Caring for nature for 15+ years
The current rate at which people are observing sustainability practices is far from stopping climate change. Whether it’s reducing the use of disposable items or saving more energy, environmentally friendly activities will only yield meaningful results if everyone is “cast in the same mould”, therefore, to say. That said, high-impact global sustainability is the responsibility of government and large organizations, including conglomerates.
Understanding such a role, SM Prime Holdings, Inc., one of Southeast Asia’s largest integrated real estate developers, incorporated its sustainable practices into its developments early on. Via Costa Del Hamilo Inc by SM Prime., a leader in the leisure resort industry and the movers behind Hamilo Coast – this upscale beach resort in Nasugbu, Batangas, fosters a tangible connection with nature. Marking its five-year term, Hamilo Coast looks back on its milestones and achievements with an emphasis on sustainable development.
“Sustainability has been at the forefront of our vision in providing a resort lifestyle. We strive to practice environmental and social sustainability in our operations through our partners and communities,” said Franklin M. Bolalin , Assistant Vice President of Hamilo Estate Management.
Disaster risk reduction
Each year, the country faces an average of 19 typhoons, some of which often result in property damage and loss of life. Coastal defenses such as sea walls and breakwater structures are often put in place to resist storm surges. In the case of Hamilo Coast, the mangroves are key.
The 100,000 square meter or 10 hectare equivalent of the Hamilo Coast mangrove belt is one of the largest mangrove areas in the municipality. The sustainable resort has since planted 50,000 mangrove propagules, protected in collaboration with the conservation organization World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Philippines.
Besides disaster mitigation, mangroves also benefit the climate by absorbing greenhouse gases (GHGs) and carbon dioxide. This ability nurtures the region’s ecosystem and biodiversity, providing habitat for a wide range of species.
Hamilo is home to rich marine life and abundant flora and fauna. Its conservation programs and various sustainability initiatives have nurtured and conserved its precious biodiversity. There are approximately 96 different bird species found on the estate. Among these bird species are the rough-crested Malkoha and the Philippine eagle-owl.
From growing local plants to conducting regular coastal cleanup campaigns, coastal resource conservation initiatives are active on the Hamilo Coast. With the help of WWF, they can increase the biological capacity of their fisheries and monitor their marine protected areas (MPAs) – the coves of Pico de Loro, Etayo and Santelmo which are part of the three MPAs of the Costa Del Hamilo. Hamilo has worked with WWF since 2007 to monitor the health and sustainability of the Hamilo Coast region.
In recognition of its conservation efforts, Hamilo Coast has been named by the World Wide Fund for Nature as its longest-serving sustainability partner in 2020.
“Over the years, our partnership with SM has contributed significantly to the impact we have in our work at Hamilo Coast. From liquid waste and coral monitoring to our current work on integrated waste management and food sheds, we hope this ongoing partnership will help us achieve our vision of making Hamilo a holistic model of sustainability,” says Katherine Custodio , Director of WWF-Philippines. Director.
Development of green buildings
The path to a sustainable future is paved with many interventions, including zero waste, dematerialization, zero emissions and resource efficiency practices. For its part, Hamilo Coast enables its intention to be a leading sustainable community by ensuring that its buildings are designed with the environment in mind.
Some of the estate’s facilities are powered by alternative energy sources. For example, its streetlights use more solar energy than traditional streetlights to operate. Natural lighting and ventilation are also noticeable in some of its residential areas, which benefits the environment as well as its tenants. In addition, Hamilo Coast implements a solid waste management plan which consists, among other things, of material recovery and vermicomposting.
At the heart of Hamilo Coast is how a distinct beachfront home can blend in with its surrounding environment. As people seek a more relaxed environment closer to nature and the outdoors amidst a work-from-home setup driven by the ongoing pandemic, Hamilo homes provide access to invigorating landscapes, coves to explore and the soothing sea.
Fifteen years later, Hamilo Coast has surpassed its reputation as a weekend respite. It is now one of the best settlement options for people looking to experience the coastal life in a sustainable community.