A friend had asked me the other day for recommendations of restaurants in Manila that have great food and a great ambiance. She has some guests that are visiting from out of town, and wants to take them food tasting around Manila. She also added that they are designers themselves, and asked to suggest places that have beautiful and unique interiors. This made me think… What are some of my favourite restaurants, in terms of FOOD and AMBIANCE in Manila?
One of my all time favourite Spanish restaurants in Manila. I have been a big fan from the day they opened. Not just because of their mouth watering Txuleton or Pulpo a la Galega, but also because of their modern interiors, and interesting display of art. If you do visit, be sure to check out their bar next door!
5th Floor Clipp Center, 11th Avenue cor. 39th, Bonifacio Global City. Taguig
Mecha Uma has a modern and minimalist style, with concrete flooring and geometric woodwork ceiling casting an interesting play of shadow and light. It has a warmth to it and is a great place for date night! It’s neither formal nor casual, and it feels interactive with the best table being the bar by the kitchen where you can watch the chef prepare your dish. This edgy ‘hole in the wall’ Japanese restaurant only seats about 30 people, so be sure to call and reserve beforehand!
G/F RCBC Savings Bank Corporate Center 1634, 25th St, Taguig, Metro Manila
Clean delicious food? That’s what most people are looking for nowadays. When you walk into Wholesome table, you just FEEL healthy. You’ll know what i mean when you go check it out… It has that healthy organic vibe to it, not just in the food but in the interiors too. The interiors feel cozy, warm and welcoming. The design detail I love the most about this space is their large black grid window frames. My usual order: a smoothie and powerbowl.
30th St. Corner 7th Ave., Bonifacio High Street Central, Taguig
GF Infinity Tower, H.V. Dela Costa corner Leviste St, Salcedo Village, Makati
LG Estancia Mall, Capitol Commons, Pasig
Another yummy breakfast place! My favourite meal of the day. This trendy spot has that rustic industrial coffee shop vibe, with its communal dining tables, exposed metal beams and the use of wood pallets for decor. Don’t forget to try their waffles!
C3, Bonifacio Highstreet, 7th Avenue Bonifacio Global City, Taguig
G/F Edades Bldg. Amorsolo Drive Rockwell
One of the newest and hottest spots of Manila. Toyo Eatery does a modern take on Filipino cuisine. The interiors are simple and minimal, beautifully decorated with large slabs of solid acacia wood table tops and rattan chairs. Delicious food, and a great place to go with a group of friends.
G/F Building C, Karrivin Plaza, 2316 Chino Roces Ave, Makati, 1231 Metro Manila
Blackbird is located at the Nielsen tower, which was once Manila’s airport control tower and terminal. I love the historical factor, and the fact that they still maintained a modern aviation theme throughout the restaurant. Absolutely brilliant. It’s contemporary, chic, and upscale. A great place to dine for a more formal setting.
Ayala Triangle Walkways, Makati, Metro Manila
Kiwa is a “high end” Korean barbecue restaurant located at the Solaire Casino. It is a MUST for those who enjoy upscale Korean cuisine. It is beautifully designed with high ceilings, decorative wooden beams and large paper laterns. But what I love the most are the large floor to ceiling windows overlooking Manila Bay.
Solaire Resort and Casino
SMITH BUTCHER & GRILL
Walking into Smith, it feels as though you’ve walked into a farmhouse that has been renovated into a modern trendy restaurant and bar. The structure of the interiors is held up with exposed metal and wooden beams, and the interiors are decorated with plush cowhide sofas (of course, it’s a steakhouse!), leather chairs and tufted banquettes. It has a great ambiance with loungy music and dim lighting. A great place for a romantic date or dinner with a group of friends.
ACI Building, Av Dela Costa St, Salcedo Village, Makati, 1227 Metro Manila
RAGING BULL CHOPHOUSE & BAR
Raging Bull is Shangrila The Fort’s newest steak house, and is an absolute must for steak lovers. The retro classic interiors are reminiscent to 1960s uptown Manhattan design. My favorite design details: the black and white chevron stone flooring pattern, the tufted leather benches and bar stools, and brass lighting fixtures. Be sure to stop at the bar for a class American cocktail!
Third Level, West Wing, Shangri-La at the Fort, 30th Street Corner 5th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City.