MANILA, NOVEMBER 10, 2014
(MANILA BULLETIN) by Sol Vanzi - The new senior hub in Makati is a
one-stop shop for everything interesting, delicious, and
traffic situation, Malate residents like me try to string
Makati activities together in one day: shopping, clinic
visits, interviews, reunions, and other inescapable
No matter how hard one tries, however, several
problems persist; biggest of these is what to do with
oneself when there is a long gap between appointments. At my
age, it is no longer interesting to hang around hotel
lobbies and fashionable bars.
Tacos with Fish & Roasted Sesames
||Watermelon & Rocket
A Facebook message brought me together recently with
ladies I worked with at the Malacañang through several
decades and presidents.
Neny Regino, Maribel Dario, and
Juris Soliman picked me up for a surprise reunion at the
brand-new Makati Senior Hub “for lunch and other activities”
and were joined by Ching Suba and Micky Fenix (whose husband
Yen was a Palace presence).
Before lunch, we toured The Hub, an SM venture, where
adults can engage in activities in the realm of arts and
crafts, music, dance, games, leisure, technology, health,
wellness, and self-improvement.
I immediately signed up for
weekend art lessons under Fernando Sena, who had, decades
ago, successfully tutored my kids on oil and pastel
The Hub’s IT Corner allowed me to check my email for
clients’ latest instructions as well as peruse Facebook for
the latest trending topics.
The gang twisted my arm to join them in a mahjong
session. We sat around an ultra-modern table where the
mahjong tiles magically mix and arrange, all on their own,
after every game. The contraption mesmerized me so much, I
did not mind losing.
While waiting for lunch, we watched a romantic movie
classic on a gigantic HD screen, sinking comfortably into
leather, reclining La-Z-Boy chairs. The chair was so
comfortable, I wanted to curl up and sleep in its embrace.
We also reserved Zumba sessions in the spacious, fully
equipped studio-cum-gym after lunch.
Exciting and All-Organic
The lunch at Kitchen 56 was well worth the trip and the
wait; thanks to Chef David Hizon’s green thumb and the
flourishing herb garden right behind The Hub, only a few
meters from his kitchen.
We started with shrimp spring rolls, perked up with
herbs, peanuts, and lime-hoisin sauce. They were light and
refreshing, just perfect for the sunny day. Even the uni
negra risotto we all shared filled us just enough to want
The squid’s black ink rendered the al dente risotto
flavorful but not fishy, rich but not cloying. Uni (sea
urchin roe) and scallops added layers of color and flavor to
The pomelo salad— made up of fresh greens, green
papaya, carrots, cucumber, pomelo, mint cilantro, peanuts,
fried tokwa, crispy shallots, and lime vinaigrette— was an
oriental tapestry of textures and colors.
feast went on for hours, with flower-infused
watermelon-rocket salad, kamote top ravioli, beef kebabs on
Ifugao rice, and fish tacos.
Before we parted, we gathered at The Hub’s chapel to pray
for palace friends who had gone ahead. I knew I would be
back often, and soon.
The Hub is at 56 Jupiter, Bel-Air, Makati. For details,