PHILIPPINE REAL ESTATE and RELATED NEWS in and around the country . . .

ALI plans P10-B bond offering

October 1, 2019 | 12:09 am [ ]

AYALA LAND, Inc. (ALI) plans to raise P10 billion from the issuance of fixed-rate bonds by November, as the company completes its funding requirements for the year.

ALI Chief Finance Officer Augusto Cesar D. Bengzon said the bonds will be split into two-year and 7.25-year tenors due 2021 and due 2027, respectively. This is to accommodate the demand for shorter-term issuances.

“It’s going to be unique. It’s a dual tenored issuance… We’ll have the flexibility to determine how much will go to the two-year tranche and the 7.25-year tranche,” Mr. Bengzon told reporters after listing ceremony for ALI’s P3-billion bond offering at the Philippine Dealing and Exchange Corp. (PDEX) yesterday.

Mr. Bengzon said they have yet to decide on how the split will be between the two- and 7.25-year bonds, adding that this will be announced once they get closer to the offer period.
BPI Capital Corp. has been hired as the offering’s issue manager, and will act as joint lead underwriters and joint bookrunners alongside BDO Capital & Investment Corp. and China Bank Capital Corp., according to an offer supplement posted on ALI’s website.

The bonds are scheduled to be offered to the public from Oct. 21 to 31, with target listing at the PDEX on Nov. 8.

Proceeds from the offering — expected to reach P9.87 billion — will be used to partially fund the development of One Ayala Avenue-Makati, which will house retail, office, and hotel components. It will also feature a transport hub set to be completed in 2021.

It will also finance refurbishments of the Glorietta and Greenbelt malls in Makati, the development of Vermosa Mall in Cavite, the expansion of Seda Nuvali, as well as land acquisitions in Laguna and Batangas.

The funds are expected to be fully utilized by the first quarter of 2020.

Mr. Bengzon said this will be the company’s last issuance for the year, following its P3-billion bond offering listed at the PDEX on Monday and an P8-billion issuance last May. These form part of the company’s P50-billion shelf registration program with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“It’s very efficient, this shelf registration. There was a time many years back when we’d have to figure out if we need to pre-fund, because the time to get the second and third issue is relatively long. Now we can do it in a three- to four-week period,” Mr. Bengzon said.

Aside from bonds, ALI is also considering bilateral loans to fund its P130-billion capital expenditure for 2019.

ALI generated a 12% increase in net income to P15.2 billion in the first half of 2019, following a four percent increase in revenues to P83.2 billion.

Shares in ALI rose 0.30% or 15 centavos to close at P49.45 each at the stock exchange on Monday. — Arra B. Francia

Ayala Land unit brings its luxury condominiums to QC, Pasig

October 1, 2019 | 12:08 am [ ]
By Jenina P. Ibañez
Ayala Land unit brings its luxury condominiums to QC, Pasig

Parklinks North Tower, located in Parklinks Estate, offers 280 large-format condominiums.

AYALA LAND Premier (ALP) is building its first luxury residential condominiums in the Quezon City and Pasig areas.

Parklinks North Tower, a joint project from Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) and Eton Properties Philippines, Inc., will rise on a 35-hectare sprawling estate on either side of the Marikina River.

The residential tower will have access to the Parklinks Mall and office spaces facing C-5, while across the river will be the vast Parklinks Estate accessible through a 110-meter four-lane bridge.

Half of the estate will be devoted to green spaces like gardens and the 3-hectare Central Park, and will include retail establishments, riverside dining, and bike and running lanes.

“As with any Ayala Land development, we have a balanced mix of commercial, office, and residential spaces. But what is easily discernible is the amount of green spaces we’ve allocated for in this estate. It’s envisioned to be the greenest urban estate within Metro Manila,” Ayala Land Premier Marketing Manager Tomas P. Cadiz said in a briefing.

“The goal of the estate is really to open up the community spaces to the river. Majority of the areas bordering the river are dedicated to civic spaces and parks,” he added.

The 55-floor Parklinks North Tower will have 280 large-format one to four bedroom condominiums with wide floor-to-ceiling windows to maximize the views.

Each floor has four to eight units ranging from 70 to 306 square meters (sq.m.) and 2.7-meter high ceilings. All residential units have balconies.

“From conceptualization, light within the spaces has really been one of the key elements we wanted for this tower. Together with our design architect Hans Brouwer, we conceived living spaces with expansive windows and an abundance of natural light,” Mr. Cadiz said.

They established design standards including window widths, kitchen counter sizes, and closet lengths for all units.

The tower also offers limited villa units, including the bi-level Horizon Villa and the four-bedroom Sky Villa — the largest unit at 306 sq.m..

