Burswood Entertainment Complex is located on the river Swan which is some three KM east of the city of Perth in Western Australia. The complex has been constructed at Burswood island.
It was at the proposal of Dellas Demster, a Perth businessman that the Western Australian Government agreed to build a complex for casino at a large landfill site. The proposal seemed unattainable as the site was landfill and there was the danger of subsidence and the hazard of polluting the river.
However the complex construction was undertaken by a partnership venture between Genting Berhad and Dallas Dempster, a casino operator from Malaysian.
Burswood Entertainment Complex
The construction was planned in two stages. The first stage costing around A$200 m, involved construction of hi-fi buildings that will include a hotel with 400 rooms, a 135-table casino, a exhibition and convention centre, 18-hole golf course, amphitheatre, tennis courts and various other amenities. Beautification of the area of Burswood Island was also included in the first stage. The second stage involved constructing a second hotel on the site.
However, when the Burswood Island casino was inaugrated on 30 December 1985, well ahead of its schedule, there was more than half the project still under construction. The casino was the main attraction and proved a big hit with the gambling public. This was proved by the fact that it started posting A$1 million gross profit per day. People had to queue for hours to get a chance to gamble. Welcome to the largest casino in Australia, this is the third-largest in the world.
The three millionth visitor to the casino was recorded by 1987 January. And in 1990 the casino saw an expansion. And 1995 an improved International Room for high-rolling punters was opened.
The casino is open 24X7. There are 1,500 coin operated game machines. The table games consists of Mini Baccarat, Baccarat, Roulette, Poker, Blackjack, Casino War, Three Card Poker, Pai Gow, Money Wheel, Sic Bo, Progressive Texas Hold’Em and Caribbean Stud. In the main casino the Blackjack tables use continuous shuffling machines while in the Pearl Room the shuffling is done by hand. In Australia Blackjack games do not have a hole card.
Burswood Dome, which is an indoor sports stadium, was thrown opened to the public on 28 August 1987. This indoor stadium is the biggest auditorium south of the equator. Its size is 8,800 square meters with a seating capacity of 13,600 people. It has a fiberglass roof which is suspended at a height of 35 meters from the ground and is held in place by pressurizing the whole arena.
Many renowned persons performed in this dome. Cliff Richard, The Shadows, Britney Spears, Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, U2, Beyonce, Elton John, Justin Timberlake, Kyle Minogue, George Michael and some of the international performers who held their shows in the Burswood Dome.
The Burswood Dome was supposed to have been demolished in 2007, but the plan has been deferred till 2011 when the Perth Arena would have been completed.
Burswood Park is the area around the casino. Originally it was a rubbish dump on which the casino complex was constructed resulting in the parkland around it. The park has wild flower displays, various statues, and the famous Burswood Park Public Golf course. It has become a public recreational facility.
While the casino made hay, Burswood Property Trust was facing financial crunch as it was a separate entity from the casino and had no part in its profits. Still under construction, the Buswood Island Hotel was sold to a Japanese company Brisney Pty Ltd.
The inaugration of the hotel was delayed by 85 days when it opened to the public on 4 October 1987.
The second state of the Burswood development project was delayed and neglected for a long time. And in 2003 a joint business enterprise was formed with Inter Continental Hotels Group to manage the Burswood Resort Hotel and to build a new Holiday Inn Hotel with 291 rooms beside the Burswood Theatre.
In 2005 the Burswood International Resort Casino was renamed as “Burswood Entertainment Complex” when PBL took full control.