Is it time to gamble on Crown Resorts Ltd shares?

It hasn’t been the happiest of 12 months for shareholders of Crown Resorts Ltd (ASX: CWN), who have seen the value of their holdings drop by around 22%.

Following recent reports that Macau turned in better-than-expected gaming revenue numbers in February, could we be looking at a change of fortunes in the region?

In February Macau’s decline in gaming revenue decreased by just 0.1% year over year. This is the smallest year-over-year decrease in almost two years and, while it may be too soon to get excited, it could be a sign of a change of fortunes in the region.

I happen to think that despite its struggles, Crown Resorts could be a good addition to most portfolios. The incredible rise of Chinese tourism, together with the weak Australian dollar, could mean an influx of Chinese tourists flying into Australia.

Not only will the likes of Qantas Airways Limited (ASX: QAN), Sydney Airport Holdings Ltd (ASX: SYD), and Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd (ASX: VAH) benefit from increased levels of inbound tourism from China, but Crown Resorts could see heightened demand, too.

Its most recent half-year results for the period ended 31 December 2015 were met with a fairly steep 8% share price decline, with investors less than impressed with its performance. For the period Crown Resorts reported an increase in revenue of 10.1% to $1.88 billion, and net profit of $205 million, up just 1.6% year over year.

But the shares have since rallied and retraced all of the post-report declines, possibly alluding to the fact that the market is now feeling a little more bullish on the company’s prospects.

I feel there is a lot to look forward to for Crown Resorts shareholders in the future. The company is busy with designs for its project on the Las Vegas strip, has plans for a fourth hotel in Melbourne, and plans to open Crown Sydney in Barangaroo South.

Management has boldly claimed that Crown Sydney, which incidentally will be Sydney’s first six-star hotel, will be “a landmark building that will complement Sydney icons like the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House.”

The shares are trading at a premium to the market average price-to-earnings ratio of 15.5. But trading at 19 times earnings is actually a little lower than where they have traded at on average in the last eight years. This could make it is a good time to buy the shares of this resorts and entertainment giant.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any stocks mentioned. Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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