Aside from Makati which is a landmark business district in the Philippines, we can’t help but consider the BGC area as the new symbol of our economic prosperity. High rise buildings everywhere, multi-national business offices are opening, there are also a lot of exclusive residential towers, high fashion boutiques, luxury cars showrooms and posh restaurants… name it, BGC has it all.
The ambiance is also very vibrant especially its nightlife. The feel is very positive you can see even the usual malls making an upgrade to keep up with the chic and trendy address. Even the residential condominiums are becoming a very lucrative investment as more and more offices have relocated in the area. An international school and the proximity to airport have also made this place so inviting even to foreigners. Japanese and other foreign investors are also actively buying real estate (floor spaces, in fact) in some of the up and coming developments in the area. They are taking advantage of our bullish economy by making more investments aside from stock market.
Tagaytay and Nuvali
Being one of the “feel good” places in the south, Tagaytay is always a signature place in terms of classic restaurants and relaxing massage with the bonus view of the scenic Taal Volcano. And being a part of Cavite – my wife’s hometown, I just can see myself living here and spending a lazy afternoon… maybe a future vacation home for me and my family.
Nuvali, on the other hand, is also a favorite stopover while going or coming from Tagaytay. This development along Sta Rosa-Tagaytay Road is an eco-friendly community developed by Ayala Land. The koi pond, the water ski, the bike trails, the jogging paths… it’s all about nature here.
Both places, being almost close to each other are always a favorite vacation destination that’s only a few minutes-drive from Manila. Aside from that, we won’t always miss to bring home some of its best sweets and popular delicacies.
Kapitolyo Pasig area
Right at the back of Ortigas area is a hub that’s becoming popular with young professionals for its classy restaurants and coffee shops which are open even on late nights. Capitol Commons and Estancia are a hit for those who want to shop, dine, or to simply stroll around… with less crowd, ample parking spaces and an upmarket ambiance.
Also, just across the old Rizal capital (hence the name) is where you will find some popular restaurants, pubs, lounges, and bars. They are known to serve Filipino, Korean, Japanese, Greek, and Thai foods, among others. It’s definitely a haven for food lovers after a long day of work.
UP Town Center and the other booming food streets in QC
Close to Philcoa area along Commonwealth Ave is another area fast becoming known for its wide array of restaurants where students and young professionals come for casual dining experience. It’s a retail complex managed by Ayala malls, which as their tag line says, “where great minds come together” to shop and dine.
Two other streets in Quezon City are also becoming popular for food lovers: the Maginhawa Street near Philcoa/QC Circle and Greater Lagro area in Fairview, Quezon City. I’ve not been to these places yet but since I’m staying closeby and I’ve heard great reviews about these food strips, I’d definitely include them in our next itinerary. For OFWs who are thinking of venturing into food business, maybe you can consider these places for possible business location.
Staycations in Manila
We may be familiar with the different hotels abroad. We’ve made staycation always a special weekend date for the family. And good thing, we can also do it in the Philippines – the same brand of hospitality, the same brand of luxury. Maybe, we are just so conscious about the price. But when you take a closer look, conversion doesn’t have much of a difference.
For budget conscious, never compromise your vacation getaway as more and more low-priced hotels are also available offering value-for-money experience.
The Different Wellness Centers in the Metro
Intended for relaxation, a lot of spa centers have become very popular and more and more diverse and accessible. Nowadays, they do not only pertain to relaxing massage but also spa for nails, for hair, etc. And most of all, they are now available in the malls, or in small boutique houses in the neighborhood. For a complete and relaxing ambiance, different wellness centers are also available in the hotels, to the busy districts like Makati or Ortigas, or to popular relaxing areas like Tagaytay or Antipolo.
From Pagudpud in the North, Palawan and Boracay in Visayas, to the beaches of Samal island in Mindano, the splashes of the water into its white sands are simply inviting. Island hopping, lying on a lounge chair under the coconut tree, party at the beach front, seafood on your table… that’s just paradise everyone’s dreaming of. Others have already considered getting beach front properties on prime locations in the provinces in anticipation for their retirement or an increase in property prices.
And since travel has become a popular stress-reliever for many, it has also become a thriving business nowadays even with the presence of big travel agencies and airline promotions. Group tours and personalized guides are now available online at every affordable prices. Book early and get big discounts!
The Rustic Lifestyle
Trailing the rice fields, bathing at the cool river waters, watching the old ladies burning dried leaves under the tree… the early evenings and the early mornings, these are scenes from the incomparable life in the province. How I wish my children would experience it all.
And what’s the best way to declutter the city? Encourage suburban lifestyle.
The Many Other Unexplored Places
The beautiful waterfalls of Mindoro, the awe-inspiring beaches of Sicogon island in Iloilo, the marble capital of the Philippines – Romblon, and many more. Surely, the Philippines still has a lot of best kept secrets in its 7,107 islands.
Unexplored places also mean more opportunities for business and investment.
They say the nation’s greatest investment is its people. And to a developing country like ours, opportunity for businesses in this area is wide open. Skills training, personality enhancement, and business developments can be turned into a thriving industry in the future. The possibilities for Filipinos are endless.
We dance to the tunes of the festivals all over the country. We smile and we stand tall in any challenges that come along our way. We show our traditions and Filipino culture in what seems like the longest Christmas celebration ever. These are the Filipinos… with one of its best character, love for family.
All of these things are calling us home (there are definitely more). And though it’s traffic and it’s “as hot as hell”, even if you fear all the negative news on TV, even if many still say life is difficult… still, nothing beats being together with your family. Just the thought of your favorite food, that gorgeous white sand beach, the malls, the tri-sikad and jeepney rides, the Christmas season… who wouldn’t be enticed to the call of HOME?
I'm a Christian, a husband and a father, a Filipino expat in Qatar, entrepreneur, aspiring blogger, freelance real estate consultant, lover of anything KOREAN, an adventurer.