|Robert Earl, the entrepreneur behind the global chain of Planet Hollywood restaurants, has announced he is to invest in the redevelopment of an existing London casino. In alliance with London Clubs International, plans are now in place to spend £5 million developing a new casino to be called FIFTY, replacing the current casino owned by LCI and located in London’s Piccadilly.|
The aims are to turn the site into a multi-purpose venue, including the facility to host live entertainment. The site is planned to be ready sometime in 2005 and will be a four story complex featuring private gambling facilities, a gaming room, two restaurants and a cocktail bar.
This new development comes after the announcement of the UK government to deregulate gaming laws, relaxing current restrictions in the process. Following that announcement, plans have been put in place for new venues also at London’s Millenium Dome and Alexandra Palace. The plans for this Piccadilly site are in the vein of a Vegas style casino- before these recent changes in legislation casino operators were prohibited from using casinos for anything other than gambling. The new legislation is now opening up opportunities for casinos and their operators.
Robert Earl explained the logic behind the plans, and the ambitions for this casino venture: “All casinos in London right now are all very similar, beautiful spaces, the same customer base of middle-aged, overseas visitors rather than locals. But we plan to change that. Instead of going to San Lorenzo, The Ivy or Zuma, people will use their membership to come here, eat at the restaurant, use the lounge downstairs or go upstairs to gamble if they feel like it.”