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The Emerald gaming resort in Mactan gets BOI tax perks

An artist's perspective of The Emerald, an integrated gaming resort being developed by the Udenna Group on Mactan Island. (Photo from

A P34-billion integrated hotel and casino that Davao businessman Dennis A. Uy’s Udenna Group is developing on Mactan Island leads the list of projects that the Board of Investments (BOI) approved in the first six months of 2019.

A total of 14 projects with an estimated combined cost of P49.2 billion were registered with the BOI from January to June 2019.

These projects will enjoy an average income tax holiday of 4 to 6 years (maximum of 8 years) and duty-free importation of capital equipment, among other incentives.

Udenna’s project, called The Emerald, will create 3,799 job opportunities when it opens in 2020. It will be the first integrated gaming resort outside Luzon.

The Emerald is being developed on a 13.5-hectare property in Punta Engaño. It will feature an aggregate gaming floor area of around 7,000 square meters, a five-star hotel with over 800 rooms, a retail complex with a gross floor area of 8,000 square meters, a convention center, and 18 restaurants.

It is being developed through Lapu-Lapu Leisure, Inc., a unit of listed PH Resorts Group Holdings, Inc., the holding company for the gaming and hospitality business of Udenna Group.

Udenna was granted a provisional license to operate a casino by gaming regulator Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) in May 2017.

Other developments under PH Resorts (formerly known as the Philippine H2O Ventures Corporation) are the upscale Donatela Hotel on Panglao Island in Bohol, which is managed by the Enderun Hospitality Management, and The Base adventure-themed resort in Clark Global City.

The Emerald was granted fiscal incentives by the BOI in the first quarter of 2019, according to a report by the BOI Domestic Investments Promotion Service Cebu extension office.

Five other projects were granted incentives in the first quarter, including the P2.345-billion upscale Dusit Thani Mactan Cebu Resort which was developed by Robinsons Land Corporation also in Punta Engaño.

Read: Robinsons resort among P243-B projects granted tax incentives

Dusit Thani Mactan Cebu Resort (Photo by Ventures Cebu)

Other projects approved by the BOI in the first quarter were the following: P7.9-billion Compostela Steel, Inc. manufacturing facility in Compostela, Cebu; P1.3-billion All Natural Coco Products, Inc. factory in Bacong, Negros Oriental; an P849-million health facility by Allied Care Experts Dumaguete Doctors, Inc. in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental; and P500-million Sterling Resort Mactan by Cebu Seaworld 888 Resort Corporation in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

Eight other companies received BOI’s approval for their projects in the second quarter.

Among these are: Ecology Marine Transport Specialist, Inc. in Amlan, Negros Oriental, with an estimated project cost of P604 million; trading company South Pacific, Inc. in Mandaue City in Cebu, P550 million; San Miguel Yamamura Packaging Corporation in Mandaue City, P379 million; and Anjo Global Sourcing, Inc. in Minglanilla, Cebu, P372 million.

Manila-based mass housing developer Bria Homes, Inc. will also receive tax incentives for its two residential condominium buildings, each costing P54 million, in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu.

Shipping company Shogun Ships Company, Inc. from Cebu City was also granted incentives for two projects, with estimated cost of P88.9 million and P90.4 million. (Ventures Cebu)

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