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Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Calamian Deer in Palawan

The Calamian Deer (Axis calamianensis), also known as Calamian Hog DeerPhilippine Deer or Usa in local term, is endemic only in Calamian Group of Islands in Palawan, Philippines. Its included in  IUCN Red list in 2007 as endangered species. The decrease in population is due to hunting and damage of forest by practice of native people in Palawan using Kaingin system (slush and burn method of agriculture). 

Conservation occurs in Calauit Island Game Preserve and Wildlife Sanctuary which is established in 1976. In 1995 the management of sanctuary was transferred to Palawan Council for Sustainable Development. The sanctuary also house some endemic animals from Philippines and exotic animals from Africa.

The Calamian Deer is fairly small and heavy bodied with relative long legs. The size is 100 to 175 cm in length, shoulder height of 60 to 100 cm, and weight 27 to 110 kg. Its coarse hair is tawny-brown with darker underparts and the legs are darker than the rest of the body. The face has subtle white markings around the muzzle inside while the base of the ears, throat, underside of the short,bushy tail is also white. The mature mail has three-pronged antlers.

They are inhabits in grassland, second growth scrub and woodland. They are seen before in groups of 7 to 14 individuals in the wild. In captivity, Calamian deer have been observed to mate and give birth year round with gestation period of 222 days.

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Calamian Deer in Balboa Park, Banker's Hill, San Diego, California
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The male and female Calamian Deer endemic in Philippines
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Calamian Deer in Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens
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Calamian Deer in San Diego Zoo
Male Calamian Deer
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Calamian Deer in Calauit, Palawan

Friday, August 19, 2011

Magellan's Cross in Cebu City

Magellan's Cross was planted on April 14, 1521 to mark a spot in Cebu City. It is also a symbol of the birth of Christianism in Philippines after the baptismal of Rajah Humabon, his wife Queen Juana and 800 natives of Cebu. The oldest cross in the Philippines is now housed in a small chapel near to the Basilica Minore del Santo Nino in Magallanes Street in front of Cebu City Hall.

The encrypted sign below the cross describes the original cross is encased in the Tindalo wood cross displayed on the center of the chapel. This is to protect the original cross from the people who wants to chipped some part of it as souvenir or in the belief that the cross possesses miraculous power. Some people believe that the cross seen inside the kiosk is just a replica, that  the original was already destroyed or lost.

Magellan's cross is one of the tourist attractions in Cebu and one of the oldest memento from the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan.

Magellan's Cross inside the Kiosk in Magellan St, Cebu City Philippines
The description of Magellan's cross encrypted on stone
The chapel where Magellan's Cross was kept
Magellan's Cross description

The Luxury Dusit Thani Manila Hotel

Dusit Thani Manila Hotel is a luxury five star hotel located in the center of financial district in Makati City, Manila. The hotel is a located within the financial, commercial, entertainment and shopping district and just a short distance from Manila tourist attractions and Ninoy Aquino International Airport. 

The hotel has 538 newly renovated luxury rooms and suites with motif of Thai traditions and equipped with latest technology services such as broadband connection and LCD flat screen television. It offers international foods with different dining experiences. The Grand Ballroom can accommodate 1,000 guests, also with meeting and banqueting rooms for small activities. Dusit Manila Hotel also offers the best recreational activities for their DFiT Fitness Centre that provides a 973-square metre of cutting edge fitness facilities, the Devarana Spa for a revitalizing experience giving guests a new lease of life right at heaven’s gate and the outdoor swimming pools for adults and kids.

