Family, folklore define pioneering hotel design

PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF M-GALLERY | DREW Anderson of TOPO and resort owner Hope Uy, check out farm-to-table planting.

With craft, community and a deeply held intrinsic value for the cultural mores and history of the island, South Palms Resort Panglao Bohol–MGallery is shaping up to be anything but a cookie-cutter hotel.

Six world-class innovation and sustainability leaders in architecture, interior design and green development have gathered to create a hotel like no other — weaving the folklore of the destination into the fabric of the project and into the hearts of the community of artisans proudly crafting a living history for guests when the hotel opens as part of the Panglao Shores masterplan in fourth quarter of 2024.

Take Patrick Keane, founder of Enter Projects, an artist and master of “native material” design who is working with Boholano craftsmen to create spaces of celebration:  “Here is a community deeply entrenched in generations of arts and crafts. We are using local materials such as recycled woods, weaving basketry and weaving fabrics, plus traditional techniques passed down through generations and incorporating performance-based materials, such as solar and sustainably engineered materials. As a project it is breaking new ground.”

PATRICK Keane, founder of Enter Projects Asia, analyzes a traditional loom weaving in Bohol.

The concept of “adaptive reuse,” which is about extending the life cycle of architecture through creative upcycling, ensuring history lives on and folklore traditions are maintained. Hazel Wu of White Jacket has been at the forefront of the reuse of materials from former ancestral homes to ensure materials are utilized and cherished.

“A piece of Bohol will be featured in every room, including wooden walls that previously formed part of village dwellings and natural materials that tell the story of local artists and artisans. This is a tale of culture and folk tales. Stories that will be told throughout the hotel,” said Wu.

HAZEL WU of White Jacket (Singapore), checking wood quality of a former disused ancestral home in Bohol.

Located on a 6.4-hectare site, the hotel is a story of collaboration and rediscovery of the roots of Bohol’s cultural heritage led by the owners’ passion and love of the destination. The personal journey of Hope Uy, daughter of the founder of owning company, Alturas Group of Companies, is at the core of the creation of the 188-key resort.

HOPE Uy, managing director of Panglao Shores.

Every aspect of the project will be developed in line with eco-building standards and materials, such as high-performance glass, natural ventilation and solar harvesting, along with smart technologies, electric transport, water treatment and waste reduction. John Farrell, founder and director of XCO2 Energy is a specialist in low-carbon projects and his input is instrumental in helping South Palms Resort Panglao Bohol—MGallery to be operationally eco-friendly.

Construction of South Palms Resort Panglao Bohol—MGallery is currently underway in Phase 1 of Panglao Shores with completion scheduled in Q4 2024.

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