Despite being one of the busiest thoroughfares in Makati City, Pasong Tamo is pretty easy to overlook as a tourist destination. Whether it's because it's not as flashy as Ayala Avenue, or because the whole road has that seedy, decrepit feel to it, is hard to say.
Nonetheless, if you're traveling to Makati City, it'd be a mistake to pass up on the road now known as Chino Roces. Various establishments — restaurants, bars, art galleries — have begun to crop all over the avenue, after all. Unless you want to miss a significant part of what makes Makati, well, Makati, you'd do well to keep these reasons to visit Pasong Tamo in mind.
It Connects Several Major Thoroughfares in Makati City
Pasong Tamo passes through many of Makati's major roads: Buendia (a.k.a. Gil Puyat Avenue), Pasay Road (a.k.a. Arnaiz Avenue), EDSA and lots of small, short streets. In other words, as long as you stay on any point along Pasong Tamo, you're bound to find your way through the Philippines' financial capital.
It's Lined With Great, Underrated Shopping Centers
Go up north, and you'll pass by Shopwise, a store that gives you value for money on almost any item you can think of. Go down south, and you'll pass by Waltermart, Makati Cinema Square, and Alphaland Southgate Mall. These places may not be as glamorous as their counterparts in the CBD or Rockwell, but they sure make up for it with reasonably-priced goods and services you won't find anywhere else in Makati.
It's Dotted With Hole-in-the-Wall Coffee Shops
Craving for a good cup of joe? Head over to Habitual Coffee, which is only a few blocks away from the King's Court building near De La Rosa Street. Or go on a mini-adventure and look for YDG Coffee, a small yet snazzy joint hidden behind the Roche Bobois Building. You can also drive further south, and stumble across your next favorite caffeinated drink at Writer's Block in Karrivin Plaza, or Toby's Estate in Whitespace Manila.
It's Dotted With Holes-in-the-Wall, Period
Considering how underrated Pasong Tamo, it's no surprise that most of its establishment fly under visitors' radars. Satinka Naturals, for example, serves healthy food and drinks for anyone who passes by the part of Pasong Tamo that intersects Kamagong Street.
Likewise, Cantino — a carinderia near European Motors Philippines — serves tasty, filling breakfast dishes at wallet-friendly prices. Finally, you have Toyo Eatery at Karrivin Plaza, which serves traditional Filipino food with a contemporary twist.
Cars, Cars, and More Cars
No, we're not talking about the ones that clog up traffic. We're talking about the auto shops lining Pasong Tamo, such as Volvo, Toyota, Suzuki, and Mazda. Most of these are around the Mantrade area, so be sure to ask the locals for directions!
Art Galleries Too
In the La Fuerza Compound, there's the Finale Art File and Nova Gallery Manila. We've already talked about them in a previous post, but suffice it to say that they both house extensive collections of works by artists of all stripes.
If you prefer photos to paintings, though, there's also the Silverlens Galleries in the Lapanday Center. Unfortunately, the place is under construction until further notice, so you'll have to wait 'til December 2016 (or possibly 2017) to view its premier photography collection.
Two Words: Little Tokyo
You don't have to fly to Japan to sample Japanese cuisine. At Little Tokyo, which is a few blocks away from Makati Cinema Square, you can find restaurants serving everything from warm, savory ramen to the infamous fugu (pufferfish). The restaurants have an atmosphere that so closely replicates their native counterparts, you'll think you're not in the Philippines anymore!
Also, if you're looking for other Japanese goodies, you can find them in Yamazaki. A part-restaurant, part-convenience store establishment, Yamazaki serves a variant of katsu curry that's an absolute must-try. Can't find this joint? Ask the resident security guards. They're friendly and generous with directions!
Another Two Words: Green Sun
Green Sun may have only opened in November 2014, but it's already become a bustling hub for creatives and events in Makati City. You can browse through the trendiest design pieces here, or wait in line for Green Sun's doors to open and the party to get started. We cover some of Green Sun's events in our blog, so make sure to keep a close eye on our events tag!
Of course, Pasong Tamo isn't just about food, shopping, and art. If you'd like to house train your dog, BetterDog Philippines has pretty good training facilities. You can also try a pro-athlete's workout at Focus Athletics, do Pilates at Up Pilates Studio, or play different kinds of sports in Makati Cinema Square (also known as "Makati Square"). As the old saying goes, the possibilities are endless!
What else is there about Pasong Tamo that hasn't been mentioned yet? Mention them in the comments section, or say hi to us on social media!