There is something about visiting old shopping malls in the city. It seems as if you can feel the gush of excited shoppers and exchange of items along the corridors, and you instantly know that the mall has provided such an enticing experience to each of its visitors in the past. And that was what the Victoria Plaza in Davao offered during the early 90s, and is still doing up to now.
Victoria Mall is one of Davao City’s most popular shopping centers. It was built and opened to the public during the early 1990s and it was the first mall that was constructed in the city. Now you can imagine the flocks of people that visited the place during that area as it was considered to be Mindanao’s ultimate and largest shopping center. The plaza is relatively small with its two-storey building compared to the numbers of other malls and shopping centers that have sprung up around the city. The mall area is still comparably large, however, which adds to the better shopping experience.
Pearls are a major sight at the Victoria Plaza Mall. These are great items to bring home as souvenirs (or pasalubongs, in Filipino) to give to your family and friends. Several stores are lined up selling all kinds of cultured pearls from the makimoto pearls to the south sea pearls and the fresh water pearls. Some stalls may even offer customization, so you can get your purchases to fit perfectly on you. You can also choose the style and design of the pearl if you want as it will only take a few minutes for the stall owners to produce it for you. You may beg to argue that pearl stores are all over Davao city, and you can even purchase one near the hotel you’re staying at. Know that the pearls found in the plaza are reasonably priced, providing deals like no other in the city. You can also avoid paying tourist-priced souvenirs when you shop at this mall. Think about being a smart tourist instead of the innocent traveler buying those overpriced souvenirs. You can even haggle or barter your way to the lowest possible price. Stay reasonable with your demands, though, of course!
Admittedly, Victoria Plaza has seen better days. It may not look as appealing as the other new malls, but the plaza has its own share of restaurants that offer only the best dishes in the city. Seafood restaurants offering authentic Filipino dishes are among favorites of the locals. Check out Cynthia’s Lechon House and Restaurant and Ahfat Seafood Restaurant located just outside the compound. Durian coffee is offered by a specific shop around the area and is something the adventurous tourist should look forward to trying. Make sure to ask around for directions. The plaza is located along J.P Laurel in Bajada Avenue, which is easily accessible by riding a jeepney.
Visiting tourists of Davao should definitely consider stopping by the Victoria Plaza. Rest assured you will be able to avoid pesky vendors offering you extremely expensive souvenirs and might even go home with a nice set of pearl jewelry.