When Donald Trump toyed with opening Darling Harbour, Sydney casino

When Donald Trump toyed with opening Darling Harbour, Sydney casino
When Donald Trump toyed with opening Darling Harbour, Sydney casino

The former property developer turned US President Donald Trump once considered opening a casino in Australia.

He was among the tenderers for the Darling Harbour Casino in 1986, partnering with the Queensland-based construction company Kern.

Five groups lodged tenders for the multi-million-dollar casino:

The Australian Federal Hotels and Sabemo group.

Malaysia's Genting Berhad, with Australia's Civil and Civic.

The US operator Harrah's, with Australia's Leighton and Pennant groups.

The US company Trump and Australia's Kern Corp.

HKMS, or the Hong Kong Macau Sydney consortium, backed by Dr Stanley Ho and a Hong Kong company, New World Enterprises, which owns developments in Kowloon.

The Government tender came afTer it refused to go through with a $610 million deal with the Hooker/Harrah's consortium after Cabinet was given adverse reports about individuals associated with both groups.

In mid-1987, on the eve of the casino decision, Trump indicated he didn't really care if he won the contract or not.

Trump told the New Jersey Casino Control Commission he was supposed to go to Sydney in early 1987 but "as the time got closer and closer, it sounded more and more less attractive".

"Eventually I decided it was just a long trip. So I don't know whether my enthusiasm level can be very high for that particular job.

"It's just a long, long trip away. I believe in very hands-on management," he told the commission, as reported in the SMH at the time.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of Australia's most respected property journalists, having been at the top of the game since the early 1980s. Jonathan co-founded the property industry website Property Observer and has written for national and international publications.

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