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HomeThe RegionNorthern MindanaoSummit Hotels inaugurates ‘Happy Place’ in Tacloban

Summit Hotels inaugurates ‘Happy Place’ in Tacloban

Robinsons Land Corporation recently inaugurated its biggest investment in the Eastern Visayas Region with the grand launch of Summit Hotel Tacloban last June 21st.

“Eastern Visayas is our major investment in Summit Hotels, said Elizabeth Gregorio, general manager of RLC’s Summit Hotels and Resorts. “It is now 80-85% complete, and has been under construction for the last two years. We expect it to be fully operational within the next two months including the opening of the restaurant.”

Tacloban City is the regional center of Eastern Visayas (Region VIII) which consists of six provinces: Biliran, Eastern Samar, Leyte, Northern Samar, Samar (Western Samar) and Southern Leyte. It has another city in Ormoc, while Calbayog City in Samar is one of the oldest in the country.

The 5th Is Here

Summit Hotel Tacloban is the fifth property of the Gokongwei-led Robinsons Land Corp. (RLC) under the Summit brand. The 138-room hotel, the largest in the city, is considered to be the first shopping hotel built next to Robinsons Place Tacloban on the RLC-owned five-hectare complex in Marasbaras district.

“When we have happy places, we like to keep coming back to those places. Tacloban is like one of those places, where aside from opening one mall we expanded to a bigger mall and we expanded to more than one hotel,” Gregorio noted. “So we can say Tacloban is a happy place for Robinsons Land and Robinsons Hotels and Resorts.”

She added there’s a lot of reasons why it’s a happy place: “There’s a lot of natural attractions in Tacloban; the very rich culture in Tacloban, and the whole Eastern Visayas region, and most important, when you’re in a happy place you have very good experiences with people, which for us is the most important.”

RLC established its presence in Tacloban in 2009 with Robinson’s Place Tacloban, then the first mall in Eastern Visayas.

“We started with one mall, Robinson’s Place Tacloban. We very much liked our experience with the mall we expanded it, and together with that our very first hotel Go Hotel in April 2012. Due to the positive response from the expansion, it allowed us to expand further to another mall and now we have Summit Hotel Tacloban. This is the only place where we have the Go Hotel and the Summit Hotel.”

Future Expansion

Since Summit Hotels and Resorts began with opening of Summit Ridge Tagaytay in 2009, it now has a total room count of 758 with five hotels: Summit Hotel Magnolia in Quezon City, Summit Hotel Fuente and Summit Hotel Galleria in Cebu, and now Summit Hotel Tacloban.

Lisette Arena, Marketing Director, said the brand will grow to seven properties by 2019 with the opening of new properties in Greenhills and Naga.

“Each Summit property is unique. We take a bit of each location and instill it into the property , be it culture, the arts, the people, the way we present our F& B, we want to take a little of what the location has to offer”, said Monica Casperino, Director for Sales.

“Our goal is to make it simple and easy when you come to do business here. We want it to be a place where business doesn’t have to be a lot of work, where you’re actually able to c create memories while you’re here, and to really take something back with you,” she added. “We are in the business of creating exceptional service and lasting memories.”

Drixel Ortega, operations manager for Summit Hotels & Resorts, describes the brand’s set of customer service values as Personable Service.

“Giving particular focus to all or one of these particular service values everyday inspires us to go beyond your expectations. These are our service values: Care, Kindness, Cheerfulness, Honesty , Efficiency, and Teamwork,” he added. “In the hospitality industry, customer service is everything.”

MICE Market

Mark Eugene Agullo, Summit Hotel Tacloban head of sales, said the new property offers an inviting, inspiring and intimate venue with meeting spaces that are ideal for groups of 30 to as many as 600 persons, for intimate meetings to big company gatherings.

“Exceptional personalized service with great attention to details, makes event planning easy,”Agullo stressed.

“We have the nicest and the biggest ballroom in the city which can be divided into three function rooms, named after the three major islands of Eastern Visayas: Samar, Leyte and Biliran. We also have 3 breakup rooms named after the capital city and municipalities of the islands: Tacloban, Catbalogan, and Naval.”

Gregorio added that as the only place so far where a Summit Hotel and Go Hotel are adjacent to each other, the RLC complex with Robinson’s Place Tacloban mall gives the group a flexibility to accommodate meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) events.

“Our Summit and Go Hotels have not been competing, but very much complementing. Our Go Hotel is essential service, budget, the price point is also very affordable. Our Summit Hotel is still affordable but full service. And then the Summit Hotel has a ballroom for 600-650 persons, so for big functions, we’ve been also been able to attract more guests for the Go Hotel because of this, on top of the Summit Hotel. And they complement each other because we have them at different price points. Given the right opportunity, we would also like to use this model elsewhere.”

Maria Trinidad C. Dacuycuy, officer in charge for the Department of Tourism Region VIII office, welcomes how the RLC Hotels have vastly improved the region’s capability to bid for MICE events.

“We are positioning Tacloban and Ormoc as MICE destinations. With more flights and boutique hotels being constructed especially after Yolanda, there was a vacuum for bigger accommodations and function halls. Every time we bid, that’s our drawback, we didn’t have a venue like this.”

Warm Welcome

Cindy Gidal, Summit Hotel Tacloban hotel manager acknowledged the warm reception the hotel’s opening has been getting from locals and visitors alike.

“We had a very warm welcome from our public and our guests, we already have a lot of inquiries for our ballrooms for their events, and special occasions,” Gidal noted. She added the hotel’s occupancy rate has been around 45-50% since its opening.

Previously, Tacloban City had 80 hotels and lodging houses with a total of 1,859 rooms.

“This Summit Hotel is a testament to the gem that we discovered, also a testament to our gratitude and thanks to all the people of Tacloban for all the support that you have given us throughout the years, and it’s also our testament to our commitment to stay in Tacloban,” Gregorio said. “We hope that Summit Hotel Tacloban is a happy place that you’ll keep coming back to.”

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