Aspers Group has announced that it now intends to proceed with its plan to build a US$563m waterfront casino in Southampton, UK, after winning a High Court challenge that had been brought by rival Global Gaming Ventures.
Aspers, which is a joint venture of the local Aspinall family and Sydney-based Crown Resorts, already operates casinos in London, Milton Keynes, Newcastle and Northampton and was awarded the Southampton casino licence in March 2016.
Its plan calls for the construction of a new facility offering 150 slots and 30 gaming tables inside the planned Royal Pier Waterfront hotel, retail and office development, although the overall scheme has yet to receive final approval.
London-based Global Gaming Ventures, which recently opened the 50,000sq.ft Victoria Gate Casino in Leeds and has plans to inaugurate a gambling facility in the city of Bath early next year, objected after its own plan for the new Southampton casino in the Hammerson shopping development in Watermark West Quay was rejected in favour of the proposal from Aspers.
In its legal challenge, Global Gaming Ventures argued that work at Watermark West Quay was already under way while the Royal Pier Waterfront project had yet to gain final planning permissions. It also claimed that the evaluation of benefits should have been mathematical since the term “gross value-added” had been used in the original criteria.