Clark seen as potential MICE destination

Catherine Talavera (The Philippine Star) - June 25, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Clark is gradually turning into a preferred destination for the meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) sector, driven by its improving connectivity and growing hospitality industry, a property consultancy firm said.

“It is slowly becoming a MICE destination,” Santos Knight Frank (SKF) senior director for research and consultancy Jan Custodio said.

“Most of the hotels have facilities capable of accommodating conferences. The airport is also becoming a plus factor,” he added.

The SKF executive said Clark welcomed about 500,000 visitors in 2018 and hosted 43 running events, three festivals and 14 spectator events.

“In Clark, the increasing number of tourist arrivals, business and investment activities have caught the attention of international hotel operators,” he said.

For this year, a total of 618 new hotel rooms will come online in Clark with the opening of the Hilton and Hyatt Hotels.

“Despite this, the supply of branded hotel rooms within Clark Freeport Zone is still seen as limited and has put pressure on rates,” Custodio added.

At present, the weighted average daily rate of five-star hotels within Clark Freeport Zone has already reached P11,151, higher than the P8,432 average in Makati and the P9,158 in Bonifacio Global City.

In addition, a night at four-star hotel in Clark now averages at P7,674, more expensive than Makati’s P6,441 a night.

“The thing that would make Clark more of a destination is the connectivity,” Custodio said.
Last year, Clark International Airport reportedly catered to more than 2.6 million passengers, a 75 percent growth year-on-year.

The SKF official added that the growing number of occupiers in Udenna’s Clark Global City and Filinvest’s Mimosa and New Clark City also present huge opportunities for business hotels and serviced apartments.

Moreover, Clark’s hosting of the Southeast Asia Games this year is also seen to create more attention for Clark.

“The Southeast Asian Games which the Philippines will host this year will strengthen Clark as a destination in terms of tourism and allow it to showcase key developments in airport infrastructure, sports facilities and property,” Custodio said.

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