By Vincent Mariel P. Galang, Reporter

LEGEND Hotel International Corp. (LHIC) is targeting to widen its market for the Kabayan Hotel brand, with the expansion of its hotel in Pasay City.

Located along EDSA, Kabayan Hotel mainly caters to overseas Filipino workers and travelers from the provinces.

“Right now it has about 200-plus rooms. In EDSA, we are expanding it with a 10-storey hotel, so that’s another 300 rooms, and we expect that to open in January of 2020,” Celine Marie L. King, chief operating officer of LHIC, told reporters on Tuesday.

She noted the current two buildings of the hotel have around 280 rooms and have an average occupancy of 84%. With the addition of another building, she said the company hopes to attract more guests.

“The market is growing. There are a lot of competitors especially in the Bay Area because that’s where we are, but I think because we are truly Filipino they can associate that it’s Kabayan, it’s local. We will continue to grow that market. We know them, we understand them and their needs,” Ms. King said.

Kabayan Hotel Pasay is near the so-called Bay Area, where several hotels are located such as Hotel 101 Manila and Conrad Manila.

With the addition of the new building, the company is also looking into hiring 30 to 40 employees.

However, LHIC is not bringing the Kabayan Hotel brand to other areas for now, as it is focused on expanding its hotel in Puerto Princesa — The Legend Palawan (TLP).

“We’re just fixated in expanding the Legend Hotel Palawan, but yes we have talked to a lot of people who would want the Kabayan brand even overseas… but because of our love for Palawan, we would want to invest there first,” Ms. King said.

The company recently finished renovating about 90 rooms of TLP, and is considering to adding more rooms, depending on this year’s demand.

LHIC is a Filipino company owned by Wyden King. Aside from Kabayan Hotel and TLP, the company also owns The Legend Villas in Mandaluyong City, The Mabuhay Manor in Pasay City, Legendary Tours which offers travel packages in Palawan, Pinoy Pamilya Hotel in Pasay City, and My Place Residence Hall in Loyola Heights, Quezon City.