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Monthly Archives: February 2010

Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 8 (Malate, Manila)

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Our Malate Valentine’s weekend stroll ends with this blogpost. =)

There are many homeless and hungry souls in the streets of Malate. =(

Near where the homeless people sleep, luxury establishments line up the district's impoverished streets.

But the Malate homeless don't go hungry all the time. And that is because of the piousness, generosity, and love of this Catholic university...

These hungry people patiently await the opening of St. Paul University Manila's gates for a hearty meal for free!

Yeyette learns more about their daily ordeal.

The little girl's mom asked for Yeyette's Valentine's balloon. And so she gave it to them as a Valentine's gift. Malate love!

St. Paul University Manila feeds hungry people (for free, of course) during Sundays.

With street philosophers!

The old lady offered her little granddaughter to us for adoption. But Yeyette politely declined, telling her the importance of a family staying together through good times or bad.

Their humble abode -- a pushcart.

An elder Manileña who was born during the last war, telling stories of how Malate looked like during her childhood days.

The university's charity program is about to begin.

Students distributing tickets to the poor. The tickets are convertible to free meals inside the university grounds. Unfortunately, Yeyette and I weren't allowed to go inside; they required as to write an official letter. And we had no more time for that. Maybe next time.

It would have jumped onto my neck if it weren't fettered.

What the local government failed to do, St. Paul University Manila accomplishes.

Saint Paul University Manila is owned and administered by the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Paul of Chartres.

The University started out originally in 1911 as a Novitiate, a training center for young Filipino women wishing to become Sisters of St. Paul of Chartres, on a swampy piece of land in Malate.

Congratulations to the Sisters of St. Paul of Chartres and to the students of St. Paul University Manila. You are doing God's work! Be proud of your inherent Malate love!

On our way back to Robinson's Place Manila, we saw these cute, jelly like stuff which can grow on water.

Valentine's Day articles being sold on the sidewalk.

Inside Robinson's Place Manila after the lovely street strolling.

Love conquers all!

The Valentine's weekend was a blast! We mingled and chatted and shared stories to so many Manileños of Malate! We then decided to go to my mom's place near the mall. We haven't seen her for almost three years! Time to spread the love even more!

We ended up with my mom and beautiful sisters in their condo unit inside one of Manila's tallest buildings!

With my mom. She's only 17 years older than me!

Happy Valentine's Month! Spread the love! Malate love! =)



Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 7 (Malate, Manila)

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DOWNTOWN MALATE Our Malate Valentine’s Day love stroll continues. =)

Roxas Boulevard was named after the fourth President of the Philippines, Manuel Roxas.

I punk'd Roxas Boulevard!!!

1322 Golden Empire Tower

1322 -- one of the highest buildings in Manila.

A thing of beauty -- is a lifeless urban tree? Joke. I'm just rhyming here.

A street mom teaching her street kid to wave at the camera.

Calle Alas? Not. It's Calle Salas, named after a Spanish newspaper editor in Manila by the name of Romero Salas. Before the 1930s, this street used to be known as Calle Divisoria.

Calle Marcelo H. del Pilar, named after the famed Filipino writer and propagandist from Bulacán. He almost became the national hero when the 1901 Philippine Commission was looking for one. But they unanimously chose José Rizal mainly because of the latter's dramatic death (compared to del Pilar's natural death due to tuberculosis).

Malate bars -- dead by morning.

Calle Santa Mónica was named after San Agustín's mother. It was said that she stormed heaven with her prayers for the conversion of her then sinful son.

This looks ancient!

Deeper into the heart of Malate.

Malate Adriático Grand Residences

Robinson's Place Manila is situated between the districts of Malate and Ermita. But technically, it's already within the jurisdiction of Ermita.

Calle Adriático was named after the hispanist, Macario Adriático. He was a Mindoreño representative to the First Philippine Assembly. Calle Adriático was then known as Calle Dakota. Up to now, old Manila folk --and many a jeepney driver-- still refer to this street as Dakota. This long street is shared by Malate and Ermita.

Robinson's Place Manila facing the lively (and deliciously lovely) district of Malate.

My lovely wife Yeyette posing in front of Robinson's greenery.

Calle Pedro Gil was named after a journalist-turned-politician during the American occupation of the Philippines. He later became an ambassador to Argentina. Calle Pedro Gil was once known as Calle Herrán (some people still refer to it as such) in honor of the Spanish naval captain José de la Herrán who defended Manila Bay against the American invaders in the now famous (and one-sided) Battle of Manila Bay.

