Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. bestows Global Tourism Ambassador to Fil-Am actress Vanessa Anne Hudgens

2023 March 30

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Thursday awarded Filipino-American Hollywood 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 her courtesy call with President Marcos in Malacanang Palace.

The awarding was witnessed by several government officials, including Presidential Adviser on Creative Communications Paul Soriano and Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Frasco.

After the awarding, President Marcos told Hudgens that Malacanang Palace has held in its walls “a lot of history for the Philippines.”

“Beyond that, it has a lot of history for me. I lived here 20 years and now I’ve come back to live here again,” the chief executive said.

Other guests include Hudgen’s mother Gina, who hails from Ozamiz City, and sister Stella as well as 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 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 OPACC and DOT have selected Hudgens 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, has proposed to carry out projects focusing on the country’s branding including the invitation to Hudgens as one of its pioneering partners to kickstart the initiative.

In line with this, the OPACC and DOT are looking at producing a documentary project highlighting Hudgens’ homecoming to the Philippines, with an aim of reconnecting the Fil-Am actress with her roots and at the same time promote 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 series (2006-2008), resulting in significant mainstream media success, including her signing with Hollywood Records.

Hudgens also co-produced several films such as The Knight Before Christmas (2019) and the three installments of The Princess Switch (2018, 2020, 2021).