No food service yet, social distancing, hotel closed for now
BY JOSH RESNEK
If everything goes according to the plan as approved this week by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, Wynn Boston Harbor Casino will be opening on or around June 29.
Thus, will end an extraordinary closure of the casino which began on March 15 when the Coronavirus began hitting us with full force.
Since March 15 neither the casino nor the Encore Hotel has produced a dime of revenue.
The hotel will not be reopening on the 29th, according to Wynn company officials.
The hotel may reopen but on a limited basis, according to company reports.
The casino however will be reopening with a full litany of social distancing and hygienic requirements.
Temperatures will be taken. Hand washers will be everywhere. All employees will be wearing masks.
It is expected that many customers will do the same although the requirement is not absolute.
It is not yet entirely clear which restaurants will be reopening and in what capacity.
The buffet, which has been reopened in Las Vegas, will not be reopened here.
In the casino itself, card games have been eliminated and many other table games have been introduced.
Ending card games eliminated the need for dealers.
They have all been laid off.
With $3.4 billion in liquid assets, or enough to last the company for 1 1⁄2 years at the present burn rate, Wynn company president Matt Maddox is confident the comeback will be strong and over time, everything will come back to normal.
“We are confident that travel and tourism will recover in both the US and China, and our industry leading assets, fortress balance sheet and talented team members position the company to thrive in the years ahead,” Maddox affirmed.
Wynn closed its Strip operations on 17 March. In Las Vegas, Q1 operating revenues were $323.8m, a 19.3 percent decrease from $401m for the first quarter of 2019. Operating revenues at Encore Boston Harbor came in at $140.9m.
In Asia, the company’s subsidiary Wynn Macau reported a nearly $154.2m net loss for the first quarter.
Wynn’s Macau interests generate about $75% of the company’s income. The closing of Beijing because of a recurrence of the virus will impact business in Macau which is a new worry for Wynn Resorts.
With air travel and tour- ism to Boston remaining extremely slim and limited, it is difficult to predict how the casino reopening will go.
Company officials in statements to Wynn employees say they are raring to go, a sentiment shared by a great many employees who have been paid by the company throughout the ordeal.
It is believed that pent up demand for customers to go out again and to gamble will
be enough to bring respectable crowds back to the casino.
As of Tuesday, Wynn stock was traded at $92.00.
Its 52 week high was $153.00. The 52 week low, $35.00.
The dividend has been suspended.
Wynn presently owes the city of Everett for in lieu of tax payments – an amount believed to be about $12 million.
It is expected that money will shortly be paid to the city.
The city will be without substantial income generated by hotel room fees for the near future.