Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Ladies Who Lead - Recognizing New Women leaders in Megaworld Hotels and Resorts

The best man for the job is a woman!

The word "care" will always be associated, if not the majority of Filipinos, with all women, particularly mothers, who have tirelessly given everything they could to shape leaders and contributing individuals beginning in our collective "home." In fact, times have changed, and more empowered women are now taking on leadership roles in their respective fields.
Megaworld Hotels and Resorts, the largest hospitality management chain in the Philippines with six brands, twelve properties, and 4,500 room keys across the country, is recognizing three intelligent, hardworking women who have overcame numerous challenges with various mindsets and are now taking on new leadership roles within the company.

Keep going and learn to stand tall


“I am positive that change will come naturally. In the future. I would like to be defined and seen as a leader alone, and not a woman leader. Keep going despite the times when the world fails to be kind. We must learn to stand tall and take care of ourselves. there is no point in beating yourself up over things that you cannot change. Ultimately, fall in love with the process, not the goal. Don’t be afraid to be too much and enjoy as you watch everything fall into place.” ~Owen Samonte, Director of Sales and Marketing
Rowena Samonte, General Manager of Twin Lakes Hotel

The next time you visit the Twin Lakes Hotel, one of the most popular hilltop resorts in the south of Luzon near Tagaytay, make sure to say hello to GM Samonte. Owen, or "Owen" to many, rose from Director of Sales and Marketing to her current position as first lady general manager of a 122-room hotel in the center of Megaworld's 1,200-hectare Twin Lakes estate. Despite the title, she talks about how the world is still changing.

As society comes to better terms with inclusivity, she sees it as a privilege and a responsibility to part-take in the effort of eliminating prejudiced biases with gender and preference as a primary basis.

With almost three decades of humble service in the industry under her belt, the first-time general manager has undoubtedly accomplished a lot. She has advanced from operations to sales until she reaches the level of executive leadership. She recalls beginning her career as a cashier at an outlet and progressing to Assistant Director of Events and Management at Edsa Shangri-La in Manila. She also tried out other international brands like Mandarin Oriental and Intercontinental Hotel, as well as local brands like B Hotel in Quezon City and Robinsons Hotels and Resorts, before joining Megaworld Hotels and Resorts, the largest Filipino-owned hotel chain, in 2020.

When asked about the best advice she can give to the younger generation about becoming a better version of themselves.

For the month of March, in honor of Women’s Month, imagine quiet moments with the cold gentle breeze over “Afternoon High Tea”. Enjoy this best in the property’s high ceiling European Style lobby or al fresco, overseeing the hotel’s vineyard and mesmerizing view of Taal lake. Make the month of March  memorable for you and the family, for dining and room bookings visit or email

Believe in the good in everyone

“Mentorship is a tool I personally have benefited from the most and is my privilege and responsibility to pass it forward. You bet, and quite a lot! But if there’s one observed universal fact across cultures that ties us all in, is that you will never go wrong when you believe in the good in everyone. You can never tell how your day is going to end. You take things like how the shores welcome the waves of the sea. You can never control it, but you can always make the most out of it. What more from life can you ask for?” ~Maia Israel, General Manager of Belmont Hotel Boracay
Maia IsraelGeneral Manager of Belmont Hotel Boracay

Sweet and loving. Maia Israel, who rose from resort manager to general manager of the Belmont Hotel Boracay in a year, has always been admired for her nurturing leadership style.

She admits to having been blessed with leaders who took the ways of the heart to motivate outcome and positive results when she thinks back to the days when she started her career in the hospitality industry as a member of the reservations team at Shangri-La Mactan in the 1990s. From there, she worked for brands like Marriott International and Banyan Tree in the Maldives, Indonesia, Fiji, and Cambodia, among other places.
Were there tough days? With most of her experience growing in the revenue, rooms operations and F&B of numerous beach resorts all over the world. 
She appreciates the distinction between the two MHR properties in Boracay Newcoast, one of which is the Savoy Hotel Boracay. She stated that in contrast to the usual parties that the island is typically known for, Belmont takes a straightforward and tranquil approach. The hotel is ideal for small to large family get-togethers, business travelers, and elderly guests who want peace and quiet while enjoying Boracay's sun, sand, and sea. with 442 rooms, two restaurants, a spa, a pool, and a beachfront dedicated to watching the golden sunrise.
Get treated to a night or two and plan those private dinners by the beach with Belmont Hotel Boracay. Email or visit for room reservations and other arrangements for a comfortable stay.

