Today's Punto
Today's Punto
Feature Article
‘Commercio Centrale’ in Clark to showcase best in Pampanga

Nov 09, 2017

(VISIT PAMPANGA 2018. Tour and travel executive Bessie Rustia presents to Gov. Lilia G. Pineda her Balik Pinas, Balik Saya program with special emphasis on Pampanga as destination. Joining them is board member Tonton Torres. Photo by Bong Lacson)

CLARK FREEPORT – Something new is brewing in Pampanga this holiday season. Starting November 24, all things Kapampangan will be showcased in a lifestyle weekend market called “Commercio Centrale” at the Parade Grounds here.

As part of the Pampanga Day celebration, the rousing showcase will have its grand opening on December 1 with Gov. Lilia G. Pineda, 2nd District Rep. Gloria Macapagal- Arroyo and Tourism Promotions Board COO Cesar Montano cutting the ribbon.

During the media forum “Talk Widus” organized by the Pampanga Press Club at the Widus Hotel and Casino here on Wednesday, Bessie Rustia of Creative Travel and Tours who is spearheading the event said the program is in line with the national campaign of the Department of Tourism (DOT) dubbed: “Bring Home A Friend.”

Rustia said the DOT’s program was rooted in the national campaign to make 2018 the home coming year for Pinoys abroad which she has adopted through her own initiative via her project: “Balik Saya, Balik Pinas,” or specifically “Balik Saya, Balik Pampanga.”

But Rustia said the project entails the cooperation of everyone from the public and private sectors as well as other tourism stakeholders.

“I developed this program five years ago. Balik Saya, Balik Pinas is to promote the Philippines to Pinoys abroad and just recently I was able to complete it,” she said.

Rustia said Commercio Centrale is meant to create an impact and a distinct tourists’ destination that will make visitors come back to Pampanga.

“It’s not just a market place but a special hub for events,” she said.

“Our objective is to align the project with the vision of the province and support its mission to create a sound tourism corridor that will elevate the status of Pampanga as a top-of-mind, must-visit destination,” Rustia said.

She pointed out that among the strategy is to create a tourism highway between two international gateways –Clark International Airport and Ninoy Aquino International Airport - via a signature bus program.

Another is to capitalize on the richness of the heritage of Pampanga much like how Vigan in Ilocos Sur positioned itself in the tourism landscape with its history, arts and crafts as well as culinary offerings, she said.

The Commercio Centrale is a destination in itself. More than a marketplace, it is a social hub, a trading post, an events place and a lifestyle center, Rustia said. Pampanga should be experienced, embraced, enjoyed, she added.

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