Residential amenities include a 21-meter infinity pool, kiddie pool, bi-level fitness center, social hall, sports court, and children’s play areas on the 10th floor. The Horizon Terrace overlooking the estate and the Antipolo mountain ranges is on the 45th floor.

Units at Parklinks North Tower are priced between P22–120 million, and are now valued at P320,000 per square meter.

Turnover for Parklinks North Tower is targeted by 2025. Parklinks Mall will open in 2023, while Parklinks South Tower is set to be unveiled later this year.

Situated along C-5, Parklinks will be close to major residential communities like Greenmeadows, Corinthian Gardens, and White Plains.

ICCP Group sees growth in townships, industrial estates

September 24, 2019 | 12:06 am []

Pueblo de Oro Development Corp. is developing a 40-hectare residential subdivision in Malvar, Batangas.
By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Associate Editor

THE ICCP Group is seeing continued growth in its property development business, particularly in townships and industrial estates.

ICCP Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Guillermo D. Luchangco said Pueblo de Oro Development Corp. (PDO) and industrial park developer Science Park of the Philippines, Inc. (SPPI) have been recording steady sales.

“We don’t have as many projects as Filinvest or Ayala but our sales growth is good and our profit margins are healthy,” Mr. Luchangco told BusinessWorld in an interview at the company’s office in Makati City on Sept. 4.

PDO, which develops residential communities and township projects, is best known for its flagship project Pueblo de Oro in Cagayan de Oro. The company acquired the 360-hectare property in the early 1990s, back when such huge township projects were practically unheard of, especially in the provinces.

“In the case of Pueblo de Oro, we had 360 hectares in Cagayan de Oro which we developed into a township. We were able to attract SM to put up its first mall there. We also put up a Robert Trent Jones Jr. golf course, which is ranked as one of the top five golf courses in the Philippines by Golfing Philippines (magazine),” Mr. Luchangco said.

The township also hosts a business park with a PEZA-accredited IT economic zone; and educational institutions Xavier University and Corpus Christi School.

The business activity in the area spurred demand for residential projects that cater to different market segments. And demand shows no signs of slowing down, prompting PDO to acquire additional property — bringing Pueblo de Oro’s total project area to 400 hectares. To date, the township is now home to 9,840 residential units.

Mr. Luchangco said the success of Pueblo de Oro Cagayan de Oro pushed the company to develop similar townships in Cebu, Batangas and Pampanga, albeit at a smaller scale.

“In those areas, we are in the regional centers of the Philippines like Cebu, Sto. Tomas and San Fernando… We intend to expand into other regional centers,” he said.


Even before “green” projects were a trend, PDO was already implementing eco-friendly initiatives in its projects.

“We’re a mid-sized developer but because of that we are able to pay more attention to our projects, environmental management, give that development more features, to give it some distinction,” Mr. Luchangco said.

The company maintained a 40-hectare urban rainforest in Cagayan de Oro, helped plant 65,000 mangrove seedlings in Mactan, and has regular tree-planting activities as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) program.

In the Cagayan de Oro township, Mr. Luchangco said they built a 6,600-cubic meter detention pond “so we would not flood the people living below in case of heavy rains.”

 ICCP Group Chairman and CEO Guillermo D. Luchangco — COMPANY HANDOUT

“As responsible citizens, we spent the money to build the waterway and the detention pond. During Sendong (in 2011), it held and we ended up helping the city by supplying water to some areas because the water supply got cut off and we still had water. After Sendong, there was a big rush of people buying property because they saw our properties did not see flooding,” he said.

Mr. Luchangco noted that Pueblo de Oro Pampanga has not experienced flooding even during typhoons, as they raised the elevation of the land when they were developing the project.

“We built the area two to three meters higher (than surrounding areas), because our studies showed it is prone to flooding… It vindicates our projects that they don’t flood,” he said.

Even for the golf course in Cagayan de Oro, PDO has made sure its environmental impact was minimized. Mr. Luchangco said the company built five ponds not just as golf course hazards but to serve as interconnected reservoirs to retain water.

“We have a layer of about eight inches of sand below the surface to drain the water out. The sand acts like a filter, the water is used for the golf course, so we don’t use as much water as you would expect. We also put in an electronic control system for the sprinkling of water. It basically calculates how much water the course really needs and only that area gets sprinkled,” he said.


The ICCP Group’s property business also includes the development and management of industrial estates through SPPI.

“Industrial estates was the first thing we did in property. We started in 1989 after we saw a number of foreign companies who wanted to come in but the scene was chaotic for them,” Mr. Luchangco said.

“I decided to start the business of industrial estates. We made sure there’s power, water… We also managed the estate.”

The company has developed six industrial parks, starting with the 178-hectare Light Industry & Science Park I (LISP-I) in Cabuyao, Laguna. LISP I was said to be the first privately-owned industrial estate to operate as a Special Export Processing Zone under the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA).

