03/10/13

A mall built right: SM City Marikina

Despite the vast and commanding presence nowadays of SM malls around the metropolis, the country and beyond as well, these malls are not exactly what one would call as compelling as far as form, aesthetics, and overall design is concerned. Save for some notable exceptions, SM malls are generally derided as “dull box structures” of concrete and, in recent years, glass, and steel which do not strive to become standout landmarks. I suppose the mentality employed here is, “Hey! It’s and SM mall! What more fancy design does it need? We can build a plain-looking building and put an SM tag on it and people will still go.” You get the picture.

But as I said, there are exceptions. One of them is the subject of this post today: the SM City Marikina. Actually, SM City Marikina is not ranked as among the “top-tier” SM malls as the Mall of Asia and Megamall. Indeed, the SM mall in Marikina does not offer as much retail choices as the latter two that I mentioned. What makes this mall stand out though is its unique design that takes into consideration the topography and conditions of the area where it’s located.

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12/22/12

Celebrating Marikina’s shoemakers

Located on the eastern side of the metropolis, right next to the Province of Rizal lies the bustling city of Marikina. Of course, Marikina needs no further introduction as the mere mention of its name brings one to mind the popularity of this city as the center of the country’s shoemaking industry. Hence, its title as “The Shoe Capital of the Philippines.”

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Kapitan Moy Guevara, the father of the Marikina shoemaking industry

For Marikina’s shoemakers, they and their shoemaker forebears owe their livelihood with the pioneering efforts of one man: Don Laureano Guevara, a renowned community leader in Marikina who was also affectionately called “Kapitan Moy.” Continue reading