WITH the country boasting among others of beautiful islands and beaches, sailing presents itself as an exciting way to explore the Philippines. It is something that property developer AboitizLand recognizes and pushes for.

To highlight its thrust on such front, AboitizLand partnered early this year with the Philippine Inter-Island Sailing Federation (Phinsaf) for the 20th Philippine Hobie Challenge.

Regarded as the country’s premier international extreme sailing event, the challenge is a five-day regatta promoting earth-friendly sailing aboard the Hobie Cat 16, a 16-foot long, twin-hulled wind-powered sailboat capable of negotiating open seas.

For this year’s edition of the Hobie Challenge, the race sailed off from AboitizLand’s Seafront Residences property in San Juan, Batangas to Boracay Island.

The event was a throwback of sorts, retracing its original Laiya-to-Boracay route when the regatta was introduced in 1999.

Portuguese sailors Maria Videoira-Hagedorn and Tomas Camelo ruled the regatta, clocking 24:32:39 to edge 10 other teams from the Philippines, Australia, the United States and Hong Kong.

Geoff Rowden and Rosie Phelan of Australia settled at a close second while Keli and Arli Corlett, also from Down Under, ended up at third place.

Organizers said the Philippine Hobie Challenge is a way of promoting earth-friendly sports across the archipelago and a unique way to sharpen sailing skills to international standards, create environmental awareness, discover various hidden islands, and support communities through outreach programs.

For Aboitizland, events like the regatta are also a good platform to push eco-sports tourism in places like Laiya.

“It was a great opportunity to showcase how Seafront’s residents will enjoy the benefits of living by the sea,” said AboitizLand first vice-president for operations Rafa de Mesa as he spoke of their involvement with the Philippine Hobie Challenge.

To address the residents’ need for a peaceful respite to pursue life’s passions, Mr. De Mesa said they are continuously rearing development of Seafront to such a direction.

Seafront Residences offers house and lots, parks and outdoor amenity areas, as well as Residences and Villas designed and inspired by world-class designers and featuring modern Filipino styles with panoramic viewdecks.

The property also has the Seafront Villas or condominium by the beach and has a cozy lifestyle hub for dining, retail and leisure. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo