31 March, 2009

M1055: Balara Park Postcard

The postcard shows the old Escoda Hall and the three swimming pools of the Balara Filters Park or Balara Park in Diliman, Quezon City. The Balara Park was originally built from 1949 to 1959 and first opened to the public in 1953. The Balara Park has six main amenities namely the Children's Park, the Pedro Tobias Park, the Escoda Hall, the Windmill Park, the picnic grove and the swimming pools. However, the most notable of these are the Escoda Hall and the swimming pools.

M1055: Balara Park Postcard

The Escoda Hall, a white and red pavilion dominating the swimming pool complex, has a large symmetrical Southeast Asian motif roof, designed by the Mañosa Brothers; however the original tile-like asbestos roofing (as seen in the postcard) was replaced by corrugated steel roofing. There are three large swimming pools next to the Escoda Hall. The biggest of the three is the T-shaped adult pool with the top end of the letter "T" facing the hall. On either side of the adult pool are two rectangular children's pools.

Other vintage structures and statuary that can be found in the park are an Italian Style Chapel; the Orosa Hall, an open ornamental summerhouse; "Bernadine", a white statue of a nude water bearer on the fountain in the rotunda; the Worker's Monument commemorating the NAWASA employees who died in the construction of the filters; the Lion Head, a gaping maw for the filters' backwash water; a replica of the Carriedo Fountain of Sta. Cruz, Manila; A. Giddeon Playground; Baby Terrace named after First Daughter Zenaida Quezon; a 3,000 sq. m. elevated picnic ground with a 200 m. circumference oval; the Anonas Amphitheater.

Balara: Revived Icon of the 50s
Quezon City Tourist Attractions


John said...

I lived in the Philippines from 1947 to 1952. WE loved to go th Balara for swimming and picnics.

filipino deltiologist said...

wow.. do u have some pics of the place back then? would love to see them thanks