Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The Amazing Race Asia Travels to Legazpi City

LEGAZPI CITY, gateway to the Bicol Region’s 8 Wonders of Eco-Tourism, also one of the Philippines’ leading tourist destination and known for the world-famous Mayon Volcano and all the adventure spots surrounding it, was again the opening highlight of Episode 6 of The Amazing Race Asia Season 4.

Excited bloggers converged in a live viewing party held at Greenbelt 3 to watch the screening of The Amazing Race Asia Season 4 on leading action and adventure channel AXN using a large LED television display at the National Sports Grill.

Hyping the excitement among the jam-packed crowd came about when Team Philippines Richard Herrera and Richard Hardin were declared Team no. 1 by TARA host Allan Wu. This time around, the challenges were done in freezing temperatures at New Zealand after a long flight from its Philippines pit start at Misibis Bay.

Prizes from AXN and the Amazing Race Asia were raffled by The Riches and fellow racer Lani Pillinger. The blogger’s event was initiated by International Publicist Joyce Ramirez of PR Asia who also co-produced the Legazpi episode under Executive Producer Michael Mckay. The event was likewise supported by AXN Asia with funding support from Mayor Noel Rosal of Legazpi City, business tycoon Elizaldy Co and Atty. Ronald Ang of Sunwest Group of Companies.

Last week, the fifth episode of Amazing Race Asia filmed exclusively in Legazpi City and Cagraray Island, is said to be the series’ most expensive production to date as various scenes showcased the luxury resort island playground Misibis Bay as pit stop; the perfect cone Mayon Volcano; the historical Cagsawa Ruins, and Lignon Hill, which offers the best vantage point of Mt. Mayon and the cityscape.

The Amazing Race Asia is based from the multi-Emmy Award winning US reality TV show produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. It has been to 20 countries in Asia, Oceania, Europe, and Africa.

Regional tourism director Maria Ong-Ravanilla said she is really proud that Amazing Race made its pit stop in the province.

The filming of Amazing Race Asia here will promote Albay as one of the premier tourist destinations in the country,” Ravanilla said in a phone interview.

She said their hopes are high that more Asian tourists will visit Albay since the show is being aired internationally.

We are grateful that Amazing Race Asia chose Legazpi as one of its sites. With this, we expect that a lot of TV networks within and outside Asia will be enticed to hold shoots here or to feature the province as a world-class tourist destination,” Ravanilla added.

Ian Varona, Misibis Bay resort manager, said the Amazing Race Asia will give a good international media mileage for Legazpi City and Albay province since it will be aired over and over again in different countries for years to come.

Bicolano businessman and countryside development pioneer Elizaldy Co said by helping the tourism industry grow it will open doors for new investments that will help generate jobs for the locals.

Co, who is chairman of the board of the Sunwest Group of Companies, said creating more jobs will help curb unemployment and alleviate poverty.

It is our dream to be the country’s no. 1 tourist destination. What we’re doing now is being like a catalyst by opening doors for future investments,” Co said.

The Sunwest Group owns Misibis Bay Resort, waterfront lifestyle mall Embarcadero de Legazpi, and two posh hotels in this city—Hotel St. Ellis and Hotel Venezia.


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