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Ocean park operator eyes Cebu expansion

Ehda Dagooc (The Freeman) - April 20, 2013 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The operator of Manila Ocean Park Complex and Hotel H2O in Manila, H2O Ventures Inc., is looking at Cebu as one of its target destinations for nationwide expansion in the Philippines, taking advantage of the promising tourism sector in the country.

The company plans to invest US$200 million in the next few years, to build at least five hotels more in other areas in the Philippines, including Cebu, Busuanga, Coron and Boracay.

Although the plan is still at a very early stage, Hotel H2O general manager Lily Santos-Adrid said that the company’s plan for Cebu will largely be another marine-themed resort project.

Seizing the strong domestic tourism, the management of the Hotel H2O in Manila, led by Santos-Adrid, recently tapped Cebu for its promotional roadshow to attract Cebuanos and the rest of southern Philippine market to explore the first marine-themed hotel in the country.

The Department of Tourism reported that the country surpassed the 35.5 million domestic passengers target by 2016. Last year, the country recorded 37.5 million domestic trips, prompting the Aquino government to raise the domestic target to 44 million by 2016.

“It is the growing domestic market that drove us to visit key tourism cities in the Philippines to introduce our hotel,” Santos-Adrid said.

Known as the first and only marine-themed hotel in the Philippines, Hotel H20 has 147 uniquely designed rooms.

The hotel opened in 2010 and has been designated as the official residence and patrons of Manila Ocean Park.

Hotel H2O is a joint venture with Europe-based World Hotels, a global hotel group for independent hotel and regional hotel brand that has built 500 concept hotels in 265 destinations and 65 countries.

Amid the stiff competition of hotel accommodations along the Manila Bay area, which is also where US Embassy is located, Santos-Adrid said the hotel is optimistic in enticing guests because of its modern technology and unique characteristics.

“We have rooms connected by a long aquarium wall that holds 3,000 fishes,” she said.

While the traditional hotel services are still appreciated despite recent hotel trends, their hotel is one of those that adopted unique designs and technology and coupled with personal services to provide total hotel experience and keep up with the changing preferences of customers.

The hotel has 128 rooms and 19 suites spread across 11 room categories. It also has a fitness center spa lounge, business center, grand ballroom, function rooms, boutiques and specialty restaurant.

She said the hotel has an average of 70 to 75 percent occupancy rate every year from both local and foreign market. Most of their guests are families who stay in their facility to tour the Manila Ocean Park. /JMD (FREEMAN)

 

CEBU CORON AND BORACAY DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM HOTEL LILY SANTOS-ADRID MANILA BAY MANILA OCEAN PARK MANILA OCEAN PARK COMPLEX AND HOTEL SANTOS-ADRID VENTURES INC
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