Tag Archives: Manila

culture by Alyssa Castillo

Single in the City: Mr. Nice Guy of Manila

“He makes for the boyfriend every girl wants but…”

Ask anyone and they would tell you that dating today is quite complex. While technology adds a layer of convenience to meeting new people, it does so with some baggage in tow. We send off our twenty-something into to the digital landscape to find out how things really are. The mission? Go on a Bumble date for every NBHD we cover, and live to tell the tale. Next up: Mr. Nice Guy of Manila

“Out to prove that nice guys exist.” This is exactly what Mr. Nice Guy wrote on his About page. I swiped right almost instantly after I read that. And when we matched, I didn’t hesitate to say, “Hi, I like nice guys.”

There was no need to be flirty. It was enough that he was thoughtful and caring. He would casually ask me how my day is going or ask if I’ve eaten my lunch yet. He’d tell me to get home safely after work and make sure I get enough rest for the next day. And even if it would take me hours to reply to his messages, he didn’t make a fuss about it.

When I met him for a coffee date, I felt like I was meeting an old friend whom I couldn’t wait to catch up with. He had a warm aura and a pleasant personality. He was funny, too. And I loved the way he talked about his family. We also talked about our past relationships, and shared our personal sentiments on dating in our twenties in such a small world as Metro Manila.

As he met his previous girlfriend through Tinder, Mr. Nice Guy believes in being able to find love anywhere. Meanwhile, I confessed my skepticism toward online dating or using dating apps. Before, I’d insist that relationships grow organically; you don’t go out look for it. But as time passed, I realized that to each his own. And with technology rising, people looking for genuine friendships and lasting relationships may actually find great connections on a platform like Bumble.

Mr. Nice Guy makes for the boyfriend every girl wants. But here’s the plot twist: There was the lack of attraction on my part, and it was holding me back. This date felt like it was a platonic bonding time with a friend, a guy friend who would give you advice to your own boy problems. And I wondered if him being too nice had something to do with it. Before we parted ways, he asked for a second date, expressing that he wanted to begin seeing me seriously. It crushed me to tell him that I would love to keep in touch, but only as friends. Of course, he was nice about it.

While in my Uber, I concluded that he might’ve just proved to me what he said he would. After a string of “bad” guys in 2017, Mr. Nice Guy reminded the jaded me that decent men like him still exist. He messaged me as I was on the road, saying that he thought I’m “an amazing girl” but admitted that he got a little disappointed at how the date ended. It left me with a question: Do nice guys really finish last?

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Alyssa Castillo
Alyssa Castillo is a freelance writer and is concurrently Rogue Media's Editorial Assistant for The NBHD. She reads for fun, writes for a living, and wastes too much time entertaining the possibility of a zombie apocalypse. Find her on Instagram as @alyssakcastillo.
culture by Alyssa Castillo

Small Girl, Big City: The 2017 NBHD Gift Guide (Manila & The Fort)

Last but no the least are two differing neighbors that offers everything from cool postcards, pomades to your next favorite hoodie

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The NBHD Team put together this year’s Gift Guide by following one simple instruction: troop to different districts to explore the mom-and-pop shops, holes in the wall, and hidden spots the locals favor for their specialty needs. The main restrictions were that each store had to be headquartered in our assigned haunt, and of course, filled with items we would be happy to find under our own Christmas trees.

And with that, here are the cool things we found in our NBHD Gift Guide to BGC and old school Manila. (You’re welcome.)

 

fort-manila-1
(01) Kuratake Brush Writer #60 Gold, P307.50, Art Bar
(02) Heritage-Themed Postcards, PHP60/piece, The Heritage Collective
(03) Support Your Friends Hoodie (on model), P1,800, Support Your Friends
ART BAR IS AT SERENDRA, BONIFACIO GLOBAL CITY, AT ARTBAR.PH, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM / THE HERITAGE COLLECTIVE IS AT THE HUB, 413 FIRST UNITED BUILDING, ESCOLTA, MANILA, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAMSUPPORT YOUR FRIENDS IS ON BIGCARTEL, FACEBOOK, AND INSTAGRAM.

 

fort and manila solo 2
(01) The Maverick Pomade, Folk 1006
FOLK 1006 IS AT THE HUB, 413 FIRST UNITED BUILDING, ESCOLTA, MANILA, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM.

