a gallery
MH del Pilar Street cor A Flores, Ermita, Manila

Ermita and Malate are two Manila districts that may correspond to Montmartre in Paris. Ermita is home to budget tourist houses, some of the city’s best tattoo artists, antique shops, galleries that sell generic house decor / filipiniana theme paintings (some of them are stunning though) and an array of one night stand hotels. It used to bear the notorious red-light district tag but thanks to the city governments efforts, no establishment in Ermita is wild enough to entertain such crowds anymore. However, just south of Ermita and Malate districts there’s Pasay City- Metro Manila’s premiere sin city.

Malate on the other hand had always been known for its vibrant nightlife. Although without the red-light reputation of Ermita, it isn’t totally innocent. Malate is home to the metro’s biggest adult stores. Pimping and negotiations are occassionaly practiced discreetly especially within the vicinity of Remedios Circle. The bohemian culture of Malate nightlife paved way to its partying success. Unlike yuppie Makati, youthful Eastwood and upscale Bonifacio Global, Malate does not discriminate and because of that it earned the artist and LGBT crowds.

The Taft Avenue strip of Ermita and Malate is one that is virtually a university town of malls, restaurants, dormitories, coffee shops, convenience stores and Internet cafes. It is somewhat disconnected to the nightlife centre existing closer to Roxas Boulevard.  The fact that southwestern Manila is both a uni town and a party place explains why it had always been considered as one of Manila’s more affluent areas. The hotels, office spaces and skyscrapers along Roxas Boulevard seemingly agree.