It has been raining in the city these past few weeks and waking up in the morning with raindrops falling on my window for two weeks at Eight Forbestown Rd makes me feel really home. I told you in the previous blog that Newport City has everything accessible the moment I step foot outside Belmont Hotel and again like déjà vu, being in Forbes Town Center (the guard said this is what the area is called, I am only familiar with the Burgos Circle haha) makes everything so easy and accessible for me. Newport City and Forbes Town Center are both Megaworld projects. I had a small talk with the caretaker of the unit, she said that these properties are called “Township” development, a city within a city and everything you need is just right outside your door. (Super true! and I love this concept!!)
Minus the heavy downpour of the rain, I enjoy walking around the area – it’s very modern, chic but peaceful and quiet.I did my own grocery at the shops in the ground floor of the building for my breakfast and light snacks for my visitors aside from the usual “states side” chocolates and chips. I have been meeting with my friends non-stop for the past two weeks. It is good to be just reunited with everyone, sometimes we stay inside the unit or my nephew and nieces use the pool in the building but most of the time, I go out with my friends, who are now staying in nearby cities in Manila. I also get to enjoy my quiet alone time in cafés catching up with my family in the US.
We’ve had lunch at the Max’s Restaurant almost right across the building. I can remember how we only eat here during “special occasions” like weddings and reunions, because we had to travel to the nearby city from Pangasinan to be able to eat in Max’s. Iba pa din talaga ang Pinoy food. Crispy Pata, Kare-Kare and Sinigang. Yum! Surely, you wouldn’t miss our group. We’re the tita table na pinaka-maingay.
So you see, I’ve placed myself right in the center of the bustle and hustle city life which means I am in the center of food, leisure and entertainment. From Burgos Circle until at the McDonald’s at the end of Forbes Town Center, it is filled with restaurants, cafés, retail specialty stores and fitness which makes it easier for me to just go down and explore. Actually, the whole Fort Bonifacio area for me is “walkable”. In the morning when it doesn’t rain, I exercise and jog from my area to High Street, then have morning snacks or breakfast at the Starbucks Reserve on the ground floor of the condo building or Wildflour Café + Bakery.
On a Thursday night, we tried going around checking the nightlife that Fort Bonifacio boasts and we started in Forbes Town. We checked out Tipsy Pig and Bugsy’s both were more of the yuppies and college crowd. It was very “chill” (we were with Charles, one of my kumare’s nephew who drove and showed us around the nightlife of Fort Bonifacio). From the stories of Charles, speakeasy it is also a growing trend among the bars and clubs. We visited Frank and Dean, a really nice place for dinner and desserts; I thought we were just having desserts there but Charles led us upstairs to a phone booth and when he pushed the wall, voila! It was a bar or club or whatever the young people call it now. It was very dark with only the name “Ocean’s Telephone Co.” illuminating the room. Of course, us, your Titas of Manila (I am a Tita of Manila now since I am in Manila. Hahaha) got few drinks from the bar and left.
And the highlight of our night was the famous The Palace Manila in Uptown Bonifacio– Valkyrie, Pool Club, Revel, Café Naya and The Brewery. Charles gave us a tour of these places, again “tour” because you know #TitasofManila. Apparently, he knows someone who works there so we can go inside without paying for a table or entrance. Valkyrie was the typical Vegas style nightclub, loud music, people dancing and the crazy lights. Pool Club is more of the Miami style, open area with pool, still with loud music and club lights but refreshing. From Pool Club we went to the stylish and chic Revel, it very sosyal compare to the two, mostly because the crowd are older and formal. Then we walked past by Café Naya, it was a restaurant which I predict caters to club goers either dinner before clubbing or the hangover meal. Lastly, we settled for The Brewery, it was a pub type of place, and we enjoyed the live performance of an indie band. It wasn’t as loud and crowded as the other two. We had a few drinks and had a nice long conversation. Good thing we weren’t the only noisy ones there. Haha. And we ended the night with laughter and hugs.
Due to the heavy rains, we stayed in for a couple of days. When the rain subsided and the sun smiled a bit, we spent a family day at McKinley Hill. My relatives have been talking about the Grand Canal in Piazza Mall, they saw photos online and they want to experience the “Venice” feels of the area. True enough, the Piazza Mall has that Italy feels. There were a lot of families who were also enjoying the area. Filipino families have a tight-knit relationship. Even in the States, we treat each other like family in the Filipino community we belong in. And just like Filipinos, we loooove to celebrate. We celebrate most of the traditional Filipino holidays and parties means potluck of Filipino food.
We spent the whole day walking around the Piazza Mall. By the time that my relatives left for Pangasinan, my tummy was already aching from too much laughter while talking about past stories of my childhood and the family. It was sad to see them go. I hate being alone in my place so instead of directly going back, I decided to shop a bit in Burgos Circle and called it a night.
Now, I’m preparing for my Tagaytay trip in the coming days. Here I am packing again. It feels nice though because I’m looking forward to exploring wonderful places in the Philippines that I have never been.