Only 500 loyalty members were invited to private gaming rooms under a strict COVID-19 safety plan.
Australia.- After a 10 week lockdown, The Star casino in Sydney reopened exclusively for VIP guests on Monday.
Only 500 loyalty members were invited to private rooms, while social distancing measures were still required for gambling and eating within the facilities.
The New South Wales (NSW) state government allowed The Star Entertainment Group to begin operating its private gaming rooms and up to twelve food and beverage venues within the complex.
For the moment, bookings will be available only to invited members, and diners will have access to gaming facilities. Restaurants are only allowing 50 seated customers.
The Star Entertainment Group‘s COVID-Safe Plan has been endorsed by two independent leading experts in Australia, Dr Paul Griffin and Dr David Heslop. It also complies with NSW Government health orders.
Although business volume is expected to climb under the new scheme, the plan is to begin to engage with customers again and reinstate employees into regular tasks gradually.
The firm said in a public statement that more than 95% of its workforce of around 9,000 across NSW and Queensland was temporarily stood down following property shutdowns in March. It said that from June 1, The Star will be able to increase its workforce to around 1,000 in Sydney.
The operator made clear it was not expecting to profit under the new scheme. It estimated the three-month shutdown would cost about AUD$220 million (USD$140 million).