SPPI’s other industrial estates include LISP II in Calamba, Laguna; LISP III in Sto. Tomas, Batangas; Hermosa Ecozone Industrial Park in Hermosa, Bataan; and Cebu Light Industrial Park in Mactan, Cebu.

“After we sell our industrial estate, we offer to continue managing it for a fee. But profitability is not the main objective, we make a lot more in building and selling estates than by running them. The reason for that is we want to make sure the quality of the estate does not deteriorate… In all our estates that we have turned over, they have chosen us to manage it,” Mr. Luchangco said.

The latest project is LISP IV in Malvar, Batangas.

“The newest is LISP IV in Malvar. That’s being developed now. We have sold some areas and developing other areas,” Mr. Luchangco said, adding that PDO is developing a residential community next to the industrial estate as part of a “live-work” community concept.

Mr. Luchangco said he wants PDO and SPPI to be known not just for high-quality projects, but also as environmentally conscious companies.

“What we want… is to be the gold standard in residential communities, because we want to do good products,” he said. “We want to be known for our quality and environmental concern.”

The Ascott expands to the south with Citadines Cebu City

September 24, 2019 | 12:02 am [ ]

THE Ascott Limited looks to boost the hospitality experience in the Visayas region with the opening of Citadines Cebu City.

“Ascott Limited is thrilled to welcome guests into the newly-opened Citadines Cebu City to elevate the Cebu experience,” The Ascott’s Country General Manager for the Philippines Daniel Wee said in a statement.

Located in Base Line Center, Citadines Cebu City offers 180 serviced residences, which aim to combine the elements of a modern home and the services of a hotel. Its lobby features furniture and accent pieces by Cebuano artists such as Kenneth Cobonpue, Bobby Lagdameo, and Inky Livie.

Units range from studio queen, studio twin, and one-bedroom suite, which all come with their own kitchen, wireless internet access, home entertainment system, individual air conditioning, and built-in washer and dryer.

Guests will also have access to concierge and housekeeping services, a 24-hour reception and guest service team, and a fitness gym.

The Ascott has tapped The Abaca Group for the property’s food and beverage services, including the daily breakfast, banquet facilities, and in-room dining.

The apartment-hotel stands close to several tourist spots like the Magellan’s Cross, Basilica del Santo Niño, Fort San Pedro, Casa Gorordo Museum, Fuente Osmeña circle, the Taoist temple, and the Provincial Capitol.

Developed in partnership with listed property developer Cebu Landmasters, Inc., Citadines Cebu City is the first out of The Ascott’s strategic partnership with the company. The two firms plan to develop more hospitality projects in key cities in the Visayas and Mindanao region such as Cagayan de Oro, Davao, Dumaguete, and Iloilo.

8990 bullish on luxury hotels

September 26, 2019 | 12:10 am [ ]

THE Adama Resort Siquijor is 8990 Holdings, Inc.’s first “super luxury resort” development. — COMPANY HANDOUT

MASS housing developer 8990 Holdings, Inc. expects to generate P3 billion in recurring revenue from its venture into the luxury hotel business.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the listed property developer said it has 10 new hotels and resorts in the pipeline until 2023. The projects will be undertaken by its newest subsidiary, 8990 Leisure and Resorts.

The newly formed unit’s first development will be the Adama Resort Siquijor, a “super luxury resort” that will offer 250 rooms inside a 20-hectare property. It is scheduled to open in the second half of 2020.

Adama Resort Siquijor will have a central foyer, rooms that maximize the area’s natural light, and cabanas beside the beach.

8990 Leisure and Resorts President Lowell L. Yu said the project will highlight the tourism spots in Siquijor, such as its coral reefs and white sand beaches.

Aside from Siquijor, the company earlier said that it will build Adama resorts in Puerto Princesa, Siargao, Lapu-Lapu City, Baguio, and Boracay.

The company will also launch luxury hotel brand Kura and urban hotel Argo in top tourist destinations such as Palawan, Cebu, Boracay, Davao, Iloilo, Siargao, and Baguio. Some hotels will also be built in Metro Manila.

Prior to establishing 8990 Leisure and Resorts, the company already has experience in the hospitality business with its hotels in Boracay and Baguio under the Azalea brand.

8990 Holdings’ core business is in the development of affordable housing projects. It is currently building the 22-building Urban Deca Homes Ortigas along Ortigas Avenue Extension, which will offer 19,000 units. The project is seen to generate at least P30 billion in sales for the next four to five years.

8990 Holdings saw its net income attributable to the parent rise 18% to P2.82 billion in the first half of 2019, as gross revenues also jumped 17% to P7.01 billion.

