Quezon city that is. Its where I’m from. But okay when I say city I mean Metro Manila including QC, Makati, Ortigas, Taguig and basically somewhere that is not the provinces. I know many expats the retired ones at least, prefer to live and is happy living in Visayas and Mindanao and some parts of Northern Luzon but for the expats who need to stay here in city, there are ways to make the most of your stay in the urban zone.
When you live in the city you’ll encounter urban nightmare like traffic, flooded streets whenever it rains, noise, unflattering site of squalor, garbage, smoke pollution, high prices of goods, etc. Of course You’ll probably encounter them as well in the province but not as much in the main capital of the Philippines. These are some of the reasons why many expats avoid the city living. And it’s understandable.
Heck, I go insane with the everyday traffic! Having said, there’s still some ways to have fun and stress free stay here. I’m no expert when it comes to living in the provinces so, hopefully I’m forgiven with this post as it’s more for the expats in the city and those who are maybe planning retire in the Metro area. I thank you!
Below are few tips of how you can have stress free ways to live in the city. It’s where to stay where to eat, where to get discounts, how to enjoy life and be stress free in the city of smiles.
Where to rent or buy a house in the city
So I said house, I’m not fond of high rise condominium type of living. Most expats, especially the ones sent by US companies will usually have them stay at such locations like The Fort in Taguig, or Rockwell, McKinley. If you are the type who likes to be with other with the elite of the expatriates then you’ll likely enjoy getting condo there. Either you rent or you buy. The aforementioned locations near the Makati Central Business District.
For house rent, I’ll suggest do so in Quezon City. Why? Just because it’s in the middle of everything. Here, you can find middle class to upper middle class villages and residential areas. It’s just near everywhere. Below are several locations to rent or own a house
Philam Village, West Triangle and Scout area
It’s near SM and Trinoma Mall. These are gated village with nice houses not that ostentatious. You can either rent a house or if there is for sale then take a look. It’s near everything from restaurants, cafes, Television stations and grocery stores. Other places where you can rent or buy a house would be Capitol Homes, Ayala Heights (best village to go to for trick or treat!), White Planes, Green Meadows, New Manila. The rent or sale price might be on the high end but for comfort and security it’s good place to settle.
Cheap yet great food and cool restaurants
Maginhawa Street, Teacher Village, QC is the place to be! If you’re looking for good food to satisfy your cravings but easy on the budget, you’ll find restaurants like Tomato Kick, Van Gogh is Bipolar, Mexican Express, etc. Good food, good location. Now that’s stress free and fun.
Another suggestion is 77 Bar and resto. Come one expats and others, if you haven’t been there, visit the place. Eat and have drink or two or three. It’s actually an old 2 story house they turned into restaurant and bar and what’s nice is it’s so homey! Just picture and old house. Spanish houses you see in the province. Stress free eating here. Delicious food. Not expensive. Go!
Fun with vouchers
Have you heard of group buying sites? I’m a sucker for them. I don’t think this one will matter to the expats but discounts are fun and can save money. You can book a hotel, get travel package, discount on restaurant, and other promos. You can buy vouchers give them as gifts or just use them. I usually look for good deals especially restaurant promos.
Where to withdraw crisp clean bills
Not that it matters, probably, but I just discovered it so just sharing. Have you seen those PS Bank ATM machines? I like that the money it gives out is always clean and new. I likey!
Where to buy grocery items, etc.
For imported good that expat always looking for, one can always go to Rustans (Powerplant mall), SnR (The Fort). Of course there’s always also SM Hypermart.
Theater Plays, Musicals, Concerts
For the expats who’s into arts, you can enjoy watching different theater performances. You can watch Phantom of the Opera, King and I. And then you can bring along your kids to see Peter Pan and Hansel and Gretel theater play. We’re heading into the ‘ber’ months so more shows and fun activities to go to and see. One thing about city living, it’s all happening here. And by the way, the Maroon 5 concert sold out I think.
So those are few tips I’ve mentioned. I’m born and bred in Manila so everything I’m familiar with and I have experienced, I’m sharing. You know, to live here is not that bad at all.
To live city is to make do with all the other negatives but there are positives that outweigh those annoyances of city living. It’s all about adjusting and making things work out for you and your family. Whether it’s in the province or in Metro Manila, it’s still in the Philippines. Have fun and stay sane in the city just don’t drive at EDSA rush hour….or else you’ll go insane!
And so, would you like to live here? I think I know the answer. Uhm, still no? He he.
A Filipino. Living and working in Manila. Has a soft spot for expats. Always have an opinion about anything and everything.