Negros Occidental to develop world-class nature resort

BACOLOD CITY – The Negros Occidental provincial government is set to develop the Mambukal Resort and Wildlife Sanctuary in Murcia town into an ecological-friendly, world-class resort to boost tourism in the province. The updates on the proposed developments include the planned enhancement of hotel facilities and the introduction of new tourism features.

In a statement, Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Lacson said “Mambukal has always been a hallmark of our provincial tourism, and as such, we aim to develop a world-class resort while at the same time promote ecological sustainability and protection.”

Lacson said the hotel will have more rooms with prices from mid- to high- range. The province also plans to introduce features such as trail running, hiking, biking, and horseback riding, tramlines and ziplines, he added.

Recently, the provincial government finalized the purchase of the 10-hectare property covering the resort’s famous seven falls from the Mambucal Real Estate Development Corp. for P80 million. “The province will now exercise control and ownership over the land surrounding our falls and river systems. Our focus will be on reforestation, ensuring the protection of our falls, and preserving our natural resources,” Lacson said.

When the resort reopened in December 2021 after almost two years of closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Lacson issued Executive Order (EO) 21-45, declaring and rebranding the Mambukal Resort as a wildlife sanctuary. The the area is home to several wildlife species protected under Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act.

Considering Mambukal Resort’s characteristic, which is home to, among others, “endemic and wildlife species that require specific human manipulations for their perpetuation, it falls under the category of wildlife sanctuary,” the EO added.

EO 21-45  also prohibits “hunting, wounding, taking or killing within the said territory of any endemic or wildlife animals/and or the destruction of any vegetation or any act causing the disturbance to the habitat of the wildlife herein protected.”

Located at the foot of Mt. Kanlaon, Mambukal Resort and Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the few bat sanctuaries in the country. (PNA)