Spread the Malate love!

Eurotel's behind the branches and leaves.

Along Calle Orosa are a couple of postwar houses.

Calle María Y. Orosa (once known as Calle Florida) was named after the famous Filipina home economist who invented the “clay oven”. She fought against the Japanese and was killed in battle.

Calle Julio Nákpil is a street named in honor of the musician-patriot from Quiapò who fought under Andrés Bonifacio. He later married Bonifacio's widow, Gregoria de Jesús.

Calle Guerrero (formerly known as Georgia Street) is from Luis Mª Guerrero of the illustrious Familia Guerrero of nearby Ermita district. He was a famous pediatrician during his time.

In this video, we interview a homeless man who sleeps on the streets of Malate. He said the money given to him as a relocation fee by the people who took over his former home was stolen by a certain “Chairman López”.

This arátiles tree serves as shade for the homeless man we interviewed. Little did we know that we're about to meet more homeless people (to be concluded tomorrow)...

RELATED LINKS Love, love, love, Malate Love! (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 2 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 3 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 4 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 5 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 6 (Malate, Manila)

Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 6 (Malate, Manila)

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Malate love!

Ships line up the horizon.

Against the Manila sunlight.

♪ All these happy people, where do they all come from? ♫

Urban tropics.


Manila street art.

Weeping over their incarceration.

Early morning fishing.


Badminton by the bay.

The ubiquitous buco juice!

Low tide.

This should have been a lovely sight -- if not for the sludge and garbage.

A sight to behold -- and to pity for. =(

Posing near a news-hungry, one-legged old timer.

1322. Yeyette is so enamored with this building. She wants to have a space for us there soon!

A two-week infant!

I remember a cousin who has been to other countries telling me that beaches there fronting urban areas are still clean and enchanting. What we have here is a national embarassment. Is this such a big problem for the national government to fix?

My wife deploring this travesty of nature.

It's extremely disappointing to see these young Manileños enjoying a place that is very harmful to their health. But where else can they go with a meager budget? Many Manileños are still poor. Indeed, we have one of the stupidest and inutile governments in the planet in terms of environmental protection (among others). Tsk.

This coming May elections, we should vote for those who will prioritize the utmost and SINCERE conservation and protection of our environment and natural resources. I emphasized the word SINCERE. Ergo, it means NOT Loren Legarda.

¿Baquit di natin pag-isipan | Ang nañgyayari sa ating capaliguiran | Hindí na masamâ ang pag-unlád | Cung hindí nacacasira ng calicasan ♪ (taken from the song MASDÁN MÓ ANG CAPALIGUIRAN by Filipino folk band Asin)

A heartrending scene, at least for my wife and I: children as young as our own kids playing in a polluted beach sand. Indeed, our children's generation will face a much bigger challenge in the very near future. It's bigger than famine, bigger than war, even bigger than strife -- the destruction of our ecological systems. This is the only planet we have got. Thus, we have to put a stop to this utter disrespect to nature. SERIOUSLY, the pollution of our environment should be considered as a heinous crime. We have to spread the love not only toward each other. We should spread our love toward nature as well.

RELATED LINKS Love, love, love, Malate Love! (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 2 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 3 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 4 (Malate, Manila) Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 5 (Malate, Manila)

Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 5 (Malate, Manila)

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Our Lady of Remedies Parish, Malate, Manila

Only a few people know or care about the history of that quaint little church by Manila Bay.

The Parish of Our Lady of Remedies, popularly known as Malate Church, was built by the Augustinian Order during the late 16th century, making it one of the oldest churches in Manila outside of Intramuros. In 1591, Malate had only one church and one convent, both of which were severely damaged during the 1645 earthquake. In 1667, it again suffered destruction on orders of the 24th Governor-General of the Philippines, Sabiniano Manrique de Lara. It was done under duress due to the threat of Chinese pirate attacks led by the dreaded Koxinga.

A decade later, Fr. Dionisio Suárez began reconstructing a new church and convent made of bricks and stone. Fr. Pedro de Mesa completed the construction in 1680. The church was occupied and vandalized by the British when they invaded Manila in 1762. Further destruction happened in 1868 during an immense typhoon. Fr. Francisco Cuadrado reconstructed the church in 1864. This third church is the Malate Church that we know. Fr. Nicolás Dulanto made some restoration work on the church, including the completion of the façade’s upper part.

