The coronavirus epidemic has wreaked havoc in the mainland of China and globally as well. The number of new cases continues to increase by the day, with more people succumbing to the deadly virus. Precautions have been put in place to thwart the spread of the disease.

The Special Administrative Region of Macau has not been left behind in protecting its citizens. Its latest precautionary measure was a directive by the authorities ordering the closure of all casinos in Macau, for at least 15 days with a possible extension.

The latest count shows that 23 casinos have already shut their doors, this is according to publications that first shared this piece of news featured at the They all hope that they will be able to resume operations as soon as possible, with the fear of a negative financial impact already rooming.

Sofitel Macau at Ponte 16, Legend Hotel and Rocks Hotel are the latest gaming venue to agree to shut down their doors. This comes a few days after several casino operators agreed to follow protocol and shut down their operations. A total of 921 hotel rooms are out of order, with the earliest they can be opened being February 20.

What was once a bubbly city, full of life and light rivaling those of Las Vegas, is now a shadow of its former self. The city looks abandoned, with bare people walking the streets. A number of hotels and guest houses have completely shut down their businesses, as they await instructions from the authorities. Amongst those that have shut down include Altira and Grand Harbour Hotel.

Casino operators are worried about the financial implications the epidemic will have on their businesses. In addition to lack of money flow into their venues due to the temporary closure, they have to refund canceled hotel bookings as well as make commercial payments.

Gaming operators, Melco and Galaxy Entertainment have already started refunding their customers for any stay before 29 February. To try and help, many casino operators have donated towards helping curb the spread of the virus as well as treat those who have been infected. A total of $90 million has already been contributed towards the course.

This week some relief has come to the retailers occupying venues owned by MGM China. MGM China’s CEO, Grant Bowie gave a press statement saying that the company will not be asking for rent from any of its tenants. He said that the company made the decision in a bid to try and help alleviate the financial burden on their retail tenants and to let them know they are in this together.

The precautionary measures in Macau seem to be paying off. In the last five days, there has been no new case of coronavirus reported in the region. But even with this calm down, both the residents and visitors are still advised to get or call immediate medical attention in case they or a person they know exhibits any of the symptoms related to this virus.

Basheera Manaar is a freelance writer covering news related to Land Based Casinos in United States. When she is not informing you about the gambling world, you will find her busy interacting with nature, people and animals. She recently graduate from Nairobi University with a degree in Journalism.
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