It’s not a bluff – The Island will be home to Aria, Bellagio and MGM hotels.
Dubai has often been called the Las Vegas of the Middle East – just without the gambling. Now, we can confirm that the city will be home to a Las Vegas-inspired island, aptly titled The Island. A record-breaking deal has been signed, and it is scheduled to open in 2028.
The Beijing-based company, China State Construction Engineering Corporation, has been awarded the AED 4.4 billion contract. The Island’s deal is making headlines, as it is one of the largest construction contracts in Dubai since 2017, and hints at a shift towards gaming in the country, which currently is not home to casinos.
The Island will be located off the coast of Umm Suqeim, and spans 10.5 hectares. As it will be located near Burj Al Arab, we are expecting Insta-worthy views. According to a call with investors, the hospitality brands Aria, Bellagio and MGM are currently under construction on the Island. The space will be home to 1,400 hotel rooms and apartments.
According to the database company, BNC Network, The Island will feature restaurants, indoor as well as outdoor swimming pools, and water fountains. Plus, at the centre of the Island will be a 110-metre-tall entertainment tower.
Drawing inspiration from its Vegas counterpart, MGM Resort Dubai is set to host regular shows and will also feature a beach club and indoor and outdoor swimming pools. The hotel will also be a haven for shoppers and foodies, with a plethora of restaurants and retail options. Bellagio Hotel Dubai will boast a modern and futuristic design across a staggering 1,000 rooms and 10 exquisite villas. The facilities within and around the hotel are equally impressive, including a theatre, museums showcasing art and culture, and an array of world-class restaurants. We’re also hoping for an iteration of the Bellagio Fountain found at the Las Vegas property.
Aria, Bellagio and MGM are famous for their connection to Las Vegas and casinos, which has led many to believe that a gaming facility could open in Dubai. In September 2023, General Commercial Gaming Regulatory Authority was officially established to create a framework for a national lottery and commercial gaming.
MGM President and CEO, William Hornbuckle, said at a conference in Las Vegas: “I’d love to be in Dubai with an operating product with a casino in it, but one step and one day at a time. We’re very progressive and excited by what could happen there. We think there will be three or four [casinos] in the Emirates. It’s up to each ruler to decide what they want to do and where they want to do it.”
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GO: Visit https://www.mgmresorts.com for more information.