If you are looking for an idyllic place to hold your debut or wedding reception, you can consider the Coconut Palace in Manila. Its location provides wide-open, beautifully landscaped grounds that face the magnificent Manila Bay.
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The construction of the Coconut Palace was commissioned by the former First Lady Imelda Marcos. The palace's main goal was to be a guesthouse for Pope John Paul II in his 1981 visit to the country. However, the Pope declined and opted not to stay at the Coconut Palace during his visit. The Pope said that the palace was a too sumptuous place to stay in a country stricken with poverty.
Built during the Marcos era, the Coconut Palace has hosted numerous high-profile guests, from Brooke Muammar al-Qaddafi, George Hamilton, and Brooke Shields. The place has an opulent charm, giving a sense of being at ranks with its former prestigious guests who once walked on its grounds, looking out at the Manila Bay.
The Coconut Palace is a prime example of one of the Philippines' opulent structures. Designed in the traditional Filipino salakot (a signature Filipino hat shape) by Francisco Manosa, the palace primarily showcases the versatility, different uses, and export potential of the coconut tree.
The Coconut Palace is built with different types of hardwood and shells that are indigenous to the Philippines. Coconut lumber is also specially engineered to add to the palace's overall aesthetic beauty.
The palace is also shaped like an octagon to imitate coconut contours before being served as a refreshing drink. This shape provides a uniquely Filipino backdrop to weddings and receptions that are held there.
Other highlights of the Coconut Palace include its unique chandelier made of 101 pieces of coconut shells and a dining table, which is entirely made of 40,000 pieces of tiny inlaid coconut shells. The palace's design, ornamentation, and contour echo the coconut elements, from its roots, fruit, bark, shell up to its flower. The Coconut Palace's unique features do not stop at its ground floor. Its second level also features coconut and various handicrafts indigenous and uniquely produced in the Philippines' different regions. Each suite is also named after seven specific areas found in the country: Zamboanga, Pampanga, Marawi, Bicol, Mountain Province, Iloilo, and Pangasinan.
Visiting information and tips
The Coconut Palace offers a unique experience and fabulous photographic opportunities with gorgeous landscaped grounds and facing Manila Bay.
It is located within the wide complex of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), the Coconut Palace also provides open parking spaces for guests.