Bay City: Asia's New Tourism Capital
Business World
Dec 16, 2013

With 7,107 islands that make up the longest coastline in the world and a strategic location right at the crossroads of international travel lanes, the Philippines has the most coveted location in Southeast Asia. It is surrounded in the North by Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea; in the South by Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia; and in the West by Thailand. Bounded in the East by the Pacific Ocean, it is the natural gateway between the Western and Eastern Hemispheres. This is understandably the reason why, once upon a time in the country’s storied history, many nations fought for a foothold on its shores.
The Philippines: Asia’s Rising Star
Today, the Philippine capital city of Manila is being touted as one of Southeast Asia’s most attractive property markets. Considerably bolstered by the booming real estate sector, the Philippine economy grew by 7.8 percent in the first half of 2013, the fastest in Southeast Asia.
This unprecedented economic growth has already led the world’s leading credit agencies to raise the country’s credit rating. In March 2013, Fitch made the first investment grade call, followed by the same upgrade by Standard & Poor’s in May. In October, Moody's Investor's Service upgraded the Philippines' credit rating to Baa3, affirming the earlier investment grade ratings and indicating continued growth for the country’s economy.
This investment-grade climb—putting the Philippines on par with Turkey and Spain—underscored the rapid growth and political stability that the country has achieved in recent years. “The Philippines’ economic performance has entered a structural shift to higher growth, accompanied by low inflation,” Moody’s said in a news release.
The Philippine economy has lagged behind other Southeast Asian countries since 1960. Now, the World Bank forecasts that the country’s growth will exceed 6 percent every year until 2015.
The Bay City: Tourism Industry’s Next Success Story
Another sector that plays a major role in the country’s continued economic growth is tourism. Certainly, every country has its signature tourist destinations and landmarks. For the Philippines, the beaches of Boracay and Palawan have attracted tourists in droves. But another place, one worth mentioning now, is an area that is fast becoming the newest tourism capital of Asia: the Bay City.
Spanning 1,500 hectares of land across the cities of Manila, Pasay and Parañaque, the Bay City is made up of the SM Mall of Asia complex, PAGCOR Entertainment City, Aseana City, Asia World, and Centennial City.  It combines the very best of Manila’s past and future with the historic Manila Bay, one of the finest natural harbors in the world where galleons once docked en route to Acapulco, serving as the backdrop of the city.
Bringing the country into the future is PAGCOR Entertainment City, a 100-hectare ambitious project by the Philippine Government. Hailed as the country’s grandest tourism development to date, the PAGCOR Entertainment City is expected to play a vital role in altering the reputation of Metro Manila in the global arena.
Making up a large portion of the Bay City expanse, it aims to rival the casino and entertainment scenes of Las Vegas, Macau, and Singapore. Along with hundreds of restaurants, landmark shops, and designer stores, four world-class integrated hotel-casino and resort complexes will rise in the district. The first to open to the public was Solaire Resort and Casino which officially began operations in March earlier this year. It is the $1.2 billion flagship endeavor of Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels, Inc., headed by maritime port magnate Enrique Razon, Jr. It houses a 5-star hotel, a grand ballroom, and a large gaming area on 8.3 hectares of land.
Next to open in 2014 will be City of Dreams Manila, a $1.3 billion project by Melco Crown Resort Corporation and Henry Sy's Belle Corporation. Tapping the world-class brand of City of Dreams in Macau, the development will include a large gaming area and a Crown Towers Hotel that will cater to the premium market segment in Manila.
Scheduled to open in 2015 is Manila Bay Resorts, a $2 billion project by Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment, Inc. The sprawling 44-hectare facility will house three hotels including a 6-star hotel that will have 30,000 square meters of floor space for gaming. In addition, there will be an indoor man-made beach, shopping malls, spa facilities, a cinema complex, an amusement center, a concert hall, and plenty of retail and dining options, including a series of fine dining restaurants by Michelin-starred chefs from all over the world.
Resorts World Bayshore by Travellers International is a partnership between Andrew Tan’s Alliance Global group, Inc. and Genting Hong Kong, Ltd. This $1.1 billion project will rise on a lot area covering 31 hectares and will be launched in 2016, the last to open among the four licensees. The master plan for Bayshore features two hotels, a 3,000-seater grand opera house, a shopping mall, residential towers, and an expansive gaming area.
Aside from the casino and resort complexes, included in the list of prominent structures in the Bay City are: Conrad Hotel, Hotel 101, Tunes Hotel, the DFA Consular Office, the Embassy of Qatar, King's School Manila, ASEANA One IT Center, S & R Membership Shopping, a marina and yacht club, and car showrooms by Ford and Subaru.
