The PHRS Philippine Hotel Reservations Service’s very first Boracay Beach Volleyball Open (
BBVO) did not disappoint as players and about seven hundred spectators and supporters converged to celebrate fitness and the love of sports on the beautiful island of Boracay.
Four o’clock in the morning, with the water at its lowest level, the crew began its grueling task of leveling the two (2) playing courts in anticipation of the first ever Boracay Beach Volleyball Open (BBVO) from Philippine Hotel Reservations Service or PHRS, for short. As the sun rose, players and new registrants flocked to the famous white sand beach in front of Summerplace Boracay to officially start the event.
Yet there was one big obstacle, the entire island had no power! With Governor Carlito Marquez (of Aklan) waiting in the sidelines to conduct the symbolic “First Serve” to commence the tournament, the organizers scrambled to find a power generator.
While the players warmed up, DJ Darwin, the man hugely responsible for the fun and exciting atmosphere, eventually pumps out the first song and starts the ‘party mood’, thus, officially breaking the nervous anticipation of all those in attendance. The event was finally underway and Kalibo Cable was there to capture every moment of the competition live on TV while One Sport Magazine took every amazing spike, dig and jump shots of all the players!
True to the original intent of promoting both the love of volleyball and the promotion of Boracay as an eco-tourism destination, the two (2) FIVB*- standard courts were surrounded by flags and perimeter borders using bamboo structures which greatly resonated the true “island feel” intended for this event.
Lila Marquez-Rosenberger, the CEO and co-founder of PHRS expressed her company’s desire to create a play area with the least environmental impact on the island. Quite evident throughout as all areas were clearly marked for recyclable trash disposal and even all the goodies were given away using reusable cloth bags courtesy of Choose Philippines.
PHRS offered not only offered unlimited beverages from San Miguel Corporation and Technolux (Fiji Water), and snacks from Solara (a new multi-grain snack from Rebisco) but they also made sure that non-players could partake in all the fun through various activities and games at the BBVO Booth where they gave away pads and pens, magazines, t-shirts, jackets and more, courtesy of their twenty-four (24) generous sponsors. No one left the event empty handed!
Game Director, Ariel Joaquin of the Progressive Volleyball Center, knew almost instantly as he gave out his last minute reminders about the rules of play that this tournament would be nothing short of exciting. The players knew a lot was at stake -- as sixteen (16) teams would compete for the Men’s prize of PHP 15,000 and consolation prizes amounting to another PHP 10,000 for the 2nd to 4th placers; while eight (8) teams for the Mixed category vied for the PHP 6,000 prize.
The exhilarating events on Day One was capped off by a sumptuous BBQ Bash of fresh oysters and fish at Le Soleil where ZestAir, the event’s official airline partner gave away goodies during the “Bring Me” game. Of course the night could not end without the much-awaited Players Party where players and supporters enjoyed unlimited cocktails courtesy of the Summerplace Boracay.
Day Two proved to be most exciting albeit a short break to watch Pacquiao-Marquez fight. It was clear by mid-day that the dominating teams were from Le Soleil de Boracay and Team Phoenix/Cebu. These two (2) teams fought closely for the championship title for both divisions and in the end each team took home the prize winnings.
Charie Villa, the head of News and Online Business for ABS-CBN’s Regional Network Group who graced the event with her team to do an exclusive Sport Segment on TV Patrol Panay/Iloilo was on hand to award the medals and cash prizes to the winners and runner ups for the Men’s Division: Team Le Soleil - Jayson Labuyo and Jayson Palma, while Team Phoenix’s Joerem Yu and Jason Gabales, who fought ferociously for the grand title took the highly deserved 2nd place position. Ranking 3rd and 4th places were Dan Constantino and Lester Ocampo of Team Sur; and Sander Formacion and Mark Anthony Alvarez for Team Palassa Spa, respectively.
The Mixed Division, tagged as a FUN tournament, proved to be just that and more! Players from as far as Germany, United States and Canada who participated in the competitive matches were joined by fun-loving tourists from Brazil, Qatar and Sweden who played in the exhibition rounds to get a chance to win prizes from our sponsors.
Resident General Manager of Le Soleil de Boracay, Jimmy Coscolluela awarded the medals and cash prize, along with bags from My Goodie Bag, for the Mixed category winners -- Team Cebu composed of Jocel Ann Estela, Dan Constantino, and yet again, Joerem Yu and Jayson Gabales.
Recognizing the overwhelming response over the success of the event received from the players, sponsors, media, guests and organizers, Lila Marquez-Rosenberger expressed her gratitude and reveled in the outpouring enthusiasm from the crowd as she announced the possibility of making this into an annual event.
Hope to see you at the PHRS Boracay Beach Volleyball Open in 2012!
*Fédération Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) is the international governing body for the sport of volleyball.
PHRS Philippine Hotel Reservations Service, Inc is largest leading Philippine-based hotel reservations hotline and booking portal (www.philippinehotelreservations.com) in the country. They have been bringing guests to Boracay since 2006 and are planning to end the year with a total of 7,000 visitors into the island.
Official List of Sponsors :
Le Soleil De Boracay
Zest Air, Inc.
San Miguel Corporation
Women's Health Magazine
Men's Health Magazine
One Sport Magazine
Choose Philippines (ABS-CBN)
ABS CBN Regional Network Group
My Goodie Bag
Polychem Industries, Inc.
Best Western Boracay Tropics
Boracay Holiday Resort
Patio Pacific Boracay
Solara Multi-Grain Snack (a product of Rebisco)
Club Manila East Boracay