Where To Eat, Sleep, Love In Tita City
Like every other living thing on this planet, a tita needs a certain environment to thrive and survive in. And being the delicate creature that she is, I'll be the first one to say that a tita space is one of the most nurturing, cozy corners in the world, so if you do find one, do pay the space a visit—or indulge in an overnight stay, at least.
I believe Quezon City is one such place. I call it tita city as most of its villages are conducive for tita living. It has many homey chikahan spots that have yet to be discovered (and I secretly hope won’t ever be, shhh) so that you and I can spend time together peacefully, until our coffee gets cold.
But because I am kind and have the natural inclination to share the good that I know, I’ll let you in one of tita city’s secrets. It’s called Panay Kain, Tulog, ATBP (Filipino for "often eating, sleeping, et cetera" or "all eating, sleeping, et cetera") and as you may have guessed, I immediately fell in love with its name and what it promises.
Along Panay Avenue in Quezon City you'll find the quiet complex (if you don’t count weekends, but consider it “healthy noise” as it comes from families getting together and sharing a meal anyway) that may as well be the place to stay at to eat, sleep, and fall in love with tita city.
Let me count the ways.
THE ABUNDANCE OF PLANTS PROMOTE CLEAN AIR
Who doesn’t love a place adorned with plants? Certainly plus points for me. The greenery added to its homey vibe, that I almost asked for a sprinkler to water the plants myself. I was also thankful for the fact that the complex wasn’t located along a highway or a busy street, so it’s still rather quite a secluded area.
THE RESTAURANT CHOICES ARE A LIFE-SAVER
Life-saver, well, literally, because it’s where you shall feed yourself, but also because of the dining options made available for you, and especially families and groups of friends who take too long to decide. To get your mouth watering, I’ll briefly tell you about them.
There’s Komedor for our favorite Pinoy recipes (also known as my personal choice of comfort food); Artsy Café for burgers, steaks, and a bevy of other hearty meals specifically for cheat days; and Mandarin Sky Wok, which, as its Chinese-sounding name suggests, offers the best of Chinese cuisine.
Each restaurant is reflective of its dining concept, from its well thought of interior design to the ambiance it promotes, which are also all thanks to the hospitable managers and warm and friendly staff members.
THE HOSTEL & DORM FEELS LIKE HOME
It’s like walking into your newly-renovated room. You can choose between sleeping on the private rooms, or rent one of the hostel beds (which have an Andersonian sensibility, if you ask me) and possibly earn yourself a newfound friend or lover.
I wasn’t able to ask management but I was hoping to suggest bringing along a poster with you that you can put up by your bedside to help lull you to sleep. I was debating whether to bring my Blink-182 one or my computer-printed Starry, Starry Night poster.
The lobby feels like your personal sala and the hallways are bright and airy, with so much natural light coming in! You can walk through it in your bedroom slippers and a hot drink, as you peer down below to take a look at the street sweepers tidying up the parking space on that one fine morning you’re spending in tita city.
Aside from backpackers and foreign travelers who aren't familiar with tita city, I also highly recommend this place for commuters from the South, who are working around or nearby the Quezon City area. Don't waste your five hours in the traffic, book a night here, and then travel early the next morning.
Special thanks to Mr. Alf of BGC Hostel and Dorm and Ms. Jhel and Tessie for your kindness, time, and assistance.
Photos by Miguel Alomajan.