Believe in the good in everyone

“More than the destination, picturesque scenery, and complete facilities is really the collection of memorable moments that builds connections and spark joy. A memorable authentic Filipino customer experience is constantly evolving and adequately adapts to the needs of the customer. We Filipinos are known to be hospitable and are a happy people. We are enablers, and we do so with warmth and a smile that doesn’t need to be taught or practiced. It is important to aim to constantly improve the overall experience of each investor or customer has with the brand. MHR has a transformational leader in the person of its very own Managing Director, Ms. Cleofe Albiso, who empowers key executives. MHR’s structural pillars are in place and steps are being taken to further improve and strengthen the organization to support further growth. Have the chance to greet another day with a smile, be able to make a difference in the lives of others as much as you inspire them to bring the good forward. We welcome and recognize our new leaders with so much pride and joy knowing that there’s so much instore for everyone who believes in what a homegrown brand like us can do.” ~Claire Bernabe, Megaworld Hotels and Resorts’ newest addition to the brand management team
Claire del Rosario Bernabe, Director of Customer Experience and New Ventures of Megaworld Hotels and Resorts

It’s all about the experience. Exactly 30 years in the hospitality industry with local and international experience. Waving the flagship of the largest homegrown hospitality management brand.
Nothing ever works perfectly. While no brand will ever possess everything, its enablers will always have the opportunity to learn and discover. She is excited about the upcoming projects in her new position as Director of Customer Experience and New Ventures at Megaworld Hotels and Resorts (MHR).
Fortunately, Bernabe celebrates the organization's faith, investors, and employees with MHR. as a person who comes from well-known brands. Bernabe has held leadership positions with numerous brands in her field, including Pearl Farm Beach Resort, Century International Hotels, Marco Polo Davao, Novotel Garden Plaza Saigon, Movenpick Saigon, and Discovery Shores.
Looking into the future, Cleofe Albiso, top executive of Megaworld hotels and Resorts announces that “opportunities are endless with the organization”Albiso believes that everyone should have equal access to opportunities as long as we remain humble and put in the effort to achieve them. MHR is planning to open the largest hotel in the Philippines this year, the Grand Westside Hotel, in Paranaque's Entertainment City, with more than 1,500 rooms. Albiso and her team hope to fill the positions they have open by using this method.
To all the women and allies joining in the cause to elevate other women and campaign for inclusivity, trust that you are all welcome across all properties of Megaworld Hotels and Resorts. Get a 20% discount for your next stay whenever you go to Boracay, Cebu, Iloilo, Metro Manila, or near Tagaytay.

Twin Lakes Hotel, located at Tagaytay-Nasugbu Highway, Laurel Bantangas

Belmont Hotel Boracay, located at the Newcoast Drive, Boracay Newcoast, Brgy. Yapak, Boracay Island, Malay, Aklan, Philippines

Stay in Belmont Hotel Manila or Savoy Hotel Manila within Newport City in Pasay across NAIA terminal 3, Kingsford Hotel Manila located in the Entertainment City of Paranaque, Hotel Lucky Chinatown in Binondo, Twin Lakes Hotel near Tagaytay, Eastwood Richmonde Hotel in Quezon City, Richmonde Hotel Ortigas in Pasig, Richmonde Hotel Iloilo in Iloilo Business Park of Iloilo City, Belmont Hotel Boracay or Savoy Hotel Boracay located at the Newcoast Boracay or even in Savoy Hotel Mactan Newtown in Cebu or in the newly opened Belmont Hotel Mactan Newtown. Learn more about it and visit to plan your next hotel getaway. Travel more! For further information, visit the website, email or visit Megaworld Hotels & Resorts official facebook page.  

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