- Kathelyn Nida Mendres and her family stepped within the grounds of the ‘Bangkóta’ to a pleasant surprise as they marked the pavilion’s historic number of visits to one of Expo 2020 Dubai’s largest pavilions
- One million milestone affirms the interest of Expo 2020 Dubai’s visitors to the Philippines and its 4,000-year story of the Filipino voyage that piques the curiosity and enthralls the eyes of global audiences
Dubai, United Arab Emirates: The Philippines Pavilion ‘Bangkóta’ at Expo 2020 Dubai has recorded over one million visitors as of mid-March, driving its unique key message of ‘cultural sustainability’ to Expo’s global audiences.
Kathelyn Nida Mendres and her family stepped within the grounds of the ‘Bangkóta’ to a pleasant surprise when they learned that they were the one millionth visitor marking a historic number of visits to one of Expo 2020 Dubai’s largest pavilions. To celebrate the visit, the Philippines Pavilion gifted the family with a special gift bag from 'Bangkóta' filled with delicious treats shipped straight from the Philippines.
Philippine Department of Trade and Industry Assistant Secretary for the Trade Promotions Group and Philippines Expo 2020 Dubai Alternate Commissioner General Rosvi C. Gaetos highlighted that this milestone affirms the interest of Expo 2020 Dubai’s tourists in the Philippines and its 4,000-year story of the Filipino voyage that piques the curiosity and enthralls the eyes of visitors.
“The Philippines Pavilion sets itself apart with its unique look and message that shares the story of the Filipinos as they embarked a journey for the past 4,000 years – and today, many overseas Filipinos continue on that track especially here in the UAE where nearly a million Filipinos live, thrive, and contribute to the development of this country,” said Gaetos.
She added that the Organising Committee of the Philippines Pavilion ‘Bangkóta’ has prepared a host of events that celebrates the country’s brand of food, fitness, and fun that visitors could look forward to in the run up to Expo 2020’s closing date.
“We’re proud to join Expo 2020 Dubai’s ‘1 million club’ as we capture and sustain the interest of visitors through the myriad of our exhibits, activities, food, and more that we will be sharing to the world as Expo 2020 culminates this month,” added Gaetos.
Exhibitions to marvel at
Over the months, the Philippines Pavilion highlighted that visitors lauded the ‘Haliya’ by Duddley Diaz – a bold big blue figure that welcomes all visitors upon entering the Philippines Pavilion premises; the spiral ‘Helix’ by Baby and Coco Anne – considered as the ‘most Instagramable exhibit’ at the Philippines Pavilion; as well as the ‘Soaring High’ by Charlie Co – visible at the upper floors of the pavilion with the scupltures’ patriotic stance of the flying men representing overseas Filipinos.
Visitors also flocked to the in-demand ‘Mangrove Café’ that offers a taste of the Philippines’ best dishes as well as the ‘Go Lokal! x Marahuyo’ store where visitors can take home a piece of the Philippines.
Activities you shouldn’t miss
Philippines Food Fiesta, until March 27: Visitors can enjoy different Filipino food at the entrance of the Philippines Pavilion. Filipino restaurants will showcase some of their offerings for their ‘Bangkóta Meals’ to share the authentic taste of delicious Filipino food at discounted prices that will transport visitors to the kitchens of the Philippines.
Paraluman, March 18: A special afternoon gala in celebration of International Women's Day, visitors will witness the colours of purple and white within the halls of the Philippines Pavilion on March 18, from 4:30 pm to 7:00 pm, where inspirational speakers from all over the world will share insights on women empowerment, innovation, leadership, healthcare, and more.
Bangkóta Fitfest Finale, March 19: The United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) Dubai Chapter together with the Filipino International Triathletes will be holding a fitness activity at 10:00 am to stretch and prepare the body for the upcoming 'Run the World' marathon.
Performers at The Plaza, March 20, 24, 27 & 30: Visitors will witness talented Filipino musicians and performers that will add to the ambience of the Philippines Food Fiesta. An all-Filipino singing group comprised of 17 talented individuals set to compete in the world championship performing arts in the USA will enthrall visitors with their voices this coming March 20, 27 and 30. In addition, finalists from the recently-held OFW Got Talent Show in Dubai last March 5 will perform live at the Philippines Pavilion Plaza on March 24.
Run the World, Expo 2020 Run Grand Finale, March 26: Fitness enthusiasts and marathon lovers are invited to join and take part in the grand finale of the highly-successful Run the World series at Expo 2020. The marathon, spearheaded by the UAP-Dubai Chapter in Dubai Chapter, will witness runners from the Philippines alongside four other participating countries this March 26, Wednesday at 7:00 am.
PICHE General Assembly, March 27: The Philippines Institute of Chemical Engineers (PICHE) in the UAE will be holding their first General at the Mangrove Café. The assembly will talk about wastewater treatment, ecological systems and halal entrepreneurship.
TELA Pilipinas, March 29: Part of the Bangkóta Apex Speaker Series and presented by the Philippine Embassy in the UAE, the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Textile Research Institute Director Celia Elumba will put a spotlight on the textile industry with a talk titled 'Textiles Empowering Lives Anew: TELA Pilipinas" this March 29, 7:00 pm at the Terra Auditorium.
GMA Show, March 30: GMA Network, will bring some of its most talented Kapuso artists who will perform at Expo 2020 Dubai! GMA will hold a meet-and-greet with the artists at the Philippines Pavilion Plaza at 12:00 noon on March 30. On the same night, they will perform at the Dubai Millennium Amphitheatre, from 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm.
About The Bangkóta - Philippines Pavilion in Expo 2020 Dubai
Bangkóta is the name and inspiration for the pavilion of Philippines at the World Expo 2020, which will be held from October 1, 2021— March 31, 2022 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The pavilion, organically shaped like the Bangkóta—the ancient term for “coral reef” in the language Tagalog—updates knowledge about the Philippines, an archipelagic nation that nourished a collective, sea-oriented culture for millennia.
By calling attention to the coral reef-like qualities of Filipinos—such as an inclination for hyper-connectivity—the pavilion offers clues into a people who can build vibrant communities anywhere and everywhere in the world.
Remaining interconnected with each other as Filipinos, even through massive diaspora, the Philippines’ global stage is held together digitally. In the past 4000 years, as their Austronesian ancestors spread throughout island Southeast Asia and then embarked across the Pacific, they were and still are connected by the oceans of the world.
The Philippines pavilion evokes this hardy, traveling people in the sustainability District of the Expo, poetically emphasizing cultural sustainability through the millennia. In a plot size of 3163.25 sqm, the pavilion presents contemporary expressions in architecture, art, and design that links the deep past with the future of connectivity for the Filipino.
It is conceptualised and actualised by Architect Royal Pineda of Budji+Royal Architecture+Design and independent curator Marian Pastor Roces, collaborating with unusual synchrony with Assistant Secretary Rosario Virginia Gaetos of the Department of Trade and Industry, who also serves as Alternate Commissioner General of the Philippine Organizing Committee (POC).
Bangkóta aligns with the theme of this forthcoming Expo 2020 – “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future” – with a riveting image of the Philippines and its people as truly global.
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