CNN Cites Manila Hotel

Cable News Network (CNN) International cited the historic landmark Manila Hotel, the oldest premiere hotel in the Philippines, as one of today's seven "heritage hotels" in Southeast Asia, alongside Mandarin Oriental in Bangkok, Thailand, and Raffles Singapore.

In the article "Then and now: The stories behind Southeast Asia's heritage hotels" posted on, authors Tina Hsiao and Jules Kay "pondered on the legacy... [in] these grand old dames of hospitality" by tracing a bit of the history of each of the seven hotels, their famous guests, unique features and distinctions, and their present states, which were accompanied by then-and-now images.

Located at the Manila Bay area, the Manila Hotel was designed and built in 1908 on an area of 35,000 square meters on Roxas Boulevard, under the supervision of William Parsons. Its construction was meant to rival Malacañang Palace, the official residence of the President of the Philippines. It officially opened upon its inauguration on July 4, 1912, the same commemoration date of American Independence.

Today, the five-star white, green-tile-roofed California Missionary-styled edifice has 570 rooms that offer the best westward view of Manila's fabled sunset, the fortress of Corregidor, the poignant ruins of the medieval fortress that was Intramuros, and the palm-lined promenades of Luneta Park.

Hsiao and Kay's article mentioned Ernest Hemingway, The Beatles, Marlon Brando, Senator Robert Kennedy, Charlton Heston, the Rockefeller brothers, and John Wayne as among the Manila Hotel's famous guests.

"One of the Manila Hotel's most notable long-stay guests was General Douglas MacArthur, who was invited to form the Philippine Army and stayed at the hotel from 1935 to 1941 with his family in a penthouse suite atop the fifth floor (now the MacArthur Suite)," the feature added.

In December 1941, the Manila Hotel became the command post at the onslaught of the Japanese invasion. After reopening at the end of World War II, it became a favorite venue in holding summits, constitutional conventions, and other mostly politics-related functions.

The Manila Hotel underwent remodeling, restoration, renovation, and expansion in 1976 and was inaugurated and formally reopened on Oct. 6, 1977.

In one of the most tension-filled episodes in the country's political history, a group of military officers loyal to the deposed President Ferdinand Marcos, took over the Manila Hotel on July 6, 1986 and declared Arturo Tolentino, who was Marcos' vice presidential running mate, as President. The soldiers surrendered two days later.

Thailand's first luxury hotel, Mandarin Oriental in Bangkok, built in 1876, holds the distinction of giving the country's capital its first elevator (installed in the Garden Wing extension in 1958) and first city spa, the article said. Its famous guests include Paul Theroux, John Steinbeck, Ian Fleming, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, and Michael Jackson.

The Manila Hotel is the only hotel in the country cited by CNN International.

The other "heritage hotels" featured in the article are the Eastern & Oriental in Penang, Malaysia; Hotel Metropole in Hanoi, Vietnam; The Strand in Yangon, Myanmar; and Hotel Majapahit in Surabaya, Indonesia. (With additional information from


Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Honda Launches the New Generation BeAT Fi
    Honda Launches the New Generation BeAT Fi

    Honda Philippines Inc. (HPI) recently unveiled its latest offering, the New Generation BeAT-FI eSP Series at the Music Hall of the SM Mall of Asia. Daiki Mihara, President of Honda Philippines, Inc., is confident of the potentials of the New Generation BeAT-FI eSP Series in the local scooter market. “The New Generation BeAT-FI eSP Series is a reflection of Honda Philippines’ continued commitment to provide powerful, safe, fun, and worthwhile driving experience to the growing market of …

  • 15 wounded in 2 explosions in restive southern Philippines

    MANILA, Philippines (AP) — At least 15 people have been wounded in two separate blasts that hit a police camp in a restive southern Philippine province where Muslim militants operate, police said Saturday. …

  • 15 wounded in mosque attack at Philippine police camp
    15 wounded in mosque attack at Philippine police camp

    Fifteen people including 10 police officers were wounded in an attack on a mosque at police camp on a remote Philippine island long plagued by Islamic militancy, officials said on Saturday. Successive blasts targeted the mosque inside Camp Kasim on the island of Jolo early evening Friday -- an initial grenade attack followed by a bomb explosion less than 10 minutes later that was intended to target police who rushed to the scene, local authorities said. "It seems the (first) explosion was set …

  • US missile cruiser docks at Subic
    US missile cruiser docks at Subic

    A US Navy missile cruiser has dropped anchor in Subic Bay as part of “routine port call,” amid rising tension in the West Philippine Sea stirred by China’s island building activities and other threatening moves by its forces. The arrival of the Ticonderoga-class missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG-67) at the Subic Bay Freeport in Olongapo City yesterday was “just a routine port visit for ship replenishment and routine maintenance of shipboard system,” said Philippine Navy Public Affairs Office …

  • Agri, power sectors should brace for El Niño
    Agri, power sectors should brace for El Niño

    The agriculture and power sectors, as well as the general public should brace for a prolonged El Niño phenomenon that could further reduce water supply for electricity and irrigation, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) warned yesterday. Flaviana Hilario, acting deputy administrator for research and development of PAGASA, said the El Niño condition is expected to intensify from weak to moderate by August this year. Anthony Lucero, …

  • China to US: Help cool down Phl on sea row
    China to US: Help cool down Phl on sea row

    The US should help “cool down” the Philippines and realize that its meddling in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) dispute would only stir tensions, a Chinese newspaper reported. “Washington should know its meddling in the South China Sea has been destabilizing the region. The US has vowed not to take sides in the territorial dispute, which involves China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan. …

  • No stopping K to 12 despite SC case, protests
    No stopping K to 12 despite SC case, protests

    K to 12 is the fruit of years of comprehensive consultations involving different sectors in education,” Aquino said during the launching of the program at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City. Organized by the Department of Education (DepEd), the launch was attended by teachers, students and representatives from different stakeholders supportive of the K to 12 program. It was held two years after the signing of Republic Act 10533, or the Enhanced Basic Education …

  • MNLF pushes review of peace pact with gov’t
    MNLF pushes review of peace pact with gov’t

    The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) maintained its bid for completion of the tripartite review of the implementation of the peace agreement with the Philippine government in 1996. The MNLF’s desire to put consensual closure to the tripartite effort was relayed by its leaders to Sayed El-Masry, the special envoy of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), during the annual foreign ministers conference in Kuwait last Thursday. The MNLF peace agreement with the government in Sept. 2, …


Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Poll Choice Options