Shares in 8990 Holdings slipped 0.26% or four centavos to close at P15.10 each at the stock exchange on Wednesday. — Arra B. Francia

Megaworld to spend P1.2B for Bacolod office towers

September 24, 2019 | 12:05 am [ ]

 MEGAWORLD CORP. Chief Strategy Officer Kevin Andrew L. Tan said the office towers will be the company’s first in Bacolod. — BW FILE PHOTO

MEGAWORLD CORP. is spending P1.2 billion to develop two office towers in its Bacolod township as it continues to expand its leasable portfolio.

In a statement issued Monday, the property firm of tycoon Andrew L. Tan said it will build No. 1 Upper East Avenue and No. 5 Upper East Avenue inside the 34-hectare Upper East estate. The two towers will offer about 17,000 square meters (sq.m.) of office space catered toward the information technology and business process outsourcing (BPO) sector.

“These two new office towers will be Megaworld’s first office developments in Bacolod, and we look forward to bring in new BPO locators to the city,” Megaworld Chief Strategy Officer Kevin Andrew L. Tan said in a statement.

“To be operated under our Megaworld Premier Offices brand, these Upper East Avenue towers will showcase the company’s signature state-of-the-art features in office developments — making them the most modern offices to rise in Bacolod City.”

Megaworld plans to register the buildings under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program, which will prove that the project adheres to the United States Green Building Council’s environmental standards.

The towers will make use of LED lighting in common areas, dual-flush technology for toilets, and double-glazed windows for heat insulation and energy efficiency. Both will also have roof gardens.

Tenants and employees in the building will also have access to basement and ground level parking.

The project will stand across the soon-to-rise Upper East Mall, with the township’s central park placed between the two developments.

“These will be the only office buildings in the entire Bacolod City that are located within a fully masterplanned township development, where everything is just within easy reach,” Mr. Tan said.

The towers will be added to Megaworld’s leasable space of more than 1.3 million sq.m.

Shares in Megaworld fell 2.24% or 11 centavos to close at P4.81 each at the stock exchange on Monday. — Arra B. Francia

How a ‘crazy’ man brought Dusit kind of luxury to Davao

September 17, 2019 | 12:08 am

The astonishing swimming pool at The Beach Club, part of the Dusit Thani at Lubi Plantation Resort.
By Marifi S. Jara
Mindanao Bureau Chief

TORRE LORENZO Development Corp. (TLDC) President and Chief Executive Officer Tomas P. Lorenzo likes to tell the story of how most everyone thought him “buang,” meaning crazy in Visayan, when he first started talking about developing top-end facilities in Davao City for business and leisure travelers.

That was about six years ago, before the city came into the spotlight being the President’s hometown.

At that time, several of the country’s major developers have set foot in Davao, doing mainly condominium and commercial projects.

Mr. Lorenzo’s inkling on the potential of an upscale development came from frequent trips between Manila and Davao, where the Lorenzo family has roots and diverse business interests.

“Flights were always full, and I was thinking, I don’t know these people, who are all these people?” he said in an interview at the new Dusit D2 Davao before the launching ceremony on Sept. 6.

Mr. Lorenzo said an informal market review indicated it was mostly businessmen who have taken on the investment opportunities in the country’s south as well as professional Filipinos working overseas who have the money to purchase property and spend for holidays.

“That’s where this came out,” he narrates.

TLDC, after exploring various options, forged a partnership with Dusit International.
The joint venture has borne not just the 120-room Dusit D2 Hotel, but also a linked 174-unit Dusit Thani Residences, a serviced condominium-hotel now in the final stages of completion, and the soon-to-be branded Dusit Thani at Lubi Plantation Resort on a private island in nearby Compostela Valley province.
A fourth hotel, a Dusit Princess brand, is also in the pipeline.
Dusit International Chief Operating Officer Lim Boon Kwee said working with the TLDC team has been “a pleasure” because their captain is a “very passionate developer.”

 Torre Lorenzo Development Corp. President and CEO Tomas P. Lorenzo — BW PHOTO

Davao City Councilor Mabel Sunga-Acosta, delivering the mayor’s message during the Dusit D2 launch, said having another international hotel brand strengthens the city’s campaign to become a “major hub” for the meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions segment.

“You are not buang after all,” she tells Mr. Lorenzo.

Compostela Valley Governor Jayvee Tyron L. Uy said the Lubi resort, which is under his jurisdiction, is a “trendsetter” for the province that is also in the midst of rebranding as Davao de Oro in line with its program to attract investors and tourists.

“It means a lot to us, especially when you talk about creating economies, it will bring economic growth… and at the same time promoting tourism in the province,” he said in an interview with BusinessWorld at the Lubi resort.

The Dusit Thani, which is on the site of a former coconut island plantation, is still a work in progress but several villas are now ready for occupancy alongside The Beach Club, which is open for day-trippers.

