Iloilo City ripe for MICE tourism, says Catalbas

The Iloilo Convention Center (ICC) is seen beside the 15-storey Courtyard by Marriott Iloilo. PHOTO BY CARLA SINA-ON

ILOILO City – The Department of Tourism (DOT) has crafted a tourism marketing plan positioning Iloilo City as a primary Meetings, Incentives, Conferences/Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) destination in the Philippines.

This city’s enhanced connectivity, growing number of facilities and amenities, and inherent tourism products and services, made it a perfect destination for business and leisure. Since the hosting of Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and Association of Southeast Asian Nations Meetings in 2015-2016, the number of MICE-related activities hosted by Iloilo City grew.

DOT Region 6 director Atty. Helen Catalbas said the Iloilo MICE Situationer and Marketing Plan will be presented on Feb. 12 to 13, to be followed by a Basic MICE Training to be conducted by the Philippine Association of Conventions and Event Organizers and Suppliers (PACEOS). She said this meeting and seminar will give the tourism stakeholders updates on what it takes for Iloilo City to be in the big league of MICE destinations in the country.

“DOT will gather around 60 tourism stakeholders around Iloilo City to provide them a picture of what to expect in Iloilo City for the coming years. Iloilo City is an emerging destination for both business and leisure and we want our partners in the tourism industry to be ready for the demands that may occur,” director Catalbas stressed.

“Our benchmark should be at par with international standards. Our partners should upgrade, improve and develop their services and tourism products because sooner than later, Iloilo City is the next big thing in the MICE industry,” director Catalbas said./PN

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