Cuneta Astrodome

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Cuneta Astrodome
Cuneta Astrodome Logo.png
Cuneta Astrodome facade 2012.jpg
LocationRoxas Boulevard, Pasay, Philippines
Coordinates14°32′41″N 120°59′31″E / 14.54472°N 120.99194°E / 14.54472; 120.99194Coordinates: 14°32′41″N 120°59′31″E / 14.54472°N 120.99194°E / 14.54472; 120.99194
OwnerPasay City Government
OperatorPasay City Government
Capacity12,000
Construction
Broke groundApril 1991
OpenedJanuary 1993
Construction cost140 million
Tenants
PBA (1993–1999; 2001–present)
UAAP (1994–1999, 2004, 2006–2007, 2019-present)
NCAA (2003, 2005, 2008, 2019-present)
PBL (1993–1994, 2005)
Philippine Super Liga (2014–present)
Pasay Voyagers (MPBL) (2018-present)

The Cuneta Astrodome is an indoor arena that is located in Pasay, Philippines. Since the 1993 PBA season, it was better known as the home of the Philippine Basketball Association. when it left the PhilSports Arena (that was then known as ULTRA), up until the 1998 and since 2001. It hosts the local basketball league sports competition. It has also hosted a slew of other political, evangelical gatherings and church anniversaries. It is also the permanent home of the Philippine Super Liga since 2014.

The arena is named after Enrique Cuneta, a prominent Pasay city official during the Spanish colonial period.[1]

Despite its name, the Cuneta Astrodome is not a dome-shaped indoor arena, since its exterior is rectangular in shape.

Basketball[edit]

Philippine Basketball Association[edit]

Panorama shot inside the Cuneta Astrodome during a PBA game in 2016

Built in 1993, the arena became the PBA's home after the league signed a five-year deal with the Pasay City government, which includes the league's office within the Astrodome's vicinity.[1] The league also manages maintenance and marketing of the Astrodome.[2] During the first two years, the league played all of its games (except those played in provinces) exclusively at the Astrodome before limiting its schedule to Tuesday and Sunday games, as the league played its Friday games at the Araneta Coliseum in 1995.

In 1999, after the agreement expired, the league transferred its offices and most of its games to the PhilSports Arena, the PBA's home from 1985 to 1992. Although the league hosted a few games at the said venue, it was not used for the duration of the 2000 season. Since 2001, the league has hosted a lot of games at the Astrodome, including several recent PBA championship series games.

It has hosted more than 30 PBA championship series, most recently the Game 2 of the 2011 PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals.

It is one of the alternate venues of the league, together with the PhilSports Arena in Pasig if either the Smart Araneta Coliseum and the Mall of Asia Arena are not available.

Metropolitan Basketball Association[edit]

The Metropolitan Basketball Association held two games at the Astrodome during the opening game 2nd season on February 7, 1999. The first is between San Juan Knights led by Bonel Balingit and Chris Calaguio and the Nueva Ecija Patriots led by Willie Miller, the other is between Pasig-Rizal Pirates led by Bong Ravena and the Manila Metrostars led by Rommel Adducul and Alex Compton.

Amateur/Collegiate leagues[edit]

Aside from hosting PBA games, it also held several collegiate leagues such as the UAAP, NCAA, NAASCU, WNCAA and the UCAA. The UAAP held the men's senior basketball championships in 1994 and 1999. The NCAA hosted some championship matchups in the 2003 Finals, 2005 and 2008 with the most recent in 2003, when Letran defeated San Sebastian in the third and final game of the series, the only time it was held at the venue during the series.

In 2005 and 2008, the NCAA held majority of its games at the Astrodome while the UAAP played a series of games in the 2004 and 2007 seasons.

It also hosted the Philippine Basketball League during the mid-1990s and during the 2005 PBL Unity Cup Finals between the champion Welcoat Paintmasters and the Montana Jewels.

Other events[edit]

Sharon Cuneta, the daughter of then Pasay City mayor Pablo Cuneta held the first concert at the Astrodome on January 1993, one month before the PBA held its opening ceremonies.

Outside of sports, it also hosted several evangelical and political gatherings, the most recent by a political campaign for late-actor and Presidential candidate, Fernando Poe Jr. in 2004 and other functions by the opposition party.

It is also a usual gathering for evangelical events. Some religious organizations who have hosted the event are the Jesus is our Shield Worldwide Ministries of Apostle Renato D. Carillo, Doulos for Christ World Harvest, Jesus Miracle Crusade, Eli Soriano's Ang Dating Daan and the frequent user of the astrodome is the JESUS CHRIST To God Be The Glory Church International who held their services every Sunday and some major event such as concert, anniversary among others. The Intercessors For the Philippines (IFP) also organizes meetings there.

The biggest event hosted by far was in 1994, when the World Wrestling Federation (now World Wrestling Entertainment) held a live event at the said venue featuring a WWE World Championship match between the then-champion Bret Hart and his brother, challenger Owen Hart.

The Cranberries also held their "To the Faithful Departed" tour in the Cuneta Astrodome in 1996.

On July 19, 1997 Rage Against The Machine performed live in Cuneta Astrodome as part of their Evil Empire Tour Asian leg. All proceeds after the Concert were given for the benefit of Pasay City General Hospital.

Sharon Cuneta's 1993 Concert was also held at the Astrodome and was dubbed as "Cuneta sa Cuneta".

Taekwondo competitions of the 2005 Southeast Asian Games were hosted in the venue.

The grand finals of Talentadong Pinoy was also held here on March 6, 2010, March 13, 2011 and in August 18, 2013.

Tau Gamma Phi also held its 39th and 42nd Founding Anniversary on October 4, 2007 and October 4, 2010, respectively.

Renovation[edit]

The Cuneta Astrodome during a PBA game in 2008

In 2006, the Astrodome was refurbished with new seats and a new flooring was installed for the basketball games as the venue had shown tremendous signs of deterioration over the past few years. It was the biggest renovation that occurred at the Astrodome, as past events resulted in minor refurbishment of the arena.

The renewed Astrodome debuted on June 30, 2006 during game six of the 2006 PBA Philippine Cup semifinal series as well as the Philippines-Lebanon goodwill series that happened in August that same year.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b PBA signs memo of transfer to Pasay stadium, Manila Standard, October 31, 1992
  2. ^ Cuneta-PBA talks on Pasay transfer slated, Rocky Nazareno, Manila Standard, May 21, 1992