If you’re as curious as I am as to where foreign dignitaries stay while they’re stationed in the Philippines, then we’re in luck. The US Embassy in Manila has released this brief video featuring the historic and special Baguio residence of the US Ambassador to the Philippines. Special because the US Ambassador’s Baguio residence was recently included in the U.S. Secretary of State’s Register of Culturally Significant Property.
This virtual tour of the US Ambassador’s residence in Baguio City is hosted by Manila historian and cultural activist Carlos Celdran. Carlos, in his suit and bow tie, takes us around the historical house and shows the famed “Yamashita Room.” You have to watch the video to learn why General Tomoyuki Yamashita chose that particular room. You also have to watch the video to learn what and where this so-called “escape pole” is.
The video underscores the important contribution of the U.S. Ambassador’s Residence to Philippine-American relations from the time it was built for the U.S. High Commissioner during the Commonwealth period, to the Japanese occupation and surrender of General Tomoyuki Yamashita in 1945, and more recently, as a solid witness to the unwavering friendship between Americans and Filipinos.
The launch of this video coincides with a visit to Baguio City by Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr. during which he will honor the memory of those who died fighting for freedom in World War II in a wreath-laying ceremony on September 5 at the Veterans Park Memorial on Harrison Road.