New York City – A first in history, Explore Islands Philippines held an exhibit at the Vanderbilt Hall of the Grand Central Terminal in NYC that ran from May 9 to 12 promoting the 7,641 islands of the Philippine archipelago.
“This is the first time the Philippines will do an exhibit at the iconic Grand Central and we’re so privileged to bring the Philippines in the center of New York,” said Susan del Mundo who is the Toursim Attaché to New York in an interview with Experience Travel and Living.
Sponsored by the Philippine Department of Tourism (PDOT) and the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) and organized by JS Producitons Inc., the event was showcases the rich history, beauty and culture of the Philippines.
The opening ceremony was graced by the presence of Her Royal Highness Princess Katarina de Silva of Yugoslavia and Serbia, who also serves as the president of the Tourism Guild UK. Also there was Teodoro “Teddy” Locsin, Jr. who is the Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations and TPB Chief Operating Officer Cesar Montano. Together with these three were Jerry Sibal and Edwin Josue of JS Productions Inc., and representatives from the New York Governor’s Office.
They also took part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony which marked the official opening of the exhibit where banners immediately surfaced around Grand Central Terminal.
“[This exhibit] It’s more of promoting the country through tourism and investment opportunities,” said Del Mundo. “Not only the New Yorkers but, all the people who come and go here at the terminal,” she added noting that there are around 770,000 people who come and go inside the terminal. That is around 20 million people every year.
Del Mundo also noted that this is not the only promotions that they have been doing. “We have promotions everywhere in New York like in the subways and at Times Square so it’s more of creating awareness and building the image of the country.”
There are about 60 million tourists in New York and Del Mundo hopes that when they saw the Philippine exhibit or the promotions around the Big Apple, “I hope we can increase arrivals and support to the country.”
In addition, the country’s flagship carrier, Philippine Airlines was also at the event announcing its launch of non-stop, 15-hour flights from Manila to New York and back at the end of 2018. This will give tourists and even Filipinos an easier option to go to the country.
Photos by Stephanie Tumampos