hospitality industry

Megaworld eyes international tourists as’s ‘preferred partner hotel’

Lance Spencer Yu

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Megaworld eyes international tourists as’s ‘preferred partner hotel’

TRAVEL. Travel service provider's booth in the ITB China Conference in Shanghai, China, on May 28, 2024.

Facebook/ Group

(1st UPDATE) Megaworld Hotels and Resorts hopes that its partnership with the global travel app will provide the 'hotels that will be needed every time we encourage inbound tourism to our country'

SHANGHAI, China – Megaworld Hotels and Resorts (MHR) is banking on attracting more international tourists to fill its thousands of hotel rooms now that it has become a “preferred partner hotel” for travel service provider Group.

The “first-ever” memorandum of understanding (MOU) – signed on Tuesday, May 28 – will allow Group to provide “comprehensive marketing support” for the multiple MHR hotels that are already onboard the travel app. This includes listing MHR’s hotels as one of‘s “preferred partner hotels,” which optimizes availability and pricing and gives them “enhanced visibility” on Group’s platforms.

“At Group, we pride ourselves in our wide-ranging offers, integrated into seamless as well as all-in-one travel platform with a mobile-friendly system,” Group managing director Boon Sian Chai said during the MOU signing ceremony in Shanghai, China. “Our expansive partnership with Megaworld will leverage on‘s technology solutions.”

MHR is the largest hotel operator in the Philippines, with 13 properties that total to more than 8,500 room keys including projects still in the pipeline. Its seven brands include Savoy, Belmont, Richmonde, Kingford, Twin Lakes, Hotel Lucky Chinatown, as well as the upcoming Grand Westside Hotel.

“[MHR] as a partner provides now the availability or the hotels that will be needed every time we encourage inbound tourism to our country,” Megaworld Hotels and Resorts assistant head of distribution Pebbles Caramat said on Tuesday. “As our hotels grow in numbers, we are also to provide whatever is needed in the online landscape to be able to provide those hotels availability and experience that will require either business or leisure travelers to the Philippines.”

The partnership can also help MHR tap into the Singapore-based travel group’s “extensive marketing machine that’s able to actually feature different offerings that [MHR] can offer to customers both in China and internationally,” according to the managing director. 

Before the pandemic, China was the Philippines’ second biggest tourist market, with more than 1,740,000 Chinese visitors coming into the country in 2019. However, the Philippines has yet to attract the same level of Chinese tourists in 2023, with only 263,836 Chinese visitors for the full year. (READ: How Chinese visitors could boost Philippine tourism in pandemic’s wake)

Nevertheless, revenge travel has still helped Philippine hotel bookings through the Group grow by 54% in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the same period last year. Across Southeast Asia, bookings have more than doubled in Q1 2024. –

Disclosure: The author was part of a media delegation to the Envision 2023 Global Partners Conference hosted by Group

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Lance Spencer Yu

Lance Spencer Yu is a multimedia reporter who covers the transportation, tourism, infrastructure, finance, agriculture, and corporate sectors, as well as macroeconomic issues.