Written by Richard Way,
31st July 2023

A groundbreaking resort featuring Europe’s largest casino and a host of other world-class facilities has just opened in Limassol. Akin to something you might find in Dubai or Vegas, this stunning development will add to the experience of local homeowners and help boost both Cyprus’s economy and international profile as a premium, year-round destination. We take a closer look…

It’s little wonder City of Dreams Mediterranean is being hailed as a game-changer for tourism in Cyprus and labelled as the largest development of its kind ever built on the island. Besides its mammoth casino, it’s home to the largest resort pool complex, largest expo centre and tallest resort hotel in Cyprus (more about the full array of leisure facilities later). Deemed a landmark tourist attraction not only in Cyprus but wider Europe, the €600million City of Dreams was launched to the public on 10th July 2023.

The opening event warranted the attendance of the president of Cyprus, Nikos Christodoulides. He said: “A one-of-a-kind integrated casino resort that stands as a testament to our commitment to progress and excellence, being – at the same time – a catalyst for economic growth, job creation and the attraction of visitors from all over the world. An emblematic project that is expected to redefine the landscape of our tourism industry, showcasing the ability to transform visions into reality.”

The City of Dreams resort in Limassol, Cyprus

City of Dreams

City of Dreams was created by Melco International, a Hong-Kong based holding company that invests in luxury integrated resorts (IR), a term used more in the Asian market to describe a hotel resort that includes a casino, as well as leisure and convention facilities. That Melco International chose Cyprus as the site for Europe’s first IR resort was itself a scoop for the island.

“City of Dreams Mediterranean gives Cyprus a new story to tell by blending local culture, hospitality and beauty with a new form of entertainment and experience,” said Lawrence Ho, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Melco Resorts & Entertainment. “It allows Cyprus to unlock new markets in the region and beyond. Having a resort of this quality, with all its attractions, including the largest expo facilities on the island, opens multiple new possibilities.”

Interior of the City of Dreams casino

Five-star facilities

The resort is situated on the western edge of Limassol town, next to the UK’s Akrotiri Sovereign Base Area and the popular five-kilometre-long Lady’s Mile Beach. Paphos International Airport is around 50 minute’s drive while Larnaca Airport is an easy hour away. The centre of Limassol and its marina are 10 minutes down the road. It is the first development in Cyprus to achieve a BREEAM Excellent rating for its sustainability strategy at its design stage.

The centre-point of City of Dreams is its 14-storey luxury hotel. It has 476 rooms and 24 suites, including the largest presidential suite in Cyprus (425 sq metres of interior space with a 155-sq-metre terrace). Guests have the choice of seven restaurants/ bars, offering a range of cuisines. For adult entertainment, the main attraction is the 7,500-sq-metre casino (said to be slightly larger than a FIFA football pitch), with 100 gaming tables and 1,000 state-of-the-art slot machines. Families will never get bored thanks to the huge Aqua World swimming complex, with both indoor and outdoor pools, the WaveRider wave machine, as well as the Adventure Park and Kids City. Not forgetting the 1,600-sq-metre Spa and fitness centre and retail promenade, built in the traditional style of Nicosia. Evening entertainment includes live bands and the resort’s in-house DJs.

Key to the resort’s year-round appeal outside of the traditional tourist market is its corporate, so-called Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE), facilities. These include the huge expo centre, 8,000 sq metres of indoor and outdoor event space, a ballroom with seating for 880 people and a 200-seat amphitheatre with a terraced lawn for presenting/ entertaining.

City of Dreams resort

Larnaca Airport (LCA)

Nicosia Airport (NCA)

Paphos Airport (PFO)

Betting on Cyprus!

Melco International is not unfamiliar with Cyprus and recognised its potential back in 2018 when it opened the island’s first authorised casino at a temporary site in Limassol. Since then, under its C2 casino brand, it has opened four further gaming venues in Ayia Napa, Paphos, Nicosia and Larnaca Airport while incorporating its inaugural Limassol site into the new City of Dreams casino.

The company has a long-term strategy to help create Cyprus sustainably into a premium destination, both on a lifestyle and corporate level. A major employer as well as a contributor to the protection of the island’s heritage via its Corporate Social Responsibility schemes, earlier this year it launched its Culture Ambassadors program in partnership with the Limassol Tourism Board. The scheme educates Melco employees about Cyprus’s history, traditions and key attractions, enabling them to pass on their knowledge and enrich their offering to guests and colleagues.

Aerial view above residential houses of Limassol Marina

Luxury living in Limassol

City of Dreams is the second major high-end tourism project to benefit Limassol and wider Cyprus in recent years. The final residential development in Limassol’s mixed-use superyacht resort was completed in 2021, seven years after the marina facility – one of the Eastern Mediterranean’s premier yachting destinations – opened and work began on the commercial and residential stages.

An extension of Limassol’s cultural city centre, already Limassol marina has more than 650 berths and can accommodate yachts up to 110 metres. Its range of high-quality facilities and outlets, which includes internationally acclaimed restaurants, such as Jamie Oliver’s, attracts daily traffic of almost 3,000 people during the week, increasing to 5,000–6,000 over the weekend (60 per cent being tourists). It’s fair to say the marina has changed the face of Limassol and City of Dreams should take things to a new level.


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