All The WOW News in Cordillera

Friday, September 22, 2023

WATCH: Igorot Fighter Lito Adiwang Defeats Mattheis with Lightning 23-Second Victory in Round One

Photo Courtesy || One Championship

Cordillera - In a stunning return to the mixed martial arts scene, strawweight powerhouse Lito Adiwang made his presence felt with a lightning-fast victory that left the crowd at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, in awe. 

Adiwang, who had been sidelined for 18 months due to injury, wasted no time in showcasing his remarkable skillset at ONE Friday Fights 34.

Facing off against Adrian Mattheis, Adiwang needed just 23 seconds to secure a victory that sent shockwaves through the MMA world. 

With a single, precise right hand to Mattheis' chin, Adiwang sent his opponent tumbling to the canvas in the opening moments of the bout.

Known for his relentless aggression and striking prowess, Adiwang pounced on the opportunity, unleashing a flurry of unanswered punches. 

The referee had no choice but to intervene and stop the contest, awarding Adiwang a quick and impressive technical knockout victory.

This triumphant return improved Adiwang's professional record to 14 wins and 5 losses, while Mattheis' record dropped to 11 wins and 7 losses. 

Adiwang's last appearance in the ONE Championship was at ONE: X in March 2022, where he sustained an injury in a bout against Jeremy Miado.


Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Mayor Magalong ranked 2nd in top performing mayors in the country - RPMD

Cordillera - Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong secures 2nd spot is the list of the country's top performing mayors. 

This is revealed in the recently concluded "Boses ng Bayan" survey conducted by the RP-Mission and Development Foundation Inc. (RPMD) on Saturday, Sep. 16, 2023.

In the extensive statistical survey, Mayor Benjamin Magalong of Baguio secured a commendable rating of 90.91 percent, placing him in the second tier of this assessment. 

Joining Mayor Magalong in the second tier are Mayor Art Robes of San Jose del Monte, with a rating of 91.67 percent, and Mayor Nikko Mercado of Maasin, who achieved a score of 90.88 percent.

Meanwhile, Mayor Belmonte claimed the top spot with a rating of 95.73 percent, followed closely by Mayor Eric Singson of Candon City, who garnered a score of 94.86 percent. 

As stated by Dr. Paul Martinez, the Executive Director of RPMD, the evaluation of city mayors is based on seven core criteria, which include service delivery, financial expertise, economic advancement, leadership in governance, environmental preservation, social programs, and community engagement. 

In a similar vein, the assessment of District Representatives focuses on three key factors: district representation, legislative effectiveness, and constituent service. 


Monday, September 18, 2023

Bontoc farmers turn paddy field into a breathtaking works of art

Photo Courtesy || Gretchen Lippad Buasen

Cordillera - In a mesmerizing display of creativity and agricultural ingenuity, rice farmers in Bontoc, Mountain Province, have turned their paddy fields into canvases, producing breathtaking works of art that have captivated social media users worldwide.

On September 15, 2023, Gretchen Lippad Buasen took to Facebook to share awe-inspiring photographs of the Rice Terraces of Bontoc. These images showcased a remarkable fusion of agriculture and artistry, with intricate designs adorning the lush green rice paddies. 

These designs encompassed a wide range of themes, including religious messages like John 3:16 and patriotic slogans like 'In God we Trust,' as well as heartfelt expressions like 'Loving Arms' and 'God Loves Bayyo,' among others.

This unique form of artistry, known as rice paddy art, originated in Japan in 1993 as a means of regional economic revitalization. Instead of traditional paint, rice paddy artists use different varieties of rice plants with varying colors to create colossal pictures on the fields, effectively turning the fertile land into their canvas.

The breathtaking artistry in Bontoc's rice fields not only showcases the farmers' dedication but also highlights the harmonious coexistence of agriculture and art, adding another layer of cultural richness to this picturesque region. 

Visitors and locals alike are eager to explore this unique fusion of farming and artistry that has put Bontoc on the map for a different kind of natural beauty.


Wednesday, September 13, 2023

LOOK: Baguio City Unveils Newest Attraction - The Reflection Pool and Fountain Show at Wright Park

Photo Courtesy || Migz On-onod

Cordillera - If you're seeking respite from the summer heat and relentless humidity in the lowlands , a quick weekend getaway to the picturesque City of Pines has always been a cherished escape. 

