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The Army and Navy Club Manila was founded and organized in December 1898. The first president was Col. Smith of California. Notable persons who became its presidents were Adm. George Dewey, General Arthur MacArthur, Jr. and his son Douglas MacArthur, and Leonard Wood.

1911

The old Manila Army and Navy Club was originally designed as rest and recreation area for the exclusive use of the US military personnel and civilians, and later Filipinos. It was the site of many important events in Philippine-American relations.

The Club’s first president was Col. Smith of California. Notable persons who became its presidents were Admiral George Dewey, Gen. Arthur MacArthur, Jr. and his son Gen. Douglas MacArthur, and Army Chief of Staff and later Governor General of the Philippines Leonard Wood.

Originally, the club was housed in a building located in Intramuros. On April 12, 1911, it transferred to the present site near the then Luneta Park and along the shores of Manila Bay reserved by urban planner, Daniel Burnham, in his plan of Manila.

The building was designed by none other than Architect William Parsons, the renowned Yale-educated city planner and architect. Known for his generous use of arches and his trademark use of Capiz shells for windows, Parsons is credited for the Philippine General Hospital, the Paco Railroad Station, the Philippine Normal School, and more.

In its completion, the grand Army and Navy Club was described to be “a dignified white structure, nearly hidden by beautiful palms and acacia trees, and guarded by a well-carved wrought iron fence.” [1]

 Rizal Park Hotel - History
1921
Rizal Park Hotel - History

Upon the return of the U.S. military and Asiatic Fleet in Manila Bay, the Army and Navy Club (ANC) grew to 735 members, thus forming the largest social club in Manila. Military officers, tourists, and visiting businessmen arrived from ocean steamships to enjoy the club’s renowned bowling alleys, sports courts, bars, ballrooms, restaurant, and gorgeous views of the bay. The club quickly became the center of Manila’s burgeoning social life.

Fond memories of the club in the 1920’s recall the beautifully decorated Oriental reception room, a relaxing tea room reserved for ladies, and the grand dancing pavilion rendering classical and dance music with an orchestra. The annual Army-Navy football game held by the club was one of the most anticipated events in Manila.

According to an anecdote from Carl Ingman Aslakson, who served in the Coast and Geodetic Survey, his stay at the ANC was punctuated by the remark of an Englishman returning to India who was so impressed with the club that he kept repeating, “My word! Finest Army and Navy Club in the world!”. [2]

1941

Social activities drew to a halt in the 1940’s when the Navy and the Army began evacuating in the advent of the 2nd World War. Only American civilians living in Manila were left behind when the evacuation was completed in February 1941.

Fortunately, the building survived the bombing of Manila during the war. [2]

Rizal Park Hotel - History
1945
Rizal Park Hotel - The Trafalgar Suite

When the Americans successfully reclaimed Manila, the Engineering Corps were quickly put to work to reconstruct the building. On December 1, 1945, the club was reopened to broadcast that year’s Army-Navy game. On December 2, 1945, the formal club opened – with President Sergio Osmeña and his wife as special guests. [2]

1952

When Mr. Newland “Ned” Baldwin assumed the position of Club President in 1952, he had decided to transform the pre-war club into a family club while expanding membership among civilians and Filipinos.

The 1950’s saw the construction of an adjacent stage in the ANC as a theater for the Manila Theater Guild (MTG). The MTG was a non-profit organization with volunteer actors and actresses that staged plays to promote art and culture. The guild produced 5-6 plays a year in the club and was an important activity in the American social circles until the 1960’s.

By the mid-fifties, the club achieved its post-war renaissance. New members were placed on a waiting list for several months and membership had grown to encompass 40 nationalities. All of Manila anticipated the club’s yearly Easter Egg Hunt, the Spring Festival in the 1960’s – which included a fashion show by the pool – and the grand New Year’s Eve party. [2]

 Rizal Park Hotel - Banqueting
1970’s
Rizal Park Hotel - The Trafalgar Suite

In the 1970’s, the membership of the club gradually decreased, with military personnel choosing to go to the Manila Polo Club and with members migrating towards Makati and new business centers.

The city government of Manila officially took over the decaying structure in the 1980’s. It served as the city architect’s office until the building showed signs of crumbling. It had also briefly served as the location for Museo de Manila, housing the exhibits of Philippine picture postcards taken during the American colonial period.

Despite its decline, on 26 April 1991, it was declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP).

