August 29, 2019

7 Souvenir Shops Around Manila for Quality Local Handicrafts

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  • Filipino craftsmanship is highly valued for its unique designs, often gifted as souvenirs after visiting the Philippines. However, there are also crafts, textiles, wares, and designs that are worth keeping in your own home as decor or to wear on special occasions.

    The practice of bringing home souvenirs or pasalubong plays a huge part in the Filipino traditionWith many Filipinos now working overseas, they send gifts back to their home country through the balikbayan box—with the name coming from balik meaning to come back and bayan, the Philippines.

    Also read: Souvenirs to Buy Wherever You Are in the PH

    We have listed down a few local handicraft and souvenir stores that offer high quality and well-designed pieces for all uses. A quick visit to one of them may just give you more idea of Filipino creativity!

    Tesoro’s Philippine Handicrafts

    Cabaña by Tesoro’s in El Nido Palawan / IMAGE Tesoro’s

    Founded by Atty. Nestor and Salud B. Tesoro in 1945, Tesoro’s supports the livelihood of hundreds of small entrepreneurs and sustains heritage by purveying only the best of the Philippines. In its 12 retail outlets all over the archipelago, one will find a wide assortment of tableware, giftware, embroideries, shellcraft, heritage craft, and local apparel at affordable prices—accompanied by expert service.

    Branches include Cabaña in El Nido Palawan, pre-departure areas of NAIA Terminals 1, 3, and DMIA in Clark.

    Also read: Archipelago Botanical Gin Is Now Available in the Philippines

    Address: 1016 Antonio Arnaiz Ave, Makati City
    Business hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily

    Balikbayan Handicrafts

    Expect a wide variety of local handicrafts! / IMAGE Balikbayan Handicrafts

    If you’re looking for proudly Filipino-made handicrafts from large household items and fixtures to the smallest jewelry, then Balikbayan Handicrafts is the place for you. With their biggest store along Arnaiz Ave., you’ll surely find something to satisfy your tastes.

    Address: 1010 Antonio Arnaiz Ave, Makati
    Business hours: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Mon to Sat), 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Sun)

    The Manila Collectible Co.

    Make sure you don’t miss this hidden gem in Intramuros! / IMAGE The Manila Collectible Co.

    The Manila Collectible Co. (TMCC) is a cultural space that is a museum, gift shop, and heritage tour/workshop provider in the heart of Intramuros, Manila. Other than just being a store, they educate guests about Philippine culture.

    Inspired by prehistory and indigenous heritage, TMCC continues to collaborate with cultural groups from around the country to further promote and sustain the intangible heritage and local creative industry. This is the newest kind of destination fusing heritage, education, and responsible retail.

    Business hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Tues to Sun)

    La Local

    This is truly an IG-worthy store / IMAGE La Local

    Although newly-opened, La Local is starting strong as a one-stop shop for locally made products, from eco-friendly items to craft bags and art. They are currently looking for more brands as partners so expect something new as they grow in the future. Plus, they have food stalls selling famous local refreshments and in-store snacks.

    Address: G/F The One, Torre de Santo Tomas, Sampaloc, Manila
    Business hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

    Kultura Filipino

    Even the biggest mall chain in the Philippines supports local designers and craftsmen that they have created a separate branch store, Kultura Filipino. Inside is like a small department store in itself complete with clothes, souvenir items, food, arts, and jewelry—all from local brands.

    With multiple SM malls all over the country, the store helps small to medium brands reach customers nationwide. This in turn indirectly supports the local communities and heritages that the small brands employ to create amazing products and designs.

    Also read: Lakan: An Award-Winning Coconut Liquor

    Address: Select SM Stores

    Go Lokal!

    As a government project, the local brands get to be featured in big events such as the last ASEAN Summit / IMAGE Go Local!

    An initiative by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Go Lokal! has been popping up in malls nationwide including SM Malls, Ayala Malls, and Robinsons Department Store. To date, Go Lokal! has assisted 478 MSMEs spread out in 114 Go Lokal.

    Go Lokal! is not just about going local. It is about being multi-local—the appreciation of Philippine traditions, patterns, colors and style that may be local to Filipinos, but exotic to others. They are a free marketing avenue provided to local brands and sellers.

    Address: G/F, Trade and Industry Building, 361 Sen. Gil J. Puyat Ave, Makati
    Business hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Mon to Fri), 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Sat), Closed on Sundays


    Ritual store in Makati City / IMAGE Ritual

    This coffee joint and general store in Makati is home to local, eco-friendly, and organic produce. Run by dedicated advocates of sustainability since 2010, Ritual offers locally-sourced organic market products in plastic-free containers such as coffee, cacao, snacks, drinks, essential oils, balms, and salves.

    Address: 2F Languages Internationale Building, 926 Arnaiz Avenue, Makati City
    Business hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Tues to Sat)

    Did you find anything that you’d love to bring home? Which store will you visit soon? Tell us in the comments below!

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