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Difference of Cemetery and Memorial Park

Posted by Golden Haven on February 3, 2022

A great number of people confuse themselves how a memorial park differs from a cemetery. And for really good reasons. After all, people rarely discuss this topic over the coffee table. It is, most of the time, commonly mistaken that they are but the same – a place where we place our deceased for eternal repose.

While the confusion is entirely understandable, it is important to know the critical difference between the two. The upbringing of the common Filipino contributed a great deal to this unfortunate circumstance. The fact that you are reading this proves that you want to know for yourself which is which.

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We got this list, especially for you. If you want to fully understand the underlying differences between the two, look no further!

Cemeteries vs Memorial Parks

The traditional cemeteries are what most of us probably grew up visiting. We visit these places every November 1 of every year together with our relatives to honor our departed. From dusk to dawn, visitors light countless candles all across the country to honor the memories of their loved ones. Families reunite over a lawn while laughter and stories echo through the air. Children run all over the place and play with unused candles.

But how do these places really differ? What set them apart? Are there any distinctions?

Architectural Differences

The classic Filipino cemeteries are very much distinctive. Monuments or niche made of stones erect themselves from the cemetery grounds. These are located side-by-side and not spaced properly from one another. Some are even on top of the other! One can clearly see that not much planning has gone into the placing of said lots. Talk about confusing!

Because of this, cemeteries tend to feel crammed and confusing. When the 1st of November arrives, wish yourself good luck navigating through a seemingly impossible maze, much less lighting your candles. To say that it is stressful is a complete understatement.

traditional cemetery

Memorial parks, on the other hand, are very much pleasing to the eyes. Careful planning of all architectural structures and amenities are prevalent, especially for the more popular ones. Gone are the above the ground niches. One can leisurely walk around as easily as you can at any leisure park. There are even some memorial parks which build their amenities thematically. This makes a really relaxing scenery which is both pleasing to the eyes and the soul.

READ MORE: The Golden Shrines’ Architecture Memorializes those that have Passed in a Manner that Stands the Test of Time

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Years ago, it is uncommon, laughable even, to even think of world class memorial parks here in the Philippines. That is not the case anymore. Developers became more conscious to the evolved preference of the Filipino people. Of course, we want to place the people we love on a serene place rather than a crowded, unmaintained location.

Not to mention that there are “Instagramable” memorial parks nowadays! People jog every morning, families gather for picnics every Sunday, and some even take pre-nup photoshoots on these locations! The impressive architecture and designs of these memorial parks contributed vastly to these enrichment activities.

Management Differences

The local government usually manages and operates the traditional cemeteries. More often than not, especially on the top-of-mind cemeteries, they have been in operation for at least 100 years. Traditional cemeteries house at least five generations of families.

Private institutions or companies, on the other hand, manage memorial parks. This is one of the primary reasons why they are more appealing. A more careful planning process is prevalent on the beauty of these parks. Dignified markers accompany each lots. Some parks even offer uniformed ones.

It is also for these reasons that the maintenance between a traditional cemetery and a memorial park is very much different. They are day and night, really. That is because the manpower necessary is much more readily available for private institutions. They hire people with the skills required from lawn maintenance, landscaping, all the way to park management, marketing, and operations. You can easily compare this to housing developers or real estate managements.

Priority Differences

This is the defining factor between a traditional cemetery and a memorial park. And that is the priority between their establishments.

The cemeteries that we know of are purely functional. They exist to serve a common purpose – a place for the dead. Nothing more.

Memorial parks take this to a whole new level. We want to place our loved ones somewhere beautiful and worthy of their legacies. If you have a choice while alive to live between a studio type apartment or a luxurious mansion, I guess the choice is obvious. That is the counterpart for our deceased.

Our parents, grandparents, partners, children, friends, loved ones – they deserve a decent place after they pass away. Not somewhere flood-prone or disaster-prone. We don’t want them placed somewhere damp, stressful, or inappropriate. They deserve that. We all do.


And that is the beauty of the age we live in. We have a plethora of options available to all of us. We all just need to open our eyes, search around, and I’m sure the perfect place for you is just around the corner. And that is something to be grateful for, no?

About Golden Haven

Golden Haven Memorial Park is a subsidiary company of publicly listed Villar-owned Golden MV Holdings Inc. Currently positioned as one of the largest real estate companies in the country. Golden Haven offers premium death care services and prime memorial lots. It is dubbed as the most lucrative real estate investment with an average of 20% annual value appreciation.

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  • Golden Haven is a member of the Villar Group of Companies and a subsidiary of Golden MV Holdings, Inc. The company continues to develop the most beautiful memorial parks in the country and is now the largest chain of memorial parks in the Philippines.

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