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Parañaque City

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General Information


South of Manila, Republic of the Philippines, Bounded by Pasay City on the North, Muntinlupa City on the Southeast, Las Piñas on the Southwest, Taguig on the Northeast, and the Manila Bay (Reclamation / Boulevard 2000 area) on the West, 14°30’ latitude and 121°01’ longitude.

Land Area and Uses

47.7 square kilometers carefully planned to accomodate residential, commercial, industrial and other establishments.
Residential Areas. A part of the land area used for residential purposes accounts for ancestral homes, another in posh villages, with the remaining portion occupied by apartments, boarding houses, apartelles, townhouses, and condominiums for rent or sale at very reasonable rates.
Commercial Centers. The whole stretch of land, save for occasional vacant portions, fronting roadways from the Northside Barangay of Baclaran to the Southern Barangays of San Antonio and B.F. Homes, is occupied by stores, shops, banks, offices, supermarkets, restaurant, schools, service stations and other related establishments. In some areas, as in the beautifully luxurious Barangays of B.F. Homes and Don Bosco, commercial establishments are found further in the interiors and along roadways, thereby providing a welcome treat to the population of the adjoining residential and/or industrial community.
Industrial Areas. Parañaque’s industrial site used to be in the Northern Barangays of Baclaran and Tambo but because of expansion and commercialization in these areas, the factories were moved to the Southern and Eastern Barangays of San Antonio, B.F. Homes, Sun Valley, Marcelo Green, Merville, and San Martin de Porres. These areas have since become the center of industry in Parañaque, and the corporate headquarters in the Philippines of both Filipino and multinational companies.

Population and Political Divisions

With a population of 449,811 as of year 2000, Paranaque is subdivided into 16 barangays or townships, 2 legislative districts and a lone Congressional district. It was chartered into a city on February 15, 1998.


The City of Parañaque sits on a plain with parts lying along the coastline of scenic Manila Bay. Within the next decade, expansions shall be realized through an ambitious, large-scale, well-planned and fast-track development upon an approximately 1,200 hectare stretch that will contain mixed land uses for residential, commercial, institutional, hotel, residential-commercial, residential-office, greens and open spaces, among other purposes.


March to May are hot summer months. The temperature dips following intermittent rains and occasional gustiness from June to October. Cool and fair weather prevails from November to February. Parañaque experiences an annual rainfall of 1.82 mm. per minute while its temperature ranges from 23 to 33 degrees Celsius; it has a relative humidity of 76% and enjoys an average daylight duration of 12 hours.


Parañaque is an ethnically-integrated community composed of warm, friendly, hospitable, and devoted Filipinos. It is also a second home to various foreign nationals who have come to like and love the city and its constituents and who have realized the locality’s potentials for growth. It is a place wherein people from the different regions of the three main island groups of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao are assimilated. Due to rapid migration, only around 10 percent of the population are native Tagalog Paraqueños; the rest is an amalgam of migrants from various regions of the Philippines, plus those foreign nationals who have adopted the City as their "second home."


The City folks' main mode of communication is the Philippine vernacular called Filipino which is basically culled from the indigenous Tagalog language with evident English and Spanish influences together with traces of other languages being used by Filipinos from other regions of the country. However, official transactions are still mostly done in English which is understood and spoken as either a second or third language by most citizens.


Parañaque is not only a melting pot of variant cultures and migrants from all over the country; it is also a crossroad of diverse religions. It is also home to the Baclaran Church, known to be the most attended church in Asia, which is run by the Redemptorist fathers. Although predominantly Roman Catholic, other Christian religions and denominations freely practice their faith in the City. One would also notice the presence of Moslem communities throught Parañaque wherein they have enjoyed the respect and interaction of the Christians. Indeed, Parañaque is a place where inter-faith cooperation for social change begins, takes form, and brings fruit. Religious groups and their respective lay organizations are very active in providing the community with social services complementary to those implemented by City Hall.

