Eurovegas Alcorcón

Europe’s Largest Casino


The news that the Madrid municipality of Alcorcón (population 170,000) will be home to Eurovegas put an end to months of speculation concerning the location of the megacomplex of casinos and congress centers run by Sheldon Adelson – first the heated duel between Barcelona and Madrid, later the contest among three peripheral cities of Greater Madrid –, but sparks other debates having to do with the bidding process for the project (marked by corruption accusations against Adelson) as well as with legalities, given that the investment came partly because of the lure of a whole package of fiscal exemptions (the waiving of almost all municipal and regional taxes on gambling seems likely to push through, as well as a modification of the anti-tobacco law). Thanks to an initial fund of 2,700 million euros from Adelson, a 750 hectare terrain vague (arid area in common language) delimited by highways and adjacent to the Spanish capital will in a matter of five years – 2017 being the year set for opening day – be the setting of the largest hub of casinos and convention centers in Europe. This profitable non-place, which is expected to create employment for as many as 10,000 people, will feature four hotels and two casinos in several skyscrapers that, rising eighty floors, will be Spain’s tallest towers, and they will be surrounded by the attendant restaurants, auditoriums, golf courses and, inevitably in an operation inspired by Las Vegas, a recreation of New York’s Times Square.

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