hotels and resorts

Okada Manila’s parent company to invest in Dennis Uy’s stalled Cebu casino

Lance Spencer Yu

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Okada Manila’s parent company to invest in Dennis Uy’s stalled Cebu casino

PH Resorts

The definitive agreement between the two companies could be executed by July 2024, with the goal of having the Emerald Bay Resort and Casino open in 2026, subject to agreed conditions

MANILA, Philippines – Okada Manila’s parent company announced that it is in talks to acquire a majority stake in Dennis Uy’s stalled Emerald Bay Resort in Cebu.

Universal Entertainment Corporation said its subsidiary Tiger Resort, Leisure, and Entertainment, Incorporated (TRLEI), which manages the Okada Manila resort, has reached a preliminary deal with PH Travel and Leisure Holdings Corporation, a subsidiary of Uy’s PH Resorts Group Holdings.

The agreement is for buying stakes in two of PH Travel and Leisure Holdings’ subsidiaries – Lapulapu Leisure and Lapulapu Land – which are working on the Emerald Bay Resort project in Cebu.

Uy previously courted a number of investors for the project. Enrique Razon Jr.’s Bloombery Resorts announced in 2022 that it was set to invest in the Mactan casino, only to terminate the deal in 2023.

Last October, Uy also disclosed that his company was in talks with Cebu-based property developer AppleOne for a potential investment in Emerald Bay.

The company managing Okada may now become the latest investor, as TRLEI and PH Resorts have signed a term sheet for TRLEI to “acquire a majority stake in the Emerald Bay project and complete the partially developed Emerald Bay Resort,” according to a notice released by Universal Entertainment.

The definitive agreement between the two companies could be executed by July 2024, with the goal of having the Emerald Bay Resort and Casino open in 2026, subject to agreed conditions.

The project has been delayed by years due to the COVID-19 pandemic and cash constraints. Back in 2021, PH Resorts announced that Emerald Bay would have its soft opening by March 2022.

Uy’s company first obtained a gaming license for the Cebu casino in 2017, but its development was suspended due to the pandemic.

The Davao-based businessman has also been cash-strapped, having just recently completed a multibillion-peso debt restructuring deal with China Bank. – Rappler.com

[Vantage Point] Dennis Uy and Lady Luck

[Vantage Point] Dennis Uy and Lady Luck

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Lance Spencer Yu

Lance Spencer Yu is a multimedia reporter who covers the transportation, tourism, infrastructure, finance, agriculture, and corporate sectors, as well as macroeconomic issues.