Palmas Del Mar

Topics: Hotel, Seaside resort, Resort Pages: 7 (2112 words) Published: July 19, 2011

Palmas del Mar History
What is now Palmas del Mar Conference Resort Hotel began as San Antonio Beach Resort in the late ’60s. The resort had a salt-water pool and a children’s playground plus horseback riding, fishing, and boating as added attractions. Always free was a walk along the narrow break-water, an activity that was fun, wet, and challenging, especially during stormy weather. The main structure of the present club-house was constructed and new freshwater pools were built in the early ’70s, supposedly so that the resort could be rented out as a casino. The declaration of Martial Law in 1972 put an end to these plans and since the family was more occupied with real estate developments than with managing a resort, the newly constructed club-house and resort facilities were rented out for several years. In the ’80s, the prospect of lucrative profits from prawn-farming led the Lizareses into prawn farming. Sugar cane fields, rice paddies, and stands of coconut were excavated and stocked with brackish water. A land bridge replaced the flimsy and dizzying bamboo bridge to the breakwater, a pump house was constructed so that sea-water could be channeled into the in-land ponds. The old family resort became a bustle of supposedly scientific but high-security prawn farming activity which made the old get-away inaccessible to the general public. Fortunately or unfortunately, the good times for prawn farmers did not last. In the early ’90s, the recently excavated fishponds were filled up again and the area saw new life as Palmas del Mar Resort Village with Palmas del Mar Beach Club as the top drawer of the Bacolod’s newest residential subdivision. The resort village was a very successful concept. Subdivision sales were brisk, with many buying lots primarily for investment. The newly resurrected resort also gained a new customer base, part of the subdivision package being free membership for as long as there was a trust fund sufficient to pay the annual membership dues for lot-owners. So popular is Palmas as a resort that many of the homes that have been built in the subdivision are vacation houses of expats who spend most of the year abroad. The resort itself began as a beach club, not as a hotel. The first hotel rooms were constructed in the late ’90s but it was only after the present stockholders bought out the other heirs that Palmas really began to grow. With new management, the unfinished portion of the club house was turned into new function rooms. Land was reclaimed and landscaped into outdoor function areas for ideal for wedding receptions and garden parties. To the first 8 hotel rooms were added in quick succession, the lagoon and garden rooms, then the popular two room cabanas. As the business prospered, the Poolside suites became the first phase of what would become the Mediterranean Suite complex with the enchanting Mediterranean pool as centerpiece. Two years later, the family added the Iberian Suites, again the first phase of a larger development that includes a new swimming pool and a large ballroom. Palmas is managed at present by John Marie S. Lizares as President, Ronnie A.Lizares as general manager, Rocky A. Lizares as Treasurer, and representatives of the families of Heriberto and Vicente Lizares as directors. In the manner of their great-grandmother, Enrica, the corporation that owns Palmas del Mar carefully invests a substantial portion of earnings back into the property, making it possible for guests to look always forward to new developments within the resort. Because success never comes alone, John Marie and the heirs of Heriberto Lizares also developed Pacific Shores, an upscale seaside resort community in the Lizares hometown of Talisay. Now that this subdivision is ready for turn-over, John and his siblings are looking at developing other resort communities as far afield as Cebu. And so the story continues and with good management and the Lizares brand of hospitality,...
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