The Iloilo Esplanade (Phase 1) was given the Excellence Award. The design was crafted by PGAA Creative Design (a firm headed by this writer). The esplanade has become part of the identity of this booming city. It was an initiative of Senator Frank Drilon and implemented by the city under the guidance of Mayor Jed Mabilog and in collaboration with the DPWH.
An Award of Merit was also given to the Be Grand Resort in Panglao Island, Bohol, designed by PGAA Creative Design. The three-hectare resort was laid out to take advantage of views of the sea. The main resort block and nineteen villas were laid out in a series of lagoon pools, which flowed naturally around these and formed a network of waterside spaces, decks and lanais covering over two hectares. The landscape architect was cited for keeping much of the exiting trees and palms in place while designing around them.
The GantimPALA Awards present the best of Filipino design in landscape architecture. The awards were given in conjunction with the launch of a book that features all the qualified entries and showcases the winning entries.
PALA invited a panel consisting of three ASEAN landscape architects and one Filipino judge, a past president of PALA, Elizabeth Hautea-Espino, who was the director of the National Parks Development Committee in the last administration. The other judges were Dr. Ariya Aruninta, a distinguished landscape architect from Thailand; Damian Tang, the regional president of the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA); and Dr. Osman Mohd Tahir, the dean of the Faculty of Design and Architecture at the Universiti Putra Malaysia.