SM Signs Agreement for Radisson Hotel Cebu and Plans Convention Center

Radisson Hotel Cebu and Philippine conglomerate SM Investments Corp. (SMIC) said it signed a third agreement with Carlson Hotels Worldwide-Asia Pacific for the management of its hotel in the central city of Cebu.

SM said its 400-room hotel in Cebu City will open in the first quarter of 2009, and will be known as the Radisson Hotel Cebu.

Under two previous agreements, SM gave Carlson Hotels the management of two hotels it is currently building in Manila's reclamation area. The Regent Manila Bay and Radisson Manila Bay hotels will open in 2010. Radisson and The Regent are two of Carlson's full service hotel brands.

In a press conference, SM Prime Holdings vice president Marissa Fernan said the hotel will open to help provide rooms for Cebu’s expanding tourism and business clientele.

“We are very confident that the things that will be happening in the hotel will go with ours [mall],” Fernan said.

SM Investments Corp. (SMIC) earlier signed a management agreement with Carlson Hotels Worldwide–Asia Pacific (Carlson) to run the 400-room hotel.

To be called the Radisson Hotel Cebu, the P2.6-billion hotel is scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2009.

It was originally called Sofitel Cebu Hotel and was supposed to be operated by Europe’s Accor Group. SMIC, however, decided to transfer the operations to Carlson to take advantage of latter’s brand of hotel management.

The Radisson Cebu hotel boasts of 10 meeting rooms, a 1,000-square meter ballroom, a spa and fitness center, a lobby lounge, and an all-day dining restaurant, among others. It is strategically located in the heart of Cebu City, only 2 kilometers (km) from the central business district and less than 20 km from the airport.

The SM complex sits on a 23-hectare property at the north reclamation area, situated between the airport, the world-class resorts in Mactan Island, and the business and financial districts of Cebu City.

SMIC announced in Cebu yesterday that it is considering building a 5,000-seater convention center within its complex at the north reclamation area in this city.

The planned convention center will be put up just behind the upcoming Radisson Hotel Cebu at the present open parking area beside the mall. “This will become like a little SMX,” Fernan said, referring to the SM Exhibition Center near the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City.

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