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MGM COTAI Reveals Design Vision of an Architectural Icon Opening in 2017
The striking “jewelry box” design draws inspiration from local culture and modern design
The exterior façade of MGM COTAI - an architectural icon in the striking “jewelry box” design which draws inspiration from local culture and modern design.

[Macau, December 15, 2016] As MGM COTAI’s exterior façade nears completion, MGM today reveals the vision behind the design and some of the spectacular engineering feats involved in the development ahead of the resort’s opening in 2017.

The jewelry box design

In 2011, MGM set out with a vision to develop an integrated resort in Cotai that would support the development of Macau as an international tourism destination. The initial plan for MGM COTAI was to build an architecturally compelling pair of towers inspired by the local culture. Beginning with the recognizable three-tiered form of the MGM MACAU tower, the stacked boxes of each tower have been shuffled and cantilevered to create a single modern sculptural form. Through the creative use of immaculate Chinese decorative imagery for the façade expression, the abstract composition effortlessly brings to life a grand and vibrant representation of Chinese jewelry boxes, MGM’s recognizable gold tones and extraordinary architecture in Macau.

A team of more than 350 architects, designers and consultants came together to create an integrated resort like no other in the world, MGM COTAI is expected to open in the second quarter of 2017.

Mr. Jim Murren, Chairperson and Executive Director of MGM China Holdings Limited says, “MGM COTAI is already emerging as an architectural icon and the talented designers who have helped us create it are making a great contribution to Macau. Our Company is synonymous with entertainment and the resort’s diverse offerings and design elements, like treasured jewels in a jewelry box, complement each other yet follow a central concept of class, quality, and excitement, creating extraordinary experiences for our guests.”

Mr. Ken Rosevear, President of MGM Resorts Development LLC and Non-Executive Director of MGM China Holdings Limited, adds, "Desiring a unique and iconic design for MGM COTAI, we initiated a competition between internationally recognized architectural firms with experience in designing extraordinary resort projects. KPF was appointed when they proposed a design that not only resonated with our existing MGM property, but took it to a new level of excitement and visual excellence thereby maintaining the tradition of unique iconic structures that MGM is known for.”

“From the outset, we wanted to design a structure that would really stand out on the skyline,” says Mr. John Bushell, Design Principal at Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF), the New York and London based Design Architect firm appointed for this project and recognized for the excellence and innovation of its buildings around the world, including award-winning Shanghai World Financial Center and Hong Kong’s tallest building, the International Commerce Centre. “We wanted to build something of the highest architectural quality that is also a place for people to have fun! By utilizing a composition of similar elements and openings in-between the building, we created a mountain landscape-like structure that allows a variety of interpretations. The outside is striking both in daylight and at night, with lots of dramatic spatial experiences within. The two different hotels and an exclusive Mansion all form part of a single distinctive unified composition.”

MGM COTAI offers exceptional architectural experience at night. On the exterior, a subtle, and unique light design shines with gold, bronze and silver undertones which the brand is known for in its architecture in Macau. To achieve this effect, MGM developed an integrated lighting system across all four elevation of the towers where roughly 60,000 LED fixtures have been placed to wash the surface of the projecting feature fins, creating a beautiful glimmer.

Mr. Hunter Clayton, Executive Vice President of MGM Resorts Development LLC says, “The architectural complexity is highlighted by the outward look and feel of the building in a profound but graceful manner. Our General Contractor, China State Construction has done a beautiful job in bringing the design to life. From any given angle, the intricate layering, colors, shapes and sizes of the tri-colored stacked jewelry boxes seep with sophistication.”

An engineering feat - The Spectacle structure

MGM COTAI’s epicenter of entertainment lies in the dynamic world of the Spectacle, an innovative, multi-dimensional sensory experience designed to thrill and excite visitors as they shop and stroll in the heart of the complex, which connects MGM COTAI’s main lobby directly to shops and restaurants.

Towering above the extraordinary Spectacle experience is a meticulously engineered column-free long-span diagrid structure as long as a soccer field, where the form of the roof has peaks and valleys that allow it to support its own weight.

