Venetian resort not blind to future expectations

PUBLISHED : Friday, 21 September, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 21 September, 2007, 12:00am

Size really does matter for Macau's latest and biggest resort development - the Venetian.

The building and land on the Cotai Strip occupies more than 300,000 square metres, big enough to house 98 jumbo jets.

Logistics and purchasing goods are all about precision timing, computer programming, contacts and storage.

The Venetian, which opened last month, has procurement offices in Macau and Hong Kong, with a team of more than 200 staff.

It also has a dedicated transport department.

The first two levels of the main building, which house the exhibition and convention centres, are purposely built to allow trucks to drive directly into the rooms for loading and unloading goods.

The Venetian signed an agreement with Macau-based Jet Forwarding and Trading Company in June for the leasehold of a 190,000 sqft warehouse and logistics centre in the Zhuhai Park, at the Zhuhai-Macau Cross-Border Industrial Zone.

William Weidner, president and chief operating officer of Las Vegas Sands, the parent company of the Venetian, said the centre was crucial to the successful operation of the resort.

Mr Weidner said the purpose-built facility included 11 floors of warehousing and extensive logistics and office space.

'With the opening of the Venetian and the ongoing construction of our Cotai Strip development, it is essential that we have the necessary comprehensive logistics and warehouse support services,' he said.

'The Zhuhai-Macau Cross Border Industrial Zone, with its exclusive 24-hour entry-exit channel, land capacity and other support services, is ideally situated to meet our hotel, convention and exhibition logistics and storage needs.'

The facility will be used to support the Venetian's 3,000-suite hotel tower, 350 retail stores and 15,000-seat entertainment stadium.

Most goods will be purchased from the mainland and trucked to the Zhuhai warehouse.

Food and beverages, equipment and other supplies are then transported over the Lotus Flower Bridge to another smaller warehouse in Taipa, near the Venetian site, until needed.

Orders to date have included more than 3,000 television sets, 3 million 24-carat gold sheets for interior design, 850 custom-built gaming tables and 4,100 slot machines.

Procurement staff started working on the US$2.4 billion project three years before it opened.

While the majority of construction materials were sourced from the mainland, specialist brand requirements for hotel rooms, restaurants and the convention and exhibition centres meant that many items were shipped or air-freighted from countries including Italy, Australia, Thailand and the United States.

Most were freighted through Hong Kong.