By Gabriel Circiog, Associate Editor
Manila, Philippines—The Ascott Limited, CapitaLand’s wholly owned serviced residence business unit, has recently announced it has increased its presence in the Philippines by securing a contract to manage a serviced residence in Alabang, a major business district in Metro Manila.
Arthur Gindap, Ascott’s regional general manager for the Philippines and Thailand, says: “We see immense potential for Ascott in the Philippines as the country continues to enjoy strong economic growth and to attract foreign direct investment. In 2012, foreign direct investment into the Philippines grew by almost 10 percent over 2011. The Philippines’ recent credit rating upgrade to investment grade by Fitch and Standard & Poor’s will spur further growth. Ascott already has a strong foothold in Makati City, the country’s primary financial centre, with three operating properties. Hence, we are actively expanding in other business districts where foreign direct investment has generated robust demand for serviced residences.”
The Somerset Alabang Manila will feature 150 units and is located in a rapidly expanding integrated development, which includes office, retail, residential and leisure components: Filinvest City. The serviced residence, scheduled to open in 2017, is in proximity to numerous corporate offices of multinational corporations such as Shell, HSBC and Verizon. The project is a 25-minute drive away from the airport and is easily accessible from the industrial parks in Laguna, Cavite and Batangas. The guests will also have access to a large variety of amenities near the property such as shopping malls, supermarkets, restaurants, a hospital with a lifestyle medical center and numerous recreational venues.
The Somerset Alabang Manila will feature studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom residences, as well as penthouse units. The property will also include amenities such as an outdoor swimming pool, gym, children’s playroom, meeting rooms and business center.
The new management contract will reconfirm Ascott’s position as the largest international serviced residence owner-operator in the Philippines with more than 1,400 apartment units across eight properties. Ascott has also been recently conferred the coveted Business Superbrands status in Singapore, becoming the first serviced residence company to receive this internationally recognized accolade. Other brands that have been awarded Business Superbrands status last year were IBM, Microsoft, SAP, Canon, SingTel and Singapore Airlines.
Lee Chee Koon, Ascott’s chief executive officer, says: “Being the first serviced residence company to be recognized as a Business Superbrand has further cemented Ascott’s position as the industry leader. Ascott pioneered Asia Pacific’s first international-class serviced residence with the opening of The Ascott Singapore along Scotts Road in 1984. We have since grown to be the world’s largest international serviced residence owner-operator. Our target is to increase our brand footprint to 40,000 apartment units globally by 2015.”