Published November 29, 2006

Eighth Wonder boosts bid with Vera Wang plan

VERA Wang, the designer who has dressed Jennifer Lopez and Sharon Stone, plans to generate more than US$150 million in annual revenue from a wedding business with her partner in a proposed Singapore casino project.

Wang has tied up with Eighth Wonder, a Las Vegas-based casino developer, which is competing with two other bidders for government permission to build Singapore's second casino-resort. The New York-based designer will develop two floors of a hotel and wedding pavilions in the proposal, although Eighth Wonder may eventually allow Wang to design the entire hotel.

'On the economic side of it, it's big business,' said Eighth Wonder chairman Mark Advent yesterday. 'The demand for Vera has been overwhelming and we're going back to the drawing board.'

Eighth Wonder, with a S$5.5 billion proposal, is competing with Genting and Kerzner International to build Singapore's last casino for a decade.

Wang said that the hotel may be the first of a series of wedding resorts under her brand. 'This gives me the chance to take my fashion and lifestyle plan into the entertainment world,' Wang said in a video conference with reporters.

Advent said that the resort on Sentosa island is expected to draw more than 15 million visitors a year. - Bloomberg