SMX Convention Center-Davao plays a major role in certifying Davao as a vibrant, thriving MICE destination in Southern Philippines by providing the much needed world-class facility and service.”
— Ms Baby Montemayor, topnotch Davao-based restaurateur, chef and tourism pillar.
A fast-growing company, SMX Convention Center is managing six exhibition and convention venues in key cities across the Philippines; namely SMX Convention Center Manila, SMX Convention Center Aura, SMX Convention Center Bacolod, Megatrade Hall, Cebu Trade Hall and SMX Convention Center Davao.
It is positioning to be the premier venue for local and international meetings, incentives, conventions, exhibitions (MICE) and social and corporate events all over the country.
Among the six convention centers, SMX Convention Center Davao is the largest and first privately-owned and –managed convention and exhibition center in southern Philippines.
The idea of building an SMX convention center in Davao City dawned as a result of a long-time clamor of professional organizations, civic clubs, and even government agencies and their event organizers for venues large enough to hold as many as 5,000 delegates or bigger in a convention. Absence of this large space has resulted in failure of the city to host national and international events for years. And so, on September 28, 2012, as the SM Lanang Premier opened, SMX Convention Center Davao was born—the first SMX CC built outside Manila.
SMX Davao, located at the 3rd level of SM Lanang Premier, measures a total of 4,745 square meters. Its carpeted function space is divisible into three function rooms that can accommodate approximately 5,500 guests in a theater set-up and five meeting rooms that could cater to 10-12 guests per room. It is linked to Park Inn and Radison Hotel by a footbridge, which makes it more convenient to visitors.
Happenings at SMX
Since its establishment in 2012, SMX has been the site of various big and small events in Davao city. According to Daphne Alojado, SMX Davao manager, the center is the venue of 250 to 300 events a year.
Important international meetings were held in the convention center like recent ASEAN Summit and the 2017 Miss Universe pageant fashion show last January.
SMX Davao had also gained patrons who hold their exhibitions annually. Their most notable fairs are the Davao Trade Expo, by the Davao City Chamber of Commerce which happens every September, Phil Construct Mindanao, also every September and World Food Expo Mindanao every June—all of which are high revenue generating accounts.
Concerts have also been a frequent event in SMX, particularly from Ovation Productions. In 2013 alone, there were 10 concerts held in the convention center.
SMX also cater to events held by corporate companies like sales rallies, call center fairs and Christmas parties. Also, they host graduation exercises of different schools like the monolithic Davao City National High School, Davao Doctors College, University of Mindanao, Davao Merchant and Marine Academy and San Pedro College.
SMX expansion in 2018
To address the need for a bigger and more convenient venue, SMX Davao will be expanded, starting on the first quarter of year 2018. Alojado said that a new building will be constructed beside SM Lanang Premiere. The new structure will be connected to the Mall’s Third Level. Alojado said that aside from having the usual function rooms and meeting rooms, the new building will have trade halls big enough to cater to car shows and other huge exhibitions.
Davao as top MICE destination
“Even before the establishment of the convention center, Davao city has been the top go-to venues for functions and events. With the existence of the SMX Convention center, all the more people expressed their interest in holding functions in Davao to visit the city itself,” said Ms Alojado.
Indeed, the role of the SMX Convention Center in enabling Davao to achieve the status of a MICE destination cannot be gainsaid.
According to Ms Baby Montemayor, topnotch Davao-based restaurateur, chef and tourism pillar, “SMX Convention Center-Davao plays a major role in certifying Davao as a vibrant, thriving MICE destination in Southern Philippines by providing the much needed world-class facility and service.”
“As SMX-accredited caterer since its inception, I am witness to how it has fulfilled all our dreams and aspirations of pushing for Davao as a recognized global MICE destination,” said she, adding “we aspire to bring more events our way in partnership with various industry players, through active collaboration and common vision.. and this is being achieved with pride and joy!”