First Look: Tourism Secretary Berna Puyat Officially Opens the 'Better Boracay'

During her speech, she urged everyone to be "responsible tourists."

Foreign tourists and local visitors have started repopulating the world-famous Boracay island on the morning of October 26, now six months after President Rodrigo Duterte ordered its closure for rehabilitation.

Tourism secretary Berna Romulo Puyat led the reopening ceremony by formally congratulating everyone on a job well done. Town&Country was present to witness the moment. "Our concerted efforts have proven once again that change is indeed possible with strong political will and eagerness to work together for the love of country."

She later adds: "As we welcome a better Boracay, the Department of Tourism urges everyone to be responsible tourists. It is the key to the preservation of this national treasure. The Boracay experience is the ultimate lesson in balancing development and protecting the environment. The lessons learned here are not for Boracay alone but also for the other island destinations around our beautiful country. The reopening of Boracay is not the culmination of our journey on sustainable tourism—it's just the beginning."

The white sand beach of Boracay on the day of the reopening

With lines starting to form at the island's jetty port, Boracay also sees the reopening of 157 accommodation establishments, the list of which was released by the Department of Tourism (DOT) a day before. The list brings the total number of DOT-accredited rooms on the island to 7,308.

As of today, 157 accommodation establishments were given the green light by the Boracay Inter-agency Task Force to...

Posted by Berna Romulo Puyat on Thursday, October 25, 2018

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) released a statement a few days prior saying that the island known for its white sand beaches is 80 percent restored.


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Hannah Lazatin
Senior Staff Writer
Hannah is a communications graduate from Ateneo de Manila University. She’s originally from Pampanga and from a big, close-knit family who likes to find a reason to get together at the dinner table. Experiences inspire her. “Once, at a restaurant, I received an interpretation of my second name ‘Celina,’ and it meant 'someone who tries everything once' and that is me through and through,” she says. As for the job, she wants her “readers to be inspired by the stories of the people we feature and to move them to reach for greater things.”
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