Bigger, Bolder Gabii sa Kabilin 2012

The Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) Culture and Heritage Unit and its partners will hold the sixth run of Gabii sa Kabilin on May 25, 2012 from 6 p.m. to 12 midnight.

This year the heritage event will feature 21 main attractions composed of museums and cultural sites in the cities of Cebu and Mandaue. These are Aboitizland Heritage Pocket, Ayala Center Cebu Cinema and The Terraces, Fo Guang Shan Chu Un Temple, Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Museum, College Assurance Plan (CAP) Theater, Cathedral Museum, Casa Gorordo Museum, Cebu City Museum, Cebu Normal University (CNU), Fort San Pedro, Jose R. Gullas Halad Museum, Mandaue City Plaza, Museo Parian sa Sugbo, Museo Sugbo Complex, Plaza Independencia, Sacred Heart Parish Church and Alternative Contemporary Arts Studio (ACAS), Basilica Minore del Santo Niño through the Santo Niño de Cebu Augustinian Social Development Foundation (SNAF), University of San Carlos Museum, University of Southern Philippines Foundation (USPF) Rizaliana Museum, and Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House.

Gabii saKabilin’s new participating sites this year are Ayala Center Cebu Cinema and The Terraces, Fo Guang Shan Chu Un Temple, BPI Museum, CAP Theater, JRG Halad Museum, and University of San Carlos Museum. The BPI Museum will be available for viewing to Gabii sa Kabilin guests from 8 a.m. t0 4 p.m. only.

Tourists are treated to cultural performances, exhibits, art fairs, food markets, and interactive demonstrations in the 20 main sites.

For this year's Gabii sa Kabilin, there are various suggested routes according to specific themes applicable to the museums and heritage sites, which guests can choose from. These themes include Museums; Art Galleries and Alternative Spaces; Heritage Structures; Educational; Churches, Temples, and Sacred Places; and Public Spaces. There'll also be a walking tour along heritage sites that are within walking distance from each other.

With one ticket worth PhP150.00, local and foreign tourists may go to as many participating museums and cultural heritage sites within the six hours of the heritage event. The ticket also allows them to take as many rides as they want in Gabii sa Kabilin-designated buses and one tartanilla (horse-drawn carriage) trip in Cebu City’s old district.

Tickets will be sold starting May 10 at the 22 participating museums and cultural sites, including the concierge at Ayala Center Cebu.

Detailed information about the participating sites and their presentations as well as tour routes of Gabii sa Kabilin will be available for download also on May 10 at or

In previous Gabii sa Kabilin runs, places of historic and cultural significance within walking distance or along the tour routes are also earmarked. These have also grown in number this year. Some of them are the 1938 VECO Buiding, Asilo de la Milagrosa, Matilda Bradford Church, Cebu Provincial Capitol Building, Cebu Puericulture and Maternity House, Compania Maritima, early 1900s warehouses along M.C. Briones Street, Fuente Osmeña, Gotiaoco Building, Iglesia Filipina Independiente Cathedral, Malacañang sa Sugbo, Mother of Perpetual Help Parish Church, old Southern Islands Hospital, Plaza Hamabar, the old bridges of Sikatuna and Zulueta Streets, Oriente and Vision Theaters, Plaza Sugbo, Plaza Hamabar, University of the Philippines-Cebu College, and Yutivo Building.

An added attraction to Gabii sa Kabilin 2012 is a set of children’s activities that will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in six participating sites, namely, Ayala Center Cebu, Casa Gorordo Museum, Cathedral Museum, Cebu City Museum, Cebu Normal University, and Fort San Pedro.

Implementation of Gabii sa Kabilin is made possible through partnerships with the local government units of Cebu City and Mandaue, Cebu City Traffic Operations Management (CITOM), Philippine National Police–Cebu City (PNP), Cultural and Historical Affairs Commission (CHAC) of Cebu City, Province of Cebu, Department of Tourism–Region VII and Santo Niño de Cebu Augustinian Social Development Foundation.

RAFI and its partners are also assisted by tanods, officials and residents of 26 barangays in Cebu City. Major sponsorship is provided by Smart Communications.

Dr. Jocelyn Gerra, executive director of RAFI-Culture and Heritage, said that the expansion of Gabii sa Kabilin in terms of participating museums and activities is a breakthrough as it means that more organizations and individuals are becoming aware of the beauty and importance of local heritage. She also said that this indicates a positive trend in efforts to promote and protect Cebuano-Filipino culture.