Building the Spectacle roof was a feat of its own, where a forest of temporary columns, like trees, were first rooted to install digitally-engineered custom nodes which were then interconnected with angular steel to complete the framework. The columns were then removed, revealing a ceiling structure that forms a subtle wave in the sky. The Spectacle was designed to extend over the nearby restaurants and retail outlets, demonstrating the attentiveness of design experts to deliver an immersive and diverse experience that emanates effortless continuity.


At more than four million square feet, MGM COTAI will offer over approximately 1,400 rooms with diverse offerings ranging from Asia’s first dynamic theater, the Spectacle, as well as innovative culinary, retail, and family-friendly offerings for international visitors and locals alike. Set to be the new landmark for Cotai, MGM COTAI embodies the collective efforts of architecture and design industry experts, collaborating to offer infinite layers of creativity across every square meter of the building. MGM COTAI is the largest property and the first private sector project ever to achieve the China Green Building (Macau) Design Label Certification.


Photos taken by Nuno Assis (

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MGM COTAI’s architecture and design partners include:

Kohn Pedersen Fox

Design Architects

Hirsch Bedner Associates

Mansion Interiors


Casino and Restaurant (1)


Retail Promenade and Restaurant (1)

Burega Farnell

Lofts, Suites, and Rooms

AB Concepts

Spa Business Center and Ballrooms

Jeffrey Beers

Restaurant (2)


Restaurants (2)


Mlife and Bars

Chanda Sembada

Restaurant (1)

JBA Consulting Engineers

Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing Engineers 

Siu Yin Wai

Structural Engineers 


Structural Engineers – Spectacle Concept

Eddie Wong & Associates

Executive Architect

Wong & Tung International Limited

Architect of Record

Rockwell Group

Spectacle Design

Sceno Plus

Theater Design



Expected to open in second quarter of 2017, MGM COTAI is the latest addition to the MGM portfolio in China. Designed as the “jewelry box” of Cotai, it plans to offer approximately 1,400 hotel rooms and suites, meeting space, high end spa, retail offerings and food and beverage outlets as well as the first international Mansion at MGM for the ultimate luxury experience. MGM COTAI will offer Asia’s first dynamic theater and a spectacle to wow every guest who steps foot in the resort. MGM COTAI is being developed to drive greater product diversification and bring more advanced and innovative forms of entertainment to Macau as it grows as a global tourist destination. MGM COTAI is the largest property and the first private sector project ever to achieve the China Green Building (Macau) Design Label Certification.


About MGM

MGM is an abbreviation for MGM China Holdings Limited (HKEx: 2282) and is a leading developer, owner and operator of gaming and lodging resorts in the Greater China region. We are the holding company of MGM Grand Paradise, SA which holds one of the six gaming concessions/subconcessions to run casino games in Macau.  MGM Grand Paradise, SA owns and operates MGM MACAU, the award-winning premium integrated resort located on the Macau Peninsula and is developing a second resort, MGM COTAI which is expected to more than double our presence in Macau. 

MGM MACAU is a Forbes Five-Star luxury integrated resort inspired by the arts with every element of the resort infused with creativity and style.  MGM MACAU has approximately 600 guest rooms and suites and boasts a number of distinguishing features, including the architecturally stunning European-inspired Grande Praça, housed under a soaring glass ceiling.  MGM MACAU’s world class facilities include the MGM Art Space, dedicating over 5,000 square feet to display authentic works of art, conference and event facilities, spa, and seven signature restaurants and bars to fulfill any gastronomic craving. Our property is conveniently located on prime waterfront on the Macau Peninsula and is directly connected to the luxury retail shopping complex, One Central.

MGM China Holdings Limited is majority owned by MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) one of the world's leading global hospitality companies, operating a portfolio of destination resort brands including Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and The Mirage. 


For media enquiries, please contact:    


Irene Wong                                                       

Vice President of Public & Community Relations


Tel: (853) 8802 2822                                                       



Karen Lam                                                                                                                            

Public Relations Manager                                            


Tel: (853) 8802 3801                                                       



Juliana Kung   

Public Relations Manager


Tel: (853) 8802 3803