Filtered By: Money

Boracay shutdown to hurt business —Microtel operator

The total shutdown of Boracay Island would hurt the business operations of Microtel Inn & Suites, the hotel operator said Wednesday.

“I think it’s a crazy idea to shut down entirely Boracay. Why don’t they fix it in phases? It makes much more sense anyway,” Phinma president and CEO Ramon del Rosario Jr. told GMA News Online on the sidelines of an event in Makati City.

Phinma Corp. holds and operates the master franchise of Microtel in the Philippines. It operates a Microtel at Diniwid Beach in Boracay.

“The shutdown will be extremely costly and it is not clear that an island that you shut down can bounce back, so I think it is a very bad idea,” Del Rosario noted.

The Departments of Tourism (DOT), Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and Interior and Local Government (DILG) recommended the total closure of the island for up to a year.

President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to close the island and called it a “cesspool.”

“I think the best idea would be, first of all, shut down those enterprises that are not complying with the law,” Del Rosario said.

“Our hotel is one of those that are totally compliant. We’re very proud. We use solar energy, we have full sewage disposal and everything,” he said.

The government should consider doing the rehabilitation of the island in phases, to ensure that business will be minimally affected, Del Rosario noted.

“The first is shut down all of those that are not complying with the law and then work on specific segments of the island, maybe, so that you can do it in an orderly way,” he said.

"“You don't have to shut down the entire island ... So that's unfortunate ... I hope, if they do it, that they have a plan that is well thought out and that it will be implemented very efficiently so that we don’t prolong the shutdown,” he said.

Del Rosario did not cite a loss estimate in terms of foregone revenues from Microtel operations in Boracay, apart from saying it is profitable and that it is one of the 14 hotels of the company.

“It’s not a very large hotel, but it is profitable. It has good occupancy but it is not extremely large,” he said.

In the same event, Phinma and its partner the Junior Chamber International (JCI) Manila launched the Ramon V. del Rosario Sr. (RVR) Award for Nation-Building.

The awarding ceremony will take place on July 25, the 100th birthday of Del Rosario Sr. who passed away in 2008. —VDS, GMA News