GLOBAL hospitality management chain Swiss-Belhotel International (SBI) is aggressively expanding in the Philippines, eyeing to manage six to eight properties in regional cities.
In a press briefing held in Makati City on May 3, James KC. Tam, executive vice president of the Swiss-Belhotel International, said the company is now looking at a resort and a condohotel with 600 rooms in Bataan, a 200-room hotel in Baguio City, and a hotel with 200-300 rooms in General Santos City.
“We are very aggressive. We are going to expand our group as much as the tourism of the Philippines. We are very bullish about it. SBI is committed to being a proponent of Philippine tourism,” Garry A. Garcia, general manager of Valero Grand Suites, said.
Valero Grand Suites is a 271-room hotel located in Makati City.
Another SBI property is the 171-room Swiss-Belhotel Blulane located in Sta. Cruz, Manila.
“We have a lot of businessmen who are looking to diversify… and they want to invest in hotels but they require a professional team to guide them and that when we come in,” Mr. Garcia added.
In the Philippines, hotel owners generally would want to have a four-star hotel.
Currently, the company is developing Swiss-Bel Resort and Villas in the Island Garden City of Samal, Northern Davao. This is in partnership with Luxury Lifestyle Leisure and Resorts Corp.
The eco-friendly project will have 190 rooms for the resort hotel, and 100 villa units. Groundbreaking is expected within one to two months.
“You will not see plastic within the property because we are going to use recyclable materials,” Mr. Tam said, adding the resort will use banana leaf instead of plates.
With the expansion, Mr. Tam said that the company hope to replicate the growth that it had in Indonesia.
“I think we started in Indonesia the first hotel 26 years ago, so now we have 70 projects in the whole Indonesia. I hope with that kind of experience, I hope we can shorten the development time… , maybe in 10 years time we can have 30 something hotels in the Philippines,” he said.
As part of the company’s service to its guests, SBI said it will be tying up with airlines and banks for its loyal guests.
It partnered with Philippine Airlines to allow Mabuhay Miles members to earn miles when they stay in 70 participating SBI properties in seven countries across Asia, Australasia, and the Middle East.
Swiss-Belhotel International has 14 brands ranging from 5-star to budget hotels and it currently manages over 145 hotels, resorts, and projects in Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Australia, and New Zealand, to name some. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang