Travelogue Manila: Science And Discovery @ Mind Museum, Bonifacio Global City

Whenever I come to Manila, I make it a point to visit as many museums as possible. I like how much effort is put into maintaining the culture and heritage of the Filipino people, and how well preserved some of the artifacts are.

But while I’ve been to plenty of historical museums and art galleries on my past visits, I’ve never been to a science /discovery centre (besides Manila Ocean Park) – so the Boy and I bought tickets for the Mind Museum in Bonifacio Global City.

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It doesn’t look very large from the outside, but there are plenty of things to keep you occupied for hours. True to its science theme, the museum has a solar reflective exterior as well as natural wind ventilation and rainwater flow drainage.

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Spanning two floors with over 250 exhibits, the museum is divided into several sections, each with its own theme. We start off in the Universe Gallery. No points for guessing what this space is about lol.  Here, visitors will discover the story of the cosmos and how the universe came into being. I really liked the décor they’ve done with the place, especially the glittering tapestry of ‘stars’ on the ceiling.

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You can interact with some of the exhibits, like this one (which I actually forgot what it was supposed to demonstrate lol).

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The evolution of stars exhibit was my favourite because the pieces were so well made and colourful. Visitors press buttons to see how the star ‘evolved’, gradually expanding into a ‘red giant’ which is its dying form. Going out with a bang, amirite?

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We also caught a planetarium show, where you sit in a reclining chair while the projector plays on the dome-like screen above you – kind of like giant VR. The only other time I watched one was in LA, and I fell asleep (because I was fatigued after a 20-hour flight lol), so I was looking forward to this.

Sadly, the show didn’t live up to expectations – mostly because the projections were so dark and out of focus that I couldn’t really see what was going on.

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Moving on, we made our way to the Earth Gallery which houses exhibits on prehistoric life and geology.

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The star of the section was definitely the life-sized T-rex replica! PS: His name is Stan.

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The Life Gallery showcases the rich flora and fauna that once, and some that still, inhabit the Philippine archipelago, such as the beautiful whale shark (above) – commonly found off the waters of Cebu and parts of Luzon. There are also replicas of great apes, a life-sized giraffe and a huge figure of a brain.

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Colourful glass that you can switch the positions on to form different colour combis on the wall. Pretty cool!

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A ‘piano’ staircase that was really popular with the kids. There are motion sensors on the sides, so every time someone walked on the ‘key’, there would be sound.

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Neon rainbow tunnel.

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The second floor, which is much smaller than the first, has several arcade games like Guitar Hero that visitors can play for free, an X-ray machine that you can pass your bags through to see how it works, fun house mirrors and technological exhibits.

All in all it was a fun and educational experience at the Mind Museum! There are quite a number of interactive exhibits that will make it fun to visit with the kids, and it definitely beats walking through generic malls and enriching capitalist pockets for vanity and self gratification. At least here, you learn stuff.

Tickets can be purchased here. 

**There are all day passes and three-hour slots. I recommend getting the cheaper 3-hour slot because the museum isn’t that big and everything can be covered within that time limit. 

*imho the prices are pretty steep (adults – PHP625 for a three-hour ticket) but I guess that’s how they can maintain the place. 

Mind Museum
JY Campos Park 3rd Avenue
Bonifacio Global City
Taguig City, Philippines 1634

Business hours: 9AM – 6PM Tues-Suns, closed Mon

Cityscapes: Bonifacio Global City, Metro Manila

Hey guys!

Work has kept me busy… and uninspired.

I know there’s this idea that ‘the more you write, the better you get’, but it just seems that lately the more I write, the less inspired I am lol. Not just on the articles that I’m writing for work, but also this space, which is supposedly where I can write without inhibition.

Maybe I’m burnt out. I come home from a full 9 – 6 shift writing stories all day, take a quick shower and dinner, then write some more for my part time gig until 10PM. By then I’m too mentally exhausted to even play games or read – two activities I used to enjoy in my spare time. I’m in bed by 11, up by 7, and the whole drudgery repeats itself.

