US-based five-star hotel chain Marriott is putting up the country’s biggest convention center at Resorts World Manila, part of a $300-million expansion program the Resorts World group of business tycoon Andrew Tan has identified for implementation in the next five years.
Marriott general manager Scott Sibley told The STAR that the multi-billion peso project is in addition to a new 200-room tower the hotel will be constructing. Both the three-story convention center and the new tower will be ready by September 2014.
To be called the Marriott Convention Center, Sibley said the new facility will be able to accommodate 2,500 people at any given time, something which no facility in the country is able to do at the moment.
Touted as a state-of-the-art facility, the first floor of the convention center will house two ballrooms that can accommodate 300 people, two wedding chapels, a coffee and noodle shop, and the sales office. The second floor will feature a grand ballroom that can sit 2,500 people, but at the same time can be split into four smaller rooms. The outskirts of the grand ballroom will consist of a dozen or more meeting rooms. Meanwhile, the third floor will have 25 to 35 meeting rooms.
Sibley said that with the new tower, Marriott will have 542 rooms by 2014. A walkway will connect the new building to the convention center.
The Resorts World Group currently has three hotels in the area fronting NAIA 3. These are the six-star Maxims, the five-star Marriott and the affordable hotel Remington. The group will be constructing two more buildings – the Savoy and the Belmont, which will be condotels.
Marriott is owned by Travellers International, which is 50 percent owned by Tan’s Alliance Global Inc. and the rest by the Genting Group of Hong Kong. Savoy and Belmont will be owned by Prestige Hotels and Resorts, the same company that operates the Richmonde Hotels. Prestige is owned by Tan’s Megaworld Corp.
The $300-million investment will only be for Resorts World Manila and does not include the huge outlay that will be poured into the Pagcor Entertainment City complex along Manila Bay.
Tan has teamed up with Japanese tycoon Kazuo Okada to build a P45-billion upscale residential condominium complex. Tan-led Empire East Land Holdings Inc. (ELI) had signed a joint-venture agreement with Okada’s Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment Inc. and Eagle 1 Landholdings Inc. for a majority stake in a 12.95-hectare luxury residential resort condominium project in Pagcor Entertainment City Manila.
(Story courtesy of Philippine Star’s Mary Ann LL. Reyes)