Monthly Archives: March 2012

Two open PH hotel branches

New hotel in Palawan

Huma island

by Lailany P. Gomez



Two foreign hotel chain operators have opened new branches in Palawan and Manila, amid increased demand for budget travel packages and business travels.

Movenpick Hotels and Resorts said in a statement it would manage Huma Island Resort, a private island in Palawan. The resort is one of the 15 new hotels to be opened by Movenpick across Asia by 2015.

Movenpick chief operating officer Andreas Mattmuller for the Middle East and Asia said the region has been a major focus for expansion by the Swiss company.

Tune Hotels also opened its first Manila hotel in Ermita. The hotel has 167 rooms, including 117 double, 48 twin sharing and two wheelchair- friendly rooms.

“We are very excited with the opening of Tunes Hotel Ermita, our very first hotel in the capital city. With three more Tune Hotels coming up in Manila this year and next, Manila will be a very important growth center for our regional expansion,” said Tune Hotel’s chief executive Mark Lankester.

Lankester said Tune Hotels Ermita is expected to attract Filipino “balikbayan” who make annual trips back to Manila every year.

Tune Hotels opened a chain in Angeles City in Pampanga in February that serves as an airport hotel for the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport in Clark.

(Published in the Manila Standard Today newspaper on /2012/March/21)

via Manila Standard Today.

Palawan town with 'longest white beach' sees boost

San Vicente beach in Palawan,


MANILA, Philippines – A boost in tourism in the next five years is expected by government officials in San Vicente, Palawan, where the longest white sand beach in the country is located.

Photo courtesy of San Vicente Palawan Official Website

The town of San Vicente is a three-hour trip from Puerto Princesa.

Its stretch of white sand beach is about 14-kilometers long, three times longer than the shores of Boracay island.

There are still no resorts built in the area but local officials expect establishments to be set up as soon as the construction of the town’s airport is completed.

Officials said over 50 investors have already bought properties along the white beach.

San Vicente Mayor Ma. Carmela Alvarez believes that the town will soon be a prime tourist location.

For now, most tourists stay in the San Vicente town proper or in the coastal town of Port Barton.

Businesses, which will be set up along the white beach, are also expected to provide thousands of jobs for residents of San Vicente. — Report from Butch Mendizabal, ABS-CBN News Palawan


AirAsia to launch Clark-Palawan flights in April

Flights to Palawan

Logo of AirAsia.

Logo of AirAsia. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The local unit of Malaysian budget carrier AirAsia on Tuesday said that it would begin scheduled flights to the western Philippine city of Puerto Princesa, making the new airline’s third destination since it officially started operations last month.

AirAsia Philippines said the flights from the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport to the capital city of Palawan province would begin on April 20 and take advantage of the growing demand by local and foreign tourists for travel to the island’s nature-themed sites.

To drum up interest for the airline’s new route, it announced Monday a “free seats” promotion where passengers would only have to pay an all-in fee of P275, which will cover the fuel surcharge, processing fee and government fees for aviation security and value-added taxes.

At present, AirAsia is the only domestic carrier that offers the all-in-fare promo concept and follows the airline’s successful launch of its services to Kalibo and Davao using the same marketing concept.

“As a true low-cost airline, we ensure that our guests are always informed of what they are paying for when they book our flights, especially our promo seats,” AirAsia Philippines CEO Marianne Hontiveros said. “AirAsia believes in transparency and no hidden charges or misleading promotions will be practiced.”

The P275 all-in-fare promo will be available for booking from March 20 to 25 and flyers will be able to travel from April 20 to Jan. 31, 2013.

The all-in-fares are available online at and also available via mobile at as well as through AirAsia applications for Blackberry, iPhone and Android phones. The applications are available for download at Blackberry App World, iTunes App Store and Android Marketplace by searching for the keyword AirAsia.

The airline said its new service to Puerto Princesa from Clark would provide the accessibility to visit the Calauit Island wildlife sanctuary, the Coron Reef, the Tubbataha Reefs National Marine Park, the famous Puerto Princesa underground river—which has been voted as one of the seven wonders of nature—and many more adventure and leisure spots.

Last month, the low-cost carrier launched two daily flights departing from Clark to Kalibo International Airport and to Francisco Bangoy International Airport in Davao beginning March 28 this year.

Effective April 15, however, AirAsia’s twice-daily flights to Davao will be reduced to once daily to make way for the Puerto Princesa route.

“We’re a new player and we have to be sensitive to market demand,” Hontiveros said. “Palawan is a beautiful destination that travelers from Northern and Central Luzon would want to see. It is a market with lots of potential. It is gaining popularity and highly likely for us to anticipate additional frequencies.”

“These changes will improve domestic connectivity. When we have more aircraft, we will explore adding frequency to Davao,” she added.

AirAsia Inc. is a 60-40 joint venture between Filipino investors Antonio O. Cojuangco, Michael L. Romero and Hontiveros, and Malaysia’s AirAsia International Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of AirAsia Berhad. Its local unit uses Airbus A320 aircraft for its scheduled services.

via  inquirer Business.

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