. We would love to see an Entertainment Strip on our Durban Beachfront similar to the Vegas Strip. This could easily lead to Durban being the “Vegas of Africa”!
The Suncoast expansion plan had to get the nod for an amendment to the casino licence conditions from the KZN Gaming and Betting Board – and the provincial government – as well as an amendment to the Integrated Development Plan for the precinct from the eThekwini Municipality.
City Manager, S’bu Sithole, said recently that he was also delighted with the continued faith shown in the city and province by Tsogo Sun.
He felt that “a development of this scale would be a significant catalyst for the continued rejuvenation of the Durban beachfront”.
In terms of the application approved by the gaming board, Tsogo Sun will make R100m available to be spent on charitable or social infrastructural developments in the province.
Suncoast, which opened almost 12 years ago, has 8 million visitors a year and the expansion became necessary, as “we have been at capacity for some time”, said Mike Dowsley, the executive director of Suncoast Casino, Hotels and Entertainment.
There will be an additional 900 gaming machines in the casino, taking the number from 1 450 to 2 350.
And there will also be 16 more tables, taking that total to 80.
The expansion will take place northwards on part of the existing parking area.
A new parkade will go up and by the time the project is finished, there will be parking for some 5 900 vehicles, 2 680 more than at present.
Architects are now busy taking the project from the concept stage to the detailed planning phase, while a retail developer is researching the design of the retail mix.
Once planning is complete, the project would go to tender and that process should take about three to four months, Dowsley said, adding that construction would start “some time” next year.
Tsogo Sun’s chief executive, Marcel von Aulock, said the group was delighted that the provincial government, the KZN Gaming and Betting Board and eThekwini Municipality had seen the value offered to the city and the province through the development.