Baguio City has long been a favorite destination, known for its refreshing climate and breathtaking scenery. 

However, just when you thought you'd explored every nook and cranny of this enchanting city, a new attraction has emerged to captivate your senses.

Over the weekend, Baguio City unveiled its latest gem, "The Reflection Pool and Fountain," a free tourist spot that's destined to become the envy of your Instagram feed. 

Nestled in Upper Wright Park, this newest addition was inaugurated on September 8th, marking a significant milestone in the rejuvenation of one of Baguio's iconic tourism sites.

Known locally as "Shanun Tan Bëlbël," which translates to "Water and Pine Tree" in the Ibaloi language, The Reflection Pool embodies the serene dance between two fundamental elements of our environment. 

It serves as a poignant reminder of the delicate balance that must be preserved and cherished in our ecosystem.

Residents and tourists alike can indulge in the mesmerizing fountain show every Friday to Sunday, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. 

As the water dances to the rhythm of colorful lights and the backdrop of Baguio's pine trees, it's an experience that promises to leave a lasting impression on all who visit.

So, if you're planning your next escape, don't forget to add Baguio City's newest jewel, The Reflection Pool and Fountain, to your must-visit list. 

This enchanting attraction is a testament to the city's commitment to preserving its natural beauty while offering visitors an unforgettable experience.


Sunday, September 10, 2023

Former Igorot Miner now one of the best Muay Thai fighter in the World

Photo Courtesy || PSC

Cordillera - Ariel Lampacan, a native of Itogon, Benguet, has captured the hearts of many as he transformed from a young Igorot miner into one of the world's best Muay Thai fighters. Born on April 5, 1998, Lampacan's life story is a testament to the power of determination and dreams.

At the tender age of 12, Lampacan found himself in the depths of a gold mine alongside his parents, who were small-scale miners. He recalled the grueling process, saying, "We would go to the mountains, and we'd dig. There's a lot of process to extract the gold. It will take about 3 or 4 months before you can see the gold." Despite the harsh conditions, Lampacan knew there was something more waiting for him.

His turning point came when he witnessed his older brother passionately pursuing Muay Thai. The fire inside him ignited, and at 14, he made the pivotal decision to swap his mining tools for boxing gloves. "I saw him train. I was 14 then. I told myself, instead of mining for the rest of my life, I will join my brother in training," he said.

Lampacan's dedication paid off when he clinched the title of Muay Best Boxer at the 2013 Batang Pinoy competition. His talent didn't go unnoticed, as Coach Billy Alumno of the Muay Association of the Philippines (MAP) spotted his potential. Ariel Lampacan became a vital member of the national team, making waves in the world of martial arts.

Today, Ariel Lampacan serves as an inspiration to aspiring athletes worldwide, proving that with unwavering determination and a burning passion, one can overcome adversity and ascend to greatness. His remarkable journey from the depths of the mines to the pinnacle of Muay Thai is a story that will be celebrated for generations to come.


Distinct Species of World's Largest Flower Discovered in Kalinga - Rafflesia Banaoana

Photo Courtesy || Cris Thorogood

Cordillera - Botanists from the University of Oxford Botanic Garden and the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) have made a significant discovery in the world of botany by reinstating a species of Rafflesia, known for housing the world's largest flowers. This achievement is detailed in a recently published paper in Phytotaxa.

The species in question, Rafflesia banaoana, had previously been mistakenly identified as another species, R. leonardi. Through meticulous examination of previously overlooked characteristics, the scientists have conclusively demonstrated that these two species are distinct entities. This finding elevates the total count of Rafflesia species in the Philippines to fifteen.

Adriane Tobias, a forester and Rafflesia expert at UPLB, stressed the importance of careful observation of previously unexamined characteristics and ecological factors to avoid the oversight of similar but separate species.

