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The Manila Hotel spearheads Visita Intramuros

June 21, 2019

The success of this year’s Visita Iglesia around the Walled City of Intramu­ros during the Holy Week reawakened awe and interest in the bulwark of Philippine history and culture.

For just two weeks after the meeting of minds between The Manila Hotel president and former senator Joey Lina and Intramuros Administration (IA) chief Guiller Asido, Visita Intramuros came to be — a series of tours beginning with The Grand Dame’s Heritage Museum, featuring the Presidential Suite, its iconic MacArthur Suite and elegant Champagne Room.

On June 12, in time of the 121st Philippine Independence Day celebrations, The Manila Hotel, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and IA launched Visita Intramuros taking the media on a tour that heralds a curated journey to the country’s glorious past.

“This is in line with the direction of the Department of Tourism to strengthen cultural tourism by expanding tourism products [and venues] and engaging a specific market to increase revenue,” the IA administrator said.

DOT Assistant Secretary Roberto Alabado meanwhile said that “partnerships such as this is a testimony that the successful partnership of the private and public sectors is imperative to preserve and promote our heritage.”

Intramuros Administration Chief Guiller Asido, The Manila Hotel President Joey Lina and Department of Tourism Assistant Secretary Roberto Alabado 3rd enjoy a siklesa ride at the launch of Visita Intramuros.

General Douglas MacArthur’s desk when he stayed at the Grand Dame as Military Advisor to the Commonwealth Government from 1935 to 1941.

The lavish living room of The Manila Hotel Presidential Suite/Manila Hotel Heritage Museum.

Intramuros Administration’s collection of religious icons comprise most of the display at the Museo de Intramuros.

Bahay Tsinoy showcases the tangible imprints and lasting influence of the Chinese to the Filipino way of life dating back to the pre-Spanish colonization era.

Fourth generation Aaron James Limpe-Aw continues the development of the country’s oldest distillery by honoring the founders of the 167-yearold company through the Destileria Limtuaco Museum.

Best experienced on a siklesa or motor-drawn kalesa, the Visita Intramuros tour package may be booked with the Concierge department of the Manila Hotel, with option to have a guide and all-in pass. In-house guests can enjoy a 15-percent discount on the tour prices as well as the Filipino Tea at the hotel lobby.

Lina said that the tour program is designed to enable hotel guests experience the rich history of the Great Walls of Intramuros and the Grand Dame.

The exclusive tour features attractions starting from The Manila Hotel.

The Manila Hotel Heritage Museum. A newly curated museum that houses the collections of The Manila Hotel that reflects the history of the Grand Dame.

The MacArthur Suite. A two-bedroom suite that was the residence of General Douglas MacArthur for six years — from 1935 to 1941 during his tenure as Military Advisor to the Commonwealth Government — decorated with rare paintings including works of Fernando Amorsolo, photographs, Asian antiques and Filipino crafts.

Champagne Room. Well-known for its impeccable service and lavish decor, the venue is favorite venue of the fashionable set for elegant gatherings. It is considered as the best embodiment of the Grand Dame’s decades of tradition and devotion in providing guests with the finest dining experience.

Fort Santiago. Built on the site of the native settlement of Rajah Sulayman, the fortification established in 1571 was the headquarters of the armies of foreign powers in Philippine history — Spanish, British, American and Japanese.

Museo de Intramuros. The newly opened museum that houses the collections of IA where one sees “the Filipinization of the Catholic faith,” as DOT Asst. Sec. Alabado told The Manila Times.

Destileria Limtuaco Museum. Not only does the museum houses artifacts of the oldest distillery in the country featuring the actual process of making rum and whisky, but also showcases the evolution of one of the Philippines’ oldest operating companies that was established in 1852.

Bahay Tsinoy. Touted as the Museum of Chinese in Philippine life, the collections show the tangible imprints and lasting influence of the Chinese whose presence in the archipelago dates back long before the Europeans sought alternate routes to the Moluccas.

Casa Manila. A colonial lifestyle museum which features the domestic life of the upper class in 19th century Philippines. The three-story building is a replica of the house of Binondo merchant Don Severino Mendoza.

Baluarte de San Diego. Alternately called the Ruins by students of schools around the area, this historical concrete structure has withstood the test of time as barricade that defended not only the land but also the stories of the past — against cannon fires, earthquakes and the Battle of Manila.

IA also provides tranvia for bigger groups.

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