In the game of residential real estate, it’s the decades-old exclusive subdivisions that house some of the country’s wealthiest.
Large estates and convenience are what you pay for when you purchase some of the most expensive pieces of real estate in the country–for just a few hundred million pesos.
It’s Manila’s equivalent of Beverly Hills in terms of exclusivity and affluent residents. The gated community is home to foreign ambassadors, diplomats and the who’s who of Manila society. Mansions are situated on large properties and luxury vehicles coast through avenues lined with lush trees and greenery. McKinley Road divides the village into Forbes Park and Forbes Park North. Many residents are regulars at membership clubs Manila Polo Club and Manila Golf and Country Club, both located within Forbes Park. St. Luke’s Medical Center is at the nearby Bonifacio Global City.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Positioned along Palm Ave, San Antonio Plaza has all the conveniences you need for a modest town center—Rustan’s Supermarket, National Book Store, Mercury Drug, Bank of the Philippine Islands. Have breakfast at Maple, get your sushi fix at Isogi, or catch up with a friend over pasta at Pasteleria La Nuova. Have unexpected guests coming over for dinner? Get a quick blowdry at Tinette’s salon, make a quick run to Santis Delicatessen and Gourmet Corner, and grab a cake at Purple Oven.
Price Per Square Meter: P224,820 – P411,765
Known to many as “Dasma,” the upmarket subdivision contains two community parks, gym and tennis court facilities, and a medical clinic. The village surrounds private Catholic school Colegio San Agustin and is a stone’s throw away from Manila’s notable international schools. The style of homes ranges from ultra-modern to Spanish colonial in design. Tight security and a friendly neighborhood environment make Dasmariñas Village a preferred neighborhood for expatriates and wealthy families alike.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Exit the Lumbang gate onto Chino Roces Ave and head to Txanton for jamon Iberico paired with wine from Premium Wine Exchange. Go upstairs to M for a fabulous dinner by chef Tom Bascon. Step inside speakeasy bar Finder’s Keepers to indulge in handcrafted cocktails prepared with top-shelf premium liquor. Looking for more than a nightcap? Head next door to nightclub Black Market to party into the early hours of the morning.
Price Per Square Meter: P266,667 – P400,000
Located in close proximity to the city’s business district, Urdaneta Village is a ritzy enclave inhabited by Manila’s privileged crowd. Elegant bungalows and multi-story dwellings line the spacious streets while an ample sports field and indoor and outdoor basketball courts are at the disposal of residents. The multi-purpose village clubhouse hosts mass on Sundays and annual bazaars several times a year.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Just outside the village, Discovery Primea towers over the city. Its new restaurant, Flame, with modern European cuisine and sweeping views of the Makati skyline, is located on the 16th floor of the high-rise hotel and apartment building. Across Ayala Avenue is Rustan’s Supermarket and Department store, Glorietta mall, and Shangri-La Makati. The Peninsula Manila is also a stone’s throw away.
Price Per Square Meter: P220,459 – P256,012
Bel-Air Village is a pleasant refuge tucked away in the heart of the city. Its desirable location provides residents with easy access to Power Plant Mall and the lively restaurant and bar scene in Poblacion. Amenities include a newly-renovated clubhouse, a refurbished gym with state-of-the-art equipment and a clinic exclusively for residents. The village association aims to maintain a sense community by organizing activities such as flea markets and movie nights for kids.
Neighborhood Hangouts: The burgers at Sweet Ecstasy are the closest you will get to that Shake Shack or In-N-Out style burger in Manila. The casual open-air eatery has a laid-back atmosphere that is best enjoyed with a boozy adult milkshake. With an exclusive exit to Rockwell Drive, residents get easy access to all the other dining establishments at Power Plant Mall and Rockwell areas such as Rambla, Ooma, Dean & Deluca, Mamou, and more. Other village exits lead to Jupiter and Poblacion/Kalayaan’s popular eating joints like Bucky’s, Hot Space, El Chupacabra, Tilde, and many more. Female residents also frequent Emphasis, Basement, and Be Beautiful For Him salon for everyday beauty rituals, from blowdrying services to manis and pedis.
Price Per Square Meter: P142,857 – P206,767
San Lorenzo Village
Nestled within the hustle and bustle of Makati City, San Lorenzo Village is located within spitting distance of Greenbelt, Glorietta, and SM Makati, allowing homeowners easy access to world-class shopping centers. This private enclave is highly regarded for its spacious homes and around the clock security. Catholic girls school Assumption College lies within the confines of the village, providing residents with first-rate education for their children. San Lorenzo dwellers are walking distance from some of the best restaurants in town with gates that open onto Arnaiz Avenue and Edsa.