“This is not your P50 (per person entrance fee) type of resort, which I am sure we have all experienced,” Mr. Lorenzo said. “Think Dusit Maldives.”

Christopher Wichlan, general manager of the Dusit properties in the Davao Region, said what they have now is a unique product cluster consisting of an “exclusive destination” and “value for money.”

The Beach Club, when fully completed before the end of the year, will include a dive center that would allow guests to explore the waters around the island that has been kept as a marine sanctuary for 30 years.

For staying guests, “natural barriers” will be set up to create a private space with exclusive facilities.

“The way we’ve invested here (all the Davao properties), with all the technologies and security is to make sure that everyone has the confidence to come here,” Mr. Wichlan said.

Mr. Lorenzo said the bigger commitment behind the Davao ventures has been to contribute to the growth of Mindanao, the Philippine’s vast southern islands that continue to address both real and perceived concerns on peace and security.

“I am from Mindanao… the idea here is developing Mindanao.”

Filinvest Prestige offers new village experience

September 17, 2019 | 12:03 am [ ]

FILINVEST PRESTIGE’S Brentville International Community is offering a new village experience, as it makes key upgrades to the residential community in Biñan, Laguna.

“The new Brentville design strives for a more timeless feeling for residents. Its contemporary architecture gives off a light and airy character with clean lines and neutral palette,” said Juan Seriña, principal architect of H1 Architecture and Design — the design consultant for Brentville.

“We want to give our residents a space that fosters community, while seeking for a quiet and peaceful lifestyle. This is evident in the new Village Front, clubhouse, and the many green open spaces where they could congregate with their neighbors or follow through with their workout routines,” he added.

Brentville’s new entryway is now lined with shade trees and lush landscape. The main village gates also got face-lift and new color scheme.

The Village Front’s new retail development was designed by H1 Architecture and landscaped by AECOM. Open spaces and walkable areas will be incorporated into the modern design.

Residential clusters under Brentville will include The Meridien, Sunshine Palace, West Parc and Woodmore Spring. Prominence II offers townhomes and single-detached homes, while The Arborage at Brentville offers residential properties.

The community is home to Brent International School. Existing facilities and amenities include the main pool, infinity pool, kiddie pool, basketball court, tennis court, playground, and jogging trail.

Road user tax bill seen raising additional P8.12-B in first year

September 20, 2019 | 7:56 pm [ ]


A MEASURE gradually increasing the road users’ tax filed in the House of Representatives is expected to generate P8.12 billion worth of revenue in the first year of implementation, a key legislator said.

House Bill No. 4695, or the “Motor Vehicle Road User’s Tax Act,” according to Rep. Jose Ma. Clemente S. Salceda of the second district of Albay, hopes to update Motor Vehicle Users’ Charges, which have not been revised since 2004.

“This bill actually improves the progressivity of the current MVUC law. First, it provides relief for motorcycle owners, who, because of traffic, have been forced to use motorcycles. These people are not rich, and cannot afford cars. Actually, there are more motorcycle owners than there are owners of all other vehicles under MVUC combined, so this will also reduce bureaucratic strain.” Mr. Salceda was quoted as saying in a statement Friday.

He said the House version is expected to bring in P8.12 billion in 2020, P9.62 billion in 2021, P10.57 billion in 2022, P28.44 billion in 2023, and P32.61 billion in 2024.

Fifty percent of the proceeds will be earmarked for the Universal Health Care programs, under Republic Act No. 11223; while the remaining half will be allocated for public utility vehicle modernization until 2024.

Revenue generated beginning 2025 will be used entirely for UHC programs.

The bill among others proposes to increase MVUC rates to P2,912 on passenger cars with gross vehicle weight (GVW) of up to 1,600 kilogram (kg) in the first year of implementation; P6,552, if weighing 1,600-2,300 kg, P14,560, if over 2,300 kg.

At present, rates range from P1,400-12,000, depending on weight and age of the passenger car for private use; and P900-5,000, if for hire.

Utility vehicles weighing up to 2,700 kg will be levied P3,640 and an additional P0.73 per 100 kg over 2,700 kg; while motorcycles with engine displacement of 400 cc and above with sidecars will be charged P546. Without sidecars, the charge is P437.

This is higher than the P2,000 with additional P0.40 per 100 kg in excess of 2,700 kg for utility vehicles; and the P240 and P300 rates slapped on motorcycles without and with sidecars, respectively.

The bill also provides for the following rates for large vehicles: buses, P3,276, if weighing 4,500 kg with additional P45 per 100 kg above 2,700 kg; trucks and trailers, P3,276, if weighing over 4,500 kg with additional P0.44 per 100 kg over the GVW.

The present system imposes the following rates for trucks and buses: P1,800, plus and additional P0.24 per 100 kg in excess of 2,700 kg.