Trefoil blind arches are at the church’s façade, indicating Moorish art influence. The attached belltowers give an impression of solidity and strength by its massiveness (emphasized by very few openings), as if to “squeeze” the middle part of the façade. Solomonic columns superpositioned over the Romanesque columns give Malate Church its baroque feel.

During World War II, both Japanese and (especially) Americans wreaked havoc all over Manila, making the city the most devastated city next to Warsaw, Poland. Malate Church wasn’t spared; only its walls remained after the hostilities. But the Columban priests –the current residents and caretakers of the church– restored it to its original beauty and splendor during the 1950’s.

A Valentine's Day mass was ongoing.

The image of Nuestra Señora de los Remedios was brought here from Spain in 1624 by Fr. Juan de Guevara, O.S.A.

Faithful Manileños.


At the church's western wall.

Spread the love! =)

Anunciamos tu muerte. Proclamamos tu resurrección. Ven Señor Jesús

Agua bendita.

Street vendors selling their wares around the church area.

Already working at a young age. =(

Reynaldo Alano personally selling his obras.

The church looming behind the verdure.

Love, love, love, Malate Love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 2 (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 3 (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 4 (Malate, Manila)

Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 4 (Malate, Manila)

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Very early on Valentine’s morning, we saw a peculiar scene: Roxas Boulevard swarmed with thousands of joggers! We learned from a soldier-participant that we were actually witnessing the “Run for Your Heart” sporting event. The Philippine Sports Commission and the Filipino-Chinese Athletic Federation’s organized it. Alley Quisay, an armyman, won the marathon later that day.

What a lovely Malate Love morning!

When we woke up on Valentine's morning, we were surprised to see Roxas Boulevard without any vehicles...

...and there were too many joggers!

Even the military guys were at it!

Nobody's jogging here. The sprinters are all over the boulevard.

She'd rather run for my heart. =)

Did you know that former Manila Mayor Arsenio H. Lacson's first language was Spanish (vis-a-vis Hiligaynón)?

Yeyette and Mayor Lacson -- the finest Manila Mayor of all time!

This boulevard was once a beach! It was reclaimed during the American Occupation and was called Dewey Boulevard (1898-1941). The Japanese changed it to Banzai Boulevard (1942-1945). After the war, it was renamed to its present name: Roxas Boulevard!

Love, love, love, Malate Love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 2 (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 3 (Malate, Manila)
Quisay rules ‘Run for your Heart’

Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 3 (Malate, Manila)

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Malate is very popular particularly among foreigners and the Pinoy party animal. For a brief period during my last days in college, the lights and sound captivated my young heart.

The place is very much alive at night especially during weekends and holidays. Malate is the perfect hangout for drinking sprees. Street parties aren’t rare. Several bars and restaurants catering international delicacies line the streets. But when my beloved Yeyette and I strolled there during Valentine’s eve, I noticed many Korean restaurants. And they’re not just many. It’s like they’ve taken over many streets there! I suddenly thought, “are we in Korea Town or what?”

I have to admit that I was a bit appalled by the fact that several Korean restaurants were all over the place. I have nothing against Koreans (except for their hilarious hairdo and corny pop music gimmickry), but perhaps I’m just getting fed up seeing them everyday in a country where they actually have no cultural ties. And it’s pretty alarming because up to now I still haven’t figured this “massive exodus” of Koreans to this Third World nation. What gives?

Anyway, my wife is a Korean fan. And so are two of my officemates, Louren and Clinton! But they’re not just fans. If given a chance, they are willing to become Koreans! My wife, who somehow resembles Korean ladies, is a Korean food addict. Louren knows how to speak and write Korean (aside from other languages). And Clinton even once quipped how he wished we Filipinos were Koreans! This fascination for Korea and Koreans boggles me. Boy and girl groups from that country have captivated a multitude of Filipinos. English tutorials for Koreans are everywhere. And the persona of Sandara Park still looms large (eh-eh-eh-eh-eh-eh-eh…21!). Is Meteor Garden such a big influence and factor? LOL!

Strangely, while at the Manila Bay esplanade, a fisherman from the Manila Bay Angler’s Association asked Yeyette if I was Korean. Like, duh.

