PROPERTY – The pioneer in condo living

Condominium projects are mushrooming in Davao City, a concrete testament (pardon the pun) to the vibrant economy of one of the most 91supDMCI
progressive cities in the country. But perhaps unknown to many, it was the Consunji-owned DMCI that pioneered the lifestyle referred to as “urban condo living” in the city.
Way back in 2006, putting up and selling condo units was not attractive endeavor among realtors and brokers.
“I had a meeting with them and broached our intention to build a condo unit, but their answer was no,” recalls DMCI Mindanao general manager Leonora Gutierrez, adding that realtors and brokers argued that the city was not yet ready for that kind of development, citing the vast tract of lands still available for horizontal housing development projects.
“We were frustrated, but still pursued the project. It was like an experiment. We were testing the market,” she said. In 2008, DMCI built the Ecoland 4000 two-building condominium with 112 units. The project sits on a 4000-square meter area in Ecoland—thus, the name.
Gutierrez said the market reception for the project proved that their decision was right.
“We proved them wrong. They failed to recognize that there were many migrants in Davao City, that it had become a melting pot of people. It had become a place where they send their children to schools. They do business here,” she said.
Even without much promotional activities, Gutierrez said Ecoland 4000 condominium units are selling like the proverbial hotcake.
“We printed our fliers only once as we did not conduct much promotional activities. Many of our buyers got information from word of mouth,” she said, adding that the project was so successful that when it was finished in 2009, DMCI had to construct a second project, the three-building Magallanes Residences in the downtown area.
The second project is similarly successful, so much so that when the first building was finished in 2010, DMCI was again constructing the second building that was turned over to unit owners in 2011, the same year the third building was constructed.
“Every year, we turn over a building,” she said.
While the construction of Magallanes Residences was ongoing, DMCI was also developing another exclusive residential and commercial condominium, the Palmeto Place in Maa which has opened its third and last building, the seven-storey Lombardy featuring commercial units on the ground floor.
Also set to commence construction this year is another four-building condominium project on a three-hectare property in Ecoland. with one hectare allotted as an open green space. It is tentatively called Ecoland 3000.
“It offers urban living in a rural setting. The theme is modern classical,” Gutierrez said.
Despite the entry of other big property developers into Davao City, Gutierrez believes the local market is not yet saturated.
“There is still a very bright prospect in real estate, “she said, adding that DMCI remains as the industry’s frontrunner, owing to its brand and quality trademark.
“We have the cutting edge in terms of price, high quality standards and delivery on or ahead of schedule. Our price is really competitive, because in all our projects, we own the land,” Gutierrez said.