While Makati’s population balloons from an estimated 530,000 to four million during the day due to the workforce, thousands more troop to the country’s Central Business District every Christmas season to enjoy the city’s endless shopping destinations, food havens, and multi-faceted attractions.
But with the now-infamous Metro Manila traffic, just the thought of traveling to and from this colorful and bustling city can put off even the most loyal habitués of Makati.
Completely aware of this modern day reality, Ayala Land Inc.’s “Make It Makati” advocacy has partnered anew with MasterCard and the InterContinental Hotels Group (comprised of Raffles and Fairmont Makati, InterContinental Manila and Holiday Inn & Suites Makati) for the “Makati Staycation” project.
The idea is this: If you want to experience the Christmas season in Makati sans worrying about traffic, pick one hotel and make the most out of your 24-hour stay in the Philippines’ own version of the city that doesn’t sleep.
12 NN—Check in. Choose your desired cocoon for a weekend staycation. MasterCard cardholders can avail of 50 percent discount on the weekend room rates of Intercontinental Manila and Holiday Inn Makati, as well as Raffles and Fairmont Makati’s rates from Friday to Sunday. Take note that there are also block out dates so be sure to check with your hotel of choice.
12:30 NN—Lunch out. While there will surely be a discounted or complimentary lunch buffet with the attractive hotel packages under Make It Makati, foodies should take the opportunity to leg it to some hole-in-the-wall destination they have always wanted to try in the CBD. As everyone knows, Makati is a foodie’s haven with many unassuming neighborhood restaurants lined up along Salcedo and Legaspi Villages, not to mention the stretch of Jupiter and Guijo streets. A suggestion would be Izakaya Kikufuji, one of the most visited authentic Japanese restaurants in Little Tokyo, Legaspi Village.
2 P.M.—Museum- and gallery-hop. After a satisfying lunch, burn some calories while taking in a visual spectacle. Check out Ayala Museum to catch its ongoing exhibits “Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten” and “Defining Quirino” or permanent exhibits “Gold of Ancestors” and “A Millennium of Contact” then move on to Yuchengco Museum to have a look at the masterpieces of Philippine artists. If you’re into collectible art, the LRI Design Plaza along Nicanor Garcia Street should also top your list.
4 P.M.—Adrenaline rush. When the sun starts its descend, a heart pumping race at at Circuit Makati’s City Kart Racing is highly recommended because after all, it’s not every day you can go as fast as 100kph on the road—especially along Makati’s thoroughfares. Gatorade Chelsea Blue Pitch and Mountain Dew Skate Park are additional alternatives for outdoor activities if you would rather sweat it out by kicking balls or skateboarding instead of putting the pedal to the metal.
6 P.M.—Big time dinner. Refueling after an exhausting physical activity will be easier while inside Circuit Makati what with newly opened food stops at the two-storey Circuit Lane such as Torch Restaurant (international fusion cuisine), Backyard Kitchen + Brew (farm to table concept) and Stevenston Pizza.
8 P.M.—Shop or stop at the theater. The options at this point will depend whether your staycation happens in November or December. If you plan it for this month, go on an early Christmas shopping at the Passionfly Circuit Night Market (November 14 to 15) or at the Circuit Makati Bazaar 2015 (November 27 to 29).
Now, if staycationers opt for the latter, a theater treat awaits them at Circuit Makati’s newly opened Power Mac Center Spotlight, a 300-seater black box theater. Showing im December is Bit by Bit Company’s twin bill production Children’s Plays for Adults (December 12, 13, 19 and 20), featuring the awa rd-winning Filipino plays of Eljay Deldoc (Si Maria Isabella at ang Guryon ng mga Tala) and Glenn Sevilla Mas (Games People Play).
And whether shopping or stopping at the theater, make sure to catch the magical “Festival of Lights” show, which will run until January 6, 2016.
7 A.M.—Weekend marketing. After piling up the activities on Saturday, take it easy on Sunday. Mellow down with a leisurly stroll at the famous Makati weekend markets, namely the Salcedo Community Market and Legazpi Sunday, and go local with an endless array of fresh produce, delicacies, sea food and even gardening needs.
10 A.M.—Relax. Round up the 24 hours with the utter “me time” at your hotel spa and rejuvenate before returning to reality.
12 NN—Check out. Alas, the inevitable end of the 24 hours. There is no need to feel sappy though, because you can simply do it all over again. The Makati Staycation is available until the last day of the year, and for sure, with the Christmas rush done by then, a whole new experience of this impressive city will take you by surprise.
For more details, visit www.makeitmakati.com.