As a result of locally confirmed COVID-19 cases in Macao on 18th June, the Macao SAR Government announced that the city had entered a “state of immediate prevention” from 1:00am on 19th June. Since then, it has decisively taken a series of measures in order to swiftly control the spread of the outbreak in the community as new cases continue to appear, adhering to the principle of “preventing imported cases and a rebound of the epidemic”.
Citywide nucleic acid testing takes place and rapid antigen tests are given out
In response to the outbreak, the Government has made a district and risk-specific epidemic prevention plan where multiple red and yellow zones have been outlined for lockdown and preventative measures. Meanwhile, three rounds of citywide nucleic acid testing were conducted for three or two days starting from 19th, 23rd and 27th June respectively, with specific nucleic acid testing for key areas and different target groups also being conducted. Residents and all other individuals in Macao have been given rapid antigen testing packages for self-administration and they are required to declare the test results to the platform so that the Government can effectively and efficiently discover anyone who has transmitted the virus.
The Macao authorities have been calling on residents and tourists to avoid carrying out unnecessary activities so as to reduce the number of people gathering together. There has also been a strict implementation of epidemic prevention measures in the city. In addition, the Government departments and the tourism industry have announced the cancellation or postponement of events and many venues and facilities have closed (please refer to here for details).
The latest updates on the epidemiological situation in Macao are available at the Special Webpage Against Epidemics, at www.ssm.gov.mo/apps1/PreventCOVID-19/en.aspx#clg22916 and MGTO important notes at www.macaotourism.gov.mo/en/article/notice/covid19-notice.
Extra quarantine hotels and a treatment centre are launched
As people who have tested positive for COVID-19 have different situations, the city’s Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Centre has arranged three quarantine locations: Public Health Clinical Center, designated hotels and the COVID-19 Community Treatment Centre. Most people are quarantined in designated hotels for medical observation as a priority but if there are new developments then the centre could be put into operation at any time. In response to the increase in the number of confirmed cases, the England Marina Club Hotel and Earth Tower at Sheraton Grand Macao have become the hotels that are used for medical observations for those with positive test results as they are in quarantine. The Lisboeta Macau and The Parisian Macao have also been given designated medical observation hotels, with a total of 2,950 rooms.
Epidemic prevention information is continually updated
The travel record risk check function of the Macao Health Code has been activated and the public can conduct automatic or manual risk checks through the Macao Health Code Application. In the event of having an overlap of travel history, the Macao Health Codes will be automatically converted to a yellow code for a particular period with those affected having to take two nucleic acid tests within three days. In response to the new cases, the Special Webpage Against Epidemics is continually being updated with all of the latest information on the prevention and control of the epidemic in Macao.
The Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) is closely monitoring the epidemic situation, making any appropriate arrangements in accordance with the relevant guidelines that are issued by the Health Bureau and carrying out hotel and apartment inspections to ensure that epidemic prevention measures are strictly implemented.
In order to co-ordinate with the latest epidemic prevention and control measures being carried out by the Macao SAR Government, its departments and the tourism industry have announced the cancellation or postponement of activities and events in the city since new COVID-19 cases began to be reported on 19th June. Additionally, many venues, facilities and dine-in restaurant services across Macao have suspended operations.
To curb the spread of COVID-19, an executive order issued by the Chief Executive ordered the closure of non-emergency public services for two consecutive weeks until 1st July. A number of entertainment, games, hairdressing and fitness venues, as well as swimming pools, were closed to the public from 5:00pm on 23rd June. Restaurant and other food and beverage establishments may not serve dine-in customers and are only allowed to dispense takeaway orders.
A number of tourism activities are being adjusted
The Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) has suspended the city’s “Stay, Dine and See Macao” local tours, cancelled the “Quality Tourism Services Accreditation Scheme” Assessment Seminar for the Food and Beverage Sector, training courses for the tourism industry to be held from late June to July, and postponed the “10th Macao International Travel (Industry) Expo”, as well as urged the relevant entities to suspend or postpone all activities that are funded by the office.
The Grand Prix Museum, the Ritz Building and all MGTO’s tourist information counters have been temporarily closed to the public; however, MGTO’s online platform (www.macaotourism.gov.mo) and the 24-hour tourism hotline (853) 2833 3000 have been operating as usual and regularly receiving travel-related enquiries.
The tourism industry also adjusted its activities, in line with the Macao SAR orders and orientations. This includes, for example, Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited, which postponed both the opening date of its “Super Fun Zone” and its “Melco Style Presents: 2022 The Black Pearl Diamond Restaurants Gastronomic Series”. And the 2022 Sands Shopping Carnival organised by Sands China Limited has been rescheduled until further notice. Plus, the first phase activities of the “Amazing Market X H853 Fun Factory” in the Lisboeta Macau have been cancelled.
In other public sectors, the Cultural Affairs Bureau has closed its cultural venues and suspended its arts and cultural activities. The Municipal Affairs Bureau’s indoor and outdoor facilities have temporarily closed to the public. The Sports Bureau has temporarily closed all of its sports facilities. The Marine and Water Bureau has temporarily suspended all of its water activities and closed both Hac Sá and Cheoc Van beaches until further notice.
For the latest information on Macao’s epidemic prevention and control measures, please visit the Special Webpage Against Epidemics at www.ssm.gov.mo/PreventCOVID-19 and MGTO important notice at www.macaotourism.gov.mo/en/article/notice/covid19-notice.
Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited announced the Super Fun Zone will be launched at its property Studio City. Initially scheduled for opening at the end of June, due to current epidemic situation in Macao, the unveiling of Super Fun Zone has been postponed. The attraction covers more than 29,000 square feet that laid across four levels, providing residents and visitors with a new family-friendly entertainment experience that also promotes economic diversification in Macao.
The new venue features five themed zones called “Under the Sea”, “Mountain”,” Forest”, “Space Station” and “Outer Space”. The “Under the Sea Zone” encompasses 50 gaming spots alongside an exciting five-metre freefall ride. The “Mountain Zone” has an array of balancing and climbing activities at various levels that reach up to more than six metres in height. The “Forest Zone” features three large treehouses, a tube slide that begins more than four metres above the ground and a range of electric-powered kart racing adventures. The “Space Station Zone” has a giant hanging net play platform experience that’s spread across two levels. The “Space Balls”activity in the “Outer Space Zone” is a galaxy-like playground for toddlers and their parents. There are also three party rooms in the Super Fun Zone, each offering a variety of food and birthday party package options for guests.
Since its opening in 2015, Studio City has provided a number of parent-child tourism facilities. The Super Fun Zone is part of the Studio City Phase 2 that already saw the launch of the Studio City Water Park last year, featuring five water slides. Studio City Phase 2 is under construction and it will also feature a large indoor and outdoor water park, a Cineplex cinema with six screens (including two traditional cinemas and four luxury VIP cinemas), a state-of-the-art convention and exhibition venue and more hotel rooms.
Macao enhancing parent-child entertainment facilities
The new Super Fun Zone will join other large parent-child entertainment facilities in Macao, including the “Grand Resort Deck” at the Galaxy Macau, which features the world’s longest Skytop Aquatic Adventure River Ride which run for 575 metres, as well as a kids’ aquatic zone. There are also climbing nets, slides and a carousel in the “Qube Kingdom” in The Parisian Macao. The “Angry Birds Play Center @ Ponte 16”, at the Ponte 16 Resort Macau, offers a range of fun games for children to explore. The “VR ZONE MACAU” at the Macau Fisherman’s Wharf has a number of VR experience activities to enjoy, bringing both innovative tourism and entertainment to visitors, among others.
Sands China Limited has unveiled Macao’s first hybrid MICE broadcast meetings studio at The Londoner Macao. Smart Stage is set to create a brand new tourism-plus-MICE experience in the city, complementing the resort’s existing MICE offerings as its 6,000-seat multipurpose Londoner Arena nears completion, further enhancing the image of Macao as an international convention and event centre.
Smart Stage offers professional broadcast quality live-streaming capabilities and hologram functionality. Its “Extended Reality” (XR) studio allows presenters to interact with real-time visual markers to beam event participants from around the world “live” into Macao via holographic technology, creating an immersive experience that can bring presentations to life.
Smart Stage can conduct virtual site inspections, product training, live talks and other events. It has hosted more than 400 virtual site inspections since its inaugural month for customers across the globe including in Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia, the USA, India, Korea and Japan.
The Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) released a video and television programme series on 18th June to deepen the public’s awareness of sustainable gastronomy and its significance in the city. The video and TV series were also released to showcase Macao’s contribution to the heritage and innovation of the city’s gastronomic culture and sustainable development, and to further strengthen Macao’s reputation as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy.
As a co-production of MGTO and Plataforma Macau, the video features MGTO Director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, President of Cultural Affairs Bureau, Leong Wai Man, Vice-President of the Macao Institute for Tourism Studies, Diamantina Rosário Coimbra, President of the Macanese Association, Miguel de Senna Fernandes, and It’s Pure Production founder, Samuel Power. Each shares their insights into Macao’s gastronomic culture, Macanese cuisine and the Macanese Cuisine Database, as well as sustainable gastronomy.
MGTO has produced a video to promote Macao’s sustainable gastronomy
MGTO and TDM - Teledifusão de Macau, S.A. are joining hands to debut the TV programme series “Macao Flavors, a culinary legacy” on TDM Chinese TV channel from 18th June to 5th August. Airing every Friday, the series revisits the process of Macao’s application for the UNESCO designation as well as unveiling the stories behind the city’s culinary heritage and its innovative crossovers between gastronomy and other fields.
To highlight Sustainable Gastronomy Day on 18th June, the “Experience Macao, Unlimited” promotional campaign that showcases monthly wonderful city highlights set the theme as “Tasty June”. MGTO is also partnering with an e-commerce platform on the Mainland China to launch a themed page named “Macao’s Food Scene Round the Clock”. In addition, MGTO is presenting prize-giving hashtag challenges on the restaurant review site. Residents and tourists can search relevant entries on the platform to participate in the challenges. The event runs until 11th July.
In response to the Sustainable Gastronomy Day, many restaurants in Macao launched sustainable menus with eco-friendly and seasonal ingredients. Among them were Churchill’s Table at The Londoner Macao. Eight selected restaurants at the Wynn Macau and Wynn Palace also launched “Sustainable Seafood Gastronomy” menus in June to raise the public’s awareness of marine and ecological conservation. The Manor at The St. Regis Macao launched the “Celebrate Sustainable” six-course dinner set, promoting the philosophy of protecting the environment and supporting social responsibility.
Following a United Nations General Assembly resolution in December 2016, Sustainable Gastronomy Day has been an international observance marked on 18th June every year, to raise public awareness about the role sustainable gastronomy can play to help achieve the implementation of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Macao has been celebrating the Sustainable Gastronomy Day each year following its designation as a UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy on 31st October 2017.