Hotel Facade, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Hotel Exterior, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Deluxe Room, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Deluxe Twin, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Grand King Room, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Club King Room, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Lobby, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Lobby, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Dining, Benjarong, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Dining, Umu, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Dining, Basix, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Dining, Tosca, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Gourmet, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Pub, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Club Lounge, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Ballroom, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Meeting Room, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Boardroom, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Devarana Spa, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Fitness Room, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Umu - Japanese Garden, Dusit Thani Manila Hotel
Tel No. +63 (2) 238 8888
Fax No. +63 (2) 238 8800
Address: Ayala Centre, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines

Pablo Antonio, National Artist in Architecture

Pablo S. Antonio, National Artist in Architecture (1976) pioneered modern Philippine Architecture. His architecture adapts the Art Deco techniques which is dominant motif during his time. His design is based on simplicity and clean structural design. The lines are clean and smooth, and where there are curves, these are made integral to the structure. He believes that function come first before elegance. Antonio's design focus on the maximum use of natural light and cross ventilation, He strives to make each building unique, avoiding obvious trademarks. Antonio himself has been quoted as stating that "buildings should be planned with austerity in mind and its stability forever as the aim of true architecture, that buildings must be progressive, simple in design but dignified, true to a purpose without resorting to an applied set of aesthetics and should eternally recreate truth".

Antonio was born in Binondo, Manila in 1901, orphaned by age of 12 and did part time job in daytime to supplement his study at night. He studied architecture in Mapua Institute of Technology and later transfer to University of London after securing scholarship from Ramon Arevalo, the engineer in charge in Legislative Building (now National Museum of the Philippines where Antonio assist in the design and construction). He graduated in 1927 for only three years of study (normal is 5 years).

In 1933, he designed the Ideal Theater in Avenida, Rizal Avenue which is one of his major works that made him prominent in architecture. The founder of Far Eastern University, Nicanor Reyes, deal with him to make several buildings in the campus. The FEU campus is considered as the largest ensemble of surviving Art Deco architecture in Manila, and in 2005, it received an Honorable Mention citation from the UNESCO for the body's 2005 Asia-Pacific Heritage Awards for Culture Heritage Conservation.

Antonio's other major projects includes Manila Polo Club in 1950, Lyric Theater, Galaxy Theater, Life Theater, Scala Theater, Ramon Roces Publications Building (now Guzman College of Science and Technology), Capitan Luis Gonzaga Building, Boulevard-Alhambra apartments in 1937 (now Bel-Air) and White Cross Sanitarium in 1938.

In 1976, he was he was named National Artist of the Philippines, he was only the second architect so honored, after his contemporary, Juan Nakpil.

Ideal Theater in 1930s design by National Artist Pablo Antonio in 1933
Ideal Theater on the left designed by Pablo Antonio and on the left is State Theater designed by Juan Nakpil

Far Eastern University designed by Pablo Antonio in the late 1930s
Facade of White Cross Sanitarium designed by Architect Pablo Antonio in 1938
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Manila Polo Club by Pablo Antonio
Guzman College of Science & Technology formerly Ramon Roces Publications Building
Boulevard-Alhambra (now called Bel-Air) Apartments Building in Roxas Boulevard designed and built in 1937
Life Theater in Quezon Blvd. Manila
Lyric Theater along Escolta Manila
Galaxy Theater by Pablo Antonio
National Artist of the Philippines Award in Architecture

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Vulcan Point in Taal Volcano

Only in the Philippines, you will find the world's largest island within a lake (crater lake of Taal Volcano) inside the island (Taal Volcano) inside the lake (Taal Lake) within the island (Luzon Island). Vulcan Point, about 40 meters in diameter was incuded the Guinness World Record for this category which is unique in the Philippines.

In short it can be stated by this line..."the largest island in a lake of an island in a lake of an island". Taal Volcano is popular tourist destinations in Philippines located in Batangas province in Luzon Island.

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Vulcan Point inside the lake 
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Island inside the lake of island
Island inside the lake of an island inside the lake
Island inside the lake of an island inside the lake of an island

World's Largest Shot Slam

The largest shot slam in the world was achieved in Naga City, Camarines Sur, Philippines on 27th of December 2010 with 2,435 people which broke the previous Guinness World Records of 1412 participants in Mexico. The participants is composed of mixed gender and age. The activity was sponsored by Ginebra San Miguel Inc. and GSM V. Distributors Inc.

cups filled with gin from Ginebra San Miguel in attempt for world's largest shot slam
participants are waiting for the start of world's largest shot slam
participants composed of men and womens, oldies and maybe above 18 years old youths
every participants wears number plate for counting
the awarding of Guinness World Records largest shot slam in Naga City, Philippines
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