Saturday, January 19, 2013

Davao Chinatown, also known as Mindanao Chinatown, is the only Chinatown in Mindanao, Philippines. It is located in Davao City. At around 44 hectares, it is at the center of numerous business establishments, of which a great majority is owned by Chinese Filipinos. The Davao Chinatown encompasses the areas of Ramon Magsaysay Avenue, Monteverde Avenue, Sta. Ana Avenue, and Leon Garcia Street.

Arch of Friendship
First of the archways is christened as "Arch of Friendship" which is situated along Magsaysay Avenue, near the Jones Circle. It was sponsored by the heirs of Francisco Villa-Abrille (Lim Chuan Juna), one of the prominent Chinese traders whose ancestry originated from Amoy, China, now Xiamen. The Friendship Arch was inaugurated in August 2008.

The archway's design is an inspiration from the 400-year-old architectural designs of Yuan Garden in Shanghai, China. The beams were designed similar to that of the bamboo, a traditional construction material of the Chinese. The archway is embellished with fish and pearl - symbols of the Villa-Abrille Family, and was done by Architect Arnel Villacampa. 

The Arch of Unity

The second archway, dubbed as the "Arch of Unity", is situated at the other end of Ramon Magsaysay Avenue towards the Magsaysay Park in Manuel Quezon Boulevard. It was donated by members of the Dabaw Kaisa Foundation, and was inaugurated on January 31, 2009 with the Consul General of the People’s Republic of China, the Honorable He Shijing in attendance.

Arch of Peace

The third archway is called the "Arch of Peace", and is situated at the corners of Jose P. Laurel, and and Sta. Ana Avenues near the Davao Central High School. It was donated by the Yuchengco Group of Companies headed by Mr. Alfonso Yuchengco, former Philippine Ambassador to the People's Republic of China. The Arch of Peace was officially inaugurated  on July 20, 2009.

Unknown to many, Davao City holds the distinction of having the biggest Chinatown in the world, with a total land area of approximately 44 hectares covering at least four barangays. The creation and development of Chinatown was an initiative of the Davao City Council Tourism Committee Chairperson, Ms. Susan Isabel Reta, in an effort to attract more foreign and local tourists to Davao City.




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