According to the Oxford Botanic Garden and Arboretum website, Rafflesia banaoana was initially documented by Professor Pastor Malabrigo Jr. in 2010, who was introduced to the plant by the Banao Indigenous Cultural Community in a remote forest in the Kalinga Province of northern Luzon in the Philippines. The species was named in honor of this community. The Rafflesia banaoana is an exceptionally rare flower, growing up to half a meter in diameter, and is known for its unpredictable and infrequent appearances.

The joint team from Oxford and Los Baños has been actively researching this enigmatic group of plants since 2019. They have conducted numerous expeditions across Luzon in the Philippines, as well as in Java and Sumatra, Indonesia, in their quest to study Rafflesia.

Dr. Chris Thorogood, Deputy Director and Head of Science at Oxford Botanic Garden, expressed the privilege of being part of this crucial work in collaboration with UPLB, emphasizing the pressing need to understand the diversity of these extraordinary plants, especially in the face of habitat destruction and species extinction.

The team plans to continue their collaborative efforts with scientists across Southeast Asia to further enhance our understanding of species limits, ecology, and evolution in the world's largest flowers.


WATCH: NBA releases short film featuring Igorot own "Bahag-ketball" game

Photo Courtesy || NBA

Cordillera - The National Basketball Association (NBA) has unveiled a captivating short film shedding light on the profound influence of basketball in the Philippines, spanning from the bustling city of Manila to the rugged terrain of northern Luzon.

Entitled "The Mountain Ballers of the Philippines," this seven-minute cinematic masterpiece showcases the Igorots, an indigenous community nestled within the Cordillera Mountain Range, particularly in the town of Tadian.

The film delves into Tadian's rich historical tapestry, emphasizing its status as the custodian of some of the nation's oldest rice terraces, with roots tracing back centuries before Spanish colonization gripped the archipelago in the 1500s. Within this municipality, a diligent farming populace has forged a unique bond with basketball, using it as a cherished means of relaxation after strenuous toil.

Local farmer Rocky Biswelan, featured in the film, articulates this sentiment, stating, "It's a long and exhausting day, but when I spot fellow villagers playing basketball on my way home, I always find time to join them."

Ayyoweng Di Lambak Ed Tadian, an annual festival, plays a pivotal role in preserving the cultural heritage of Tadian. Amidst vibrant displays of traditional attire and dances, the festival introduces a modern twist known as "bahag-ketball." During this spectacle, participants don loincloths (bahags) and engage in barefoot basketball matches, reviving the sporting spirit of ancient communities.

Tadian Vice Mayor George Bisen, Jr. elucidated, "Bahag-ketball serves as a homage to the historic basketball style of our ancestors, illustrating that Igorots, both past and present, have an enduring passion for the sport. As Igorots, we revel in physicality, especially when the game is fiercely contested. It is a tribute to our forebears through the medium of sports."

Mayor Hon. Constito Masweng of Tadian emphasized the vital role of sports in the municipality's development, particularly for the youth, as it keeps them "engaged in positive extracurricular activities."

This poignant short film, a creation of writer and director Carlo Ledesma, constitutes a part of the "NBA Films for Fans" initiative, a project celebrating the global resonance of the NBA and basketball, exploring diverse cultural perspectives from around the world.


Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Bontoc Municipal Government Seeks National Treasure Status for Maligcong Rice Terraces

Photo Courtesy || Pagcor

Cordillera - The Municipal Local Government of Bontoc, Mountain Province representing the Barangay Local Government of Maligcong and its residents has filed a Petition to Declare the Maligcong Rice Terraces as a National Culture Treasure (NCT) to the office of the National Commission of Culture and Arts. 


The Municipality of Bontoc, nestled in the northern part of the Philippines, boasts Maligcong as one of its sixteen captivating barangays. Spanning an expansive 1,160 hectares, Maligcong is home to the breathtaking Maligcong Rice Terraces, a gem in the region's tourism crown. Perched atop Mt. Kupapey, this natural wonder is a testament to the indigenous wisdom passed down through generations, with "Maligcong" itself signifying field leveling, exemplified by these magnificent terraces.

Maligcong's inhabitants have embraced their role as stewards of this artistic landscape, inspiring a commitment to its preservation. Upon entering the barangay, visitors are greeted by warm smiles and picturesque mountain vistas. Strong cultural ties bind the community, shielding Maligcong from the waves of modernization.

