Love Spanish Food, Music, and Dance? Don’t Miss La Fiesta, a Festival by the Spanish Chamber of Commerce

The Spanish Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines is set to launch its First Edition of La Fiesta on February  18, 2023, with the Extremadura region as a guest of honour. La Fiesta will be held at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Quezon City, and will feature Spanish gastronomy, music, and dance.

La Cámara, together with the support of the Spanish Embassy, is spearheading La Fiesta. It will celebrate Spanish culture and cuisine, this year specifically highlighting the Extremadura region. La Fiesta, to be held at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Quezon City, will feature renowned chefs, musicians, and dancers from the said Spanish region.

La Fiesta 2023 Spanish Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines

Image: Las Fiesta

Ruben Camba, President of La Camara states : “La Fiesta 2023, is the first edition of an annual event for the Filipino Spanish business community organised by La Camara.. It is not only the perfect venue to continue building the relations between the Philippines and Spain, it is also the occasion to invite a region of Spain to the Philippines. This year we have as guest of honour the region of Extremadura, one of the 17 regions of Spain.”

La Fiesta is designed to become an annual tradition of La Cámara, which has a long history of organising major events such as La Cámara 120 Years Gala Dinner, and the 75th Anniversary of Diplomatic Relations Between the Philippines and Spain. This new celebration, to be attended by more than 300 guests, will begin at 6pm and is scheduled to last until midnight.

Extremadura region, located in the west of Central Spain, will be the festival’s main focus in this inaugural edition. It has a magnificent culinary tradition and a rich history that dates back to the Roman Empire. The cities of Mérida (the Roman Augusta Emerita), Cáceres , and the Monastery of Santa María de Guadalupe are World Heritage Sites.

Extremadura is also recognised for its environment, characterized by its reserves of water and natural diversity, It has 72 natural spaces under official protection, which make it a unique region in Europe.

First-rate cuisine

La Fiesta 2023 Spanish Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines

Image: Las Fiesta

La Fiesta will be the perfect venue to taste the delicacies of Extremadura. “My region is the pantry of Spain. The raw material we have is of the highest quality. We are surrounded by an incredible heritage and natural environment,” assures Chef Francisco Romero, the invited chef for the event.

Originally from Cáceres, Chef Romero began his career in 1998 at Paradores (a Spanish state-owned chain of luxury hotels located in historic buildings or in natural areas). Currently, he works as the second Head Chef in the Parador of Cáceres.

On the gastronomy of Extremadura, Chef Romero highlights the “immense variety of cheeses that we have, our Iberian products, our slow-cooking stews, and the conventual and monastery cuisine,” and further mentions the influence of cuisine from the Rayana area (on the border with Portugal).

Alongside Chef Romero, Chef Carlos Garcia will also be in charge of the menu at La Fiesta. Born in Acedo, a small town in northern Extremadura, Chef Garcia arrived in the Philippines eleven years ago after more than a decade working as Head Development Chef at the prestigious Gauthier Soho restaurant in London. He now owns two restaurants in Metro Manila: The Black Pig in Alabang and The Pig Pen in Nuvali.

Flamenco show with Manuela Sanchez

La Fiesta 2023 Spanish Chamber of Commerce in the Philippinesv

Image: Las Fiesta

Gastronomy will not be the only highlight of La Fiesta as Manuela Sanchez, a flamenco dancer and teacher, will be performing a musical show. Born in Monasterio (Badajoz), she began dancing at the age of ten and started her professional flamenco career at the age of sixteen. Sanchez has been dancing and teaching flamenco all over the world and is currently managing Artextrema Producciones, a company that mixes flamenco with other disciplines, such as theatre and poetry.

“For us, it is a great pride to represent Extremadura in La Fiesta,” declares Manuela Sanchez. The dancer says that native songs like Tangos and Jaleos will be played during the show, in addition to some of the more commercial flamenco dances. “We hope to enjoy this experience and make the public enjoy our art,” assures Manuela Sanchez.

La Fiesta will take place at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Quezon City, an attractive and intricately-designed site featuring Manila’s old glory influenced by ancient Spanish architecture. Together with the gastronomy, music, and dance from Extremadura, the event will also offer an awards ceremony for companies in the Philippines with Spanish affiliations, a raffle draw, as well as a dance party with a DJ until midnight for everyone to enjoy.