Resources courtesy of the City Information Office, City Hall, Parañaque.
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The name "Parañaque" is derived from the phrase "para na aque," which was commonly used in the past when people who wished to disembark from kalesas (horse-drawn carriages). The phrase literally means "stop now, boy": "para" from the Spanish parar (to stop), "na" from the Tagalog word for "now" or "already," and "aque" from the Tagalog word for boy, lalaki. An alternative meaning of "para na aque" could be "stop here," with "aque" being derived from the Spanish aquí ("here").
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A burning building along Taft Avenue which was hit during the Japanese air raid in Barrio, Paranque, December 13, 1941, the Philippine Islands
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An old perspective of St. Andrew's Church in La Huerta.


The then town of Palanyag was founded in 1572. Since the place lay very proximate to the sea, the Paraqueños did much trade with the Chinese, Indonesians, Indians and Malayans. At that time the main means of livelihood were salt-making, fishing, planting rice, shoemaking, slipper-making and weaving. The community was headed by cabezas de barangay, a westernization of the local chieftains and the principalia as the local aristocrats were called, a very durable social institution since they were the political absorbers. They justified and moderated the demands of the Spanish colonizers. Education was limited to the principalia since it is only they who could afford it.

The recorded beginnings of Palanyag began in 1580 when Fr. Diego de Espinar, an Augustinian missionary, was appointed Prior or superior of the convent or religious house of the town. As resident priest, he established the mission house there, with its spiritual jurisdiction reaching up to Kawit in the province of Cavite. The Council of the Definitors (or conference of chiefs of the religious orders) held on May 11, 1580, accepted Palanyag as an independent town.

The image of Palanyag's patroness, Nuestra Señora del Buensuceso, was brought to St. Andrew's Church in La Huerta in 1625.
Historical accounts state that since Palanyag was located at the crossroads of Manila, the provinces of Cavite and Batangas, the town's strategic location enabled the townspeople to play an important role in Philippine history.

During the invasion of the Chinese pirate Limahong in 1574, Parañaque residents, particularly those from Barangay Dongalo, heroically aided in preventing the attack in Manila. This became known as the "Red Sea Incident" due to the blood that flowed as a result of the defense made by the people from barrio Sta. Monica, the barangay's former name.

When the British invaded Manila in 1762, the townspeople once again remained loyal to the Spanish colonizers, especially the Augustinians. The invasion however showed that the power of the Spaniards was not invincible and more than a hundred years later, this would prove to be true.

Then came the Philippine Revolution (circa late 19th century) and the Spaniards realized that the town was a practical gateway to Cavite, the bastion of the revolutionary Katipuneros. Conversely to the rebels based in Cavite, they saw the town as their gateway to Intramuros, the Spanish seat of government in Manila.

Prominent Paraqueños, like Manuel Quiogue and secular priest Father Pedro Dandan became leading revolutionary figures.
When the Americans took over, one of the first towns to have a municipal government was Parañaque.

During the Japanese occupation (circa 1940's), Parañaque supplied the leadership of the guerilla movement like the ROTC Hunters as well as food and arms. Parañaque was one of the first towns to be liberated and its guerillas helped in paving the way for American forces to enter Manila.
As can be gleaned from the above, Parañaque then and now has and continues to play a strategic role in the Philippines' political and economic progress.

Another outstanding feature of this historic town by the bay is the cultivation of its cultural traditions like the Komedya, Sunduan, and Bati, among others that continue to attract local and foreign tourists alike, especially during the summer months.

From Palanyag to Parañaque

Palanyag, the old name for the city of Parañaque, generally means "my beloved", among other definitions, for as far as its residents are concerned, this best describes their affection for their hometown. Another version came from the combination of the terms "palayan" and "palalayag", the former meaning ricefields of which the city once abounded in and the latter pertaining to the sailing and fishing occupation of many of its residents. This was also a sign of cooperation and goodwill between the two major working sectors of the town, the farmers and the fishermen. It was however a drunken guest, during a certain affair which decided on the final name, who said "Mabuhay ang Palanyag at ang mga taga-Palanyag! (Long live Palanyag and the people of Palanyag!)" So the name stuck from that day on.