 

fort-and-manila-main

(01) Support Your Friends Hoodie, P1800, Support Your Friends
(02) Daybreak Coffee Six-Piece Sampler Pack, P300, Alex & Claude
(03) The Maverick Pomade, Folk 1006
(04) Pomade, Folk 1006
(05) Veganola Energy Bombs, P298, Alex & Claude
(06) Sow & Gro Plant Kits, P100 (small) and P150 (big), 1372
(07) Alabaster by Potter’s Clay Pomade, Folk 1006
(08) Heritage-Themed Postcards, PHP60/piece, The Heritage Collective
(09) Calendula Lip Rescue Balm, PHP 100, Sa Store
(10) Aloe Vera After-Sun Serum, PHP 380, Sa Store
(11) Gaffer Manila Beard Oil, Folk 1006
(12) Kuratake Brush Writer #60 Gold, P307.50, Art Bar
(13) Saddle Row Gift Certificates,P1500, Saddle Row

SUPPORT YOUR FRIENDS IS ON BIGCARTEL, FACEBOOK, AND INSTAGRAM / ALEX & CLAUDE IS AT F1 CITY CENTER, LANE A, 32ND STREET, BONIFACIO GLOBAL CITY, TAGUIG, 0921-8840349, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM / MNLGROWKITS IS ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAMFOLK 1006 IS AT THE HUB, 413 FIRST UNITED BUILDING, ESCOLTA, MANILA, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM / THE HERITAGE COLLECTIVE IS AT THE HUB, 413 FIRST UNITED BUILDING, ESCOLTA, MANILA, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM / SA STORE IS AT THE HUB, 413 FIRST UNITED BUILDING, ESCOLTA, MANILA, 0926-0356647, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM / ART BAR IS AT SERENDRA, BONIFACIO GLOBAL CITY, AT ARTBAR.PH, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM / SADDLE ROW IS AT SERENDRA, BONIFACIO GLOBAL CITY, TAGUIG, 0977-8025433, AT SADDLEROWPH.COM, AND ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM.

 

Photography by Renzo Navarro
Art Direction and Styling by Mags Ocampo
Model Andrea Beldua
Produced by Cindy Go

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Alyssa Castillo
Alyssa Castillo is a freelance writer and is concurrently Rogue Media's Editorial Assistant for The NBHD. She reads for fun, writes for a living, and wastes too much time entertaining the possibility of a zombie apocalypse. Find her on Instagram as @alyssakcastillo.
art + music by Renee Ultado

Manila through the eyes of Kevin Kwan

The Crazy Rich Asians writer only sees leafy streets, simply delicious food, and a much-needed respite

“I have no imagination,” says the Asian-American author Kevin Kwan. A tough fact to accept from someone who has created a world of sprawling estates and private jets where couture fittings is a perennial occasion and plastic surgery for pets is a thing. I catch him in the middle of a packed working week, dashing from one bookstore to another to promote Rich People Problems, the latest and the last book of his hit series Crazy Rich Asians.

His third visit to the country started with a few days of sun and sangrias in Puerto Prinsesa. “I love Palawan. It’s one of my favorite places in the planet now,” Kwan gushes. The island also figured into his latest book, its pristine waters and the kind of seclusion and inaccessibility that comes with paradise-like places was a perfect setting for one troubled character looking to disappear for a while. And, well, Kevin, half-jokingly suggesting that they cancel the book tour when it was time to go to Manila and meet his readers.

“In Manila, I love all the very leafy neighborhoods.” While Manila and leafy are two words rarely used in one sentence, he cites pockets of green spaces as his haunts around the metro: BGC, Forbes Park, and Dasmariñas Village. Predictable choices, but he claims that in his personal life, he goes for the simple things. Especially food. “I love almost everything I try here. Lechon, of course. It’s such a delicacy,” Kwan says as he reminisced a rather juicy piece of lechon he had the night before. “But I also love just the simple garlic rice with fried egg on top. That to me is the ultimate breakfast. Maybe a piece of spam here and there. In my own personal life, I like really simple things,” he continues.

His book series has always generated a considerable amount of buzz around the Philippines, but even more so when news of it being turned into a Hollywood flick surfaced. It did help that Kris Aquino, locally dubbed as Queen of All Media, made it to the cut of the final cast for the film. Attempts to break into the shroud of mystery surrounding her character proved futile. “I can’t discuss exactly what she’s doing. It’s a top state secret,” Kwan laughingly says. “She gave an amazing audition. I think a lot of people don’t give her credit for being a great actress. She’s a talented Asian actress, and that’s why she’s in the movie.”

The movie project also made headlines elsewhere, being the first Hollywood film to cast an Asian leading man alongside an entire Asian cast, a feat in an industry plagued with frequent whitewashing and a one-dimensional approach to racial representation. “We need more different types of Asian people in movies to show diversity. We want to break stereotypes.” Kwan says with conviction. “But we can only do so much. The public has to come out and get behind it. Asian audiences in the US, around the world, if they want more Asian content they have to support Asian content.”

Art by Mags Ocampo

RICH PEOPLE PROBLEMS IS AVAILABLE AT ALL NATIONAL BOOK STORE BRANCES NATIONWIDE. YOU CAN FOLLOW AT @KEVINKWANBOOKS ON INSTAGRAM
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Renee Ultado
Renee Ultado is a stylist and writer fueled by glamour, caffeine, tequila shots (sometimes), an unswayed faith in the goodness of other people (always), and the reassuring thought that Mariah Carey is out there somewhere in a rhinestone studded slip dress doing the Lord's work. Find him on Instagram as @reneeultado.