“While I am convinced that this is a progressive and equitable bill, I am very open to further improvements to this proposal. My committee will consult all the relevant stakeholders.” Mr. Salceda said. The measure forms part of the government’s comprehensive tax reform program.
President Rodrigo R. Duterte in his fourth State of the Nation Address asked the 18th Congress to pass the remaining CTRP packages, particularly the proposal to reduce corporate income tax and rationalize fiscal incentives, increase excise tax on alcohol products and e-cigarettes, centralize real property valuation and assessment and simplify the tax structure for financial investment instruments.

The government has so far passed Republic Act No. 10963, or the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Law, which slashed personal income tax and increased or added levies on several goods and services; RA 11213, the Tax Amnesty Act, which grants estate tax amnesty and amnesty on delinquent accounts left unpaid even after being given final assessment; and RA 11346, which will gradually increase excise tax on tobacco products to P60 per pack by 2023 from the current P35. — Charmaine A. Tadalan

Megaworld to spend P1.5B for Lapu-Lapu City mall

September 20, 2019 | 12:04 am [ ]

MEGAWORLD Corp. will build a mall inside its Mactan Newtown estate in Cebu. — WWW.MEGAWORLDCORP.COM

MEGAWORLD CORP. is pouring P1.5 billion for the development of a new mall inside its Mactan Newtown estate in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

In a statement issued Thursday, the listed property developer said it is set to build Mactan Newtown Beach Walk, which will cover 30,000 square meters (sq.m.) of gross floor area.

The two-storey mall will feature a 1.4-hectare man-made lagoon with a depth of up to 1.5 meters at the center, which Megaworld envisions can be used for future water sports activities such as jet skiing, wakeboarding, stand-up paddling, and boating.

The lagoon will be surrounded by a man-made shoreline, while also featuring floating boardwalks and a bridge that will connect both sides of the mall.

“Megaworld Lifestyle Malls is bringing a fresh, new concept of mall development in Cebu that recreates and innovates the beach lifestyle experience,” Megaworld Chief Strategy Officer Kevin Andrew L. Tan said in a statement.

“We take inspiration from some iconic coastline commercial developments in South California, where visitors can enjoy coffee, meet friends over lunch or dinner, watch a movie, or simply shop around in this laid-back beach atmosphere.”

Mactan Newtown Beach Walk will house four cinemas, a food hall, al fresco dining areas, travelers’ lounge, and a view deck that will give mallgoers a view of the sea and nearby islands.

Megaworld expects to complete the mall by 2021.

The company also plans to build a three-storey boutique hotel next to Mactan Newtown Beach Walk. To be operated under the Megaworld Hotels brand, it will offer 48 rooms with retail shops at the ground level.

The mall and hotel complex will allocate about 40% of its total area to green and open spaces, as part of Megaworld’s sustainability efforts. The mall alone will have solar roof panels, as well as an open layout scheme that will allow for passive cooling and natural lighting for most of its common areas.

“We will even have some untouched areas for bike trails, airsoft shooting, and tree-top activities. This part of the Mactan Newtown is abundantly surrounded with trees, and we want to keep them,” Mr. Tan said.

The project will rise inside Megaworld’s 28.8-hectare Mactan Newtown township, which will also house office towers, condominiums, leisure amenities, retail shops, and The Newtown School of Excellence.

Mactan Newtown currently has four office buildings dedicated to business process outsourcing companies, with about five to 10 more set to be launched by 2021. It also has nine residential condominiums, one hotel, and a beach facility.

Megaworld’s net income attributable to the parent climbed 16% to P8.3 billion in the first half of 2019, after revenues surged 20% to P16.8 billion.

Shares in Megaworld dropped 0.99% or five centavos to close at P5.01 each at the stock exchange on Thursday. — Arra B. Francia

Gov’t awards Bulacan airport project to San Miguel

September 19, 2019 | 12:30 am [ ]

The New Manila International Airport, located in Bulacan, is eyed to become an alternative to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. — SAN MIGUEL CORP.

THE DEPARTMENT of Transportation (DoTr) awarded on Wednesday the P734-billion Bulacan airport project to private proponent San Miguel Holdings Corp.

In a signing ceremony at the department’s office in Clark, Pampanga, San Miguel Group President Ramon S. Ang said the company may commence construction of the gateway — officially called the New Manila International Airport — by December.

“I believe we will be able to do groundbreaking before end of the year,” Mr. Ang said, as the DoTr gave the company the Notice to Proceed yesterday.

“Sinimulan na namin ang engineering nito about two years ago. Kaya ngayon na nabigyan kami ng go signal ni Secretary Tugade, mabilis na lang ito [We started the engineering work on the project about two years ago. So now that we’ve been given the green light by Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade, this will roll out quickly].”

