Manila, Philippines: Continuing a cherished tradition started by former President Ferdinand E. Marcos and First Lady Imelda R. Marcos, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has once again opened the doors of Malacañang Palace to the public for the Christmas season. This marks the second consecutive year that the President and First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos have graciously welcomed visitors to the Palace, offering a unique opportunity to experience the holiday spirit in a truly historic setting.
“This year, the Palace grounds have been opened for the entire nine Simbang Gabi nights,” shared Undersecretary Cesar Chavez, a newly appointed presidential adviser. Simbang Gabi refers to the nine dawn Masses that commenced on December 16, a significant religious observance in the Philippines. By extending the accessibility of Malacañang Palace, President Marcos Jr. aims to create a memorable experience for Filipinos, especially children, during this festive season.
The “Tara sa Palasyo” initiative, aptly named, promises a jubilant celebration filled with carnival rides, engaging games, and delectable food. Families can enjoy the lively atmosphere while taking in the breathtaking view of a magnificently-lighted Christmas tree. The lush gardens provide a serene backdrop, allowing visitors to savor the cool evening breeze as they explore the grounds.
Children, in particular, will be delighted by the array of attractions specially organized for them. From exciting rides to the opportunity to take memorable selfies in front of the iconic Palace, there is something for everyone to enjoy. The Presidential Communications Office emphasizes that this event aims to foster joy and camaraderie among attendees, creating lasting memories for all.
As a gesture of hospitality, complimentary puto bumbong and bibingka, traditional Filipino rice cakes, will be distributed to those attending the Simbang Gabi. These beloved delicacies are a delightful addition to the overall festive experience, allowing visitors to immerse themselves fully in the Filipino holiday traditions.
“President BBM’s decision to open the Palace this Christmas to the public is a heartfelt way of saying ‘welcome home’,” expressed Undersecretary Chavez. By providing access to this historically significant location, President Marcos Jr. aims to create a sense of belonging and warmth, inviting Filipinos to celebrate the holiday season together.
Visiting Malacañang Palace during the Christmas season offers a unique opportunity to witness the convergence of history, culture, and celebration. It allows both locals and international visitors to experience the rich traditions and warm hospitality that define the Filipino spirit. Whether you are captivated by the stunning decorations, indulging in traditional delicacies, or simply enjoying the festive atmosphere, a visit to Malacañang Palace promises to be a memorable experience for all.
Source: The Manila Times