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Archive for May 2014

The Golden Tribute to the History of Cebu

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Standing before the Insular Life Cebu Business Center stands a 40-foot sculpture created by Eduardo Castillo. “The Golden Tribute to the History of Cebu” was unveiled on the company’s 102nd anniversary, paying tribute to Cebu, as Insular Life CEO Vicente R. Ayllon said, “This will serve as an inescapable reminder to the Cebuanos about their cultural heritage.”

Crafted in a combination of brass and aluminum, the images of Lapu-Lapu, Ferdinand Magellan, Rajah Humabon and wife Hara Amihan, and the Sto. Niño are shown standing together in the center.

Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama was also in attendance at the 2012 unveiling.

Insular Life, founded on November 25, 1910, is known as the first life insurance company in the Philippines.

Insular Life, founded on November 25, 1910, is known as the first life insurance company in the Philippines.

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Written by Paulo Loreto

May 10, 2014 at 8:21 AM

Basílica Menor del Santo Niño

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Built in 1740, the Basílica Menor del Santo Niño (or Minor Basilica of the Holy Child) claims to be the oldest church in the Philippines. The church was built in place of the Church and Convent of Saint Augustine, which was originally built in 1565. The current church, ordered by then-Spanish Governor of the Philippines Fernando Valdés y Tamon, was constructed with stronger materials than preceding structures.

The church houses the image of the Santo Niño, the oldest religious relic in the country, dating back to the 1521, when Ferdinand Magellan arrived in Spain and handed Rajah Humabon and his wife the image of the Santo Niño after they were baptized under the Catholic faith.

In 1965, Pope Paul VI elevated the church to a minor basilica. Basílica Menor del Santo Niño is one of 37 minor basilicas in the East Asia and Oceania region; one of 12 in the Philippines.

The basilica suffered major damage from the 2013 Bohol earthquake. Currently, portions of the church are closed for renovation.

Cebu's annual Sinulog Festival celebrates the Santo Niño.

Cebu’s annual Sinulog Festival celebrates the Santo Niño.

Written by Paulo Loreto

May 6, 2014 at 9:48 AM

Gotiaoco Building

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Built in 1914, Cebu’s historic Gotiaoco Building is said to be the first commercial structure in Cebu with an elevator and air conditioning. Located behind Cebu City Hall, just last year in 2013, National Musuems of the Philippines and the Sugbu Chinese Heritage Museum Foundation, Inc. entered an agreement to restore the building and convert it into the Sugbu Chinese Heritage Museum.

The original Gotiaoco Building was home to the Cebu branch of Heacock’s and also housed Cebu’s first AM radio station. During World War II, the building was bombed and was rebuilt in the image of the original 1914 structure with a few differences.

In 2012, the Cebu City Council declared the Gotiaoco building a local heritage site.

The building was built by Don Pedro Gotiaoco, a tycoon, philanthropist, and leader of the Chinese community in Cebu.

The building was built by Don Pedro Gotiaoco, a tycoon, philanthropist, and leader of the Chinese community in Cebu.

Written by Paulo Loreto

May 3, 2014 at 12:05 PM