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Cebu a favorite destination of Koreans

First Posted 13:31:00 09/18/2009

A STEADY flow of Korean tourists coming to Cebu has prompted a Korean company to invest at least P4.5 billion in a resort here that will employ at least 860 Cebuanos.

At least 200,000 Korean couples come to Cebu each year for their honeymoon or vacation, according to Imperial Palace general manager Ritchie Y. Kang.

Koreans comprise at least 50 percent of tourists in Cebu, he said.

?Cebu has become a very popular tourist destinations among Koreans because of the very popular resorts located here like Shangri-La (Mactan Island Resort and Spa) and Plantation Bay (Resort and Spa),? Kang said.

Kang said the planned resort would be marketed to Koreans. ?Our target market are Koreans because we know that they like to come to Cebu,? he said.

Jong Hwan Park, president of Phil. BXT Corporation (the holding company of Imperial Palace), said that aside from the sizable Korean market, they also decided to invest in Cebu because of its great infrastructure.

?Cebu has many direct flights from and to Asian countries and even Russia, and it will only take four hours' flight from Korea to Cebu.?

Imperial Palace Waterpark Resort and Spa is the group's first investment in the Philippines. He added that they also have a business hotel in Korea and Japan.

?We expect more Koreans to come here because Cebu has become a very popular place and the preference of most Koreans because they can speak [a] little English which Cebuanos are very good at [and] so they can communicate better with Filipinos than other Asian people like Japanese or Chinese.?

/Correspondent Aileen Garcia-Yap

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