San Juan

The Good Ol’ Greenhills Shopping Center, Part 2

As the first part of this series dealt with the history of the Greenhills Shopping Center and the transformation of its classic structures, this part deals with the other structures that have defined the modern Greenhills, especially the new ones that have risen and soon to rise in this complex.

Perhaps the most prominent of these new structures is the one across Shoppesville and Theater Mall called Promenade, a massive building that is home to a number of restaurants, (some of them have an alfresco dining option) a Fully Booked bookstore branch, a performing arts venue called Teatrino and 6 cinemas.

Speaking of cinemas, what makes the Promenade cinemas stand out is that they are equipped with state-of-the-art technologies to create a better movie experience. Most notable would be the Cinemas 6, 7, and 8 which are not only the newest of the cinemas there, but also notable in the sense that they are the first ones to be equipped with the latest cinema sound technology from Dolby called the Dolby Atmos. What makes Dolby Atmos special you may ask? This technology provides clearer and more powerful audio thanks to up to a whopping 64 channels of audio set up throughout the movie theater. That is already more than the number of audio channels installed on a standard movie theater.

old movie theater equipment on display
artwork by National Artist Bencab adorns the Promenade cinemas


It can be said that Ortigas and Company’s approach in the ongoing redevelopment of Greenhills Shopping Center can be described as “aggressive” as it seeks to develop every inch of the complex as much as possible. The area near the open parking area across the main building was made into a restaurant strip, though the location may be seen by some as a disadvantage. Some got to have their own buildings and spaces in the complex such as McDonalds and Gloria Maris, as well as Krispy Kreme, (which managed to have their first drive-thru branch in the complex) Japanese restaurant Wafu, and Fitness First. As being the latest trend now for shopping complexes, a residential condominium tower is soon to rise in the complex called the Viridian.

The rest of the complex was developed to meet the growing issue being faced in Greenhills Shopping Center: parking space. Apart from a steel parking facility across the main building, there are 2 parking buildings in the area which also serve as commercial space: the Connecticut Carpark along Connecticut Street and Annapolis Carpark along Annapolis Street.

Connecticut Carpark
Annapolis Carpark

Annapolis Carpark is perhaps the more interesting among the two as apart from retail space, the carpark also houses a prayer room that caters to the Muslim brethren who forms the majority in the demographic with regards to the religion of the stall owners there. It was not built without controversy however as it was objected by ultraconservative Christian groups, which sadly included the late Philippine Star publisher Max Soliven.

the Prayer Area at Annapolis Carpark


Nevertheless, it got made, making Greenhills Shopping Center one of the few, if not the only, major shopping mall in the metropolis that has an area for non-Christians. That being said, Christians are very much well represented in the complex with the presence of a Catholic chapel and the Sunday fellowships at Music Museum.

Greenhills Chapel

On-going at this time of writing is a construction yet another multi-level carpark building along Club Filipino Street beside the main building. This would actually not only serve as parking space but will also be the future home of Unimart.

the future multi-level carpark and Unimart


It is a given that shopping areas in the metropolis tend to experience more frenetic activity during the Christmas season, Greenhills Shopping Center is no exception. Only that it gets more shopping traffic being a shopping haven for affordable items.

And if the stores in the complex’s various shopping buildings are not enough, every Christmas, more shopping space gets added as the open parking area fronting the main building is converted to an outdoor night flea market of sorts where one can buy more items like clothes and toys, as well as food.

No Greenhills Shopping Center Christmas would be complete without the Christmas moving display spectacle, a tradition originally from the now defunct C.O.D. Department Store that has been carried over now to Greenhills. (it was also one of the early entries of this site which you can check out here)


With the changes around the metropolis, especially with regards to shopping trends, the Greenhills Shopping Center has managed to overcome the challenges brought about by these changes and managed to reinvent itself in the process. While this reinvention came at a price, it can be said that it was something that had to be done as part of its continuing evolution as a beloved shopping landmark that has been loved by many as it strives to still be loved by future generations.

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