San Miguel will select a contractor that will build the airport. It previously engaged Groupe ADP (Aéroports de Paris), Meinhardt Group and Jacobs Engineering Group for the design of the project.

Mr. Ang said Japanese, Korean and European airport operators have expressed interest in the project.

San Miguel will tap foreign banks for project financing, with 70% to be derived from bank loans and 30% from equity.

“Mostly Chinese banks and American banks,” Mr. Ang said.

The project involves construction of a 2,400-hectare airport with four parallel runways (expandable to six runways), eight taxiways and three passenger terminal buildings.

It will have an annual capacity of 100 million travelers, which the government hopes will help decongest Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City.

Aside from the airport itself, the project also includes construction of an 8.4-kilometer toll road that will link the gateway to the North Luzon Expressway. San Miguel estimates that, with the new road, travel between Makati City and the new airport will take around 30 minutes, and from Balintawak, Quezon City about 15 minutes.

The first two runways are expected to be finished in three years at the earliest, while the rest will be completed in four to five years.

Once operational, the Bulacan airport is expected to contribute nearly P900 billion to the economy, according to a project briefing during the signing ceremony.

“We are grateful to President (Rodrigo R.) Duterte and (Mr. Tugade) for allowing us to undertake this historic project,” Mr. Ang said.

Mr. Tugade added: “It’s a game changer because we can come up with a facility that will compete with the world-class airports all over Asia and all over the world.” — Denise A. Valdez

San Miguel looking to build an elevated expressway on EDSA

September 19, 2019 | 12:06 am  [ ]

By Denise A. Valdez, Reporter

SAN MIGUEL Corp. (SMC) is seeking to build an elevated expressway along Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) as a direct alternative to the heavily congested 23-kilometer highway.

Ramon S. Ang, president and chief operating officer of SMC, told reporters yesterday the company targets to submit a proposal to the Department of Transportation (DoTr) for a 10-lane, five-by-five expressway along EDSA.

“Details noon, we will be submitting to DoTr siguro (We’ll submit its details to the DoTr either) Monday or Tuesday,” he said.

Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade mentioned the project during the signing ceremony for SMC’s Bulacan airport project yesterday when he was asked about the government’s plans to help ease Metro Manila traffic.

“Yung elevated EDSA, pinag-uusapan namin ’yan… Meron nang prototype ’yan (We’ve been talking about that project That has a prototype already). But in due time, we will make the announcements,” he said, refusing to provide details yesterday.

Transportation Undersecretary for Planning Ruben S. Reinoso, Jr. said the plan is to build a “Skyway” that will link the Manila-Cavite Expressway (CAVITEx) to the North Luzon Expressway (NLEx) in Balintawak, Quezon City.

It will be an elevated, steel toll road built higher than the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3), which runs along EDSA as well. “Kaya parang Lego ’yun. Poste lang itatayo mo (It would be like Lego. You only need to put up the posts),” he said.

Mr. Reinoso added the expressway will have dedicated lanes that will operate a bus rapid transit system. This is seen to help reduce traffic for commuters plying EDSA and riding the MRT-3.

Once SMC finalizes its submission to the government and the project is approved, Mr. Tugade said he wants the expressway to be partially operable within 30 months.

“Meron kaming usapan para ipakita ang sincerity (We have an agreement to show our sincerity). The government can buy it back, the project, at any time at cost,” he said.

Mr. Reinoso explained this means if the government finds the project viable, it will consider paying SMC the cost of the project to own and operate the facility.

The Metro Manila Development Authority said in July there are about 385,000 vehicles passing through EDSA every day at any given hour. This exceeds the highway’s designed capacity of only 240,000 to 250,000 vehicles a day.

Aside from the elevated EDSA, SMC is also currently building Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3: an 18.68-kilometer toll road from Buendia, Makati City to Balintawak, Quezon City, which is scheduled for completion by early 2020.

Cebu Landmasters to spend P2.4B for two Bacolod residential projects

September 19, 2019 | 12:03 am [ ]

CEBU Landmasters, Inc. (CLI) is spending about P2.4 billion to expand its footprint in Bacolod City with the launch of two residential projects and the construction of a serviced apartment in the area.

The listed property developer said in a statement Wednesday that it has launched Casa Mira Bacolod and Velmiro Plains Bacolod, its residential brands that cater to the affordable and mid-income market segments.

Located in Barangay Granada, the P400-million Casa Mira Bacolod will offer 431 townhouse units with floor areas sized from 40 to 78 square meters, standing on lot sizes from 48 to 60 sq.m.

The 4.5-hectare project will feature amenities such as a clubhouse, swimming pool, kiddie pool, basketball court, children’s play area, park areas, perimeter fence, and a 24-hour security system.

