The four-year-old event welcomed a record-breaking 200-plus entries from around the archipelago this year

Winners and Highly Commended at the 4th Philippines Property Awards 2016
Winners and Highly Commended at the 4th Philippines Property Awards 2016

Megaworld Corporation took home its first-ever Best Developer award as well as three more gongs and 13 Highly Commended honours at the fourth annual Philippines Property Awards gala dinner.

The Dr Andrew L Tan-led company started the evening with an unprecedented 16 nominations, with Uptown Bonifacio getting six nods. The high-end urban township eventually won Best Residential Architectural Design for the Uptown Ritz condominium development.

Last year’s Best Developer winner SM Group was nominated for 10 awards through its various subsidiaries and eventually took home Best Commercial Development (Philippines) for SM Seaside City Cebu, a retail project undertaken by its commercial investment arm, SM Prime Holdings Inc.

The conglomerate, headed by Henry Sy Sr, the country’s richest man, also won the coveted Special Recognition in CSR for providing Filipinos “five-star” homes in prime locations around the country, as well as promoting a conducive learning experience for the youth by building and remodelling overpopulated public school classrooms across the islands.

Presented by Hansgrohe, the fourth edition of the Philippines Property Awards 2016 welcomed a new category to reward the country’s outstanding boutique developers. In the category for Best Boutique Developer, AppleOne Properties Inc pipped King Properties. Fellow Cebu-based firms, Primary Homes Inc and Cebu Landmasters Inc, collected several Winners and Highly Commended accolades in other categories.

With this year’s entries doubling to more than 200 compared to 2015, the time has come to widen the scope of the programme, a move that was welcomed by the independent panel of judges and trusted awards supervisor BDO.

“Whilst there’s still an emphasis on Metro Manila, there was an increase in the number of entries from Cebu and also Davao,” said Lindsay J Orr, chief operating officer of Jones Lang LaSalle Philippines and chairman of the judges. “What we need to do now is to continue to bang the drums and build the awareness for the Philippines Property Awards so that next year we make sure that we’ll have an even larger section of entries from other regions.”

Another highlight of the ceremony was the presentation to former Senate President Manuel B Villar Jr, founder of the Vista Land Group, of the Real Estate Personality of the Year award by the editors of Property Report. It was the only award not selected by the independent judging panel.

Known for his master planned developments called “Communicities,” the self-made billionaire saw his construction supplies business in the early 1970s grow into a quality housing developer.

“I am deeply grateful for, and profoundly humbled by, this recognition from the Philippines Property Awards,” said Villar. “For me, the Real Estate Personality of the Year award is a testament to how Vista Land has been an instrument in improving the lives of Filipinos by providing them homes to live comfortably and communities where necessities are within their reach. “

Proving his company’s worth as a quality housing specialist, Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc took home the Best Housing Development (Philippines) award for Northpoint, located in Davao. This project beat all the residential category winners from across the nation and, along with the other ‘best of the best’ winners from the Philippines, will move on to compete at the South East Asia Property Awards grand finale in Singapore this November.

“As the Asia Property Awards programme continues to grow in its 11th year, we are proud to accomplish our goal to showcase the finest developers and projects from the established and emerging locations in the Philippines,” says Terry Blackburn, founder of the Asia Property Awards and managing director of awards organiser PropertyGuru International. “We look forward to welcoming more entries from regional developers next year as we celebrate the achievements of Philippine real estate.”

Property Report Congress Philippines 2016
The inaugural Property Report Congress Philippines 2016 at the Fairmont Makati on 7 April

The rise of the country’s emerging markets was featured prominently at the Property Report Congress Philippines 2016, a high-level forum that discussed the past, present and future of the local real estate industry. It was the first time that the Congress took place in the country after the successful debut in Singapore in 2015. The Philippine conference preceded the black-tie gala gala dinner at the Fairmont Makati and was joined by experts from all over the archipelago and further afield, including current and former Winners and Judges from the Philippines Property Awards.

JLL Philippines’ Orr delivered the keynote address about the exciting prospects in the local market, whilst an in-depth workshop on digital marketing for Filipino real estate professionals was given by the gala dinner’s VIP speaker John W. Mims, chief connector and managing director of The Hunting Ridge Group. Other thought-provoking discussions covered the rise of branded residences, the crucial issue of infrastructure problems, the future of green building and the impact of technology in the Philippine property sector.

Click here for the complete list of Winners and Highly Commended at the Philippines Property Awards 2016