Baguio Latest News

Baguio’s UNESCO recognition hailed

BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan welcomed the latest feather on the cap of Baguio City after it was named as one of the sixty four cities worldwide to be part of the prestigious Creative Cities Network of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).


The local chief executive, who is in his final leg of his visit to the sister cities of Baguio in China, Canada and the United States over the past two weeks, said that UNESCO’s latest recognition given to Baguio will serve as a motivation for local officials and the concerned stakeholders to strengthen various programs related to crafts and folk arts considering that the people practice diversed culture and traditions.

“We are elated to learn about the latest recognition given by UNESCO to Baguio city which will serve as a good motivation for local officials and the people to continue strengthening various government led and private sector supported programs in arts, crafts, culture among others,” Domogan stressed.

Earlier, UNESCO released the list the new batch of Creative Cities that included Baguio city which joined  US, Mexico City, Chiang Mai in Thailand, Yamagata in Japan, and Istanbul in Turkey.

UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova announced on October 31 that 64 new cities from 44 countries were included in the network. Since 2004, the network has highlighted its members’ creativity within 7 fields: crafts and folk art, design, film, gastronomy, literature, media arts and music. The 64 new member cities join 116 previous other cities from 72 countries.

Baguio City, which was cited for crafts and folk art, is the first city in the Philippines to join the exclusive club.

Chiang Mai, which was also chosen for crafts and folk art, is the only ASEAN city to join Baguio this year. The other ASEAN cities already in the network are Phuket in Thailand for gastronomy, Singapore for design, and Pakalongan and Badung in Indonesia, both for crafts and folk art.

“These new designations showcase an enhanced diversity in city profiles and geographical balance, with 19 cities from countries not previously represented in the Network,” Bokova said.

Mayor Domogan said it is high tie for the local government, in coordination with the concerned stakeholders, to revisit existing programs in crafts, arts, culture and heritage to incorporate the needed strategies that will sustain its inclusion in the coveted list of the UNESCO’s Creative Cities Network.

According to him, appropriate innovations must be introduced to complement existing programs and projects for the local government to be at part with other similarly situated cities in the global village in uplifting the promotion of crafts, arts and culture for the benefit of the present and future generations.

Baguio, the gateway to the Cordilleras, was created as a hill station by the Americans more than a hundred years ago. The famous architect and urban planner Daniel Burnham set up the blueprint for the city, which was declared as the Summer Capital of the Philippines in 1909.

Since then, it has become the country’s premier city for tourists. In 1988, artists Bencab (Benedicto Reyes Cabrera), Santiago Bose, Tommy Hafalla, Roberto Villanueva, Kidlat Tahimik, David Baradas, Willie Magtibay, and Luisa Igloria founded the Baguio Arts Guild, which established Baguio City among the art hotspots in Asia.

The 64 new members of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network are: Alba (Italy) – Gastronomy, Almaty (Kazakhstan) – Music, Amarante (Portugal) – Music, Auckland (New Zealand) – Music, Baguio City (Philippines) – Crafts and Folk Art, Barcelos (Portugal) – Crafts and Folk Art, Braga (Portugal) – Media Arts, Brasilia (Brazil) – Design, Bristol (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) – Film, Brno (Czechia) – Music, Bucheon (Republic of Korea) – Literature, Buenaventura (Colombia) – Gastronomy, Cairo (Egypt) – Crafts and Folk Art, Cape Town (South Africa) – Design, Carrara (Italy) – Crafts and Folk Art, Changsha (China) – Media Arts, Chennai (India) – Music, Chiang Mai (Thailand) – Crafts and Folk Art, Chordeleg (Ecuador) – Crafts and Folk Art, Cochabamba (Bolivia [Plurinational State of]) – Gastronomy, Daegu Metropolitan City (Republic of Korea) – Music, Dubai (United Arab Emirates) – Design, Durban (South Africa) – Literature, Frutillar (Chile) – Music, Gabrovo (Bulgaria) – Crafts and Folk Art, [City of] Greater Geelong (Australia) – Design, Guadalajara (Mexico) – Media Arts, Hatay Metropolitan Municipality (Turkey) – Gastronomy, Istanbul (Turkey) – Design, João Pessoa (Brazil) – Crafts and Folk Art, Kansas City (United States of America) – Music, Kolding (Denmark) – Design, Kortrijk (Belgium) – Design, Košice (Slovakia) – Media Arts, Kütahya (Turkey) – Crafts and Folk Art, Lillehammer (Norway) – Literature, Limoges (France) – Crafts and Folk Art, Łódź (Poland) – Film, Macao Special Administrative Region, China (Associate Member, UNESCO) – Gastronomy, Madaba (Jordan) – Crafts and Folk Art, Manchester (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) – Literature, Mexico City (Mexico) – Design, Milan (Italy) – Literature, Morelia (Mexico) – Music

Norrköping (Sweden) – Music, Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) – Crafts and Folk Art, Panama, City (Panama) – Gastronomy, Paraty (Brazil) – Gastronomy, Pesaro (Italy) – Music, Porto-Novo (Benin) – Crafts and Folk Art, Praia (Cabo Verde) – Music, Qingdao (China) – Film, Québec City (Canada) – Literature, San Antonio (United States of America) – Gastronomy, Seattle (United States of America) – Literature, Sheki (Azerbaijan) – Crafts and Folk Art, Sokodé (Togo) – Crafts and Folk Art, Terrassa (Spain) – Film, Tétouan (Morocco) – Crafts and Folk Art, Toronto (Canada) – Media Arts, Tunis (Tunisia) – Crafts and Folk Art, Utrecht (Netherlands) – Literature, Wuhan (China) – Design and Yamagata City (Japan) – Film.

