City officials recently commended and expressed the local government’s appreciation to Engr. Pio G. Velasco, owner and builder of the famous Igorot Stone Kingdom located along Longlong road, Pinsao Proper barangay, for his contributions to the local tourism industry .
Under Resolution No. 034, series of 2024, local legislators stated that the local government expresses its gratitude to the aspiration of Velasco to build a legacy in honor of his mother, where the park has sparked the interest of many people, residents and visitors, that in turn translated to economic and tourism recovery for the city.
The body recognized that the Igorot Stone Kingdom is the newest tourist attraction in the city where it is a 6,000-square meter mountainside man-made park conceptualised by its owner and builder Engr. Velasco, during the implementation of the community quarantine restrictions from 2020 to 2022.
The tourist destination is located along Longlong Road, Pinsao Proper barangay and it serves as a tribute to honor Velasco’s Igorot mother, Rita ‘Rosing’ Gal Velasco, a woman of strength and patience.
The council stipulated that the park depicts the rich culture and heritage of the Cordillera, the Igorot’s skilled stone-laying hands that created the stonewalls similar to the Banaue rice terraces and the representation of the old and the new Igorot culture and values of the Igorot people.
According to the council, the said concept is not only a representation of structures made of stones like the riprap walls, towers and castles but also one that will educate the people on the rich culture and belief of the Igorots.
Also scattered in the area are other structures made out of the stones, skillfully layered and arranged to represent the different symbols of the Igorot history and culture.
Among the attractions in the Igorot Stone Kingdom include a tower that depicts the fantasy story of Gatan and Bangan, an Igorot man and woman who survived the great holocaust, fertility stone tower and a kabunian or Igorot god tower.
The Igorot Stone Kingdom is a realization of the childhood dream of a fantasy kingdom of Engr. Velasco, where the land where it is located stood idle for many years, then he saw and began to appreciate the place’s architectural beauty and the ideal place to fulfill his long time wish of building a kingdom for his beloved mother, thus, from a childhood fantasy, the once idle slopes were transformed into a vibrant tourist hub.
The council pointed out that with the ease of travel to the city, people are steadily coming in and one of their primary destinations and on the top of their bucket list is the visit to the Igorot Stone Kingdom where the place has now become a major tourist attraction and a revenue generating destination.
Copies of the approved resolution will be transmitted to Engr. Velasco for his information, guidance, ready reference and further needed action. By Dexter A. See