Diorama at Bahay Tsinoy, Manila, 2009
For many hundreds of years, people of Chinese origin have played an important role in the Philippines. The national hero, Jose Rizal, had both Filipino and Chinese blood running in his veins. Several of today's Filipino mega-moguls found on Fortune's 500 list, as well as many more political and financial leaders, are wholly or partly of Chinese ancestry.
Nonetheless, the history of Chinese Filipinos - known as Tsinoys or Chinoys - is fraught with drama and difficulties. Up to this day, the relationship between Pinoys and Tsinoys, although peaceful, is complex and delicate.
If you live in the Manila area, or come here for a visit, I highly recommend taking a few hours to see the museum Bahay Tsinoy (The House of Tsinoy) to get a better glimpse of the cultural and historical legacy of the ethnic Chinese in Philippine life. The dioramas are fun and the displays interesting.