BAUKO, Mountain Province – Concerned sectors in the Cordillera are now prodding the State-owned Tourism Infrastructure Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) to immediately start the long-overdue rehabilitation and upgrading of the historic Mount Data Hotel here considering its significant contribution to the rich history of the region and its expected contribution to the growth and development of the municipality.
Last year, TIEZA took over the management of the Mount Data Hotel from the Mountain Province provincial government after a 10-year lease and closed its operations for its required rehabilitation and upgrading to become one of the top calibre lodging facilities outside Baguio City.
Mayor Abraham B. Akilit said even the municipal government is eagerly awaiting the implementation of the hotel’s programmed rehabilitation and eventual operation so that the appropriate outdoor recreational activities and the palace museum will be put in place to help draw more foreign and domestic tourists to visit the province and other parts of the region that are accessible from the Mount Data Hotel.
“We want the facility to be operational because we have been receiving numerous inquiries from foreign and domestic tourists wanting to spend a well-deserved vacation in the province and to stay at the historic Mount Data Hotel that is why we join the other sectors in appealing to TIEZA to already start the implementation of the project,” Mayor Akilit stressed.
The 22-room Mount Data hotel was built in the late 1970s and it served as a venue for the signing of the historic ‘sipat’ between former rebel priest Conrado Balweg of the Cordillera Bodong Administration–Cordillera Peoples Liberation Army (CBA-CPLA) and the late President Corazon C. Aquino which paved the way for her issuance of Executive Order No. 220 on July 15, 1987 that created the Cordillera Administrative Region.
Under the proposed management set-up, the Mountain Province State Polytechnic College will manage and operate the hotel and restaurant while the Bauko municipal government will administer, manage and operate the outdoor recreational activities and the peace museum.
According to Mayor Akilit, what is equally important is for the TIEZA to maintain the design of the hotel because of its important historical and cultural value to the region which concerned government agencies must respect.
Previously, the Mount Data Hotel was owned and managed by the former Philippine Tourism Authority before it turned over to the Mountain Province provincial government the management of the same in 2006 through a memorandum of agreement executed between the previous officials.