Rice, the lifeblood of Maligcong, shaped the creation of its terraces, built by the toil and determination of forefathers. These enduring stone structures, though weathered by natural calamities, reflect the resilience of Maligcong's people.

The recent nomination for the UNESCO-Greece Melina Mercouri International Prize underscores the significance of Maligcong Rice Terraces as a national cultural treasure of the Philippines. This recognition elevates Maligcong's status as a world-class tourist destination, inviting all to cherish and protect this captivating landscape for generations to come.


Young Girl from La Trinidad, Benguet Makes History as First-Ever Little Miss Northern Luzon

Photo Courtesy || vadzromero, Moodcc Photography, Nicai Caballero

Cordillera - La Trinidad, Benguet's prodigious young talent, Bona Stella Rivera, etched her name in history as she claimed the inaugural title of Little Miss Northern Luzon (LMNL). 

Rising above 14 other exceptionally gifted contestants hailing from diverse locales across North Luzon, Rivera emerged as the undisputed queen. The grand coronation unfolded in Baguio on a splendid Saturday, September 2.

This unique pageant, welcoming entrants aged 5 to 12 from Northern Luzon, served as an exceptional platform for these young participants to exhibit their rich cultural heritage, beauty, talents, and intelligence. 

Founder Mariver "Vell Watson" Agayas expressed that the event empowered children, fostering their self-assurance and shaping their destinies.

In addition to the coveted crown, Rivera collected an impressive array of awards, including Best in Tourism, Best in Filipiniana Attire, Darling of the Crowd, Miss Personality, Face of Charity, Best in Creative Costume, Best in Sports Wear, Little Miss Influencer, and Best in Tourism Video. She also secured the third position for Best in Talent and Best in Summer Wear.

Grateful for the unwavering support of the Almighty, local officials, her family, relatives, glam team, and loyal supporters, Little Miss Northern Luzon 2023, Bona Stella Rivera, cherishes her incredible journey through the LMNL competition.


Tuesday, September 5, 2023

WATCH: A Thrilling but Dangerous Tram Ride Experience in Buscalan, Kalinga

Photo Courtesy || Jet Lau Rider

Cordillera - Have you ever considered adding a dash of adventure and thrill to your visit to Kalinga? 

Well, a group of curious tourists in the town of Buscalan certainly hadn't, until someone proposed an unconventional idea - a tram ride. 

Without a moment's hesitation, they decided to take the plunge into this unexpected adventure, and what ensued was a whirlwind of excitement they'd never forget.

The tram, a seemingly humble contraption, served an indispensable role in the lives of the locals. It bridged the gap between two sides of a formidable mountain, making journeys that would normally take them 30 minutes to an hour, as swift as a fleeting breeze, lasting just around a minute.

The mechanism was deceptively simple: sturdy metal cables securely anchored on both sides of the mountain, a rugged cage designed to haul goods, and a wheel-equipped car to set it all in motion. 

It was a marvel of ingenuity, a lifeline for transporting essential supplies across the challenging terrain.

However, a word of caution – this tram wasn't designed for human transport, and for good reason. Safety concerns loomed large, and it was not recommended for adventurous souls seeking a joyride. 

The tram was a lifeline, a thread connecting two worlds, a unique facet of life in Kalinga, but one best left to its intended purpose: the humble yet vital task of transporting goods.


Monday, September 4, 2023

Taste of Thailand in Cordillera: The Badthewrong Cafe of Igorot Teacher Freddie Gaynat

Photo Courtesy || Badthewrongcafe

Cordillera - After a decade of imparting knowledge in the vibrant "Land of Smiles", Freddie Gaynat, a dedicated Igorot teacher, made the life-altering decision to return to his homeland, the Philippines. 

Yet, he didn't come back empty-handed; he brought with him a treasure trove of culinary skills acquired during his stay. 

With a burning passion for Thai cuisine, Freddie embarked on an inspiring journey and fulfilled his dream by opening the doors of "Badthewrong Cafe," a remarkable establishment that stands as the town's very first and only Thai restaurant. 

This venture was more than just a business; it was a testament to his unwavering love for the exotic flavors of Thailand.