Another version, according to tradition, was when a Spanish soldier told the driver of his caruaje or horse-drawn carriage, to "Para aqui, para aqui (Stop here, stop here)!" The driver, uncomprehending, kept on prodding his horse to go on while the soldier angrily repeated his instruction: "Para aqui, para aqui!" Onlookers just laughed as the Spaniards empathically said "para aniya aqui para aniya aqui (he said 'stop here' he said 'stop here)." For days the incident was repeated around and term "para aniya aqui" stuck.

There is another story that says of an imposing balete tree at the mouth of the Parañaque. It looked like a boat sailing slowly and majestically, earning the Tagalog term Palanyag, a corruption of the term "palayag" which means "point of navigation". Further adulteration of the word later resulted in the word "palanyaque".

A historian believes the town's name may have come from the term "palanas" which means a "broad flat plain," the geographic description of Parañaque.
Other origins of the name Parañaque are "palanac" (with no special meaning), "patanyag" or contest for popularity, and "paranac", a native term for the shell product that used to be the livelihood of the natives of the town at one time.

Whatever the correct origin of the name of Parañaque, the various terms strongly suggest the town's storied and mosaic past.

Main source : DULCE FESTIN-BAYBAY, Author of the first comprehensive history of Parañaque, courtesy of Parañaque's City Information Office.
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Arroyo OKs bird sanctuary in Parañaque

By Juliet Labog-Javellana

MANILA, Philippines -- President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo Monday signed a proclamation establishing a 175-ha bird sanctuary and eco-tourism area along the coastal lagoons of the cities of Las Piñas and Parañaque.

She also ordered the Department of Education to incorporate global warming and climate change in the science subjects in public schools to make the young more aware of the importance of protecting the environment.

Ms Arroyo issued the directives during the belated celebration of Earth Day at Rizal Hall in Malacañang Monday.

In a still unnumbered proclamation, she designated the lagoons of Las Piñas and Parañaque covering 175.307 ha as a “critical habitat and eco-tourism area” as part of her “Green Philippines” agenda. She signed the proclamation in the course of her speech on Earth Day, observed every April 22.

The protected area is meant to “support combined populations of the globally threatened Chinese egret and the Philippine duck along with 27 species of other rare and uncommon species of waterbirds.”

Environment Secretary Angelo Reyes said that the establishment of the haven for migratory birds would not put the population around the two cities and the country at risk of the dreaded avian flu.

“You know with the advent of development in the Manila Bay area it is important that we preserve a certain portion for these migratory birds. Otherwise we don’t know where they will move when they migrate from the north,” he said.

“This area ... will of course be monitored by our personnel from the DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources).”

A boost to tourism

Reyes said the designation of the bird sanctuary would also boost tourism.

“(This is good for) eco-tourism because these birds...come between October and February every year and tourists, they come in and watch these birds,” Reyes told reporters.

He said the coastal areas in these two cities have been home to these migratory birds which come from as far as Siberia, China and all the way down to Australia.

The President said the declaration of the bird sanctuary was part of a four-pronged environmental program dubbed Green Philippines.

To protect the environment, she said her administration had programs on reforestation, preservation of coral reefs and waterways, ridding the land and air of pollution and energy independence.”

She said the DepEd would become part this year of the government agencies promoting protection of the environment.

‘Green Philippines’ plan

“Today, I am directing the Department of Education to incorporate subjects dealing with global warming and climate change into the public school curriculum subjects. We want our young to be aware of global warming and other climate change phenomenon,” she said, “because we want to press ahead up to their generation with a massive Green Philippines Environmental Plan that is comprehensive in scope and thorough in execution.

Ms Arroyo said that as part of the program to protect reefs and waterways, her administration sought to establish national parks and international sanctuaries for eco-tourism and scientific research.

The proclamation mandates that any reclamation activity shall not impede the ecological functions of the lagoons of the Las Piñas-Parañaque Critical Habitat and Eco-tourism Area and its mangroves, salt marshes and tidal areas as breeding, feeding and roosting place for marine and terrestrial wildlife.

