Sunday, January 10, 2010

Dumaguete's Great Leap Forward

I can't get over how pleased I am with Robinson's Place Dumaguete.

When Dumaguete's first Dunkin Donuts arrived a couple of years ago, its opening was celebrated with a parade through the city's main commercial street. I can only imagine the utter pandemonium that must have accompanied the opening of the province's first big mall (some would say the first real mall) last November. It is far and away the city's new Best Thing. Suddenly our small city feels twice as big.

For some perspective on how much this means: This mall gives Dumaguete its first KFC, CD-R King, Booksale, Mang Inasal, Bo's Coffee Club, and much more. It also contains the city's 4th Jollibee, 2nd Shakey's, 2nd Goldilocks, 2nd Dunkin Donuts, 2nd Greenwich, 2nd Chowking, and 2nd McDonald's. It also brings 3 cinema screens to a city which had (in my opinion) no acceptably decent movie theaters.

People from Dumaguete have a lot of pride-- well, maybe not so much pride, but certainly great affection-- for the city. It feels small but it has everything one needs, with modest tourist attractions and a good quality of living on what's usually seen as the "other" side of Negros. Now, with a mall, a real mall, it feels, finally, like we've hit the big time.

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