During his ten-year teaching sojourn in Thailand, Freddie fell head over heels for the tantalizing Thai cuisine. He immersed himself in the culinary culture, diligently observing and learning the intricate art of crafting iconic Thai dishes such as Pad Thai, Pad Kra Pao Moo, the renowned Tomyum Goong, a variety of Thai curries, and much more. Among the stars on his menu, the "Kao Neeo Mamuang" (Sweet Sticky Rice with Mango) emerged as a crowd favorite.

Freddie's profound admiration of Thai food was the catalyst that ignited his dream of introducing these exquisite flavors to his fellow iCordillerans. As he reflected on his return from Thailand, he initially envisioned a cozy coffee shop. 

However, he quickly realized that a coffee shop without food was an incomplete concept. Observing that the town was saturated with Korean and Japanese eateries but sorely lacking Thai cuisine, Freddie had a bold idea: Why not open the first Thai restaurant in La Trinidad?

Little did he anticipate that his humble coffee shop concept would blossom into a full-fledged, authentic Thai restaurant. It didn't take long for word to spread, and soon, enthusiasts of Thai cuisine from all walks of life flocked to "Badthewrong Cafe" to satiate their cravings. 

Freddie was taken aback by the overwhelming love and appreciation he received from those who knew Thai food inside and out.

The story of Freddie Gaynat and "Badthewrong Cafe" is a testament to the power of passion and dedication. It's a reminder that dreams, when fueled by a genuine love for something, can transcend expectations and manifest into something truly extraordinary. 

Freddie's culinary journey serves as an inspiring example of how one person's love for a foreign land's flavors can enrich and diversify the culinary landscape of their own community, bringing smiles and satisfaction to the faces of food lovers in La Trinidad and beyond.


Saturday, September 2, 2023

Baguio's HRAB Unveils Gigantic Wedding Cake to Celebrate 16th Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism Weekend

Photo Courtesy || Baguio City PIO

Cordillera - The Hotel and Restaurant Associations of Baguio (HRAB) marked a sweet milestone in celebration of the 16th Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism Weekend on September 2 at the SM Baguio Atrium. 

In a jaw-dropping spectacle, HRAB unveiled the city's largest wedding cake ever seen.

This monumental confectionery masterpiece stood as a testament to Baguio's thriving culinary artistry. Crafted by 25 professional pastry chefs and 40 students, the four-layered wedding cake soared to nearly forty feet in height, with measurements of 24 feet by 18 feet (base), 18 feet by 14 feet (second layer), and 14 feet by 10 feet (third layer).

The cake's grandeur was not just for show; it was meant to be savored by the community. 

A whopping 12,000 slices of this culinary wonder were distributed among residents, mall-goers, tourists, and visitors, featuring a delectable array of flavors, including Red Velvet, Chocolate Truffle, Banana, Carrot, and Blueberry Vanilla.

In the spirit of unity and celebration, 11 lucky couples also exchanged vows in a mass wedding ceremony officiated by Mayor Benjamin Magalong, coinciding with the 114th Baguio Day Anniversary celebration.

The unveiling of this massive wedding cake was a momentous occasion led by HRAB President Mr. Anthony De Leon, HRAB Chairman Mr. Jeff Ng, Congressman Mark Go, Mayor Benjamin Magalong, Mrs. Arlene Magalong, DOT-CAR Regional Director Jovi Ganongan, and special guest Her Excellency Marykay L. Carlson, US Ambassador to the Philippines. 

It was a day that truly celebrated Baguio's hospitality, creativity, and love for all things delicious.


Meet Lola Veronica: 65-year-old Female Taxi Driver of Baguio City for 11 Years

Photo Courtesy || Karl Patacsil Films

Cordillera - In an industry historically dominated by men, Lola Veronica, a 65-year-old registered nurse, has shattered stereotypes and proven her mettle as a trusted taxi driver in the city of Baguio for nearly 11 years. 

Known as the "Queen of the Road" in Baguio, she has also achieved the distinction of being the first lady taxi driver on the city's popular ride-hailing app.

Lola Veronica's journey from nursing to taxi driving was driven by her desire for both income and adventure. 