I need more vacations!

In the mean time, enjoy some photos from my recent visit to Bonifacio Global City, an ultra-modern central business district in Metro Manila.

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View from Crossroads, where we had excellent Buffalo Wings at Frankie’s.

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Squeaky clean with well paved roads, BGC’s wide pavements, towering skyscrapers and malls made me feel like I could have been in any metropolitan city in the world – LA, Singapore, Sydney – if not for the occasional Filipino flag fluttering happily from a lamp post. The area’s orderliness is such a stark contrast from the rest of Metro Manila, it’s almost as if one is transported to another country altogether.

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One thing I liked about BGC was the presence of dozens of murals both large and small, peppered throughout the city. Some of these draw themes from local culture and history, such as one featuring local revolutionary leader Andres Bonifacio. Visitors will also find numerous sculptures and installations while walking around the streets.

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A large piece called Dating Tagpuan by artist John Paul Antido. 

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Shiny modern buildings

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Taking a brief respite from the heat as we cut through a well maintained park.

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An interesting sign at the crossroads leading to the Mind Museum.

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Shangri-la at the Fort Manila

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A park-cum-roundabout lined with trees and an installation made to look like trees. In the evening you’ll see joggers and people walking their doggos.

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Another art piece called Manpower by Kris Abrigo, spanning several stories high

For the full list of murals and their locations, go to bgc.com.ph. 

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More to come!

PS: Feeling a little more inspired after this short post. Hope I can get back in the groove soon!

 

Review: Frankie’s New York Buffalo Wings @ Crossroads BGC, Bonifacio Global City

The gods of fried chicken wings hath spoken, and they have declared Frankie’s the best in town.

… okay, maybe not.

But they’ve certainly earned a spot in my book, ever since I had a taste of their excellent buffalo wings at SM Aura Premier on my last visit to Manila.

This time around, I pestered the Boy until he relented and brought me to a Frankie’s branch at Crossroads BGC in Bonifacio Global City. The setting is much posher than SM Aura’s foodhall kiosk, and it seems like a popular spot for the office crowd as there was a waiting list when we arrived for lunch.

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The interior is distinctively New York, with unfinished brick walls, exposed ceilings and purposefully bare concrete walls made to emulate the city’s ‘loft-style’ industrial spaces that were popularised in the 1960s and 70s. Ambient yellow lighting creates a cosy atmosphere, while tall windows allow for plenty of sunlight to filter in on the other side of the restaurant.

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Apparently Frankie’s Restaurants (BGC, UP Town Center, City Golf plaza, SM North Edsa) have more items on their menu compared to their food hall outlets. We went for the signature Buffalo Wings, with another half dozen order of Honey Garlic.

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The Classic Buffalo (We got the Spicy, but you can choose from mild, spicy or super spicy) was as good as I remembered them. At least the quality between outlets is consistent! Deep fried to juicy perfection, this is one that you need to use your hands to truly savour. I just love that crunch and the tangy, sweet and sour sauce each piece is smothered in. They ran out of ranch, but I found the Aioli dip a delightful substitute.

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The Honey Garlic was tasty but not mind blowing. The flavours were similar to soy garlic Korean fried chicken, but fell short, somehow. The Blue Cheese dip that came with it, though, was excellent. Cheesy, creamy and oh so sinful.

There were plenty of other flavours that I wanted to try, like Cheesy Bacon (hm!), Salted Egg and Wicked Wasabi, but a girl can only have that many chicken wings.

Can’t wait for my next trip to Manila so I can go to Frankie’s again!

FRANKIE’S (CROSSROADS BGC) 

2nd Floor, Crossroads, 32nd St. cor 8th Ave, BGC, Taguig City

Hours: Sun-Weds (11AM-3AM), Thurs-Sat (11AM-4AM)