Reclamation activities should also be done in a “way that would help restore and ensure shellfish and fish productivity.”

It also mandates that a minimum 15 percent of the Manila Bay area reclamation site must be set aside for the wildlife habitats.

The President said economic progress should not be achieved “at the backs of the poor and at the expense of the environment.”

“No nation can aspire to become modern without thinking of the environment,” Ms Arroyo said.

Copyright 2007 Inquirer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Mabuhay ang Parañaque!!! :D
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Nice trivia. Ginagamit pa ba ang Palanyag, maybe in cultural events?
^yup. sa ibang cultural events. I'm glad you made this one, Sinjin. Now, I have to supply some pics and details. Gosh, if only I have a digicam.
^yup. sa ibang cultural events. I'm glad you made this one, Sinjin. Now, I have to supply some pics and details. Gosh, if only I have a digicam.
This is an informative and interesting thread. I wish to read more about Paranaque on this thread in the future.

By the way, where can I find the Paranaque City Hall? Where is it located? Maybe some forummers who have photos of the Paranaque City Hall can post them here. Thank you and more power!
I don't have a photo. But I know where it is.

The city hall is in Barangay San Antonio near Dr. A Santos Ave. Unfortunately, it does not lie in a major road so it's quite hard to find.
I don't have a photo. But I know where it is.

The city hall is in Barangay San Antonio near Dr. A Santos Ave. Unfortunately, it does not lie in a major road so it's quite hard to find.
Indeed. It does not lie on a major road. Pero lagi namin siyang nadadaanan dati when we used to rent a house in Malacanan Village in Paranaque. Landmarks na hahanapin mo to find the city hall, ummm, pumasok ka sa daan na may 7-Eleven at Shell Station, then dumiretso kalang.
05.12.07 - SM City Bicutan

Oh, everytime I see this mall, I remember the oh so heavy traffic along Dona Soledad
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There's an article about Paranaque in Graphic magazine, I just can't find a copy. damn.
Does anyone have any pictures of Tahanan village in Sucat?
I've posted one time about the 50's Architecture Paranaque City Hall (formerly munisipyo) in this forum, and I haven't seen a pic. Well a couple of weeks ago, I drove by the area, and it was already dark, but I forgot my camera so I couldn't take a pic! At least the facade is still there. I would've loved to enter to take a picture of the back yard with their ramp and 50's roof and landscaping, and also the stairs, walls, etc, what a throwback this place is!

Oh yeah, incidentally, the only reason why I passed through San Antonio is to avoid the service road traffic, because we were headed to SM City Bicutan, and considering we were coming from the Marcelo Green area, it was a long drive just to avoid the traffic jam. That was ridiculous!
^^are you from Paranaque too?
Formerly, pero lumipat na ako sa U.S. I visit Pinas and Paranaque every two years.
^^ahhh... so where in Paranaque were you from? I'm from Don Bosco Village.
I don't have a photo. But I know where it is.

The city hall is in Barangay San Antonio near Dr. A Santos Ave. Unfortunately, it does not lie in a major road so it's quite hard to find.
Well for me it's a major road, that's because I used to live in Sucat. Anyway the city hall is quite big in terms of area but it's not imposing from what I remember of it. The layout reminds me of a school, with the main yard in the middle.

Aah p'que. It was pretty suburban from what I recall, life was fast, but not as fast as it was in the fringes, but I won't be surprised if it is as urban as Manila or Pasay now. I mean back in my time every house had a water tank in their backyard and every fortnight or so there would be a pick-up with a water tank which would fill up the backyard one.

Also 4th estate, near Manila Memorial would flood so badly because along Sucat Road, in that area between the cemetery and the road connecting to BF (where the maccas is in the corner of), trash would be dumped there everytime. So trash plus the valley effect in that area creates Sucat Lake :D

Come to think of it I never knew how our rubbish got picked up then.
Where's Don Bosco Village? I live off the road in San Antonio parish, turning left coming from the palengke.
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^^Don Bosco Village is inside Better Living Subdivision, a stone's throw away Mary Help of Christians Parish.
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