MEGAWORLD CORP. is pouring P1.5 billion for the development of a new mall inside its Mactan Newtown estate in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

In a statement issued Thursday, the listed property developer said it is set to build Mactan Newtown Beach Walk, which will cover 30,000 square meters (sq.m.) of gross floor area.

The two-storey mall will feature a 1.4-hectare man-made lagoon with a depth of up to 1.5 meters at the center, which Megaworld envisions can be used for future water sports activities such as jet skiing, wakeboarding, stand-up paddling, and boating.

The lagoon will be surrounded by a man-made shoreline, while also featuring floating boardwalks and a bridge that will connect both sides of the mall.

“Megaworld Lifestyle Malls is bringing a fresh, new concept of mall development in Cebu that recreates and innovates the beach lifestyle experience,” Megaworld Chief Strategy Officer Kevin Andrew L. Tan said in a statement.

“We take inspiration from some iconic coastline commercial developments in South California, where visitors can enjoy coffee, meet friends over lunch or dinner, watch a movie, or simply shop around in this laid-back beach atmosphere.”

Mactan Newtown Beach Walk will house four cinemas, a food hall, al fresco dining areas, travelers’ lounge, and a view deck that will give mallgoers a view of the sea and nearby islands.

Megaworld expects to complete the mall by 2021.

The company also plans to build a three-storey boutique hotel next to Mactan Newtown Beach Walk. To be operated under the Megaworld Hotels brand, it will offer 48 rooms with retail shops at the ground level.

The mall and hotel complex will allocate about 40% of its total area to green and open spaces, as part of Megaworld’s sustainability efforts. The mall alone will have solar roof panels, as well as an open layout scheme that will allow for passive cooling and natural lighting for most of its common areas.

“We will even have some untouched areas for bike trails, airsoft shooting, and tree-top activities. This part of the Mactan Newtown is abundantly surrounded with trees, and we want to keep them,” Mr. Tan said.

The project will rise inside Megaworld’s 28.8-hectare Mactan Newtown township, which will also house office towers, condominiums, leisure amenities, retail shops, and The Newtown School of Excellence.

Mactan Newtown currently has four office buildings dedicated to business process outsourcing companies, with about five to 10 more set to be launched by 2021. It also has nine residential condominiums, one hotel, and a beach facility.

Megaworld’s net income attributable to the parent climbed 16% to P8.3 billion in the first half of 2019, after revenues surged 20% to P16.8 billion.

Shares in Megaworld dropped 0.99% or five centavos to close at P5.01 each at the stock exchange on Thursday. — Arra B. Francia