TACLOBAN CITY – The “Adlaw sa Ormoc – Diamond Jubilee Celebration” of Ormoc City was a big winner in this year’s Association of Tourism of the Philippines (ATOP) Pearl Award held during the national convention held in Boracay, Aklan, on October 5.

Ormoc City was one of two local government units from Eastern Visayas that submitted entries to the annual search organized by the ATOP.

Ormoc also bagged recognition for its other entries, first runner-ups for best practices in community-based tourism (Fostering Sustainability and Empowerment: Ormoc Tourism LEADS the Way in community-based heritage preservation), best hosting award for local government unit – international event (The 4th Southeast Asia Pacific Fencing Championship), and best tourism event – religious festival (425th Fiesta Celebration: Viva San Pedro Ug san Pablo!).

The local government unit of Burauen, on the other hand, received the first runner-up award in the best brochure for tourism promotion award for the “Find Your Ex” travel brochure.

Tourism Regional Director Karina Rosa Tiopes said that the two LGUs submitted a total of 22 entries for the 2023 ATOP Awards, and ultimately six were recognized during the awarding ceremony graced by Secretary Ma. Esperanza Christina Garcia Frasco.

“These winners – Burauen and Ormoc – share one thing in common. These LGUs both have leaders who believe and embrace tourism as their driver for growth and development. They empowered the LGU tourism teams who in return delivered and made significant strides in developing and promoting tourism for their respective LGUs,” she said.

“We hope that this recognition will inspire our other LGU stakeholders and give them the confidence to vie in the succeeding years ATOP Pearl Awards,” Tiopes added.

In her message, Sec. Frasco commended ATOP officers and members all over the country for their initiatives and stressed the importance of collaboration to sustain growth and prosperity through tourism. (ROEL T. AMAZONA)