In the Philippines, when you say “Ayala” the name, you are pertaining to one of the richest families in the country; when you say Ayala Avenue, you are pertaining to the country’s equivalent of Wall Street; and when you say Ayala Center, Makati, you are pertaining to high-end shopping, fun and mall hopping.
The Ayala Center in Makati is one of the hippest places you can go to for shopping, recreation, dining and entertainment. The center includes a number of malls, shopping centers, restaurants, arcades, cinemas, hotels, and a museum. In the Philippines, mall hopping is not just a pastime: it’s a way of life. Filipinos call it “malling”. And malling in Ayala Center is quite an experience because of what the place has to offer.
The main department store is the Glorietta, which is very near the Metrorail (MRT), taxi and bus stations. Glorietta is actually a string of several department stores that make up its five sections. It is a huge complex with restaurants, cinemas, arcade, entertainment area, a gym, and of course, the shops. The stores mostly cater to high-end shoppers. Glorietta connects to Greenbelt, one of the oldest hang-out places in Ayala. It opened in 1980 as one of Ayala’s main attractions. Greenbelt is a complex of two indoor buildings and two open-air shopping centers. It has a garden, promenade, and chapel.
You cannot go malling in the Philippines without visiting one of the many SM department stores. SM or Shoemart is the most successful chain of department stores in the country. Every major city has its own SM branch, the largest of which is the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City. It is, in fact, the third largest mall in the world. SM Makati may not be as huge as the other branches, but it is one of the oldest and better known SM’s in the country. SM Makati is the first mall you see in Ayala Center, because it is located along EDSA highway and just beside the MRT Ayala Station. SM’s second floor connects to the MRT station.
The Landmark department store is aptly named. It is one of the earliest attractions in Ayala, along with Greenbelt. It is strategically located near the business center, which is why it is mostly visited by professionals, yuppies, and businessmen working along Ayala Avenue and Makati Avenue.
Other department stores in Ayala that you might want to visit while malling are Park Square 1, Park Square 2, Rustan’s Makati, and 6750 Ayala Avenue. There is also a string of luxury hotels, which includes Hotel Intercontinental Manila, Dusit Thani Hotel, New World Renaissance Hotel, and Shangri-La Makati.Ayala Center, Makati, is a one-stop shopping experience guaranteed to solve all of your needs.
Each one of the malls listed above has all the facilities you need for your shopping, dining and entertainment pleasure. Ayala is not hard to find, either. Simply take an Ayala-bound bus coming in from both the northern and southern areas of metro Manila or simply take the MRT and get down at Ayala Station. At the station, just follow the crowd of people that is sure to be heading for the malls.