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MGM plans to expand to Mideast, Asia

22 May 2009

LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- As reported by The Wall Street Journal: "For years, big hotel companies have fought to gain entry to the lucrative Las Vegas Strip. Now, MGM Mirage, one of the Strip's biggest gambling houses, is making a grand entrance into the hotel industry, with plans to export the Strip's glitz to such sites as Cairo and Vietnam.

"An MGM Mirage executive says the company has signed eight hotel-management deals with developers and is in discussions with 10 more about opening hotels under the banners of its iconic Vegas properties, including the Bellagio and the MGM Grand, across Asia and the Middle East. In most cases, the properties will be marketed as luxury hotels and won't include casinos.

"So far, the signed agreements include a Bellagio -- the hotel-casino known for its dancing fountains and scenes with George Clooney and Brad Pitt in the "Ocean's Eleven" movie series -- in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm El Sheikh and in Dubai.

"There are also deals for MGM Grand properties in Cairo, Vietnam and Tianjin, China. Some locations will also include Skylofts, an ultraluxury boutique hotel brand within MGM Grand.

"'...We want to leverage our brands without any capital,' says Gamal Aziz, head of MGM Mirage Hospitality, which was formed in 2007. Under its deals, MGM Mirage expects to generate revenue of around $100 million a year from hotel operations by 2014 without spending a penny to develop the hotels, he says..."

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MGM plans to expand to Mideast, Asia is republished from Online.CasinoCity.com.