HIGHLANDS, Malaysia - "It's not so much just
a casino," said Genting's senior vice president of
communications, Anthony Yeo. "That is just one of
the choices you have here."
said Genting embarked on its plan to diversify to keep
have such fierce competition from other casinos around
the world, so we have to be pro-active and aggressive
in being different and keeping with the times," he
need to be able to provide different forms of entertainment
that bigger casinos at Las Vegas or even at Macau don't
have," he added.
this strategy, Genting is aiming to fulfil the needs of
gamblers as well as amusement seekers, Yeo said.
45-minute journey from Kuala Lumpur leads visitors to
a midway point up the hill, where they arrive at one of
Asia's longest cable- car lines that carries thousands
of passengers daily over 3.38 kilometres of lush rainforests
to the summit.
the core of Genting's profits comes from the casino,
officials said most of the 15 million visitors who visit
the complex on average every year come for the amusement
rides, the live entertainment or just to escape from the
tropical heat of the lowlands.
indoor theme park's latest addition and one of its most
popular is the Sky Venture ride, the first in Asia to
simulate skydiving in an enclosed cylindrical capsule
that creates winds that can exceed 190km/h.
sprawling five-hectare outdoor theme park that cost 100million
ringgit (about R168-million) to build offers hair-raising
rides for the adrenaline junkie with roller coasters that
leave little for the imagination with names like the "Corkscrew"
and the "Turbo Drop".
those keen on a quieter form of entertainment, live performances
are available almost every night of the week.
6 000-seat Arena of Stars has set the stage for a wide
range of performers, including singer Sir Cliff Richard,
the pop group Westlife and the Hong Kong performers Andy
Lau and Aaron Kwok.
extravaganzas including London's West End production of
"Lady Salsa" as well as Broadway's "Annie"
have also graced the stages.
rebranding of Genting comes at a crucial time when global
players in the casino and gaming industry are moving to
become flashier, bigger and, most importantly, closer
Singapore's upcoming casino as well as the recent opening
of Hong Kong's Disneyland will surely provide fierce competition,
seeing as the bulk of Genting's visitors have been Singaporean
2004, the resort
recorded 17.4-million visitors, not including those who
made day trips.
the 537 000 Chinese tourists visiting Malaysia that year,
400 000 chose to spend the bulk of their trip at Genting,
officials have expressed optimism in maintaining their
appeal to tourists and dismissing the incoming competition,
a feat that has so far been achieved with an increase
in Middle Eastern tourists in recent years.
place is very beautiful, and I'm very glad we decided
to come here," said Saudi Karima Moehamad, 42.
who arrived with her husband and two daughters, said she
had not been bothered by the fact that the resort housed
one of the region's largest casinos.
doesn't matter because there's so much else to do,"
she said, adding, "We didn't even notice the casino."
visitor, Dirk Cornelius Uys from South Africa, made a
one- hour journey to the hilltop resort to enjoy a late-night
coffee with friends.
worth the trip," the 31-year-old engineer said. "You
don't get many other places where you can sip coffee on
a hilltop and then drive back down to the comforts of
your bed the same day." - Sapa-dpa