By HENT @ Herald Express


Baguio Tourist Attractions

Marker of the Philippine Commission's First Session in Baguio

This is the site of the building where the members of the Philippine Commission met from April 22 to June 11, 1904 and officially initiated the use of Baguio as the Philippine Summer Capital. The Commission was composed of Governor General Luke Wright, president, and Commissioners Henry Ide, Dean C. Worcester, T Padre Tavera, Benito Legarda, Jose de Luzuriaga, James Smith and Cameron Forbes.

Kennon Road and its Builder

Tourist-Spots-in-BaguioNamed after Col. Lyman W. Kennon, who was the final builder of the famous Benguet road, with the help of the industrious Cordillerans and foreign workers. Kennon road is the shortest and the most scenic highway linking Baguio and the lowlands. The lion's head can be found along the way. Final construction of this road was finished in 1903. Col. L. Kennon first ascended to Baguio in 1905. Of the original workers, the Igorots and Japanese were admired for their trustworthiness and willingness to work. Kennon was closed to traffic after the July 16, 1990 earthquake. It is now open to light vehicles only.

Diplomat Hotel on Dominican Hill

diplomatIn May 1911, the councils of the Province of the Dominican Order voted to construct a vacation house in Baguio on a 17-hectare property they had acquired when the American authorities were encouraging people to come here. Actual work started in 1913 under Fr. Roque Ruano and the building was inaugurated on May 23, 1925. To take advantage of the tax exemptions a school called Collegio del Santissimo Rosario was opened in June 1915 but due to the very small enrollment the school closed in 1917, reverting the building to the original vacation house. During WWII refugees first occupied it. Later the Japanese Army Liberation Forces had to bomb out the refugees from the buildings. The five hits left very extensive damage and for a time it was left unrepaired. Reconstruction was started in 1947 and completed in 1948 with most of its pre-war grandeur and beauty restored. In 1973, Diplomat Hotels, Inc. acquired ownership, remodeled the interior into a 33-bedroom hotel with modern facilities, but retained the unique and distinct personality of the Dominican Hill. In the 80's the hotel ceased operations due to the death of one of its majority stockholders. Plans are underway to develop this historical religious landmark into a tourist resort.

Philippine Military Academy

PMAThe Philippine Commission promulgated Act No. 175, which became the basis for the creation of the Philippine Constabulary in August 8, 1905. The school for the officers of the constabulary was first located in Sta. Lucia Barracks in Manila. Later in 1908, it was relocated in Baguio on the site known as Constabulary Hill later renamed Camp Henry T. Allen, in honor of the first chief of the Philippine Constabulary. With the passage of the Jones Law, the school was later changed to "Academy for Officers of the Philippine Constabulary" with a two-year curriculum. In 1908, the course was raised to collegiate level and later lengthened to three years with class 1938 as having the last graduates of that course. When the commonwealth government was established in 1935, the Philippine Military Academy was created in place of the Philippine Constabulary Academy. Under the National Defense Act, the PMA was authorized to maintain cadet strength of 350. Because of increased population, the academy transferred to Teachers Camp in June 1936 where it remained until WWII broke out. After the war the PMA headquarters was temporarily relocated at Camp Murphy and later at Alabang, while Camp Allen was being rehabilitated. Since May 1950 the Philippine Military Academy has found its permanent home at Fort del Pilar, Loakan, Baguio City.

The Mansion

The-Mansion-Baguio-CityThis imposing and majestic mansion has a long list of Filipino Presidents and American governor-generals. It has elegantly structured building and guesthouse. Its gate is patterned after that of London's Buckingham Palace. The Mansion has also been the site of several international conferences and a working office of the President of the Philippines during his visits to the City.

Camp John Hay

camp-john-hay-amphitheaterThis former American recreational facility is currently undergoing development as a world class resort. As of March 27, 1999, the golf course was completed and is now open, The skating rink, picnic area, and the mini golf course at the Scout Hill area are likewise open.

Asin Hot Spring

Located 16 kilometers northwest of Baguio, the resort's main feature is a swimming pool surrounded by thermal springs, lush vegetation and several hanging bridges. It is an ideal respite. This is now eyed to be redeveloped into a tourism resort along with the adjoining tourist attractions of Tuba and Baguio.

Bell Church

The-Bell-Church-of-Baguio-CityThis cluster of temples is located on the border of Baguio City and Trinidad Valley. Its exotic oriental architecture, pagodas roof, ornate gateway, dragon ornaments and Buddha - guarded windows gaze from atop a hill. The Bell Temple priest practices a mixture of Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, and Christianity. One may even try having his fortune told.

Burnham Park

Burnham-Park-BaguioIt is the oldest of all Baguio parks. One can unwind from the tension of the day-to-day bustle by biking, skating or simply reflecting on the day's experiences amid a soothing garden backdrop of colorful flowers. It is thickly wooded and is a great place to have picnics and concerts. There are tennis and basketball courts, a football field, athletic oval and an orchidarium.

Mines View Park

Mines-View-Park-Baguio-CityAppropriately named for its breathtaking view of Benguet's mountain ranges where gold, silver and other ores were once quarried. There are souvenir shops around the park offering such items as woodcarvings, woven cloth, ashtrays, shell products and other curio items.

Wright Park

It is sometimes mistakenly called "Ride Park" by some that identify this pine tree park reserve for kiddy horse rides. A long stairway leads to the "Pool of the Pines", a 100 meter long pool of water lined on both sides by the famous Baguio towering pine.