It’s never the ancestral house itself, not even the intricate wood carvings no matter their uniqueness and value, but the stories of lives lived and interwoven within these structures. These provide the romance, the appeal, the Old World charm of Negrense heritage.
November 5 being a provincial holiday in Negros Occidental, celebrating history and patriotism depicted in the declaration of the Negros Republic more than a century ago, the Negros Season of Culture chooses to spotlight the Old World charm of Negrense culture.
We have three features of note. Greg Urra, born and raised in Bacolod City, embraces fashion from old cultures and turns them into pop. Greg’s creations, under the brand name Vintage Black Label, are regularly featured at the Manhattan Vintage Show. See his great concoctions in our story, Old Culture, Pop Culture.
A great story on heritage home restoration is our feature, Faith, Family, Food. Found in historic Silay City, just north of Bacolod, the house of Jose “Pitong” Ledesma and wife, Anita Locsin, has recently been restored to its glorious origins. And it will be adapted to new use, as Negrense restaurateur Tony Boy Escalante (of Tagaytay’s Antonio’s and Balay Dako) has leased the property from the Ledesma family.
Finally, down south, in Binalbagan town, we have an outstanding example of adaptive reuse. The ancestral house of Carmen Yulo and husband, Sabas Locsin, has since been acquired by a school. In Over Fields of Dreams, we get insights on how modern-day work functions can exist side by side heritage features.