Queenstown’s one of the 2 casinos with CBD is most probably going to shut down next year. It is being rumored that the landlord of Wharf Casino is not looking to renew its lease contract over the premises of Streamer Wharf. The contract is ending on September 8th, 2021.
The company right now owns a room of high-rollers’ in its bigger casino on Beach Street. Both of these CBD casinos were inaugurated in the year 1999, after a considerable period of controversy. SkyCity also acquired Singapore based Wharf Casino from the Lasseters in the year 2013. It since then has also struggled to operate it well.
The news was revealed via some applications by Skycity to the Gambling Commission. Skycity is the governing body of both the casinos. The lease reportedly is owned by the subsidiary of SkyCity that operates by the name Otago Casinos Ltd or OCL. Otago right now holds the license of the casino venue.
As per the documents, the landlord is not going to continue the lease because OCL has been refraining from making capital investments for the venue. They will renew the lease once they make the move of making a significant investment which is considered commercially difficult.
The license of OCL, though, won’t be expiring until four more years which is in September of the year 2024. Beyond that, it will also be subject to its right to renewal. SkyCity asserts that the license will be a waste in case they don’t gain a fresh lease after September in 2021.
Moreover, it has shown no interest in surrendering the license until its expiration, as per its talks with the Gambling Commission.
This has been linked to two reasons. One, it’s a possibility that the landlord is convinced of the negotiation and makes a new lease as the terms of commercial viability can change.
Second, there is a chance that the law that forbids the casino venue to be updated to an anomaly can be reevaluated.
The boss of Local SkyCity Jono Browne, when asked last year regarding the relocation of any of its 2 CBD casinos, he said that it just wasn’t an option for them. “It requires a change of legislation, and currently it’s not possible,” he says. Browne also refused to speak on the firm’s applications for the Gaming Commission this week.