2014

The once fabulous building, or what has remained of it, had been declared by city engineers as condemned after years of neglect. Its columns, floors, and walls had been extremely damaged, and floods of water seeped inside. The restoration of Army and Navy Club had been in the drawing board in the mid-2000s. However, the restoration of the club only officially commenced in 2014 when the city government signed a joint venture deal with the Oceanville Hotel and Spa Corporation.

Over the course of the restoration, Oceanville had strictly retained the old Club’s architectural design, lay-out, room dimensions, and even its motif down to the smallest details. It also retained the building’s trademark arches as originally designed by Parsons. The building’s facade, the octagonal lobby, the grand staircase, the black and white flooring, the room sizes, the balcony and courtyard, and even decorative statues were all carefully restored. Distinctive features, finishes, and construction techniques or craftsmanship that characterize the property were also preserved.

Moreover, deteriorated historic features were repaired rather than replaced. Where the severity of deterioration requires replacement of a distinctive feature, the management made sure that the new features matched the old in design, color, texture and other visual qualities and, where possible, materials. Chemical or physical treatments, such as sandblasting, that can cause damage to historic materials were not used. The surface cleaning of structures, if appropriate, was undertaken using the gentlest means possible.

For Oceanville Chairman Simon Paz, the goal was also to strengthen the building and make it conform to Philippine and international safety and engineering standards. This marked the restoration as not only remarkable for its accuracy but also because of its quality.

“So far, Oceanville is the only Filipino company that has undertaken a restoration project of such cost and scale,” Paz said, adding that Oceanville “is out to bring about the renaissance of Filipino Architecture.”

Reviving the old Army and Navy Club is just the first step, he pointed out. “Oceanville would be open to helping government rehabilitate more historic buildings around the country.”

 Rizal Park Hotel - Banqueting
2017
 Rizal Park Hotel - William Kent House

THE RIZAL PARK HOTEL MANILA OPENS

July 26, 2017 marks the historic return of the old Army and Navy Club as the new Rizal Park Hotel, which can now be considered as a vital piece of the Philippines’ national pride and history. The hotel maintained the building’s original character but added more modern facilities and amenities available to the public.

The hotel features 110 beautifully designed rooms with unique colonial-era design that takes its guests to a trip down memory lane in pure comfort, luxury and bliss. It also has fully-equipped entertainment facilities such as a spa, a coffee shop, a sky bar, a courtyard, function halls, a gym, a casino, marina, and a restaurant – Café Rizal – offering delectable creations with Chinese fine dining.

Guests are in for a nonpareil gastronomic experience at the hotel’s state-of-the art open-theatre show kitchen that offers a new twist of international cuisine with the fusion of classic and modern flair that creates a sumptuous buffet spread, partnered with a special ala carte menu.

The Rizal Park Hotel stays true to its motto of offering its guests an experience of “History In Style”. By mixing the old with the new, the Rizal Park Hotel is a symbol for a new generation of Filipinos who value their rich cultural heritage but also promote economic progress and development for the country.

Sources:

[1] “Manila Army and Navy Club.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 31 July 2017, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manila_Army_and_Navy_Club#cite_note-McCallus-1. Accessed 5 Sept. 2017.

[2] Gopal, Lou. “The Army Navy Club.” Manila Nostalgia, 23 Sept. 2014, www.lougopal.com/manila/?p=2370. Accessed 5 Sept. 2017.

Oceanville Hotel and Spa Corporation, aims to bring back the glory and elegance of the Army and Navy Club.  It has prepared a Master Plan to restore and develop the site into a world-class heritage boutique-styled hotel where dining, wellness, fitness and other facilities are present to cater to both the local and foreign tourists.

Rizal Park Hotel - about

GRAND OPENING



Rizal Park Hotel is your passport to enriched sense, where luxury merges into the vast landscape of history. As a former Manila Army Navy Club founded in 1898, Rizal Park Hotel is a site where many important events are held in the Philippine-American relations and it use to be a place where Manila's social life thrived.

This dignified structure, nestled behind century old acacia trees and guarded by beautifully carved wrought iron fence has been restored to its former grandeur and now beckons guest to experience its 5-star boutique hotel service.

Combining Filipino hospitality, opulent amenities and spectacular views, this landmark hotel in the heart of Manila beckons a new world of luxury and comfort.

PREMIUM SUITES



Nestled behind century-old acacia trees and guarded by well-carved wrought iron fence, this dignified structure has been restored to its former grandeur and mow beckons guests to experience its 5-star boutique hotel service. Combining Filipino hospitality, opulent amenities and spectacular views, this landmark hotel in the heart of Manila is a new world of luxury and comfort.

Combining Filipino hospitality, opulent amenities and spectacular views, this landmark hotel in the heart of Manila is a new world of luxury and comfort.

