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Questions For MelcoPBL from The Peanut Gallery (Version III)

With all of the swirling questions and the possibility of some juicy new details about City of Dreams ready to be leaked (to us), perhaps it's time to arrange a third round of Q&A with my contacts at Melco Crown Entertainment LTD (MPEL).

I've got about 10 things I'd like to ask them about, and if there's time I can probably toss in a bunch of other ones of your submission.

They've been pretty forthright about sharing what they can and stating clearly when the need to hold some details for a later date. As with previous episodes, I can't guarantee I'll get to ask, or if they'll answer, but past results have been fascinating and very positive.

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Comments & Discussion:

Oh how I wish I had the contacts that you have Chuck. Then again, I don't have the absolute best blog site on Macau gaming, so it's not a fair comparison. Anyway, if I had the chance, here are some of the things I'd like to know:
1) Are the planning to use digital screens to replicate an underwater theme inside the casino? Or are they using real, live, fish-swimming aquariums? If they have ANY photos or plans of the casino interior I would LOVE to see them.
2) Will the 10-min show inside the 'bubble' include actual water effects too?
3) Will the exteriors of the buildings be fitted out with lights to simulate flowing water as is portrayed in their corporate videos?
4) Will the exterior have any special features (e.g. a fountain show)
5) Are they gonna be connected to the Venetian with a footbridge or tunnel? Right now it's pretty dangerous trying to cross the road illegally

That's quite a few questions, so if you can get through at least a few of them I would really appreciate it Chuck (especially the 1st question)

Thanks! Good luck!

I have six off the top of my head. Some minor, some major:

1. In the past SJM never marketed intentionaly to the masses. With competition this is happening, but efforts, in both message and mission, have been ham-handed so far. With the opening of the COD and other projects, Melco seems to have a diverse set of properties. What is their strategy in marketing these diverse properties in a way diffrent from their competitiors?

2. Melco's move to extend credit at the Crown Macau has made waves in Macau. Can they go through the mechanics of this, and how well do they collect on losses?

3. Melco has floated a number of trial balloons over the past year to enter other gaming markets. Yet they are far behind being established in Macau compared to their competitors. How do they square this seeming incongrrunce?

4. How will the flood of room capacity with the COD effect the market in Macau. Do they feel that the market can justify two hotel towers listed at over HK$15000 a night near term, and many more long term? If not, how will such a change in rates effect COD and/or Macau in general (ie who will get the short end of the stick)?

5. On thing that struck me about the Venitian when I visted was its exact location. To get there from either the ferry or airport you need to go to the far end of Taipa and drive around the Galaxy Megaresort construction )(conversely their shuttles are fine with an entrance in the back). Part of me wonders if LVS overlooked the fact that they drive on the left in Macau, and did not realise this logistic glitch. On the other hand, they are idealy located for drivers from the big border crossing plaza once that place starts hopping. (On a third hand, by the time Cotai really does start hopping China may not need to keep such controls). Can I get some discussion about traffic flow, people and vehicle, and how it works into the COD project.

5. Labor issues between the Casino and the govrenment are problematic at the moment. What are Melco's thoughts, and what would be the ratio of the COD's staff between native and foriegn workers?

6. With the rumored bankrupcy of Air Macau, the rather tedious Chek Lap Kok Hong Kong Airport-Macau ferry, and the difficult curent airline operating environment in general, what is the COD doing to promote Macau as a pan-asian gaming destination, and what steps are being taken to ease transportation for the same regional players in and out of Macau?

Draman, about your question regarding credit extension at Crown, from what I understand, I don't think they actually do much direct credit extension to players. AMAX extends credit to players and it is entirely up to AMAX to collect on those debts. If AMAX can't collect on a debt, Crown is not affected at all.

At least that's what my understanding of the situation is.

I have a question for the Venetian.
Could you find out why they have allowed their casino to become over run by prostitutes and not do anything about it.
Prostitutes have always been around the casinos in Macau but they are mostly reasonably discreet. Not at the Venetian - just glance in their direction and there is a mad stampede as groups run over to proposition you. It is particularly bad around the slots areas.
The Venetian is starting to get a bad name for it locally and no one can believe how blatant they are.

"Mad stampede"? Really? I gotta find that corner of the Casino. I heard one part being named "Hooker Island", but a stampede? That I never found.

And how does this stampede rate with the packs of hookers that roam the Lisboa? Are you implying something about the average Veneitian's hookers looks? Or jus their breast size?

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