Gaming taxes in Macau fall sharply in January 

By William Brown Updated
Macau casino licence renewal process made clearer

Gaming taxes from concessionaires in Macau has dropped 63.6 per cent year-on-year.

Asgam reports that the Macau government took in US$402 million in gaming taxes, despite the huge decrease in revenue.

The January figure, published by the Financial Services Bureau, represents just 6.2 per cent of the government’s 2021 budget for revenue from gaming, reflecting the subdued gross gaming revenue from operators due to an increase of COVID-19 cases in mainland China at the start of 2021.

Macau’s casinos recorded gross gaming revenue of US$1 billion in January, down 63.7 per cent compared with January 2020.

The Financial Services Bureau revealed total revenues taken in through January came to US$543 million, meaning revenues from concessionaires, including a small amount of revenue from public utility services, comprised 74.3 per cent of all government revenues in January.

Macau loses two Michelin star restaurants in 2021

The Macau casino sector has seen a decline in the number of Michelin-starred restaurants at its casino resorts.

GGR Asia reported in January that in the latest edition of the Michelin Guide Hong Kong Macau revealed 18 restaurants in Macau boasting a Michelin star, down from 20 in the previous year.

All the still-listed eateries are located inside a casino hotel or resort.

Macau had again three restaurants awarded three stars.

It is Michelin’s top accolade for food that it considers “exceptional cuisine”.

Two of the outlets, French favourite Robuchon au Dome, and a Chinese fine dining outlet The Eight, are at Grand Lisboa casino hotel, owned by gaming operator SJM Holdings.

Jade Dragon, a Cantonese-cuisine restaurant at City of Dreams Macau, a casino resort run by Melco Resorts and Entertainment also kept its three-star rating.

Missing from the 2021 list of two-starred venues is The Tasting Room, a French contemporary restaurant at City of Dreams Macau.

In May, Melco Resorts closed that eatery linked to the Revamp of Nuwa, a hotel at the City of Dreams complex.

Macau establishments retaining two Michelin stars for 2021 included: Alain Ducasse at Morpheus, described as a French contemporary eatery and based at the Morpheus hotel tower, also at City of Dreams; and Feng Wei Ju, a Sichuan-style Chinese restaurant at Galaxy Entertainment Group’s StarWorld Macau.

Also retaining two stars respectively were: Golden Flower and Wing Lei, two Chinese restaurants at the Wynn Macau resort, operated by Wynn Macau; Mizumi, a venue specialising in Japanese cuisine and based at the same property; and Sichuan Moon, a Chinese-cuisine restaurant at Macau casino resort Wynn Palace.

In November, Wynn Macau confirmed that Golden Flower had been “temporarily closed during the pandemic period,” and would reopen “when visitor volumes were more normalised”.

On Wednesday, a notice on the restaurant’s website said the venue was “currently closed until further notice.”

In Michelin’s one-star category, Wing Lei Palace, a Cantonese fine dining venue at Wynn Palace, won its first one-star rating.

The other one-star eateries retained in the 2021 guide included Lai Heen, a Cantonese restaurant at Galaxy Macau; and the Italian cuisine venue 8 ½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana also at Galaxy Macau; Pearl Dragon, a Cantonese establishment at Studio City, a Cotai property majority-owned by Melco Resorts; Ying, a Cantonese restaurant at Melco Resorts’ Altira Macau, Taipa.

Dropped from this year’s one-star rating list were Shinji by Kanesaka, a Japanese sushi restaurant at City of Dreams that was also closed because of the renovation of the Nuwa hotel tower; and King, a Cantonese-style establishment in the AIA Tower in downtown Macau.

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