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Cebu Landmasters, Ascott partner for hotel expansion in Visayas, Mindanao

March 5, 2019

HOMEGROWN property developer Cebu Landmasters Inc. (CLI) is collaborating with The Ascott Limited to put up more hotel projects in the Visayas and Mindanao.

Jose Soberano III, chief executive officer of CLI, said the company sees opportunity as the projected growth in tourist arrivals would require additional capacity.

“The Philippines pales in comparison to our Asean neighbors,” Soberano said as he cited Thailand and Malaysia as examples.

The Philippines has less than seven million tourists in 2018. On the other hand, Thailand reported over 38 million tourists in the same year while Malaysia had more than 25 million tourists.

“Even a place like Bali has about the same (number of tourists) when compared to our national level,” he said.

Soberano explained that the country has to have additional capacity to be able to attract more tourists, including the big conventions market.

“Just like any undertaking when you see an opportunity, we’d like to take advantage of this and make this part of our growth strategy. Also, it makes a lot of sense for a real estate company like ours who also want to grow the recurring business side of our revenue base,” he added.

To succeed in this venture, CLI has found a partner to manage their hotel projects – the Ascott group, one of the leading international serviced residence owner-operator globally.

Ascott has seven brands – Ascott, catering to the high-end market; Citadines for young professionals; Somerset, popular for executives and their families; The Crest Collection, heritage properties; lyf, a co-living serviced residence concept designed for millennials; and Quest Apartment Hotels with locations in Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and United Kingdom; and very recently, Tauzia Hotels from Indonesia.

The Ascott Group now has over 100,000 rooms globally.

CLI senior vice-president and chief operating officer Jose Franco Soberano said the firm is now the biggest owner-developer-partner of Ascott in the Philippines.

Both companies entered into a partnership agreement for Citadines Cebu, Davao and Bacolod, lyf in Cebu and are exploring other potential areas in the Visayas and Mindanao.

“We are expanding our presence to General Santos, Butuan and Ormoc this year. That is the beauty of Ascott partnering with CLI because we are really spread out in the key growth cities in Visayas and Mindanao,” the official said.

At present, CLI has 800 rooms that will be managed by Ascott but the company plans to double the number of rooms by 2022.

Published in SunStar Bacolod