This marks CLI’s seventh project under its affordable housing brand Casa Mira, with the others located in Cebu, Sibulan, and Cagayan de Oro.

At the same time, CLI is investing P600 million for the development of Velmiro Plains Bacolod in Barangay Granada. The 8.35-hectare project consists of 342 single-detached house and lot units primarily for mid-income buyers.

CLI will offer five model houses for the project sized from 54 to 120 sq.m. in terms of floor area.

The project’s amenities include a swimming pool, clubhouse, fitness gym, basketball court, landscaped parks, and a river esplanade.

Velmiro Plains Bacolod is CLI’s third project under this brand, with the first two located in Minglanilla, Cebu and Cagayan de Oro.

Meanwhile, CLI has also broken ground for Citadines Bacolod City, a joint venture project with Bacolod-based Capitaine, Inc. The company is spending P1.345 billion for the serviced apartments.

The 14-storey building along Lacson Street will house 200 rooms covering a gross floor area of 24,861 sq.m., as the company banks on the rising tourism industry in the area.

Citadines Bacolod forms part of CLI’s plans to further its investments in the hospitality sector, with 15 more hotels lined up in three to five years’ time.

Shares in CLI surged 3.97% or 19 centavos to close at P4.98 each on Wednesday. — Arra B. Francia

Amaia Steps Altaraza targets Bulacan residents

September 17, 2019 | 12:05 am [ ]

AMAIA LAND Corp. has launched a mid-rise residential condominium in San Jose del Monte City, Bulacan.

In a statement, the economic housing unit of Ayala Land, Inc. said Amaia Steps Altaraza will rise on a 1.9-hectare property as part of a masterplanned urban community.

“With Bulacan keeping in step with property developments in Metro Manila, Amaia Steps Altaraza fulfills Ayala Land’s vision of building affordable homes for Bulacan residents who want to update their lifestyles,” the company said.

Amaia Steps Altaraza offers studio units (22–26 square meters), deluxe units (31–33 sq.m.), and premier units (39–42 sq.m.).

It is located along Quirino Highway corner Governor F. Halili Road in Brgy. Tungkong Mangga, San Jose del Monte City. The project is near schools, hospitals, retail establishments and malls, as well as the Metro Rail Transit-7 (MRT-7), which is expected to be operating by 2022.

ALP’s first QC project seen fetching over P26B in sales

September 18, 2019 | 12:02 am [ ]

 Parklinks North is already about 70% sold, 
the company said. — ARRA B. FRANCIA
By Arra B. Francia
Senior Reporter

AYALA LAND Premier (ALP) has ventured into its first project in Quezon City with a two-tower residential condominium seen to fetch over P26 billion in sales.

The luxury property unit of Ayala Land, Inc. (ALI) on Tuesday said it has already sold about 70% of the project’s first tower, Parklinks North Towers. The 55-storey building is seen to generate P12.7 billion in sales, against a project cost of around P7 billion.

“Our buyers are mostly local, close to 90% are local from Quezon City, Makati, and the Pasig area. A lot of them are entrepreneurs, a lot are repeat buyers or those who purchased an ALP property in the past,” ALP Head of Sales and Marketing Paolo O. Viray said in a press briefing in the company’s showroom in Bonifacio Global City yesterday.

Since its launch in November 2018, prices in Parklinks North have appreciated 15% to P320,000 per square meter (sq.m.).

Parklinks North offers a total of 280 units with one-bedroom to four-bedroom layouts ranging from 70 to 306 sq.m. Units are priced from P22-120 million.

Amenities in the tower include an outdoor lounge, pool complex, fitness center, social hall, children’s play area, and sports court located on the 10th floor.

Parklinks North is scheduled to be completed in the third quarter of 2025.

ALP said it will also launch Parklinks South within the next few weeks, given the robust demand seen in the first tower.

Mr. Viray said Parklinks South will have a similar layout, but will offer more units at 313. The price of each square meter could average at P310,000 to P315,000, for a sales value of close to P14 billion for the entire tower.

The second tower is expected to be completed in 2027.

The residential condominium project will be located inside the 35-hectare mixed use estate Parklinks, a joint venture between ALI and Eton Properties Philippines, Inc. (EPPI). The township will connect parts of Quezon City and Pasig City through a bridge.

The towers will be directly connected to Parklinks Mall, a five-storey lifestyle mall covering 51,000 sq.m. of leasable space. The mall will house a sports center, six cinemas, office spaces, and a mix of retail and dining options.

It will also stand next to the River Esplanade, or an open civic park that will feature dining establishments.

ALI and EPPI said last year that it will spend P53 billion to develop Parklinks over the next 10 years. Launched in January 2018, the company has already begun development for 16 hectares in the estate. This is set to be completed in November.

The companies have also started construction for the 110-meter bridge that will be completed by the first quarter of 2021.

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