November 22, 2008

Atlantis rising out of the Persian Gulf

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So the Kerzners have now opened their latest resort - Atlantis, the Palm - on Palm Jumeirah in Dubai. The star-studded opening party - said to cost USD 20MM - included fireworks that lit up the entire Palm Jumeirah.

 I got a pretty good view of the Atlantis under construction on my trip to Dubai a year ago. Here's what it looked like then: Well, a lot has happened to this world since 12 months ago. The world has changed completely, and the market crash I predicted in Dubai has actually happened a lot sooner. The stock market index is down 65%, and oil has gone from $90 to $140 and back down to $50. The real estate boom is now completely bust.

But the Kerzners know how to throw a good party, and they are probably secretly celebrating the fact that they didn't win the casino project on Sentosa. They will have a hard enough time running the new one in this economic environment...

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