And after a fun and romantic evening stroll by the bayside, Yeyette had to look for a Korean restaurant which she used to patronize when she was still single. Man, that was like a decade ago! And so we walked around Malate like for almost half an hour.

Finally, she found what she was looking for:

Yakiniku Restaurant.

I had qualms entering an Asian restaurant. I’m just not used to it. I saw a couple of Spanish and Filipino restaurants along the way. But for Valentine’s sake, I had to give in to the ever-powerful Wifey, LOL! But upon entering Yakiniku, I realized the place’s coziness and ambience. And it’s just the right size to avoid a huge crowd as is the usual fare in most restaurants.

We found out later that Yakiniku Restaurant actually offers both Japanese and Korean delights. And that’s the reason for the photo below, haha!

Turning Japanese!

After our Yakiniku experience… I suddenly want to be Korean, LOL! Just kidding. Yakiniku caters mainly Japanese food. But to be honest, I did enjoy the food — and the thrill grilling the meat ourselves!

Afterwards, we had our refreshments at the iconic Café Adriático which was founded by the late Larry J. Cruz.

Café Adriático, a Malate landmark.

“LJC” stands for the initials of the late Larry J. Cruz. Founder and president of the LJC Chain of Restaurants. In 1979, Cruz, a journalist and information man, made a career change and opened his first restaurant, a small café in a modest corner of the Remedios Circle in Malate. He named the restaurant Café Adriático, after the street it was on.

Banking on little else than his eating experience as a seasoned traveler and the support of his media friends, Cruz who had never been in the restaurant business before, made Café Adriático the most talked about restaurant in town as soon as it opened its doors. The Café served good food and offered warm and friendly service. It was a place where people met spontaneously and enjoyed each other’s company in a setting that included conviviality. Pretty soon, Café Adriático became the venue where Manila’s elite hobnobbed with celebrities, artists, business leaders and political movers and shakers. (The LJC Group)

¡Chocolate eh!

Every time these scandals reached Father Salvi’s ears, he smiled and crossed himself, immediately reciting one Our Father. They called him a watchdog, a hypocrite, a Carlist, a miser. Padre Salvi would only smile to himself and pray more. The Alferez always told the few Spaniards who visited him the following anecdote:

“Are you going to the convent to visit that little dead fly of a priest? Careful! If he offers you chocolate, which I doubt he will… but if he finally offers, be on guard! If he calls the servant and tells him: ‘Fulanito, make a cup of chocolate, eh?’ Then you can stay and not worry; but if he says ‘Fulanito, make a cup of chocolate, ah?’ Then pick up your hat and exit running.”

“What?” asked the other man fearfully. “Does he dole out poison? Good heavens!”

“Man, no; not to that extent.”


“Chocolate eh means espeso, thick; and chocolate ah means aguado, watered down.” (From José Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere, translated into English by the late Mª Soledad Lacson vda. de Locsín)

Ensaimada bread and quesong putî (white cheese).

Claude's Dream One

Although Café Adriático may be popular among artists, writers, and the like, I’m not that impressed with the place and the goodies we had had. I’m not saying the place is not comfy. It just didn’t impress me, that’s all (or maybe because it was too dark when we went there that night). And also, mosquitoes feasted on my bare feet (I was wearing sandals) during my whole stay there! Strangely, my wife (and perhaps other customers) didn’t feel any sting. I wonder what was that all about.

Café Adriático was named after the street where it stands, Calle Adriático. That street, on the other hand, was named after Macario Adriático (1869-1919), a cababayan of Yeyette because they’re both from Mindoro (the statesman’s from Mindoro Oriental; Wifey’s from Occidental). Adriático was the very first Filipino correspondiente to the Real Academia Española and is one of the founders of the prestigious Academia Filipina de la Lengua Española.

To be continued!

Love, love, love, Malate Love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 2 (Malate, Manila)

Spread the love! Malate love! PT. 2 (Malate, Manila)

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Malate Church by night.

Malate Church historical marker (Historical Research and Markers Committee, 1937).

Plaza Rajah Sulayman, named after the last king of pre-Hispanic Manila.

Paintings by Reynaldo Alano. I met him the next day (Valentine's Day), personally selling his art.

¡Iglesia de Malate!

Small pink bats!

Toys for sale!

Love, love, love, Malate Love! (Malate, Manila)
Spread the love! Malate love! (Malate, Manila)

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