To those of us who have come to know Santa Rosa, Laguna for its progress – the techno parks, automobile plants, and upmarket residential communities, the recent My City, My SM launch at SM City Santa Rosa gave guests a rare glimpse of its other side.
This is a side proud of its history and culture- its old churches and ancestral homes, artifacts, local cuisine, and famous people. And the prominent families of old Santa Rosa – the Tiongcos, the Carpenas, Zavallas, and Lijaucos – gathered together in Filipiniana attire as SM honored four prominent Rosarians – the Philippine Tatler’s Managing Editor and Rotary District Governor Chit Lijauco and the Tinig Hall of Fame Awardees, the Tiongco Brothers – Emil, Jun, and Art.
Sta. Rosa City Mayor Arlene Arcillas Nazareno led the tribute that culminated in the unveiling of the two panels featuring Ms. Lijauco and the Tiongco Brothers. SM City Sta. Rosa Mall Manager Domindaor Caringal, as well as SM’s VP for Operations Glenn Ang, and VP for Marketing and Communications Millie Dizon joined them.
The Mayor’s mother, Ms. Josephina Arcillas, Santa Rosa City Councilor Arnel DC Gomez, and Southern Tagalog Tourism Council Director Andrew Nocon were also present. They enjoyed the program, which consisted of a performance by the University of Perpetual Help Cultural Dancers and the Tiongco Brothers, who wowed the crowd as they serenaded them with their signature songs. They also enjoyed Santa Rosa delicacies – like Matse, Atole, Lumpiang Hubad, and Sinukmane with Kinilaw na Puso ng Saging which were served with a modern take during the event, together with the popular homegrown Bok’s Ice Cream.
One of the highlights of the event was the exhibit organized by Santa Rosa historian Nonia Tiongco. It featured photos of old Santa Rosa and its well -known people, as well as artifacts and antiques from the private collection of Architect Mario Zavalla. Mallgoers were seen crowding around the exhibit, with a sense of wonder as they discovered the city’s glorious past.
The My City, My SM event at SM City Santa Rosa is the sixth in this tourism driven campaign that features the many cities around the Philippines where SM is located in. The first, I Left My Heart in San Fernando, honored internationally acclaimed film director Brillante Mendoza and Mutya ng Kapampangan Nicolette Henson; Cebu, Cebu highlighted the best of Cebu through socialite Teresin Mendezona and the Aldeguer brothers –Jay, Michael, and Chris; while Sweet Home Iloilo featured Dr. Josette Biyo and Mang Inasal’s Edgar Sia II.
Just in time for the Panagbenga and Hot Air Balloon Festivals in February, Baguio on My Mind paid tribute to National Artist Bencab and Binibining Pilipinas Universe 2001 and lawyer Zora Andam; while Up, Up, and Away at Clark featured CHED Chairman Dr. Emmanuel Y. Angeles, and artist, foodie, and writer Claude Tayag.
My City, My SM is a project of SM and the Department of Tourism with support from the Philippine Star.
My City My SM endorsers Tiongco Brothers Jun, Emil and Arthur, SM VP for Marketing Millie Dizon, Sta. Rosa Mayor Arlene Arcillas-Nazareno, SM AVP for Operations-South Glen Ang and SM City Sta. Rosa Mall Manager Dominador Caringal and Sta. Rosa Councilor.
1. My City My SM endorser Philippine Tatler’s Managing Editor Chit Lijauco (center) with her family (from Left to right) Susan Lijauco, Puring Perez, Geoff Mc Llelan, Lilia Miguel and Miko Lijuaco
Southern Tagalog Tourism Council and governor of Red Cross Andrew Nocom with Mrs. Josefina Arcillas, mother of the mayor.
Sta. Rosa’s Historian Nonia Tiongco with Rebecca Soqueño , and Lilia Miguel
Architect Mario Zavalla, who lent the artifacts from his ancestral house with Gemalin Batin
Dr. Bimbo Sta. Maria of Sta. Rosa
Richard and Doris Tiongco
Binan Tourism Officer Jazz Alonte
Sta Rosa’s Councilor Arnel Gomez, Antonio Agulto with SM VP for Marketing Millie Dizon
1. Prominent guests from Sta. Rosa Conchita Delfino, Lally Tiongco, Imelda Martinez and Jane Tiongco
Apolinario and Imelda Martinez of Kilusan Kwartel Sto. Domingo
Oscar and Sora Avenido
Mrs. Doris Tiongco beside the antique Karitela from Casa Zavalla
The University of Perpertual Help Cultural Dancers in their folk danc e performance
T The beautiful Rosas of Sta. Rosa
Antique Portable Hand Sewing Machine from Casa Zavalla
A forerunner of a washing machine used by the rich families at the turn of the centuries.
A Banga, terracotta jar with a Faucet.
Sta. Rosa’s very own Bok’s ice cream was a treat for the guests.
Sinukmane or sticky rice with pirurutong and Kilawing puno ng saging.
Sta. Rosa’s authentic Atole, a corned based delicacy.
Lun Lumpiang hubad made of vegetables by Alice’s Catering