Philippino ex-pats drive new Palawan developments

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

02 April 2012 11:43

Two major developers have announced that they are about to start new residential property schemes in the Philippino resort of Puerto Princesa City in Palawan, and local agents are hoping that the move will spark a new wave of construction activity in the tourist spot. The schemes are selling well to ex-pat Philippinos working overseas.  


Vista Land and Lifescape, Inc revealed this week that it is going ahead on an 8-hectare Camella Puerto Princesa apartment project, close to work already done by Filinvest Land, Inc, which started its nearby West Palms project in 2007 and is now looking at a follow-up scheme.   “Puerto Princesa has been hailed as one of the, if not the, cleanest, safest city in the country,” says Jerylle Luz Quismundo, president of Communities Philippines. “The city is typhoon-, flood- and earthquake-free, making it a hub for residences, as well as businesses. Reputable schools and universities, market places and commercial areas, hospitals and places of worship are all a few minutes away from Camella Puerto Princesa and both the city and its province are rich in natural beauty with unmatched verdant forests. The decision to be part of this briskly growing tourist centre is an easy one to make,”  


And, she added, “one of the components not given too much attention in the past in this province is the presence of a homebuilder that will provide the ideal setting for families to grow. With businesses expected to rise soon, these communities are also positioned to entice and accommodate not just the local residents, but also for those who see the province as an idyllic place to relocate. Puerto Princesa is ripe for picking.”  


Mike Mamalateo, Filinvest Land project manager for West Palms, agrees, telling OPP that his company can see a need that has “yet to be filled” in Puerto Princesa. “When we entered Puerto Princesa, it was not a deliberate effort. But when we looked into it, we saw that it is ripe for a themed development,” said Mamalateo.   “We saw the opportunity to do something (at) the level of development we usually do. We saw that’s its a good opportunity. There’s no organised development there and the community is thirsting for this kind of development.”   Prior to the entry of the two developers, Puerto Princesa has seen only small, pocket developments that catered to the affordable market segment.  


Camella Puerto Princesa is a 8-hectare property in Barangay Bancao-bancao composed of house-and-lot packages that will carry three of the developer’s housing designs. The packages will have floor areas ranging from 40 square meters to 179 sq.m. and prices of between P1 million and P4.7 million.   Camella Puerto Princesa will be developed into a Caribbean-themed gated community with amenities such as clubhouse, basketball court, playground, a commercial area, and shuttled service.   West Palms meanwhile is a 5-hectare property which was previously targeted for the low-cost market as a joint venture of Filinvest Land with a local partner. The project was later upgraded to target the middle-income segment, according to Mamalateo. West Palms is being developed as an exclusive and master-planned residential community in a Mediterranean-themed residential village, complete with amenities like swimming pool, club house and others. The property is located along Wescom road, near the military base in the western side of the city proper.


West Palms is being sold on a lot-only basis, at an average cut of 100 sqm with prices ranging from P550,000 to P700,000. However, housing construction has to conform with the community’s design specifications.   In both developments, the developers are targeting ex-pat overseas-based buyers who are seeking to invest back at home and Mamalateo told OPP that 60% of the West Palms project is now sold out. “Our buyers’ profile is actually mostly overseas Filipinos.”


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