BY MARCHEL P. ESPINA
The Department of Tourism in Western Visayas has certified 65 accommodation establishments in Negros Occidental and Bacolod City.
As of yesterday, 41 hotels and resorts in the province were certified by the DOT, its situational report showed.
Of the number, only two establishments were issued with a Certificate of Authority to Operate (CAO), while the rest were given Provisional Certificate of Authority to Operate, by the department.
The 41 accommodation facilities in the province have a total of 463 available rooms.
Establishments granted a CAO have passed the safety standards against the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019.
In Bacolod City, 24 hotels and resorts were certified by the DOT, with 623 available rooms.
One establishment received a CAO, while the 23 others were issued with PCAOs.
In Western Visayas, 327 hotels and resorts – 134 with CAOs and 193 with PCAOs – were certified by the DOT, which have a total of 6,543 available rooms.
Meanwhile, meetings, conventions and exhibitions can be held only in areas under the modified general community quarantine and only at 50 percent capacity as per the guidelines set by the DOT.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat recently signed Administrative Order 2020-003, or the Guidelines on MICE Operations under the MGCQ.
Based on the guidelines, MICE events in areas under enhanced community quarantine, modified ECQ, and general community quarantine are strictly prohibited. Exemptions are those conducted through online platforms facilitated without physical interaction.
The guidelines also stressed that the rules on interzonal and intrazonal movement under the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF-EID) shall be observed. Persons below 21, and over 60 years old are prohibited from participating in any MICE events, even under MGCQ, in accordance with the IATF rules, DOT said.*