She felt the thrill of travel while cruising the city's streets, but it hasn't always been smooth sailing. 

Photo Courtesy || Karl Patacsil Films
She openly acknowledges that skepticism has greeted her career choice, with some passengers expressing doubt about a woman's ability to drive professionally.

Despite the initial hesitations of passengers, Lola Veronica remains steadfast in her belief that being a taxi driver is an honorable profession. 

She has not only broken gender barriers but also showcased that dedication and competence know no gender boundaries. 

Her story serves as an inspiration to others, encouraging women to pursue their dreams in male-dominated fields and to challenge societal norms. 

Lola Veronica has truly become a symbol of empowerment on Baguio's roads, proving that women can steer their way to success in any industry.


Friday, September 1, 2023

Ifugao beauty queen Janah Rhyl Lumidao crowned Miss Baguio 2023

Photo Courtesy || Baguio PIO

Cordillera - Janah Rhyl Lumidao, a radiant 5'9" beauty hailing from Cababuyan, Hingyon, Ifugao, has captured the hearts of many as she was recently crowned Miss Baguio. 

At just 18 years old, she is currently pursuing her dreams with a Bachelor of Science in Tourism at the University of Baguio, where she's in her first year.

Notably, this talented young lady has achieved another remarkable feat, being crowned Miss Lafayette. 

Her unwavering dedication and charm have earned her the admiration of many.

We extend our warmest congratulations to Janah Rhyl Lumidao and wish her continued success as she sets her sights on the upcoming Miss Universe Philippines competition. 

May she continue to soar higher and shine on the international stage.


Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Former waiter, founder of multi-billion cooperative in North Luzon - The Tam-an Banaue Multipurpose Cooperative

Photo Courtesy || Tam-an Multipurpose Cooperative

Cordillera - In the heart of Region 2, North Luzon, lies the Tam-an Banaue Multipurpose Cooperative (TMPC), a once-small venture that has blossomed into a multi-billionaire cooperative. This success story, however, wasn't without its struggles, led by the unwavering determination of Mr. Jose D. Tomas, Sr.

In 1989, Mr. Tomas initiated the Tam-an Hog Raisers’ Association to address a hog disease crisis in the village of Tam-an in Banaue, Ifugao. This initial effort paved the way for the establishment of TMPC, whose roots can be traced back to those humble beginnings. Jose D. Tomas, Sr. served as its General Manager/CEO since inception until his term as Vice Governor of Nueva Vizcaya from 2019 to 2022.

Uniting under a common cause, the group founded the Tam-an Multipurpose Cooperative in 1991, starting with 25 members and minimal assets. Over the years, TMPC's reach expanded across multiple provinces, including Quirino, Nueva Vizcaya, Isabela, Nueva Ecija, Benguet, Aurora, and Ifugao.

Inspired by the idea of volunteerism promoted by Senator Richard Gordon, Mr. Tomas adopted a similar approach for TMPC's expansion. Despite financial constraints, he convinced the board to authorize his endeavors, leading to astonishing results, like meeting a savings quota in just one week.

The cooperative faced trials too. The 2007-2008 economic crisis coupled with unpaid loans pushed TMPC close to bankruptcy. A lifeline arrived in the form of the National Confederation of Cooperatives (NATCOO), enabling TMPC's revival through innovative lending strategies.

TMPC's accomplishments extended beyond financial prowess. It now manages diverse successful businesses, including a resort, hotel, gasoline stations, technical school, agricultural supply outlets, and more. This resilient journey started with Mr. Tomas, who began as a bellboy and waiter.

TMPC's advocacy for savings has transformed lives, rescuing individuals from loan sharks. The cooperative's accessible financial assistance and efficient service empowered entrepreneurs, while their officers promoted savings habits and cooperative membership.

From modest origins to a thriving enterprise, Tam-an BMPC's saga embodies resilience, innovation, and community spirit. Jose D. Tomas, Sr.'s legacy lives on through TMPC's transformative impact, fostering financial stability and prosperity across North Luzon.


