AYALA LAND Hotels and Resorts Corp. (AHRC) is riding high on the surge in domestic tourism and rising number of international arrivals. This has encouraged the company to push forward with its plans of increasing the number of its keys in its homegrown Seda-branded hotels this year.
In an email to the BusinessMirror, AHRC President Javier D. Hernandez said the lowering of travel restrictions has also encouraged the reopening of the company’s resorts in El Nido, Palawan and Sicogon Island, Iloilo last year. “With increased mobility and strong economic indicators, AHRC is optimistic about 2023.
The surge of the domestic market with ‘revenge travel,’ as well as the Department of Tourism’s [DOT] projected 4.8-million international arrivals signal global recovery for our industry.”
He added, “At AHRC, we are ramping up for the post-pandemic revival of the industry with the reopening of our El Nido and Sicogon resorts, addition of rooms in Seda Nuvali, and the opening of the new 532-room Seda Manila Bay this year. ”
1,504 additional keys
Last year, AHRC opened the first 92 rooms at the new wing of Seda Nuvali in Santa Rosa, Laguna. The new wing also features a ballroom, a gym, meeting/function rooms, and a swimming pool. Seda Manila Bay will sit on top of AyalaMalls Manila Bay at the Aseana City in Parañaque.
“Our total hotels and resorts portfolio now stands at 4,058 rooms, with another 1,504 rooms under construction,” said Hernandez, following their parent unit Ayala Land Inc.’s (ALI) annual stockholders meeting on April 26. He failed to answer how much ALI was allocating in capital expenditures to construct the new hotel and additional rooms.
On a consolidated basis, ALI will be allocating P85 billion in capital expenditures this year, up 17 percent from the P72.4-million capex in 2022, according to the company’s annual report. This year’s capex is 53-percent less, however, than the company’s pre-pandemic capex of P130 billion in 2019.
Doubling of hotel, resort revenues
In his report to stockholders, ALI President and CEO Bernard Vincent O. Dy said, “The domestic travel revival and the return of foreign tourists have led to a doubling of hotel and resort revenues, which amounted to P6.2 billion” in 2022.
The revenues were boosted, the company said, by “higher occupancy and room rates.”
The average occupancy of their hotels was 59 percent, and 29 percent in resorts. According to the DOT, last year, international arrivals rose to 2.65 million, while overnight domestic travelers reached 40 million. (See, “Pinoys still wary of Covid, but are heading to the beach in droves this summer—poll,” in the BusinessMirror, May 4, 2023.)
AHRC manages 660 hotel rooms in its international brand segment: Fairmont Hotel and Raffles Residences (312 rooms) and Holiday Inn & Suites (348), at the Ayala Center, Makati central business district. There are 11 Seda Hotels, operating 2,804 rooms: Atria, Iloilo (152 rooms); BGC, Taguig (521); Centrio, Cagayan de Oro (150); Abreeza, Davao (186); Nuvali, Santa Rosa, Laguna (242); Vertis North, Quezon City (438); Capitol Central, Bacolod (154); Lio, Palawan (153); Ayala Center Cebu (301); Seda Residences Ayala North Exchange (293) and Seda Central Bloc (214); and Circuit Corporate Residences (255).
El Nido Resorts operates 193 rooms on its four island resorts: Pangulasian, Lagen, Miniloc, and Apulit. The Lio Tourism Estate currently has 50 rooms under Huni Lio, while the Sicogon Tourism Estate in Iloilo currently has 76 rooms under Huni Sicogon and Balay Kogon. (See, “The allure of Sicogon Island,” in the BusinessMirror, March 30, 2023.)
Image credits: Stella Arnaldo