The diversity of presentations and activities that participating museums and cultural sites are offering this year, she added, shows the cosmopolitan character of Metro Cebu. It is fitting therefore, Gerra noted, that Gabii sa Kabilin is tagged as a highlight event in the year-long celebration of the selection of Cebu City as an ASEAN City of Culture.

On May 18, Gabii sa Kabilin  in Argao and Sibonga will be launched in partnership with RAFI and the local government units of the two towns.

Gabii sa Kabilin 2012 Main Participating Museums and Heritage Sites
Aboitizland Heritage Pocket
Tel. no. 411-1600 local 1479

Ayala Center Cebu
Tel. no.516-3092

Bank of the Philippine Islands Museum
Tel. no.412-1368

Basilica Minore del Santo Niño
Tel. no.255-6699

Cathedral Museum of Cebu
Tel. no.412-3455

Casa Gorordo
Tel. no.418-7234 local 703

Cebu City Museum
Tel. no.255-4997

Cebu Normal University
Tel. no.253-9611

College Assurance Plan Center

Fo Guang Shan Chu Un Temple
Tel. no.253-8144

Fort San Pedro
Tel. no.416-7080

Jose R. Gullas Halad Museum
Tel. no.268-2579

Mandaue City Plaza
Tel. no.343-9092

Museo Parian sa Sugbo
Tel. no.255-5408 to 09

Museo Sugbo
Tel. no.516-2128

Plaza Independencia
Tel. no.416-7080

University of San Carlos Museum
Tel. no.253-1000

University of Southern Philippines Foundation – Rizaliana Museum
Tel. no.414-8773

Sacred Heart Parish Church and Alternative Contemporary Arts Studio
Tel. no.253-6479 local 114

Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House
Tel. no.515-9000

Click on the image to enlarge it - Gabii sa Kabilin Routes
Gabii sa Kabilin Fact Sheet

Gabii sa Kabilin (Night of Heritage) is an annual program hosted by the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) Culture and Heritage Unit. It is executed in coordination with RAFI’s partner museums and heritage sites.

It is an adaptation of Germany’s Long Night of Museums that has been replicated in other cities all over the world such as Vienna, Budapest, Saint Petersburg, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, Prague, Bogota, and Buenos Aires. In the Asia-Pacific Region, only Metro Cebu is currently holding such an event.

As it is a “night of heritage,” Gabii sa Kabilin does not only feature museums, but also sites of cultural and historic significance.

The first run of Gabii sa Kabilin was made in 2004 and included four museums in Cebu City. It is now on its sixth year and will feature 21 museums and heritage sites in the cities of Cebu and Mandaue.

Gabii sa Kabilin is held every last Friday of May in celebration of the Philippines’ National Heritage Month and International Museums Day (May 18).

This year, Gabii sa Kabilin will be held on May 25 from 5 p.m. to 12 midnight.
Tour Mechanics

            One ticket worth PhP150.00 gives participants the access to as many museums and heritage sites included in the Gabii sa Kabilin circuit as they want and enjoy cultural shows and exhibits from 6 p.m. to 12 midnight. They also provide for unlimited rides in Gabii sa Kabilin buses and one tartanilla ride in Cebu City’s old district.

Participants get to join several activities, such as puso making, and savor local cuisine at affordable prices. They can also shop for souvenirs as they tour museums and heritage sites throughout the night.

Participating sites and their attractions

            This year, the Gabii sa Kabilin heritage event will include 21 participating sites that will have various presentations. These are:

 Aboitizland Heritage Pocket
Alfresco heritage hub in historic Parian

  • Outdoor display of old Cebu photographs; Food market in Lopez-Jaena Street; Trivia contest; Cultural show
 Ayala Center Cebu
Popular shopping destination showcasing contemporary trends in Cebuano culture and arts

  • Performances of contemporary dances and songs, album launch, food fair and interactive guitar-making demonstration for children at The Terraces; Free showing of Cebuano indie films at Ayala Cinema
Bank of the Philippine Islands Museum
Country’s first bank museum

  • Exhibit of history of BPI and banking in the Philippines (available for viewing from
8 a.m. to 4 p.m. only)

Basilica Minore del Santo Niño
Colonial Baroque Church home to the iconic Santo Niño de Cebu