Monday, August 28, 2023

Igorot Entrepreneur Turns Unused Jeepney into Thriving Roadside Coffee Business - Torogi Kapi

Photo Courtesy || Torogi Kapi

Cordillera - In the heart of the pandemic's economic turmoil, Gideon Shakelegend [FB name], a determined Igorot entrepreneur, found a unique way to brew success from adversity. 

A former cake seller and affected by the pandemic lockdowns, Gideon spotted an old, unused jeepney tucked away in his partner's garage, and an innovative idea took root.

Setting up shop on the bustling Lamtang Road in La Trinidad, Benguet, Gideon transformed the vintage jeepney into a hub of aromatic delight, christening it "Torogi Kapi". 

As a brave Cordilleran, he embraced the challenges of the unknown, venturing into an uncharted path by serving fresh, brewed Benguet coffee to passersby - riders, tourists, and motorists alike.

READ ALSO: Benguet has the best Arabica Coffee in the Philippines - coffee experts say

Admitting his initial hesitance, Gideon confessed he was anxious about how his coffee venture might be perceived. He pushed through the uncertainty, and to his astonishment, the first day saw a complete sell-out. 

Up until now, his coffee by the roadside is a hit among riders, vloggers and tourists.

Buoyed by this success, Gideon gained the courage to persist, positioning his vibrant yellow jeepney as the epicenter of a newfound coffee culture along the roadside.

Photo Courtesy || Torogi Kapi

Word spread like wildfire, with Torogi Kapi becoming a sensation in Benguet and beyond. 

Gideon's initiative marked the first of its kind in the region, bringing a novel concept to the coffee industry. As his customer base grew, so did his dreams. 

With diligent savings, he made the monumental decision to establish a permanent coffee shop, catering to loyal patrons seeking a cozy spot to savor his brew.


Sunday, August 27, 2023

Banawe-Inspired Condominium - First Architectural Design in the Philippines

Photo Courtesy || Slater Young YT

Cordillera - Renowned Filipino architect Slater Young has unveiled a groundbreaking project that harmonizes modern architecture with the timeless beauty of nature. Inspired by the Banawe Rice Terraces of Ifugao province, Young's creation, "The Rise Monterrazas," is a testament to his vision of integrating natural landscapes into urban structures.

Young's YouTube introduction to the project reveals his deep admiration for the Banawe Rice Terraces, stating, "We got inspired by working with nature and the biggest inspiration with us would be how Filipinos work with nature in the past." The condominium, a striking embodiment of this ethos, artfully mimics the flowing tiers of the terraces, resembling a cascading mountain adorned with lush green fields.

Unlike conventional buildings, "The Rise Monterrazas" follows the contours of the mountain terrain on which it's erected, establishing its uniqueness as a one-of-a-kind condominium in the country. The project comprises 146 low-density, premium units and features a mall beneath, offering a view of the awe-inspiring structure.

Incorporating comprehensive design elements, Young ensures that "The Rise Monterrazas" prioritizes security, privacy, sustainability, and practicality. A sophisticated rainwater collection system and underground tanks have been integrated to irrigate each unit's miniature backyard garden through a pump system. This innovative approach champions environmental responsibility and community living.

READ ALSO: Longest Suspension Bridge in Southeast Asia is Found in Abra

Architect Slater Young's creation is a testament to the power of inspiration drawn from heritage and nature, resulting in a marvel that bridges the gap between modernity and tradition. "The Rise Monterrazas" stands as an emblem of his commitment to creating spaces that honor the past while embracing the future.


Saturday, August 26, 2023

Meet Aladin Bag-ayan, composer of Cordillera's top song 'Soyosoy di Dagem'

Photo Courtesy || Aladin TV
Cordillera - Aladin Bag-ayan, a celebrated Cordilleran artist and singer, has etched his name in the hearts of many through his soulful composition "Soyosoy di Dagem," which translates to "Blow of the Wind." 

Hailing from the picturesque town of Bakun in Benguet, Aladin's music resonates with the essence of Cordilleran culture, capturing both the beauty of the region's landscapes and the wisdom of its people.

Photo Courtesy || Aladin TV
"Soyosoy di Dagem" transcends mere entertainment; it's a poignant anthem that advocates for freeing one's mind from worldly troubles and allowing them to dissipate like the wind. 

