Posted on: July 10, 2023, 08:01h.
Last updated on: July 10, 2023, 09:33h.
The highly anticipated and somewhat delayed grand opening of the City of Dreams Mediterranean (CoDM) casino resort in Limassol, Cyprus, is finally taking place. Melco Resorts & Entertainment previously announced that its large casino project would finally open as of July 10 and is now ready for the big day, despite some negative publicity.
Melco expects the project to redefine the entertainment scene in Cyprus and attract tourists from around the globe. It also foresees the property becoming a major cornerstone of European gaming, becoming the largest integrated resort in the region.
As it prepares to pull back the curtain on its ambitious project, Melco is also having to face some negative feedback. A local workers union hopes to take advantage of the attention surrounding the grand opening to force better conditions for CoDM’s employees.
The CoDM spans more than 14.8 acres and boasts a myriad of amenities. The centerpiece of the resort is the 80,000-square-foot casino, which features an extensive array of slot machines (750, according to local media) and table games (75), catering to both casual players and seasoned gamblers.
Beyond the casino, guests can explore a wide range of dining options, from upscale restaurants offering gourmet cuisine to trendy cafes serving tantalizing snacks and beverages. The resort also houses luxury retail outlets, allowing shoppers to indulge in a world of high-end fashion and exclusive brands.
In addition to its dazzling amenities, the CoDM is also committed to sustainable practices. The resort has implemented eco-friendly initiatives such as energy-efficient systems, waste management programs, and green building practices. Melco is aiming to minimize the environmental impact of the resort while providing a luxurious experience for its guests.
The resort is expected to drive significant tourism and boost the local economy, creating employment opportunities and positioning Cyprus as a premier tourist destination. By the time everything is in place and the resort is running smoothly, it will reportedly offer jobs to 3,500 people.
Protests Disrupt Launch
Two unions representing some of those 3,500 potential employees aren’t happy with the way Melco is treating them. The Pancyprian Federation of Labour and the Democratic Labour Federation of Cyprus (PEO and DEOK, respectively, for their Greek acronyms) plan on making their dissatisfaction known.
Last week, according to the Cyprus Mail, the two unions, which already represent hundreds of CoDM employees, announced that they would hold public protests on July 11. They chose the day following the grand opening because it coincides with a planned media blitz at the resort.
At the heart of their grievance is an allegation that Melco has been thwarting unionization efforts. The PEO and DEOK assert that Melco is blocking them from entering the property, which they say violates local labor laws.
As a result of an impasse between the unions and Melco after several failed meetings, the CEO and DEOK want to increase the stakes. Melco had planned Tuesday to be a media day for the property, and the unions will use the opportunity to try to drum up support for their plight.
That’s if the two sides don’t reach an agreement first. The ongoing discussions have reached Cypriot Labor Minister Yiannis Panayiotou, who met with union representatives on Friday. Although they were apparently “satisfied” with the intervention, there is still no permanent resolution.
CoDM Receives Praise
As it tries to settle its employment issues, Melco can brag about new accolades. Even before the resort opened, CoDM has already received three awards.
In a press release from last week, Melco announced that The European Property Awards 2023 singled out the property in three categories, including Best Hotel Architecture Europe, Best Sustainable Commercial Development Europe, and Best New Hotel Construction & Design Cyprus.
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