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Tips and Guides

6 Reasons to Live in San Antonio, Makati

Why you’ll love this low-key, strategically located neighborhood near the country’s biggest CBDs

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Photography: Avida Land and Restock (Main Photos)

I lived in San Antonio Village (SAV for short) in Makati City for about a year. I would have gladly stayed much longer if my landlady had not given up her two-storey house-and-lot for a choice unit in a spanking new condominium also in the neighborhood—which is also a testament on how she values the vicinity.

Though San Antonio is far from my childhood neighborhood, I had my fair share of good memories of the place in my regrettably short stay. If presented with the right circumstances, I would love to move back for the following reasons:

1. Proximity to the Makati CBD

The astronomical rent in prime addresses within the Makati central business district (CBD) is neither a mystery nor a secret. Even teeny tiny units in ancient residential buildings are no exception by virtue of them being close to the hotspots. “’Yung location lang talaga ‘yung binabayaran mo,” a friend who used to live in one of the old condominiums right across a popular park would say.

Given that not everyone working in the swanky Zuellig building, for instance, is an expat or a CEO earning six figures, cheaper alternatives in the outskirts of the city are to be considered. San Antonio Village is a good option for its considerable proximity to the main roads (Ayala Avenue and Sen. Gil Puyat or Buendia) and the business streets of both Salcedo and Legaspi Villages, which brings me to my next point…

2. It is commute-friendly

If you don’t have a car or couldn’t afford to Uber your way to the office every single day, living in SAV will present you with several options you could take if you’re not too finicky about public transportations. Where I used to live, sometimes I would take a short tricycle ride or a long walk to the corner of Mayapis Street and Gil Puyat Avenue, to the jeepney terminal plying the MRT Buendia-Washington route. I would get off right in front of the building where I used to work, which is at the corner of Makati Avenue.

In photo: A Green Frog Hybrid Bus

There are also jeeps plying the parallel route of Ayala Avenue-MRT Ayala station. Taking the bus headed to the popular stops such as Cubao, Philcoa, and SM North is also another option. If you’re headed to the Fort or C5, you may be able to catch the Green Frog Hybrid Buses from SM MOA to Market! Market! via Sen. Gil Puyat Avenue.

Headed to the opposite direction? Ride a jeep plying the Guadalupe-LRT route. It stops at the LRT Taft station. From there, you can also take the orange multicabs or jeeps going to SM MOA. You can also walk to the corner of Taft Avenue where there are jeeps that can take you to La Salle and UN Avenue, for instance.

In photo: The perspective of The Linear Makati

Near the LRT Taft station are the several bus terminals for provincial destinations such as Batangas and Laguna. This information comes in handy for when you’re in the mood for a quick weekend getaway!

3. It has the comforts of home and good security

My former landlady would always make it a point to praise SAV’s good security considering that it’s not really a village in the exclusive sense of the word. Its gates close to public vehicles at a certain time, the neighborhood is quiet, and (at least in the part of SAV where I had stayed) the streets were well-lit and well guarded enough for me to sometimes venture into a long walk home at midnight. I certainly would have quit halfway or not repeat the same feat had I felt security was lacking.

Another thing to like about the neighborhood is its homey feel. There are inconspicuous sari-sari stores and corner carinderias and ihaw-ihaw stalls that materialize in the late afternoon. It has none of the snooty vibe of the more upscale neighborhoods in the city, and doesn’t have a seedy vibe either.

In photo: The perspective of Avida Towers Asten

4. There are both houses and high-rises

What also adds to San Antonio Village’s charm and balance is the mix of old family houses, newly built low-rise apartment blocks or townhouse units, and a few high-rise condominiums in choice spots like Filinvest’s The Linear in Mayapis corner Malugay and Yakal streets, and Avida Land’s Asten Towers along Malugay street.

In photo: Paco Park, Manila

5. This part of Makati is close to Manila

Since San Antonio Village is in the outskirts of Makati City and Manila, some of its major roads run from SAV to Manila. This proximity to the old city adds a whole dimension of options for shopping, dining, and recreational spots. Spend a cozy afternoon with your kids at the Paco Park, go see an exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila, rediscover Intramuros, or do a food crawl in Binondo.

In a bigger context, the strategic location also allows for more options when it comes to schools and hospitals.

In photo: Goto Monster

In photo: Restock Coffee & Curiosities

6. It has dining spots for all budgets

SAV is no slouch in the resto scene. More importantly, it boasts of homegrown gems that are easy to love. Many late nights, I would turn to the 24-hour Goto Monster for a filling and comforting bowl of goto with my favorite side order of talong chips.

In photo: Satinka Naturals

Satinka Naturals is a quaint place perfect for brunch for two or extended late lunch for one (as I did one weekend afternoon) savoring their “clean” dishes and yummy drinks. 

In photos: 12/10

On Guijo street, there’s a beautiful spot for dinner and cocktails called 12/10 which serves tasty fusions in small plates. While you’re at it, do drop by Restock next door and shop accessories for you or your home—or sample their coffee and cookies.

Do you live in San Antonio, Makati? What do you love most about it? If you have other places that you want to get featured on the site, send us a message on Facebook or send an e-mail to reallivingonline[at]gmail.com.

PHOTOS: TheFortCity.comThe Linear Makati | Avida Towers Asten | Restock | Satinka Naturals | 12/10

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