Best Things To Do in Manila This Weekend (August 4-7)

The hip and gritty enclaves of Poblacion, Makati City and Escolta are brimming with exciting feasts for the sight, sound, and senses — all happening this weekend in Manila.

We update this list every Thursday so feel free to bookmark it!


Mano Gonzales’ “Blindspot Machinery”

Fashion art director Mano Gonzales taps into his artistic side in his first solo exhibition, “Blindspot Machinery”. Nash Cruz writes, “In Blindspot Machinery, Gonzales presents relics of the past that hum a familiar sound and ring true of the Last Song syndrome. These relics, drawings -framed by steel shaped to look like the exteriors of jeepneys, with wood from ancestral homes – signify that these banal objects were once and still are vestiges of a forgotten past.”

At The Den, First United Building, Escolta Street, Manila until August 18.


Boozy Brunch at Japonesa

One of Poblacion’s newest hangouts has a trick up its sleeve during the daytime — a Saturday boozy brunch. On August 6, treat yourself to day drinking and dancing to beats by Arthur Tan.

Free-flowing drinks start at PHP595 on August 6 from 11am to 3pm. Japonesa, 5658 Jacobo St. corner Don Pedro St. Poblacion, Makati City.


Weekend Hits at HQ Poblacion

Drinks and beats all weekend sound good to you? HQ Poblacion has lined up a roster of artists bringing in the vibes from Thursday to Sunday.

Visit HQ Poblacion at 8464 Kalayaan Ave, Poblacion, Makati City.


Taco-Mata serves up NYC-style tacos

It’s all about the tacos for Makati’s hip and hungry scene — and if you’re on the hunt for some of the best in the city, check out Taco-Mata. Your tastebuds will be transported by their NYC-inspired takes such as the Harlem, featuring a delectable southern fried buttermilk chicken wrap, and the Greenwich Village, vegan tacos stuffed with roasted and charred broccoli florets, coconut yogurt, fried onions, and vegan cheddar cheese.

Visit Taco-Mata from Tuesdays to Saturdays, 6pm to 12am at Doña Carmen, corner of Kalayaan, Poblacion, Makati City.


Explore Intramuros and Chinatown by bike

Celebrating History Month? Elevate the usual museum-hopping experience by getting on two wheels and exploring the city’s last historical remnants. Chinatown Museum and Bambike, the country’s first bamboo bike, have teamed up for a bike tour of Manila’s walled city, Intramuros, and Binondo, known as the world’s oldest Chinatown.

The tour takes place every Sunday in August. Register on Bambike’s website here.


Okada Manila reopens The Fountain

Image: Okada Manila

Drama takeovers aside, Okada Manila brings some good news to the public as it has announced the reopening of its 37,464 square-meter fountain, aptly called The Fountain, for its dancing exhibitions. The Fountain has 739 water nozzles, 2,611 colored lights, and 23 speakers, and is claimed to be the world’s largest dancing water fountain. From July 18 onwards, viewers can enjoy hourly shows from 6 pm to 10 pm from Monday to Thursday and from 6 pm to 12 midnight from Friday to Sunday.

Visit Okada Manila at the New Seaside Drive, Entertainment City, Parañaque City.


UP Vargas Museum mounts exhibit of ill-gotten artwork

If you’ve seen The Kingmaker, then you know where this is headed: The University of the Philippines Vargas Museum has just launched its exhibition, PCGG Artworks Collection: Objects of Study, which is a rather innocuous name for a showcase of artworks confiscated from the Marcos family for being ill-gotten wealth. The exhibition is done in partnership with the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG).

The UP Vargas Museum is at the University of the Philippines Diliman campus, University Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City. Prior appointments required — message them on Facebook to reserve slots.


Sunday Screenings at Sine Pop

Image: Sine Pop (Facebook)

Looking to venture out of the usual movie and dinner routine? Check out Sine Pop, a 48-seater boutique cinema housed in a 1948 home that earned a feature in Monocle. On Sundays, Sine Pop showcases short films on “frugal architecture” that comes with an evening tour around its bamboo-filled property.

Sine Pop is at 14 St Mary, Cubao, Quezon City. Message them on their Facebook page for more information.


Dog Days: New Off-Leash Dog Park Opens in Pasig City

Image: Dog Town (Facebook)

Dog lovers and their fur babies will get a kick out of Dog Town, the new 2,000-square-meter off-leash dog park at Megaworld’s Arcovia City in Pasig City, featuring an obstacle course area where you can put your pup’s skills to the test. At just PHP120 (US$2.14), you get an all-day play pass.

Dog Town is located at Arcovia City, Eulogio Rodriguez Jr. Avenue, Ugong, Pasig City. Message them on their Facebook page.


Mo’ Cookies Now Has Soft-Serve Ice Cream

Soft-serve surprise! Mo’ Cookies, one of Manila’s favorite cookie brands, brings the addictive quality of their baked goods to their soft-serve ice cream at their new spot at the Powerplant Mall in Rockwell.

Try Mo’ Cookies’ new soft-serve batches at the P1 Concourse Level, Powerplant Mall, Rockwell Center, Makati City.


Fortune W.W.D. Outpost opens on Legazpi Street

Image: royce.portraits / Fortune WWD (Instagram)

One of the city’s most anticipated utilitarian streetwear brands, Fortune WWD, just opened its new outpost, featuring its contemporary takes on silhouettes such as work jackets, dungarees, and camp collar shirts.

Visit the Fortune WWD Outpost at 235 Salcedo St., Legazpi Village, Makati City.


Holy Smokes’ Last Hurrah

Image: Holy Smokes BBQ (Instagram)

Long-time Poblacion favorite Holy Smokes bids adieu on August 5. You have a day left to enjoy their best-selling Texas-style barbecue and smoked meats, such as their smoked USDA Angus Beef Belly, Smoked Bacon Pork Ribs, and USDA Prime Ribeye — with PHP400 (US$7.28) off its price as a last hurrah.

Visit Holy Smokes BBQ at Azotea de Belair, 5786 Polaris, Makati City until August 5.


The Ateneo Art Gallery Opens Same-Day Visits

Image: Ateneo Art Gallery

In case you suddenly feel like surrounding yourself with visual masterpieces, the Ateneo Art Gallery has now opened same-day registration to visitors. Non-members of the Ateneo community will be requested to pay a modest entrance fee of PHP50 (US$1), while students, alumni, and employees of the Ateneo de Manila University may enter for free.

Visit the Ateneo de Manila University’s Art Gallery in Katipunan, Quezon City.

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