Macau Posted by on Mar 30, 2010 in Culture, Vocabulary

Yesterday I went with some friends to Macau, one of China’s 特别行政区te4bie2xing2zheng4qu1 (special administrative regions).  There, we saw some of the 痕迹 hen2ji4 (traces) of Macau as a 殖民地 zhi2min2di4 (colony).  Macau has become a supreme tourist attraction in East Asia, attracting more tourists last year than even Hong Kong!  This may have to do with the fact that gambling is 合法 he2fa3 (legal).  百家乐 Bai2jia1le4 (Baccarat) is the most popular game played in Macau, far ahead of other table games in the main rooms as well as making up a near-monopoly of the higher-value gaming rooms.  Although casinos have their own 商场 shang1chang3 (malls), the clear majority of tourists are Mainland Chinese residents traveling on a 通行证 tong1xing2zheng4 (travel pass) for Hong Kong and Macau, which allows them to stay in the SAR for 7 days at a time.

Macau quietly slipped ahead of Las Vegas in 2007 for gaming revenue, before the Venetian and MGM Grand had opened.  Today, there are almost no large gaming groups (except for Harrah’s, which owns Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas) who do not have a presence in Macau.  According to Macau Business magazine, Macau is not threatened by the 圣淘沙 sheng4tao3sha1 (Sentosa) resort in 新加坡 xin1jia1po1 (Singapore), which had a soft opening for its casino this past March.

The next big question about Macau as developments proliferate is the fate of the 法律制度 fa3lv4zhi4du4 (legal system) of Hengqin island, a part of zhu1hai3 (Zhuhai) which could become the next target for Macanese property developments.  I 不愧为说 bu2kui4wei2shuo1 (am not at a loss to say) that billions of dollars swing in the balance of the decision to regard Hengqin island as part of the Mainland versus part of Macau.

Readers- have you been to Macau or any of China’s other unique jurisdictions?

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  1. Tiffany:

    Hi Andrew, I am looking at your blog now.
    Allow me to introduce myself, I am Tiffany from Macau TDM English News Department.
    I will be covering a program on Macau Bloggers who blogs about Macau.
    I will be talking to some of the bloggers and I realized your site is very interesting.
    With this, do you think I can arrange an interview with you to speak about your blog on Macau.
    I cant seem to locate your contact through this site.
    Please email me at
    Hope to hear from you again! 🙂

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