Transportation and Accessibility
Another prime attraction to the area is its accessibility. The Bay City is easily reached from any place in Metro Manila via major thoroughfares: Roxas Boulevard, EDSA, Cavite Coastal Road, and Macapagal Boulevard. It also near the Ninoy Aquino International Airport and Makati CBD. Metro rails that can bring a person to various points in Metro Manila are a mere fifteen minutes away from the Bay City. Bus and jeepney terminals are also available, as well as ferry terminals where one can find boats going to Bataan in the North of Manila and to Cavite in the South. The extension of the existing LRT Line 1 from Baclaran to Bacoor, Cavite, and the construction of the NAIA Expressway Phase 2, which will connect the Philippine Entertainment City to all international airports, are also expected boost productivity in the area.
However, all this will be for naught if public safety and security are not given top priority as well. The embassies, schools, government agencies, and all the other major institutions that will soon emerge in the Bay City require a safe location, and so do the thousands of people who will be visiting the area daily. This is why the Bay City will be equipped with CCTV cameras that will serve as a deterrent to unlawful activities 24/7. Likewise, taking safety a notch higher is Aseana City who has sought a system based network that will provide smart city services. Phase one of the project will make use of enhanced CCTV devices and license plate detectors, to be followed by a transportation information service, a traffic control system, and digital information kiosks in the near future.
Growth, Development, Progress
PAGCOR chairman and chief executive officer Cristino Naguiat Jr. said that the Entertainment City is not merely poised to become the country’s premier gambling destination but is also seen to lead the next wave of economic growth in the metropolis.
Indications to this are materializing steadily, as real estate values in the Bay City have been increasing due to the ongoing development of the PAGCOR Entertainment City. The residential demand for housing is high due to the arrival of foreign expats and locals who have relocated to the Philippines to work in the area.
Offices and international schools have also started emerging in the Bay City. To add to the veritable list of establishments slated to rise in the vicinity, Singapore International School finalized plans of moving their campus from Osmeña-Magallañes to Aseana City.
For the first time in history, the Philippines is primed to rise as Asia’s newest tourism capital. With the Bay City at the center of its economic transformation, it will generate more than 6,000 hotel rooms and 3.3 million square feet of casino gaming areas, create up to 400,000 jobs, and attract at least a million tourists annually.
Monarch Parksuites: Best Bet for a Great Investment
Situated at the center of the entertainment and tourism excitement that is Bay City, Anchor Land offers Monarch Parksuites, its biggest residential project to date.
With the residential condominium designed to be a modern rendition of Europe's famous century-old castles, Monarch Parksuites will be a Dutch Baroque masterpiece to rival the works of the world’s greatest Dutch Baroque master, Rembrandt.
Inside, Monarch Parksuites is teeming with facilities that cover an area of over 8,000 square meters. It has an Olympic-sized pool, a gourmet dining suite, media room, gym, billiards room, and reading room. Outdoors, it has a tennis court, basketball court, landscaped parterre, sunken garden, barbecue deck, and children’s play area.
But beyond pleasing aesthetics, Monarch Parksuites’ prime location establishes itself as a great investment for owners. Sitting in the middle of the country’s newest tourism capital and within walking distance to PAGCOR Entertainment City, Aseana City, and the SM Mall of Asia Complex, the development promises good returns and puts its residents at the core of a booming financial district.
Additionally, the property value of the project, hand in hand with its average rental income, has always been expected to continuously skyrocket.
“There is an increasing demand for residential and commercial space in the area, which creates a great opportunity for high rental income, as many are eager to live within this much coveted and extremely strategic location,” says Elizabeth Ventura, president of Anchor Land. “True enough, the project’s value appreciated by 15% last September 2013, only a month after the project broke ground,” she continues.
Anchor 100
Anchor Land helps its customers get the most out of their investment by providing support activities before, during, and after purchasing a condo unit.
“When customers talk, we listen. We don’t stop servicing our clients after they’ve purchased a unit,” says Beth Ventura, president of Anchor Land. “From sourcing out prospective tenants to handling maintenance concerns and housekeeping, we make sure that we attend to the needs of our clients efficiently. Our highly-trained employees are dedicated to providing the best service to our customers,” Ventura added.
Taking client servicing to a whole new level, Anchor Land has recently launched Anchor 100, a group of client servicing experts whose main duty is to keep clients happy and to provide a wide array of services that enhance the value of their investments. These include leasing and asset management and property management services. Anchor 100 was created to fully embody and carry out Anchor Land's 100% commitment to its clients.
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