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A new chapter for Cebu Marriott |

Travel and Tourism

A new chapter for Cebu Marriott

- Lester Gopela Hallig -

MANILA, Philippines - The arrival of Cebu City Marriott Hotel’s new general manager Bruce Winton signals a new chapter in the famed hotel’s success story.

Fresh from his assignment at the Marriott Seoul in South Korea, Winton sits back in the newly refurbished Palm Lounge for this meeting. He smiles at the unlikely way that his entry into Cebu Marriott had unfolded.

“It was pure coincidence that I decided to take a vacation here in Cebu last January. I just wanted to take a break from the Korean winter. Months later, I came back as the general manager,” he says. “So far I have not come up for air but I’m not complaining.”

Although he has been coming to the Philippines for the last decade, Winton had previously been to Cebu twice. With his new responsibilities at Cebu Marriott, he is looking forward to exploring the island more.

Meanwhile, he is eagerly setting his sights on giving Cebu Marriott a clean slate in terms of future investments in its human capital. Since the hotel is aiming for a higher level of performance, it is but natural to start with the very people who work up front and behind the scenes.

“We are looking to provide training opportunities for our staff associates so we can elevate our service levels and deliveries. We want further developments for our people here so they can grow, get promoted, and deliver better customer service,” he says.

All this, he says, comes from Marriott’s philosophy of taking care of its associates. He remarks: “Everything fits in: when your associates or staffers are happy, they will take good care of your customers. It is really the benchmark. As a general manager, I get a lot of customer feedback that say how our service is personal and genuine. No matter how good the guestrooms are or the hotel, you cannot replace that genuine feel.”

Along with these elements, it is also the flexibility granted to its staff that makes the difference. Winton says, “We give our associates empowerment, the freedom to make decisions, to take care of the guests no matter what. They have the flexibility.”

For hotel guests, Cebu Marriott offers 301 guestrooms with choice views of the harbor by the Cebu Strait and the Busay Hills. These are classified as deluxe rooms, business suites, executive suites, and the luxury suite. Its rooms boast of the fastest Internet connection in the city at 10Mbps as well as amenities as dual phone lines, individual climate controls, and voice mail systems. The hotel houses a fitness center, a swimming pool, restaurant, lounge, and meeting facilities.

It is also a plus that Cebu Marriott is close to company offices and adjacent to the sprawling Ayala Center Cebu commercial complex. The hotel has a footpath that connects to the Ayala mall, so guests will have no trouble exploring some of the best offerings of Cebu City.

Winton is pleased that these features are providing an advantage for their guests. Indeed, he knows this all too well. After all, he has been with Marriott for 20 years, covering nine properties in three continents, beginning with Hartford Marriott Farmington in Connecticut, USA.

“I know that the experiences have been enriching for me. I have learned a lot of new things from the location I have been assigned in. I can take the best of each place and put them to work here, and then share those experiences with the team, help them grow, and improve our services. That is really the key,” he declares.

He shares that in every market where Marriott sets up business, it distinguishes itself by being a significant contributor to the local community. He is looking forward to Cebu Marriott’s participation in supporting local charities and partnering with the Ayala Business Club in worthwhile community endeavors.

Indeed, these are exciting times for Cebu Marriott. As what Winton brightly exclaims, the possibilities are endless. This is truly shaping up to be a new chapter worth watching out for.

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Cebu City Marriott Hotel is located at Cardinal Rosales Avenue, Cebu Business Park, Cebu City. For more information, call (63 32) 411-5800 or log on to

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