Tinian eyes return of casino industry

Tinian Dynasty

The authorities on Tinian, the second-largest island of the CNMI, are eyeing a return of the casino industry a half decade after the suspension of operations at Tinian Dynasty.

Tinian Mayor Edwin Aldan is now engaging with Governor Ralph DLG Torres’ Covid-19 Task Force on strategies for accepting tourists back to the island. Authorities in the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands are seeking to establish travel bubbles, firstly with key source market, South Korea.

Tinian has three hotels, including the Tinian Diamond Hotel and Casino, which is the Phase 1 hotel of an integrated project. The Tinian Diamond Casino is scheduled to open in July, although its timing will depend on the return of tourists.

A new roll-on, roll off ferry service between the island of 3,100 people is also planned, which will significantly ease access to Tinian.

Meanwhile, the final disposal of the Tinian Dynasty property itself remains unclear. Casino operations ended in August 2015 and the hotel suspended services in March 2016. The large structure has thus been collecting dust, unused for almost five years. Despite the fact it has not been paying its annual fees, the Tinian Gaming Control Commission has not yet revoked its casino license.


Michael Penn is a journalist and scholar based in Tokyo, Japan. As a journalist, he both writes print news articles and produces news videos. On the video side, he has several years of experience doing it all by himself: reporting the stories, shooting the video, and editing the packages. As a scholar, the bulk of his past publications have been about Japan's modern relations with the Islamic world.