Wed, 17 Aug 2022

LAOAG CITY - Ilocos Norte is eyeing to open an inflatable island at the Paoay Lake to attract more visitors and promote investment opportunities here.

Funded by the provincial government, the PHP26.1 million worth waterpark will be managed and operated by the Beachbosses Inc. through a direct contracting agreement for six months and can be renewed as needed.

Senior tourism operations officer Xavier Ruiz said in an interview Wednesday the China-fabricated materials for the inflatable island installation will arrive first week of December, just in time for the target opening on December 17.

"This is just the beginning of a long time wish of the Ilocos Norte government to activate the Paoay Lake for tourism and investment opportunities," said Ruiz, noting that an old club house at the Malacanang of the North is almost done with its renovation.

He said this would serve as a support facility for the operation of the water park.

Once fully operational, the water park hopes to raise an estimated sales of PHP4.5 million from April to May which is the peak season of tourists arrivals in the province "without the threat of the Omicron virus," Ruiz said.

Based on the agreement with the service provider which operates an inflatable island on the Subic Bay waters in Olongapo City, Zambales, the Ilocos Norte government shall pay the Beachbosses Inc. PHP800,000 per month.

At least PHP300,000 of the total amount shall cover salaries for its employees, most of them are locally-hired from the province and remaining to cover its operational expenses.

As to gross revenue sharing, it was agreed by both parties that if the amount generated is PHP1 million or less per month, all the proceeds shall go to the Ilocos Norte government funds.

But the gross income goes beyond PHP1 million per month, the service provider will get a share of 25 percent of the amount.

Ruiz said there would be no age restrictions in entering the park but all are expected to wear their life vests for their safety.

Rates for the water park entrance has yet to be finalized with expected lower rates for the locals with a provision of 20 percent discount for persons with disabilities and elderly who may wish to try the water park's amenities. (PNA)

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