President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. granted digital influencer and Filipino-American “High School Musical” actress Vanessa Anne Hudgens the Global Tourism Ambassador Award as part of the administration’s ongoing efforts to promote Philippine tourism and raise the country’s global status.
Hudgens received the award during a courtesy call with President Marcos in Malacañan Palace witnessed by Presidential Adviser on Creative Communications Paul Soriano—who is directing her in a documentary—and Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Frasco.
Mr. Marcos told the Hollywood actress that Malacañang has held in its walls “a lot of history for the Philippines” which housed numerous historical personalities and is often considered one of the historical landmarks in the Philippines due to its historical significance and background.
“Beyond that, it has a lot of history for me. I lived here 20 yearsand now I’ve come back to live here again,” Mr. Marcos said, referring to his personal experiences during his late father and namesake’s reign as President. (See full story online at manilastandard.net)
Other guests include Hudgens’ Filipina mother Gina, who hails from Ozamiz City, and sister Stella along with private sector personalities such as PJ Lhuillier Group of Companies president and CEO Jean Henri Lhuillier and Vista Land and Lifescapes president and CEO Manuel Paolo Villar III.
The initiative led by Soriano is a branding campaign and marketing strategy aimed at attracting international tourists, as the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Creative Arts (OPACC) and the DOT set their sights on creating opportunities to aggressively push for the resurgence of the Philippines as a travel destination.
The agencies selected the Fil-Am celebrity to become the Philippines’ Global Tourism Ambassador given her huge following on Instagram (49 million), Twitter (6.5 million), Facebook (17 million), and YouTube (239,000).
As a digital influencer, Hudgens is seen to take part in a range of future initiatives to promote the nation’s unique culture and assist the country in reaching a wider global audience, creating awareness, and conveying the Philippine brand as a tourist destination.
To promote the country’s tourism sector and raise its global status, the OPACC, in collaboration with the DOT, proposed projects focusing on the country’s branding, including inviting Hudgens as one of its pioneering partners to kickstart the initiative.
They are producing the documentary project highlighting Hudgens’ homecoming to the Philippines, with an aim of reconnecting the Fil-Am actress to her roots and at the same time promoting the country’s tourism industry.
The historical landmarks in Intramuros, the National Museum, and El Nido in Palawan are the proposed destinations for the documentary project.
Hudgens made her film debut in the movie Thirteen (2003) and rose to prominence as Gabriella Montez in the High School Musical film and television series (2006-2008), resulting in significant mainstream media success, including her signing with Hollywood Records.
Vanessa Hudgens also co-produced several films such as The Knight Before Christmas (2019) and the three installments of The Princess Switch (2018, 2020, 2021).