Rizal Park Hotel - The Trafalgar Suite

The Army and Navy Club Manila was founded and organized in December 1898. The first president was Col. Smith of California. Notable persons who became its presidents were Adm. George Dewey, General Arthur MacArthur, Jr. and his son Douglas MacArthur, and Leonard Wood.


1911

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

The old Manila Army and Navy Club was originally designed as rest and recreation area for the exclusive use of the US military personnel and civilians, and later Filipinos. It was the site of many important events in P hilippine-American relations.

The Club’s first president was Col. Smith of California. Notable persons who became its presidents were Admiral George Dewey, Gen. Arthur MacArthur, Jr. and his son Gen. Douglas MacArthur, and Army Chief of Staff and later Governor General of the Philippines Leonard Wood.

Originally, the club was housed in a building located in Intramuros. On April 12, 1911, it transferred to the present site near the then Luneta Park and along the shores of Manila Bay reserved by urban planner, Daniel Burnham, in his plan of Manila.

The building was designed by none other than Architect William Parsons, the renowned Yale-educated city planner and architect. Known for his generous use of arches and his trademark use of Capiz shells for windows, Parsons is credited for the Philippine General Hospital, the Paco Railroad Station, the Philippine Normal School, and more.

In its completion, the grand Army and Navy Club was described to be “a dignified white structure, nearly hidden by beautiful palms and acacia trees, and guarded by a well-carved wrought iron fence.” [1]


1921

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

Upon the return of the U.S. military and Asiatic Fleet in Manila Bay, the Army and Navy Club (ANC) grew to 735 members, thus forming the largest social club in Manila. Military officers, tourists, and visiting businessmen arrived from ocean steamships to enjoy the club’s renowned bowling alleys, sports courts, bars, ballrooms, restaurant, and gorgeous views of the bay. The club quickly became the center of Manila’s burgeoning social life.

Fond memories of the club in the 1920’s recall the beautifully decorated Oriental reception room, a relaxing tea room reserved for ladies, and the grand dancing pavilion rendering classical and dance music with an orchestra. The annual Army-Navy football game held by the club was one of the most anticipated events in Manila.

According to an anecdote from Carl Ingman Aslakson, who served in the Coast and Geodetic Survey, his stay at the ANC was punctuated by the remark of an Englishman returning to India who was so impressed with the club that he kept repeating, “My word! Finest Army and Navy Club in the world!” [2]


1941

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

Social activities drew to a halt in the 1940’s when the Navy and the Army began evacuating in the advent of the 2nd World War. Only American civilians living in Manila were left behind when the evacuation was completed in February 1941.

Fortunately, the building survived the bombing of Manila during the war. [2]


1945

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

When the Americans successfully reclaimed Manila, the Engineering Corps were quickly put to work to reconstruct the building. On December 1, 1945, the club was reopened to broadcast that year’s Army-Navy game. On December 2, 1945, the formal club opened – with President Sergio Osmeña and his wife as special guests. [2]


1952

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

When Mr. Newland “Ned” Baldwin assumed the position of Club President in 1952, he had decided to transform the pre-war club into a family club while expanding membership among civilians and Filipinos.

The 1950’s saw the construction of an adjacent stage in the ANC as a theater for the Manila Theater Guild (MTG). The MTG was a non-profit organization with volunteer actors and actresses that staged plays to promote art and culture. The guild produced 5-6 plays a year in the club and was an important activity in the American social circles until the 1960’s.

By the mid-fifties, the club achieved its post-war renaissance. New members were placed on a waiting list for several months and membership had grown to encompass 40 nationalities. All of Manila anticipated the club’s yearly Easter Egg Hunt, the Spring Festival in the 1960’s – which included a fashion show by the pool – and the grand New Year’s Eve party. [2]


1970’s

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

In the 1970’s, the membership of the club gradually decreased, with military personnel choosing to go to the Manila Polo Club and with members migrating towards Makati and new business centers. [2]

The city government of Manila officially took over the decaying structure in the 1980’s. It served as the city architect’s office until the building showed signs of crumbling. It had also briefly served as the location for Museo de Manila, housing the exhibits of Philippine picture postcards taken during the American colonial period. [1]

Despite its decline, on 26 April 1991, it was declared as a National Historical Landmark by the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP).


2014

Rizal Park Hotel - The history of The Ritz

The once fabulous building, or what has remained of it, had been declared by city engineers as condemned after years of neglect. Its columns, floors, and walls had been extremely damaged, and floods of water seeped inside. The restoration of Army and Navy Club had been in the drawing board in the mid-2000s. However, the restoration of the club only officially commenced in 2014 when the city government signed a joint venture deal with the Oceanville Hotel and Spa Corporation.

