European tourists transported to this “Princess of Ports” by the Victoria-class cruise ship Costa Victoria were enamored by the kindness and gentleness of the city's residents.
Roberto Janary, a cruise ship passenger from Italy, said the beauty of Puerto Princesa was a bonus during their trip here Sunday. What was striking was the “kindness and the gentleness” the residents have shown during their 7-hour sojourn.
“I’ve always been amazed when I meet people who are kind and accommodating. That is very rare since I am a total stranger… I’m new here,” Janary said.
Agnes Novilla, one of the passengers too, from Europe, said right from getting down Costa Victoria, they have already been met by “very friendly” residents, who were eager to make sure they have a nice stay though short.
“Very friendly people indeed,” she said, even if she said she waited a long time under the heat of the sun for the shuttle van that would take them on a city tour.
City Tourism Office Aileen Amurao said Tuesday in local interviews that it was not only the beauty of Puerto Princesa that they wanted to showcase, but also the warmth and friendliness of the residents as they were one of the reasons too, why tourists would want to go back.
“We are happy with the cooperation of our residents, of course. Sometimes, what other things they’re looking for and we do not have becomes forgotten when we show kindness; when we are ready to welcome them with smiles, and a kind hearts. This is important if we want to keep them coming back,” she said.
Mayor Lucilo Bayron, on the other hand, said too Tuesday, that the cooperation that the residents of the city were showing made him proud as the chief executive.
“We are happy that the cooperation from the residents are exemplary,” he said, assuring that the city government is working hard to ensure that despite the lack of promotions, Puerto Princesa is a prime destination for cruise ships in the Philippines.
Costa Victoria, which brought 1,515 tourists and 600 crewmen to Puerto Princesa, was only one of 26 other cruise ships that are set to sail to Palawan seas in 2015, according to Amurao.
This year, Costa Victoria was the first cruise ship to have dropped anchor at the Puerto Princesa City Port. (PNA) RMA/Celeste Anna R. Formoso/EDS