Today I decided to showcase my Bookmark PC reproductions of the old Philippines. Manila can be considered as the Orient's first truly international melting pot - the confluence of Spanish, American and Asian cultures. We had the best architecture that can match Washington, DC! Sad to say that after World War II, the cultural patrimony was eviscerated.
The layout of the Manila was planned during Spanish Era as a set of communities surrounding the original Spanish Era walled city of Manila, called Intramuros. During the American Period, some semblance of city planning using the architectural designs and master plans by Daniel Burnham was done on the portions of the city south of the Pasig River.
After World War II Filipinos lost an irreplaceable cultural and historical treasure in the resulting carnage and devastation of Manila. Countless government buildings, universities and colleges, convents, monasteries and churches, and their accompanying treasures dating to the founding of the city, were decimated. For example, San Agustin Church was the only one of the seven churches in the walled city to remain standing.
Manila, once touted as the "Pearl of the Orient" and famed as a living monument to the meeting of Asian and European cultures, was virtually wiped out. Most of the buildings damaged during the war were replaced with modern American style architecture. Only a few old buildings remain intact.