Over the course of the restoration, Oceanville had strictly retained the old Club’s architectural design, lay-out, room dimensions, and even its motif down to the smallest details. It also retained the building’s trademark arches as originally designed by Parsons. The building’s facade, the octagonal lobby, the grand staircase, the black and white flooring, the room sizes, the balcony and courtyard, and even decorative statues were all carefully restored. Distinctive features, finishes, and construction techniques or craftsmanship that characterize the property were also preserved.

Moreover, deteriorated historic features were repaired rather than replaced. Where the severity of deterioration requires replacement of a distinctive feature, the management made sure that the new features matched the old in design, color, texture and other visual qualities and, where possible, materials. Chemical or physical treatments, such as sandblasting, that can cause damage to historic materials were not used. The surface cleaning of structures, if appropriate, was undertaken using the gentlest means possible.

For Oceanville Chairman Simon Paz, the goal was also to strengthen the building and make it conform to Philippine and international safety and engineering standards. This marked the restoration as not only remarkable for its accuracy but also because of its quality.

“So far, Oceanville is the only Filipino company that has undertaken a restoration project of such cost and scale,” Paz said, adding that Oceanville “is out to bring about the renaissance of Filipino Architecture.”

Reviving the old Army and Navy Club is just the first step, he pointed out. “Oceanville would be open to helping government rehabilitate more historic buildings around the country.”


2017

 Rizal Park Hotel - William Kent House

THE RIZAL PARK HOTEL MANILA OPENS

July 26, 2017 marks the historic return of the old Army and Navy Club as the new Rizal Park Hotel, which can now be considered as a vital piece of the Philippines’ national pride and history. The hotel maintained the building’s original character but added more modern facilities and amenities available to the public.

The hotel features 110 beautifully designed rooms with unique colonial-era design that takes its guests to a trip down memory lane in pure comfort, luxury and bliss. It also has fully-equipped entertainment facilities such as a spa, a coffee shop, a sky bar, a courtyard, function halls, a gym, a casino, marina, and a restaurant – Café Rizal – offering delectable creations with Chinese fine dining.

Guests are in for a nonpareil gastronomic experience at the hotel’s state-of-the art open-theatre show kitchen that offers a new twist of international cuisine with the fusion of classic and modern flair that creates a sumptuous buffet spread, partnered with a special ala carte menu.

The Rizal Park Hotel stays true to its motto of offering its guests an experience of “History In Style”. By mixing the old with the new, the Rizal Park Hotel is a symbol for a new generation of Filipinos who value their rich cultural heritage but also promote economic progress and development for the country.

Sources:

[1] “Manila Army and Navy Club.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 31 July 2017, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manila_Army_and_Navy
_Club#cite_note-McCallus-1. Accessed 5 Sept. 2017.

[2] Gopal, Lou. “The Army Navy Club.” Manila Nostalgia, 23 Sept. 2014, www.lougopal.com/manila/?p=2370. Accessed 5 Sept. 2017.

Oceanville Hotel and Spa Corporation, aims to bring back the glory and elegance of the Army and Navy Club.  It has prepared a Master Plan to restore and develop the site into a world-class heritage boutique-styled hotel where dining, wellness, fitness and other facilities are present to cater to both the local and foreign tourists.

Rizal Park Hotel - about

GRAND OPENING

Rizal Park Hotel is your passport to enriched sense, where luxury merges into the vast landscape of history. As a former Manila Army Navy Club founded in 1898, Rizal Park Hotel is a site where many important events are held in the Philippine-American relations and it use to be a place where Manila's social life thrived.

This dignified structure, nestled behind century old acacia trees and guarded by beautifully carved wrought iron fence has been restored to its former grandeur and now beckons guest to experience its 5-star boutique hotel service.

Combining Filipino hospitality, opulent amenities and spectacular views, this landmark hotel in the heart of Manila beckons a new world of luxury and comfort.

Rizal Park Hotel - The Trafalgar Suite

PREMIUM SUITES

Nestled behind century-old acacia trees and guarded by well-carved wrought iron fence, this dignified structure has been restored to its former grandeur and mow beckons guests to experience its 5-star boutique hotel service.

Combining Filipino hospitality, opulent amenities and spectacular views, this landmark hotel in the heart of Manila is a new world of luxury and comfort.

INTRODUCTORY OFFERS

ENJOY PREMIER DISCOUNTS FOR ACCOMMODATIONS AND DINING

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INTRODUCTORY OFFERS

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