A Filipino-owned chain of value hotels plans to put up a hotel in Cebu City in two years because of Cebu's robust growth, excellent manpower, infrastracture and technical support.
Francis Patrick Favoreal, vice president and chief operating officer of Legends Hotel International Corp., said the company will put up a hotel on a 1.3 hectare property at the Archbishop Reyes Ave., near the Cebu Business Park.
Favoreal said that while the company has been looking at Cebu ?with high interest, there are just some issues that we have to resolve in Manila.? Thus, the company's expansion to Cebu has temporarily taken a backseat.
He noted that any new hotel set up in Cebu is always full when it is operational. Favoreal refused to give details of the Legends Hotel project in Cebu but assured that it will give domestic travellers a ?range of options.?
Cebu is a strategic area because visitors or businessmen from other Visayas or Mindanao provinces come to Cebu to do business or leisure or they have children who go to school here.
While the global economic crisis is forecast to be deep, Favoreal said the hotel or hospitality industry will have to embrace the local or domestic tourists.
Since the Legend Hotels' immediate market is the Filipino traveller, Favoreal expressed optimism that the company will surmount the crisis because it has better rates and understands the needs of its market. Their clients include the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW), balikbayans, businessmen in transit, motorists and even the barkadas.
Even companies, who send their representatives on business trips, look for hotels that give them good value, added Favoreal.
Tourism Regional Director Dawnie Roa earlier told a sports tourism conference here that hotels in Cebu were responding to the economic crisis by coming up with ?crisis rates? in order to cater to the domestic tourists.
While Favoreal acknowledged that lowering the rates of high end hotels can threaten the value hotels, it also forces them to be creative in their approaches and showcase their strength.
Favoreal also noted that many Cebuanos who go to Manila also book at the Legends Hotel. They are either following up documents for work abroad or are owners of small and medium-sized business.
Legends Hotel International opened its latest brand, the Park, Bed and Breakfast (PBB) hotel in EDSA, Quezon City last September. It is the first motor hotel in the country which caters to travellers especially those who trek the highways with their vehicles. It is a pit stop for the driver and the car.
There are 11 hotels under the Filipino-managed Legend Hotels International. These brands are the Legend Villas,a super value hotel in Parañaque; the Kabayan Hotel in Pasay, Caloocan and Cubao that cater to the OFW in the city who need a nice place to stay in the city while they fix their papers for employment abroad.
There is also PADS by Legend Hotels in Palawan that address the traveller's preference for modern living; Legend Palawan, a five-star hotel in Puerto Princesa, Palawan.The PBB is the latest brand under its group. /Thea C. Riñen