Sands China jointly building City of Performing Arts

Sands Macao Celebrates 20 Years in Macao

A five-part series on the growth of Sands China since 2004

As the city’s first international integrated tourism and leisure enterprise, Sands China has been rooted in Macao for 20 years now, since the opening of Sands Macao in 2004. After introducing Las Vegas Sands’ successful integrated resort model to Macao – combining entertainment, retail, MICE, food & beverage, and accommodation all under one roof – the company continues to invest and actively contribute to the development of Macao into a world centre of tourism and leisure.

As Macao’s largest integrated resort operator, Sands China is determined to provide local residents and tourists a variety of exciting non-gaming entertainment options, host diverse and influential arts and cultural activities such as international film festivals and award ceremonies, and invite world renowned and local artists to organize exhibitions. The group’s property portfolio provides six multifunctional entertainment venues, with a combined capacity of over 26,300 seats, where guests can enjoy top-tier international entertainment performances. Since 2007, over 4.7 million people have enjoyed more than 740 performances. 

  4,700,000+  attendees

740+ performances

“Over the past two decades, Sands China has hosted numerous internationally acclaimed concerts and performances, propelling the rapid development of Macau’s performing arts scene and transforming it into the ‘City of Performing Arts,’” said Andy Wu, Chairman of the Travel Industry Council of Macau. “The significant investment in venue infrastructure has had a direct and positive impact on Macau’s performing arts industry. With the first privately funded large-scale concert venue [Cotai Arena] in Macao, it attracted a considerable number of visitors who were eager to witness these exceptional performances. By continuously optimising and expanding their venue facilities, the group is determined to create a new era of brilliance in Macau’s performing arts sector.”

Concert Economy

In 2023, Sands China organized over 60 entertainment events and performances – inviting famous singers and bands to perform, including A-Mei, Hacken Lee, Eason Chan, and Westlife.

Cantopop superstar Jacky Cheung performed a record-breaking 12 shows at The Venetian Macao’s Cotai Arena between June and July, selling more than 109,000 tickets on the first leg of the FWD Insurance 10th Anniversary Presents: Jacky Cheung 60+ Concert Tour. Originally slated for six nights only, the number of shows doubled after quickly selling out, reflecting the company’s determination to continue enhancing Macao’s moderate economic diversification.

Performing Arts

To further the company’s support towards the development of local culture and art in Macao, Sands China launched a new initiative, the Sands Performing Arts Program, in a bid to broaden the scope of performing arts in Macao by introducing and promoting premier national local and overseas performing art projects. The program fully utilizes Macao’s role as a platform for international exchange, in alignment with the Macao SAR government’s vision for the diverse development of the integrated tourism and leisure industry.

The Program brought a total of 13 top-notch performances to Macao in 2023, attracting over 14,000 audience members. While bringing performing arts projects that combine both classical and innovative elements, Sands China hopes to foster the growth of culture and creativity in the city. The company also organized two masterclasses for local art enthusiasts to engage with professional Cantonese opera singers and musicians, promoting exchange events among arts and culture and encouraging the professional development of performing arts.

Visual Arts

Sands China has continually invited local and world-renowned artists to organize a variety of arts and cultural exhibitions, further enriching the art experiences of local residents and tourists. The company launched its Sands Gallery in 2022, born out of Sands China’s desire to assist Macao in its positioning as a multi-cultural exchange and cooperation base with an emphasis on Chinese culture. Sands Gallery’s ultimate objective has always been to provide Macao with a platform for exchanging artistic ideas and showing appreciation of the arts. To this end, Sands Gallery offers a high-end exhibition space for artists to exchange their ideas and display their work as the company introduces masterpieces created by renowned artists. Sands Gallery aims to play an active role in enhancing public interest in art appreciation, and further inspiring local artists through various art exhibitions.

Sporting Events

Over the years, the company has sponsored and organised a wide range of sports events and invited international sports personalities to participate in events such as tennis and basketball exhibition matches and training camps, boxing title fights, golf workshops, and others, encouraging the general public to exercise and attracting foreign tourists and athletes to experience the unique charm of Macao.

For instance, Sands China has been supporting the annual Macao International 10K, fully supporting and promoting the integrated development of sports tourism in Macao. The Sands China Macao International 10K was first held in Macao in 2021, with Sands China title-sponsoring the event each year. For the 2024 Sands China Macao International 10K, Sands China joined the Sports Bureau of the Macao SAR government and the General Association of Athletics of Macau as an organizer, with the event expenses borne by Sands China. This year’s race saw an overwhelming response with nearly 10,000 runners from 48 countries and regions joining either the 10K race or the Fun Run. In addition, Sands China offered full support to event coordination and to promoting the event in Macao, Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area, further driving the integration of “tourism + sports.”

Sands China was also a major sponsor of last year’s 70th anniversary Macau Grand Prix, in a bid to facilitate a group of competent young racers to enter the international stage and build Macao into a world centre of tourism and leisure. Simultaneously, the company featured several time-limited community and cultural tourism events. For instance, the company held a series of themed activities, family-friendly workshops and photo installations at The Venetian Macao and at Sands China’s community revitalisation projects at the former Iec Long Firecracker Factory. Two concerts were also held during the two Grand Prix weekends, further promoting the integration of sports and cultural tourism.

Community Revitalisation

Since September 2023, when the Macao SAR government entrusted integrated tourism and leisure enterprises with promoting community revitalisation, Sands China has followed the principle of “reconstruction, activation, and integration of the old and the new,” when launching different projects. In addition to working with the Macao SAR government to promote the community revitalisation projects at the former Iec Long Firecracker Factory, the Taipa Houses, Pátio da Eterna Felicidade, and Rua das Estalagens, and Macao Cultural Centre Square, the company continues to collaborate with local SMEs and introduced a holographic A.I. photobooth and parent-child workshops at Iec Long during Grand Prix, Chinese New Year, and early summer periods. The company also set up large-scale romantic photo spots at the Taipa Houses and held winter concerts at the Macao Cultural Centre Square during the Christmas holidays. By adapting to the local context, Sands China explores unique revitalisation models that have been well-received by the public.

Sands China has recently announced a major initiative to solicit entrepreneurial proposals for Rua das Estalagens. By integrating the old and the new, it aims to encourage businesses to establish themselves in the area, attract diverse commercial elements, and to promote sustainable community economic development, thereby reviving Rua das Estalagens. To be eligible for the programme, entrepreneurs must possess a minimum capital of MOP 300,000 and establish their businesses on Rua das Estalagens. Sands China will provide operational subsidies in phases to businesses with outstanding performance, offering up to twice the initial capital investment, capped at MOP 1 million. The selection process considers factors such as innovation, feasibility, uniqueness, store attractiveness, and sustainable business models.

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