Maria Manlulu-Garcia, newly appointed general manager of Novotel Manila Araneta City

Novotel Manila Araneta City recently announced the appointments of seasoned hoteliers to key positions in the hotel. Maria Manlulu-Garcia was appointed as the first female general manager for international brand Accor in the country, while Darwin Labayandoy will now assume the position of resident manager from being director of rooms.

Prior to her appointment as general manager, Garcia goes way back in the hotel industry as early as 1992. She began her career as a front office agent and eventually rose from the ranks and subsequently became rooms director of the Ramada Hotel, in Portland, Oregon, USA in 1995. She was part of the pre-opening team of three hotels also in downtown Portland, namely Hotel Lucia, Paramount Hotel both under West Coast Hotels and Intercontinental Hotel prior to her return to the Philippines.

She has been awarded as Manager of the Year by the Philippine Association of HR Managers in the hospitality industry through the Mabuhay Awards in 2008 during her assignment with Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila as executive assistant manager of rooms. Moving on, she became the general manager of Pico De Loro Country Club and Pico Sands Hotel in Batangas and rejoined Accor at Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua in Indonesia prior to joining Novotel Manila Araneta City as executive assistant manager and eventually promoted to resident manager in 2016 and hotel manager in 2019.

Darwin Labayandoy will now assume the position of resident manager

Labayandoy, meanwhile, has 25 years of professional experience in the hospitality industry. Prior to joining Novotel Manila Araneta City, he held key positions at Dusit Hotel Nikko and Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila. Rooms division operations being his expertise, Labayandoy is a passionate individual known to be result-oriented with a strong dedication and a key driver of customer satisfaction.

He has undergone the Accor’s National Talent Program (NTP) and successfully finished the program in 2019. He has also contributed significantly during the pre-opening phase of Novotel Manila and has been instrumental in its successful opening. He has provided unrelenting support, strategic direction in guest satisfaction that led to the successful delivery of the hotel’s objectives for the past years.