Australian COVID spread brings mixed fortunes for Star properties

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Australias Star Entertainment Group has confirmed a two-week extension to the closure period of its flagship integrated resort, The Star Sydney, until at least midnight on Friday 30 July as the city battles a growing outbreak of COVID-19.

But there is better news north of the border where restrictions at the companys two Queensland casinos The Star Gold Coast and Treasury Brisbane have eased.

According to information released Thursday, the Queensland properties will now be permitted to increase capacity from two people to three people per four square meters, with mandatory mask-wearing and a requirement to be seated while eating or drinking also lifted.

The update follows another week of contrasting fortunes for Australias eastern states, with NSW in the midst of its largest outbreak since the start of the pandemic. Almost 1,000 cases have been reported over the past month including 65 new cases on Thursday down from 97 the day before. NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian this week announced that a stay-at-home order, already in place for two weeks, would be extended for another two weeks until the end of the month.

Victoria, home of Crown Melbourne, last night entered a five-day lockdown of its own with concerns the same Delta variant making its way through Sydney has now taken hold. There were eight new cases reported on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Queensland has extended mandatory mask-wearing requirements around Brisbane but eased restrictions elsewhere after recording three cases on Thursday.