Cathedral Museum of Cebu
Repository of the Archdiocese of Cebu’s sacred treasures

  • Beato Pedro Calungsod exhibit; Cultural show; interactive demonstration of beadwork for children
Casa Gorordo Museum
Museum of 19th to early 20th century lifestyle of a Parian family and community

  • Cultural presentation of dance and music by Marigondon Children’s String Orchestra, Badjao women and Izarzurri Vidal; Sugbuanong balak and balitaw; Tito Cuevas Retrospective Art Exhibit; Ateneo Art Awards Exhibit; Interactive carroza decoration for children
Cebu City Museum
Housed in the 1937 neo-classical building of the Rizal Library and Museum

  • Presentations by Cebu City Children Performance Artists, Knapsack Dancers, Project Anakatira Members; Tito Cuevas Retrospective Art Exhibit; AVP of Cebu City history
Cebu Normal University
Historic American Era school campus home to memorabilia and artifacts related to history of public education and Word War II

  • Exhibits on history of education in Cebu, local arts and artists, and Japanese occupation; Lukay Art Exhibit; interactive Puso-weaving demonstration for children and adult.
College Assurance Plan Center
Former residence of President Sergio Osmeña

  • Sergio Osmeña memorabilia exhibit
Fo Guang Shan Chu Un Temple
Serene Buddhist temple complex in the heart of the city

  • Presentation of excerpts from Siddharta, the Musical; Kuan Yin Boddhisatva Exhibit; History of Fo Guan Shan Philippines presentation; Bathing of the Buddha; Buddhist calligraphy demonstration
Fort San Pedro
Oldest and smallest fort in the Philippines marking the first Spanish settlement in the islands

  • Cultural show; Video presentations about Cebu City as ASEAN City of Culture, Pasiyo sa Kabilin, and Gabii sa Kabilin; Exhibits on history of the fort and founding of the city; Bonsai collection of indigenous plants; Traditional games for children

Jose R. Gullas Halad Museum
A homage to musical heritage of Cebu and the Visayas

  • Exhibits on Bisaya musical heritage of the 20th century, Jose Gullas memorabilia and traditional Filipino musical instruments; performances of Cebuano music and dances 
Mandaue City Plaza
Urban landscape of a Spanish-era pueblo-turned-industrial city

  • Cultural presentations; Interactive demonstration and tasting of Mandue’s popular food heritage
Museo Parian sa Sugbo
1730 Parian residence-turned-Jesuit mission station

  • Performances of old Cebuano songs; exhibits on history of parian, history of Jesuits in Cebu, artifacts unearthed during rehabilitation of the residence
Museo Sugbo
Cebu’s largest museum showcasing two millennia of the province’s heritage and history

  • Thirteen galleries in three museums in a six-building complex; One Town, One Product Fair; Cultural Shows
Plaza Independencia
Iconic landmark in the country’s oldest city

  • One-night-only fair of artworks by Cebu’s leading artists at popular prices
University of San Carlos (USC) Museum
USC’s museum in its historic main campus building

  • Exhibits on archaeology and ethnography of the Visayas, Spanish period and USC’s history; Book launching; Trade fair by USC School of Business students; Ka Pamilya Negosyo booths
University of Southern Philippines Foundation – Rizaliana Museum
Largest Rizaliana Museum in the Visayas

  • Reading of Rizal’s poetry in Spanish; Showing of documentaries on Rizal’s life and works; Display of Rizaliana memorabilia; Cultural presentations
Sacred Heart Parish Church and Alternative Contemporary Arts Studio (2 sites)
Cebu City’s first modern church and Gallery of contemporary Cebuano art

  • Gabii sa Kabilin opening program; Tito Cuevas retrospective exhibit; Mark Salvatus art show; cultural presentations; interactive visual arts demonstration for children 
Yap-Sandiego Ancestral House
One of Cebu’s oldest Balay nga Tisa built in the Spanish Period

  • Display of family’s collection of antiques; Cultural presentation of Filipiniana dances by the famed Sandiego Dance Troupe
Children’s Activities

This year, Gabii sa Kabilin will include interactive demonstrations and activities where children can participate, learn and have fun from 6:00 to 8:00 pm in seven venues. They are the following:

Ayala Center Cebu
  • Hat and basket weaving
Casa Gorordo
  • Story-telling; Interactive bugsay-making demonstration; Decorating a carroza
Cathedral Museum
  • Beadwork and Rosary stringing
Cebu City Museum
  • Sugboanon children’s stories at the Library; Interactive Tai Chi demonstration
Cebu Normal University
  • Lukay arts demonstration and puso weaving
Fort San Pedro
  • Playing of sungka traditional game
Sacred Heart Parish Church and Alternative Contemporary Arts Studio
  • Interactive visual arts demonstration

Other heritage sites that can be viewed during Gabii sa Kabilin

In past runs, this year’s Gabii sa Kabilin will give an opportunity to people to re-discover other significant heritage sites that are just walking distance or along the tour routes. These are:

 Asilo de la Milagrosa
Landmark neo-Gothic Church and pre-war orphanage

Calamba Cemetery
Old necropolis that houses rare Spanish-era structures

Carbon Market and Freedom Park
Historic landmark in Cebu City’s public life

Carreta Cemetery
Spanish-era necropolis and burial ground of many Cebuano revolutionaries

Cebu City Central School
1914 Gabaldon building symbolizing an important stage in the history of public education in Cebu

Cebu City Hall
Seat of the Cebu City Government fronting historic Plaza Sugbo

Cebu Heritage Monument
Three-dimensional overview of Cebu’s history in Plaza Parian

Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral
Ecclesiastical seat of the Archdiocese of Cebu

Cebu Provincial Capitol
Seat of the Cebu Provincial Government and pre-war Capitol Hill-inspired edifice

Cebu Puericulture and Maternity House
Early 1900s women’s hospital

Colon Street
Considered the oldest street in the Philippines

Compania Maritima
Early 1900s neo-Classical building, once a picturesque sea-side hotel

Fuente Osmeña
Century-old focal point in the life of Cebu City

Gotiaoco Building
Grand reminder of Cebu’s turn-of-the-century business district that will soon become Cebu’s Chinese museum

Sprawling horse racing arena that evolved into a thriving urban neighborhood

Iglesia Filipina Independiente Cathedral
Site that offers interesting glimpse into religious history of Cebu

Malacañang sa Sugbo
1910 Aduana building-turned-presidential residence

Matilda Bradford Church
Cebu City’s oldest Presbyterian church

Mother of Perpetual Help Parish Church
More commonly known as Redemptorist Church, a solid memento of work of American Catholic missionaries in Cebu

Oriente Theater
Art deco building in Cebu City’s downtown district

Old Southern Islands Hospital
Early 1900s forerunner of Don Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center

Osmeña Boulevard
Historic axis that connects Cebu City’s downtown, midtown and uptown districts

Parian Fire Station
Site of once grandiose San Juan Bautista Parish Church and convent of Parian

Prudential Bank building
Beautiful remnant of early twentieth century Magallanes Street as Cebu City’s financial district

Plaza Sugbo
Spanish-era public space with Magellan’s Cross as its centerpiece

Plaza Hamabar
Small open space across Cathedral Museum of Cebu featuring a statue of Raja Humabon from whom the plaza was named after

Port warehouses along M.C. Briones Street
Surviving testament to early 1900s maritime commerce in Cebu

Santo Rosario Parish Church
Popular Cebu City religious landmark originating from the 1930s

Saint Joseph Patriarch Church of Mabolo
Neo-gothic church that was once the parish church of the pueblo of Talamban

Sikatuna Bridge
1920 bridge along Sikatuna Street

Smith Bell and Company Building
Early 1900s trading house and currently, a shopping center
University of the Philippines Cebu College
Sprawling university complex that was an important World War II site

University of San Jose Recoletos and Our Lady of Mount Carmel Chapel
Post-war structure that was once the site of Spanish-era Recoletos church and convent

VECO building of 1938
Pre-war building that is a reminder of the history of modernity in Cebu City

Vision Theater
Magnificent neo-classical building reminiscent of Cebu’s Golden Age of Cinema

Yutivo Building
Early 1900s edifice across Cebu City Hall

Zulueta Bridge
Rare Spanish-era coral stone bridge in old Parian

It's going to be a more interesting year for Gabii sa Kabilin 2012!

Bigger, Bolder Gabii sa Kabilin 2012 Bigger, Bolder Gabii sa Kabilin 2012 Reviewed by Vernon Joseph Go on Thursday, May 10, 2012 Rating: 5

No comments