Big global hotel operator eyes Philippines

  • Karpal memorial service non-political event, says DAP inviting Najib, Muhyiddin
    Karpal memorial service non-political event, says DAP inviting Najib, Muhyiddin

    DAP today extended an invitation to both the prime minister and his deputy to be guests of honour at a memorial service for the late Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh tomorrow to prove that the event is non-political. Gelang Patah MP and party adviser Lim Kit Siang (pic) said the invitation has been extended to Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Tan Sri... …

  • Unidentified material washed ashore near Western Australia town, possible MH370 debris
    Unidentified material washed ashore near Western Australia town, possible MH370 debris

    Police in Western Australia have attended to a report of material washed ashore 10 kilometres east of Augusta and have secured the material, the Joint Agency Coordination Centre in charge of the search for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean said in a statement. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is examining... …

  • Extremists have no place in Malaysian society, says Khairy – Bernama
    Extremists have no place in Malaysian society, says Khairy – Bernama

    Malaysia's Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin (pic) has denounced political and religious extremists in Malaysia, saying they did not belong "in our society". Addressing more than 800 Malaysian university students who had come from all parts of Australia to attend the Second Malaysian Summit of Australia (Masa) in Melbourne, he... …

  • Selangor MCA reveals receipts for 'illegal water sales'

    Selangor MCA has produced a quotation and receipts from a private water-tanker operator, purportedly revealing that he had sold water to the industrial community at prices up to 23 times more than what he had paid the water concessionaire. A document distributed to the media shows that the operator had bought water on March 4 from Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor Sdn. Bhd (Syabas) at RM2.07 per 1,000 litres, but was sold to industrial users at RM48.48. Selangor MCA information bureau deputy …

  • Cops will act if May 1 rally 'threatens public order'

    The police will act against the May 1 anti-GST rally if it is found to threaten public order, Kuala Lumpur Criminal Investigations Department (CID) deputy chief ACP Khairi Ahrasa said today. "So far, our actions are to ensure peace, but if there is a threat against public order, we will take action," he told a press conference at the Kuala Lumpur police headquarters. Asked whether the police have identified individuals who will be the main personalities behind the rally, like how they did for …

  • PKR forms panel to help students with yearly scholarship heartbreaks
    PKR forms panel to help students with yearly scholarship heartbreaks

    PETALING JAYA, April 23 -- Following the annual controversy over the allocation of federal scholarships, PKR today announced a special panel to help deserving secondary school leavers appeal... …

Manila (Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN) - Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide Inc., the world's biggest operator of high-end business and leisure accommodations, has taken the first step to re-enter the booming Philippine market, signing a preliminary agreement with Resorts World Manila on a five-star hotel project at the latter's Pasay City development.

In an interview with the Inquirer, Starwood president and CEO Frits van Paasschen said his group signed on Thursday a letter of intent with Resorts World to explore the possibility of building a hotel under the Sheraton brand at Newport City, adjacent to the existing casino-hotel-mall complex and across from Terminal 3 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

"The Philippine market is very attractive to us. Businesses are booming and the government is fiscally strong," he said. "This will also mark the re-entry of Sheraton in the Philippines after an absence of many years."

Van Paasschen declined to disclose specific investment figures for the proposed project but said that, on the average, hotel rooms of the Starwood group cost anywhere between US$350,000 and $500,000 to build.

Matthew Fry, Starwood Hotels Asia-Pacific senior vice president for acquisitions and development, added that the group would enter a particular market with an initial operation of between 300 and 350 rooms per hotel. At this level, a Starwood-Resorts World partnership for the new high-end Sheraton Hotel would be worth between $105 million and $175 million.

Starwood operates more than 1,000 properties in 100 countries. Its nine brands are St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W Hotels, Westin, Le M?ridien, Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, Aloft and Element. In addition to hotels, Starwood operates premier time-share ownership resorts.

According to Van Paasschen, his group has noted the growing demand from their existing clientele for accommodations in the Philippines, both from business travellers and tourists.

In particular, he said he admired the country's track record in the booming business process outsourcing business, the manufacturing sector, the growing level of raw materials and agricultural exports, and even the increasing affluence because of remittances from overseas workers.

"This is a time when the economic environment appears to be [favouring] the Philippines for sustained growth," the Starwood chief explained. "And the fiscal situation, the government debt-the perception we have, at least-the relationship between business and government today suggests to us that this is a very optimum time."

Fry said the group was also looking at new hotel operations in Cebu and Boracay to meet the demand for resort hotels from their clients.

According to Starwood, it was experiencing "unprecedented growth," having emerged from the global economic crisis with a lean cost structure and a strong balance sheet.

In addition to gaining market share, it opened a record 250 hotels in the past three years and an additional 300 are under construction.

Both W and St. Regis have doubled their footprint and Aloft became the fastest and first global launch of any new hotel brand.

Starwood's biggest brand, Sheraton, also underwent a $6-billion revitalisation programme and was now seeing the best performance in its 75-year history.

Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily news updates.

Comments on Yahoo pages are subject to our link to Comments Guidelines. You are responsible for any content that you post. Yahoo is not responsible or liable in any way for comments posted by its users. Yahoo does not in any way endorse or support comments made by its users.

  • MH370 passenger’s partner tells of strange email from sacked Fox officer The Malaysian Insider
    MH370 passenger’s partner tells of strange email from sacked Fox officer

    The partner of an American passenger aboard the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 has spoken about how a Fox executive who was recently sacked by the news station had contacted her offering to raise funds on her behalf. Sarah Bajc, whose partner Philip Wood is among the 239 people on board the missing plane, told the Sydney Morning Herald... …

  • Dr Ling’s son chose wine over woman, court hears The Malaysian Insider
    Dr Ling’s son chose wine over woman, court hears

    The son of former MCA president Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik today reached an out of court settlement with his ex-girlfriend in a breach of contract suit over seven properties registered under their joint names. Ling Hee Leong and businesswoman Teh Chee Yen agreed to settle out of court after he took the stand briefly and testified that he had chosen... …

  • MB: Only 29 days of water left in Selangor Malaysiakini

    Although heavy rain led to flash floods in parts of the Klang Valley yesterday, the Selangor government has said that taps will run completely dry in 29 days if rationing is not continued. "For now, we must continue with rationing as the level at the main dam, the Sungai Selangor dam, is below the critical level and can only last 29 days if rationing is not conducted," Menteri Besar Abdul Khalid Ibrahim said in a statement.   "We really hope the rakyat understands this situation and supports …