Christmas 2016: Landmark Makati

Christmas 2016 at Landmark MakatiChristmas season shoppers at Landmark Makati
Ayala Center, Makati CBD, Makati

Landmark Department Store Makati has this penchant for dressing up their security in funny costumes. For Christmas 2016, security were on Swiss guard costumes again (they wore it first when Pope Benedict visited Manila a couple of years ago). I do not have a picture of it.

Christmas 2016 at Landmark MakatiCherry blossoms = Christmas

If those costumes were a bit out place, go tell me what you think about the cherry blossom trees scattered in the department store. Not only are these pink trees blooming out of season, they don’t scream Christmas at all!

Then again, we have a white Christmas tree, some hanging eight-pointed gold stars, proudly sponsored by Nestle Milo – and lots of Christmas lights!

Christmas 2016: Promenade Mall

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Promenade Mall
Missouri Street, Greenhills Shopping Center
Greenhills, San Juan

I expected to see so much more at Promenade, as it’s easily the most upscale mall in the Greenhills Shopping Center complex. Instead, we got lots of twinkling Christmas lights wrapped around anything wrap-able. The twinkling lights around the little starts add a nice touch, though, especially on those stars directly above the revolving door entrance.

Also, I’m sure that the white lanterns lined outside will add a subtle touch of elegance on its facade at night, but they’re not especially nice things to look at before it’s dark.

Christmas 2016 at the Promenade Mall

Front shrubbery is lined with white lanterns

The Christmas tree is a but a stack of white lanterns as well, but yeah, they’ll look cute when they’re all aglow. Sadly, I had no time that day to wait till it’s dark and shiny. Oh, at least they do have some live Christmas entertainment! But they probably happen at night too! What do you think? Do you like Promenade’s decorations this holiday season?

Christmas 2016: Glorietta

Christmas 2016 at Glorietta
Red and white Glorietta 5 Christmas tree
East Drive, Ayala Center
Makati CBD, Makati City

If Ayala Center is Makati CBD’s premier retail mecca, the venerable and ever-evolving Glorietta is its centerpiece. With a wide range shops and dining establishments, Glorietta offers shopping and other leisurely activities that are suitable to every type of budget. For this year’s Christmas, the mall kept things simple yet playful.

Christmas 2016 at Glorietta

Sparsely decorated new Glorietta 2 activity center

I dig the red and white scheme and the Christmas candy theme. However, if there’s a time where being louder and more spectacular is acceptable, it’s Christmas season – and I think Glorietta was being a little bit too conservative with this candy cane-inspired theme. What do you think?

Christmas 2016: Robinsons Galleria Ortigas

Christmas 2016 at Robinsons Galleria
Christmas decor on the atrium of Robinsons Galleria Ortigas
EDSA corner Ortigas Avenue, Ortigas Center, Quezon City

The 5-story Robinsons Galleria, located at the busy EDSA-Ortigas Avenue intersection, is the flagship mall of Robinsons Malls – one of the three major mall/retail chain operators in the Philippines.

To say that the mall’s main entrance fronting EDSA is underwhelming is an understatement. Aside from the fact that little updating had been done to the facade since the mall complex opened in 1990, the simple bright lights installed for the Christmas season pictured above did little to make entry to the mall more enticing. To be fair with the mall, it didn’t need any help promotion, as foot traffic in the area is incredible at any given day.

While mall workers were decorating Christmas lights October 29, 2013 (Christmas decors are usually done at this day, right after Halloween decors are taken down), fire broke out at the clothing and toys section of Robinsons Galleria. Now, that happened 3 years ago and it wasn’t clear in the reports whether the Christmas lights were to blame for the fire, but probably this explains the rather lackluster effort from the mall?

Christmas 2016 at Robinsons Galleria

Everywhere in the mall, the white Christmas lights are paired with blue and green lights. This is an odd choice of color combination, but I think it works. Also, I love the reindeer scupltures. What do you think?

Christmas 2016: SM Megamall

Christmas 2016 at SM Megamall

Building A entrance, SM Megamall
Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong

Having spent several Decembers outside the Philippines, I’ve encountered many overseas-based Filipinos say, “Iba pa rin ang Pasko sa Pilipinas.” – which I’d translate as “Christmas in the Philippines is truly special.”

Businesses that provide services that cater to overseas Filipinos and their families such as international money transfer companies and telcos cannot reiterate these words any more frequently. By now, the same words are secular gospel. Of course, to a family-oriented individual, holidays are spent best with loved ones and that’s why Christmas spent in the country with everyone else in the family is referred to as “truly special”. Filipinos could also agree that that the extravaganza put up by nearly everyone – especially malls – plays a big part in what makes Christmas here “truly special.”

I’ve been wanting to showcase the Christmas decorations from different establishments in Metro Manila  for a while now but since I dread actually going out when everyone else is on a holiday rush, I’ll settle for featuring just a few places in the metro. First up is SM Megamall – currently the Philippines’ largest mall in terms of leasable space. I decided to check Megamall out because of its status and because it’s right at the heart of Metro Manila (and just a few minutes away from my new place).

Pictured is the atrium of SM Megamall’s Building A with dangling Christmas balls in Christmas Red-and-White, Silver, and Gold. Christmas lights line the concrete part of the balconies. Classy!

Above is a picture of its gigantic Christmas tree on its Fashion Hall’s atrium. Here, the dangling Christmas balls are even more spectacular in size and simplicity. Of course, SM won’t be totally SM in essence if it goes without  a bit of tackiness here and there. Look a little bit closer and you see a stairwell, with rather overdressed mannequins! It’s nonetheless still a beautiful sight to behold.

What do you think about SM Megamall’s effort this year?