Melco Closes Two Cyprus Casinos as Curfew Kicks In

Cyprus Casinos, the Cypriot subsidiary of casino and hospitality giant Melco Resorts & Entertainment, has shut temporarily two of its casinos in Cyprus as the tiny Mediterranean nation grapples with a second wave of coronavirus infections.

In a message on its official website published Thursday, November 12, Cyprus Casinos said that its satellite casino in Paphos and temporary casino in Limassol would close and remain shuttered until November 30.

Cyprus imposed a new wave of sweeping lockdown measures in the Limassol and Paphos districts as part of its battle to contain the spread of the coronavirus. The two districts entered an almost complete lockdown beginning Thursday night. The measures implemented include a curfew from 8 pm to 5 am and a ban on movement in and out of the two districts.

The C2 Limassol casino shut its doors at 5 pm local time on Thursday, while C2 Paphos closed at 3 pm local time. Other non-essential businesses in the two districts were ordered to temporarily suspend operations as well.

Cyprus’ five casinos were ordered to close in mid-March when the coronavirus first hit the tiny island nation. The facilities were allowed to resume operations on June 13 under strict health safety protocols.

Other Two Casinos Remain Operational

Cyprus Casinos said its properties in the capital Nicosia and Ayia Napa will remain operational at this point. Its Nicosia casino will welcome visitors from 3 pm to 10:30 pm, Monday through Friday, and from 6:30 am to 10:30 pm during weekends and public holidays. The Ayia Napa facility will be open daily from 6:30 am to 10:30 pm.

Cyprus Casinos also operates a satellite casino in Larnaca, but that facility did not resume operations when its sister properties did. Company officials said in June that the casino would be relocated to a new site and that its reopening date remained unknown. The satellite casino was previously located at Larnaca International Airport.

A consortium formed by Melco, Hard Rock International, and a local partner won in 2016 the right to operate the first land-based casinos in the Republic of Cyprus. Hard Rock dropped from the scheme the following year.

Melco, through its Cyprus Casinos subsidiary, launched its first Cypriot casino in Limassol in June 2018. The facility will operate temporarily through late 2021 when Melco’s City of Dreams Mediterranean integrated resort is scheduled to open doors not far from the temporary casino site. The company has committed to a €550 million investment into the mega-project.

As part of its agreement with the Government of Cyprus, Melco was also allowed to open four satellite casinos in four tourist-busy cities across the nation, with those being Larnaca, Ayia Napa, Nicosia, and Paphos.

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