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Billionaire Adelson Mulls Europe’s Big Cities for Casinos

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Dec. 23 (Bloomberg) -- Billionaire Sheldon Adelson said he is considering building individual integrated resorts in major European cities, 10 days after abandoning a plan to construct a $30 billion mega-resort in Spain.

“I’m looking at a different model of doing Singapore-like or Japan-like or Korea-like individual IRs in individual cities,” Adelson said in an interview in Herzliya, Israel yesterday. “We will just take the major cities in Europe and see whether or not there is a possibility to pursue that.”

Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands Corp., the world’s largest casino operator, said Dec. 13 that it was dropping plans for what would have been Europe’s largest resort. Adelson had sought assurances that tax rates and other conditions wouldn’t be changed by future governments.

Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, Milan, Athens and Paris are possible sites for new resorts, Adelson said. Only cities with tourism infrastructure, including hotels, restaurants, transportation and exhibition facilities, would be considered, he said.

In Asia, it “looks like” Japan, Korea, possibly Vietnam, Taiwan, and Thailand will allow the establishment of integrated resorts, said Adelson, who is ranked 12th globally in the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

“If they do, I’ll have a lot to keep me busy for the next five to ten years,” he said.

Adelson, a self-made man who started selling newspapers on a street corner at the age of 12, spoke before a ceremony to mark the inauguration of the Adelson School of Entrepreneurship at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya, a university north of Tel Aviv.

To contact the reporters on this story: Alisa Odenheimer in Jerusalem at aodenheimer@bloomberg.net; Elliott Gotkine in Tel Aviv at egotkine@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net