When Hotel Sales & Marketing Association (HSMA) launched its first-ever Virtus Awards, they aimed to be the biggest and most prestigious sales and marketing competition in the travel and tourism industry in the Philippines.
“We are excited to present the Virtus Awards, which we envisage to transform the mindset of sales and marketing professionals in in our industry, and set the tone for excellence. It brings to focus the key role they play in the country’s travel and tourism industry as they drive the bottom line value of their hotel properties and maximize return on investment,” said Margie Munsayac, President, HSMA, during the launch of Virtus Awards held at Diamond Hotel last May 28.
There are four (4) categories that hotel nominees will be vying for. They are Outstanding Sales and Marketing Associate, Outstanding Sales and Marketing Manager, Outstanding Sales and Marketing Leader, and Outstanding Marketing Campaign of the Year. Each categories are well represented with thirteen (13) nominees from distinguished hotels, resorts, and tourists properties in the Philippines.
During an exclusive media round-table, this writer was able to meet some of the nominees from Midas Hotel & Casino, The Linden Suites, and Hotel H2O during a luncheon meet at Yanagi Restaurant in Midas.
The debuting sales and marketing awards will happen on November 25, 2015, a Black Tie Gala Night, at the New World Manila Bay Hotel.
“We’re the only candidate with a Filipino-owned hotel competing for the Marketing Campaign of the Year and our banner story is Yanagi. We always believe in preserving and giving value to our heritage. There’s so much pride as a Filipino brand competing with the giants,” said Erwin Dona III, Associate Director PR and Brand, Midas Hotel & Casino, who is nominated in the Marketing Campaign of the Year category, during the presentation of nominees hosted by Yanagi Restaurant.
“(Win or Lose) I’m happy and very proud of the achievement of Linden. Makapasok lang ang isang independent hotel sa Leader category, that is something,” said Janice Vicente from The Linden Suites who is nominated under Outstanding Sales and Marketing Leader category. Other hotels competing on this category are Dusit Thani Manila, Ascott Hotel, Midas Hotel & Casino, Sofitel Philippine Plaza, to name a few.
The Virtus Awards, according to HSMA Officer Christine Urbanozo-Ibarreta, “is open to hotel sales and marketing personnel, like reservations, public relations, marketing communications, revenue, banquet, etc.”
“The impact of the Virtus Awards to the whole industry is that the owners and GMs will take care of the sales and marketing people who are the fuel of the industry, of the hotel itself,” added Christine. “It’s the first (award) and the result of this with their clients is all of them (participating hotels, resorts, and tourists properties) will be excellent.”
“The Virtus Awards comes at a most opportune time. With the establishment of ASEAN Community by 2015, the prioritization of the country’s travek and industry opens a unique window of opportunity for local stakeholders to benefit from, as well as to cope with the challenges of regional integration,” said Rose Libongco, Overall Chair, Virtus Awards.
During the meet-up, we got the chance to know more about Midas Hotel & Casino’s Outstanding Sales and Marketing Leader nominee, Cielo Ortega-Reboredo, Director of Sales and Marketing, and how happy she is for Midas for getting inside all of four categories.
The presentation turned more lively with the presence of Cielo as she laid out how articulate she is in communicating with people, which is one of the important must-have of a person in sales and marketing position.
We also met the other candidates from Midas and two from Hotel H2O.
Trophies for the Virtus Awards were specially made by Mr. Joey Ong for HSMA. Mr. Ong was the 1st Prize awardee for Sculpture Art Association of the Philippines (AAP) Art Competition 1999 and 2002.
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