[PHOTO - Manila City mayor Alfredo Lim joins the group of Santa Clauses at Manila Hotel. (Photo by RUDY LIWANAG)]

MANILA DECEMBER 21, 2011 (BULLETIN) By JACKY LYNNE A. OIGA and EUGENE Y. SANTOS - The advent of Christmas bestows a festive holiday mood in and around the Metro.

MANILA, Philippines — Christmas is here. Streets are lit with lights and lanterns. Christmas tunes are inundating the airwaves.

And the weeks’ worth of politically-charged news have been diluted with Christmas countdowns, features, tips and a slew of Christmas events to usher in the most anticipated time of the year.

A celebration of the Filipino spirit

The Manila Hotel has long been celebrating the goodness of the Filipino spirit through genuine hospitality.

This was illustrated when the hotel held its tree lighting ceremony this year, in a gregarious fashion that let children from the Nayon ng Kabataan feel the cheerful vibe of the Yuletide season as they were greeted by 20 Santa Clauses from the US. Manila City mayor Alfredo Lim and some members of the Philippine Azkals graced the event.

Apart from mingling with Santa Clauses, the children were also treated to a fancy Christmas train ride. “The children’s joyful expressions reflect the sentiment of [holiday] happiness,” says Manila Hotel president Atty. Joey Lina. He adds that the Manila Hotel team always looks forward to the Christmas season with enthusiasm.

For this December, Manila Hotel is highlighting Filipino Christmas traditions such as Simbang Gabi, choirs singing Christmas carols, among others.

For more information, visit

A symbol of energy conservation

Energy conservation is the main credo of the Pan Pacific Manila these days. This is reflected in its fire-inspired Christmas Tree, with leaves, twigs, and lights in the vibrant colors of red and orange. “Fire is the symbol of energy, passion, and creativity,” says Richard Masselin, general manager for Pan Pacific Manila. Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim was the guest of honor during the tree lighting ceremony.

According to Masselin, the hotel’s Christmas Tree uses LED lights that have lesser energy consumption. This is in line with the hotel’s “Go-Green Initiative” through supporting alternative energy sources that are “clean, cheap, and sustainable.” In relation, Masselin shares that he and his team hope to incorporate energy-saving devices in the hotel’s operations next year in order to conserve energy.

For more information, visit

‘Tis the season to give back

One of the best things about the season is the spirit of giving and giving back. That’s why for this Christmas, along with its Christmas tree lighting ceremony, Marriott Manila launched ‘Bid and Build’, a fund raising auction project in partnership with Habitat for Humanity.

Join Marriott Manila in building a dream home with Habitat for Humanity and contribute in saving homeless Filipino families by bidding on the list of gift items donated by Marriott’s kind celebrity friends and luxury brands from makeup, skin care, to fashion.

Among the bid-worthy items available for auction were: a dainty, hand carved, kiln-dried mahogany chair with gold leaf accents from host and furniture designer Daphne Oseña-Paez, Bobbi Brown peony and python eye palettes, a show-stopping Frederic Peralta cocktail dress, a dreamy pair of Prada black stilettos from celebrity-stylist Alyanna Martinez, ana pair of Louis Vuitton monogram macassar canvas globe trotter sneaker from Charice Pempengco.

For more information about Marriott Manila’s Christmas holiday packages and promos call 988-9999.

Lighting the country’s greenest Christmas tree

In its effort to keep carbon emissions at a minimum without having to sacrifice the festive spirit of the season, Firefly Electric and Lighting Corporation (FELCO) lighted up its energy efficient Christmas tree for the fourth year at By the Bay, SM Mall of Asia with the aim to remind the public that celebrating the holidays can be done with greener, more sustainable lighting technologies.

Dubbed as the most energy efficient Christmas tree in the Philippines, it was illuminated with more than 100,000 Firefly LED bulbs with the total energy consumption equivalent to two small window-type air-conditioners at two horse powers each.

“Firefly’s LED Christmas tree uses the latest lighting technology which is 5 times more energy efficient compared to the regular incandescent bulb," said Jhie Greenwood, FELCO Marketing Manager.

”A Firefly LED light bulb consumes around 24 pesos a month – an amount that’s seven times less than what’s consumed by an incandescent bulb.”

“Firefly believes that LED is the light source for the future. We believe that using LED products will have a profound impact on energy-saving efforts and become a catalyst in our drive to save our planet for the next generation.

With this in mind, we invite everyone to bring their family here at SM Mall of Asia to view this season’s Firefly eco-Christmas tree which will be showcased from today till January,” ended Greenwood.

For more information about Firefly Electric and Lighting Corporation (FELCO) please visit or call (632) 2422060 to 65.

It’s Christmas time in Tutuban

There is no doubt that Christmas 2011 is just around the corner as Tutuban Commercial Center, the country’s popular bargain-shopping hub right at the heart of historic Tutuban in Manila, held its traditional Christmas Tree-lighting ceremony at the Open Parking area.

And as the countdown ended and when the glittering lights were finally turned on, loud cheers came from the hordes of shoppers who eagerly awaited the actual lighting of the Christmas tree, now a most anticipated event at Tutuban Commercial Center.

Luxurious tree lighting

Diamond Hotel recently lit up its luxurious 25-foot Christmas tree at the Hotel Lobby to commence the beginning of the merriest season of the year.

Lighting up the Christmas tree were Diamond Hotel president Cecile Ang, Manila City Mayor Alfredo Lim, Gretchen Del Rosario, Manila City Vice Mayor Isko Moreno, Diamond Hotel Philippines general manager Vanessa Ledesma Suatengco and Carmela Ang.

The hotel’s beneficiaries, students from Rafael Palama and Fernando Guerrero Elementary Schools also joined this joyous occasion. For the holidays, Diamond Hotel Philippines will be decked in hues of bronze and gold, and trees ornately decorated with sparkling chandeliers.

Diamond Hotel Philippines is located at Roxas Boulevard corner Dr. J. Quintos St., Manila, for information visit,

2011 Pasko sa Manila 2011 Christmas in Manila series by dmitrivalencia

This video features the yearly christmas activities here in the Philippines, various christmas lights, christmas lanterns (parols), beautiful christmas decorations and christmas ornaments from various parts of Metro Manila. As early as November, the christmas spirit can be sense through out the city.Unforunately this year the waether was not cooperative with the yuletide season because of occassional rainshowers and thunderstorms due to La Nina phenomenon.



Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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