Neighborhood Hangouts: The complex that houses Cirkulo, Milky Way, Azuthai and Tsukiji is a neighborhood mainstay. There’s a slew of Japanese restaurants to choose from on Arnaiz Avenue and in Japantown—Seryna, Sakura, Kikufuji, and more. Across the street is the Greenbelt network offering all the city living essentials.
Price Per Square Meter: P185,000 – P249,406
This 54-hectare exclusive subdivision at the junction of EDSA and South Super Highway exudes a suburban feel and boasts of manicured parks, multi-purpose halls, and tennis courts. Residents enjoy a sense of community, with everyone practically knowing everyone in the village. St. Alphonsus Mary de Liguori Parish is also inside the village, which all the more fosters camaraderie and fellowship among residents through its activities.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Right outside the village gate is Paseo de Magallanes, a commercial center that houses Rustan’s Supermarket, restaurants such as Rack’s, Dayrit’s, Cafe Breton, and Kublai’s, a neighborhood stalwart for decades, dermatological clinic Skin Inc., banks, fitness centers, and more. Pancake House opened its first restaurant in Magallanes over 40 years ago. More recently, The Bottle Shop/Global Beer Exchange, got its start in the neighborhood too.
Price Per Square Meter: P71,875 – P123,558
This 82-hectare subdivision is one of the most exclusive in Quezon City. The village is characterized by its wide streets and substantial properties. Corinthian Gardens is a village unparalleled in its convenience, boasting of small restaurants, a hair salon, and a Santis Delicatessen inside the neighborhood. The Medical City lies on the outskirts of the gated community, allowing residents to utilize top quality hospital facilities conveniently.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Ask any Corinthian resident about his or her favorite pizza and many will reply with Stevenston. Known for their unique combinations of toppings, Stevenston Pizza’s proximity to Corinthian Garden’s means pizza can be swiftly delivered to homes inside the village. Malls such as Robinsons Galleria, EDSA Shangri-La, and Podium are also in the area for convenient access to supermarkets, drugstores, hardware shops, movies, and more.
Price Per Square Meter: P200,000 – P219,690
This upscale Quezon City village was developed five decades ago by Ortigas & Company Limited Partnership, Inc. The 72-hectare neighborhood is known for its beautiful homes and picturesque landscaped gardens. Clubhouse Lanai, Greenmeadows’ versatile event space is the perfect setting for birthdays and weddings, accommodating between 250 to 300 people. Other amenities include a children’s playground, corporate function rooms and wellness facilities.
Neighborhood Hangouts: The Podium in Ortigas center is less than three kilometers from Green Meadows, giving residents access to over 100 shops and restaurants including Wildflour Cafe + Bakery, Terry’s Bistro, Gino’s Pizza, and L.E.S. Bagels.
Price Per Square Meter: P96,154 – P167,702
Situated within the small city of San Juan, the vibrant Greenhills area bustles with a mix of quaint, age-old establishments cemented as family favorites through the years. Surrounded by some of the region’s most popular high schools, such as La Salle Greenhills, Xavier School, and Immaculate Concepcion Academy, many of Greenhills’ moneyed residents receive their primary and secondary education nearby.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Weekends, specifically Sunday afternoons draw out Greenhills-based families to fill the famous Greenhills Shopping Center. Extended families usually occupy several tables in Gloria Maris, Choi Gardens, and Kimpura, which is relocating very soon. The newly established Wildflour is quickly becoming a favorite among the residents there. For a caffeine fix, popular options include Refinery, Craft Coffee Revolution, and Toby’s Estate.
Price Per Square Meter: P137,456 – P150,000
Ayala Alabang Village
Positioned outside the frenetic surroundings of Makati City, Ayala Alabang Village is one of the largest subdivisions in Manila. The sprawling 700-hectare suburb boasts of first-rate facilities including a swimming pool and multiple covered courts. It also has its own Rustan’s Supermarket within the village premises. The village hosts the annual St. James the Great Christmas Bazaar which is considered the biggest bazaar of its kind south of Makati. Alabang Country Club is situated within the neighborhood and is recognized for its premier sports facilities and 18-hole golf course.
Neighborhood Hangouts: Alabang Town Center and Commerce Center are situated righht outside the village, providing access to practically everything–cinemas, gyms, supermarkets, shops, and more. Molito, a commercial building known for its dining hubs, also houses Ramen Yushoken, one of the best ramen restaurants in the city. The Black Pig at Commerce Center, on the other hand, is the perfect place to get together over platters of cured meats and tasty tapas.
Price Per Square Meter: P90,000 – P220,713
*Prices per square meter are based on current real estate listings.
*With additional reporting by Nicole Limos and Hannah Lazatin