Aladin's lyrics echo the longing for genuine happiness untarnished by materialistic pursuits that often lead to conflict. Instead, he offers a path to tranquility and love, urging listeners to seek solace in their spiritual connection and let the divine handle the trials of the world.

Introduced on Session Road, this melodious masterpiece quickly garnered popularity, becoming a cherished anthem not only in the Cordilleras but also reaching distant provinces and even international audiences. 

The song's harmonious melody and profound message have made it a staple at various events, with Aladin's composition being covered by artists across the region.

Aladin Bag-ayan's talents extend beyond his mellifluous voice; he's a skilled guitarist and flutist. His Facebook page, "Aladin TV," serves as a platform for fans to witness his musical prowess, featuring vlogs and performances of "Soyosoy di Dagem." 

Aladin's generosity shines as he employs his platform to raise funds for charitable causes, embodying the very message his song conveys.

This Cordilleran luminary has graced numerous stages at the invitation of individuals, government bodies, and private institutions, captivating audiences with his heartfelt rendition of "Soyosoy di Dagem." 

Aladin Bag-ayan's dedication to preserving the cultural tapestry of the Cordilleras and spreading a message of peace and love through his music solidifies his place as a revered artist and advocate for positive change.


Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Toyota Philippines Set to Revive Beloved Tamaraw, Delighting Cordillera Motorists

The Next-Generation Tamaraw

Cordillera -  In a move sure to delight Filipino automotive enthusiasts, Toyota Motor Philippines has announced the much-anticipated revival of the legendary Tamaraw, a vehicle cherished across the nation, particularly by motorists in the Cordilleras. 

Earlier this year, the company unveiled plans to resurrect this iconic nameplate, surely rekindling fond memories.

To realize this endeavor, Toyota PH is committing a significant PHP 4.4 billion investment to retool the Santa Rosa plant in Laguna, enabling local production of the next-generation Tamaraw. 

Commemorating its 35th anniversary, Toyota recently introduced a concept iteration of the Tamaraw, offering an exciting glimpse into its modernized form.

While the production version remains under wraps, the preview provided a tantalizing look at what's in store for enthusiasts. 

Notably, in Cordillera, the Tamaraw FX played a pivotal role in the lives of many motorist especially the farmers, serving as a dependable truck to transport their produce to the La Trinidad trading post. 

Having been a reliable transport solution post-phase-out from taxi units, the news of Toyota's Tamaraw revival has sparked excitement among Cordilleran motorists. 

The resurrection of this beloved vehicle promises to rekindle its legacy while catering to the evolving needs of the region's drivers.


New Romantic Netflix Film 'Love You Long Time' Showcases Baguio and Enchanting Atok, Benguet

Photo Courtesy || Love You Long Time || PJHaights

Cordillera - A captivating new love story is set to capture hearts as "Love You Long Time," a Philippine drama film, an entry in the Summer Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) 2023 is now showing in Netflix. 

Directed by JP Habac and produced by Studio Three Sixty, this cinematic gem promises a tale of emotions set against the backdrop of the picturesque town of Atok, Benguet.

Photo Courtesy || Netflix's Love You Long Time
The film stars Carlo Aquino (Uly) and Eisel Serrano (Ikay), who portray characters entwined in a unique romance that transcends time and distance. 

Set in the stunning landscapes of Baguio and Atok, Benguet, "Love You Long Time" weaves a narrative of connection and longing reminiscent of the Korean film "Il Mare."

One of the film's standout locations is Haight's Farm in Paoy, Atok, Benguet, celebrated for its breathtaking vistas adorned with a plethora of flowers.

As the characters, Ikay and Uly, communicate through two-way radios across two different timelines, their story unfolds against this picturesque setting.

Ikay, a writer seeking solace in Baguio, finds herself unexpectedly connected with Uly, a resident of Atok, Benguet, as he repairs a walkie-talkie. 

Their evolving relationship forms the heart of the narrative, evoking a sense of nostalgia and heartfelt connection that is sure to resonate with audiences.

As "Love You Long Time" graces the silver screen, viewers can anticipate a touching love story set against the scenic charm of Atok, Benguet, reminding us that love's power knows no bounds, even in the face of time and distance.


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