Melco Resorts' brand new $1 billion Zaha Hadid-designed luxury hotel opens in Macau on Friday

  • Melco Resorts' new $1.1 billion luxury hotel, Morpheus, officially opens in Macau on Friday.
  • The new hotel is an architectural icon for Macau and the rest of Asia, Melco Resorts CEO Lawrence Ho told CNBC.
  • No new gaming tables were allocated to Morpheus, but it could still contribute up to 40 percent in revenue growth for Melco's City of Dreams resort, an analyst said.

Morpheus, Melco Resorts' brand new $1.1 billion luxury hotel in Macau, is "an architectural icon" for Asia, casino mogul Lawrence Ho told CNBC ahead of the property's Friday evening official opening in the territory.

Located in Melco Resorts and Entertainment's City of Dreams casino resort, the Morpheus hotel, designed by the late Zaha Hadid, targets the premium mass segment and is part of the company's attempt to reinvent to meet changing customer demands.

"With Morpheus, it's our catalyst to relaunch City of Dreams because there's been new resorts that have been built since City of Dreams opened up nine years ago," Lawrence Ho, chairman and chief executive of Melco Resorts & Entertainment, told CNBC's Emily Tan.

"Morpheus is truly an architectural icon, not just for Macau [but] for Asia. The reason behind it is, we wanted to send a love letter to China and Macau as well, given all of the support and all the great business and relationships we've had over the years," Ho added.

The Morpheus hotel stands at Melco Resorts & Entertainment's City of Dreams casino resort in Macau on May 15, 2018.
Billy H.C. Kwok | Bloomberg | Getty Images
The Morpheus hotel stands at Melco Resorts & Entertainment's City of Dreams casino resort in Macau on May 15, 2018.

In recent years, a number of luxury hotels have opened, including Wynn Palace and The Parisian Macao, on Macau's famed Cotai Strip, but fears of oversupply in the Macau hospitality sector were pushed aside.

Rather, the 772 rooms Morpheus adds to Macau's total hotel room capacity will be absorbed "in a heartbeat," said Grant Govertsen, the Macau-based managing director of Union Gaming.

"The reality is, there's not enough rooms in the market today to satisfy the pent-up demand on the other side of the border," Govertsen said, adding that the project "hit all right spots" to attract mainland consumers.

No new tables, no problem

Although no new gaming tables will be added upon the opening of the new Morpheus hotel, the Macau government has allowed for 40 existing tables to be transferred to the new property, industry publication site GGRAsia reported on Thursday.

No new gaming tables will be allocated for the remainder of the year either, but authorities in Macau will review whether it will grant new tables in 2019, the outlet added.

Ho on Friday confirmed the news, telling CNBC that in the interim, Melco had moved 40 existing gaming tables to the Morpheus hotel ahead of its official opening.

"We have a great relationship with the Macau government ... Needless to say, we've been in very close dialogue with them, we understand this year's allocation was preallocated, so I'm confident," the Melco CEO said.

But in the meantime, regardless of whether or not new tables are eventually granted, the addition of new hotel rooms with Morpheus' opening is still likely to result in revenue growth of some 30 percent to 40 percent for City of Dreams, according to Govertsen.