My 5: MGM Macau, China.

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1. MGM Macau, February 2018. Having spent three days diving into Macau’s rich history and gorgeous UNESCO sights, it was finally time for Wonderboy and I to start hitting the hotel-casinos for a dose of the territory’s world famous glitzy luxuriousness. Our first stop was this beast of a building on Avenida Dr. Sun Yat Sen. Opened in 2007 at a cost of US$1.25 billion, the building boasts fine views over Zhujiang River Estuary and nearby Taipa island.

2. MGM Macau, February 2018. MGM’s iconic lion motif runs throughout the interior, starting right here in the grand lobby. A Salavdore Dali statue stands between the lions, while The Fiori di Paradiso Drawing Wall set behind the main reception area showcases 42 glass canvases painted by the American glass sculptor Dale Chihuly.

3. MGM Macau, February 2018. Get ready for a real wow! moment when you enter The Grand Foyer. Like a scene straight out of a Tim Burton movie you’ll hardly know where to look, from the lavish, golden decorations hanging from the covered atrium to the sparkling mosaic floor and fancy-ass cafes with their suited and booted waiters. At the centre of it all stands a giant floor-to-ceiling water sky cylindrical aquarium. Because, you know, they can.

4. MGM Macau, February 2018. There are some amazing creatures on display and, if you time your visit for 11am, you can watch a duo of professional divers jump in to feed the schooling fish.

5. MGM Macau, February 2018. Many of the lion statues have a little blurb attached from the artist in question. Some of it is pretty nonsensical to say the least: “Lions, like us, dream of travelling across the planet while sitting comfortably in their starry pajamas. In front of our screens, we are all lions…” Uh… what? With 35 floors and over 600 rooms, MGM Macau features two bars, five restaurants, a shopping center, a gym and a vitality pool. Double rooms go for around $200 a night.

For more on my time in this amazing corner of China, check out my other articles on Macau.

Like these? Then why not leaf through my many other 5s from across China.

I’ve also written a short story series called Challenged in China.

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