Quantcast
Latest Stories

THE NIGHTLIFE

Roll over, Beethoven

By

ACOUSTIC pop-rock acts dominate the live music scene in Boracay. PHOTO BY POCHOLO CONCEPCION

BORACAY ISLAND —The kaleidoscope burst of orange, yellow and blue hues in the sky at sunset signals the start of happy hour in this tourist mecca.

We are having our first drink of San Mig Light at Discovery Shores, a high-end resort hotel at Station 1, when magazine editor Raul Manzano cajoles us to join his ABS-CBN colleagues who are holding a “beach slumber party” at Whitehouse hotel nearby. Turns out that it’s Cinema One’s annual film screening, now on its eighth year in Boracay.

While event host John Lapus warms up the sizeable crowd, we decide to sneak out since we don’t feel like watching the featured movie, “Sisterakas.”

Loud dance music greets us as we walk towards Station 2. A private wedding reception is in progress on the beach, the guests flailing their arms and having a good time. The party scene sets the mood for what we’ll see in the next couple of hours.

 

MANY bars set up tables and chairs on the beach at night. PHOTO BY POCHOLO CONCEPCION

Like Ermita in its heyday

Much has changed in Boracay since our last visit two years ago. More hotels, bars, restaurants and shops have sprung up along White Beach, the center of nightlife where foot traffic gets so heavy that we have to stop every so often to avoid bumping into the horde of local and foreign tourists who, like us, are eager to see what’s going on here.

Moments later we imagine we are in a local version of the Sunset Strip in Hollywood, or, closer to home, Ermita in its heyday in the ’80s. In our mind, the chugging beat of Chuck Berry’s “Roll Over Beethoven” plays on as we look for a club with a live gig.

Acoustic pop-rock, with the proverbial reggae show, rules in Boracay these days, with local acts—mostly duos or solo—playing covers of past and current Billboard hits. Most clubs like Bucos Bar & Grill set up chairs (some with sofas) and tables right on the beach, with the sea behind the performer.

FREIDA Dario. PHOTO BY POCHOLO CONCEPCION

But there are other places, like Cocomangas, that resemble the typical bar where customers prefer listening to recorded music while nursing their beer.

As we amble on we find a couple of dance clubs, one of which is Epic, where a cover charge of P300 comes with a free drink. The place is full, and we remember Freida Dario— one of Manila’s residents who have settled in Boracay and whom we met earlier at Discovery—will be coming here.

But we decide to keep walking to check out what’s new and exciting on this 4-km stretch of the finest white-sand beach in the country, recently voted as the top Asian tourist destination by an online poll.

THE DANCE club Epic is full on a Saturday night. PHOTO BY POCHOLO CONCEPCION

Fire dancers, mostly gay performers, are likewise a hit here, and they strut their stuff alongside the live acoustic acts. The smell of kerosene from the fire dancers assaults us, so we keep walking.

The row of bars and clubs playing different sounds next to each other reminds us of another tourist attraction, Magsaysay Boulevard in Olongapo near the old US naval base. That’s a rather sleazy image, but the comparison is not far off the mark when a hooker (who looks like a tranny) crosses our path while swearing loudly that a prospective client, a Caucasian guy, was not interested.

Yet those who want privacy and would rather dine and talk won’t feel out of place, because there are restaurants like Mesa and Caffe Caruso that stand out for their classy ambiance.

We are surprised to find that Starbucks and McDonald’s have opened in Boracay as well, plus Yellow Cab, Dulcinea, Sbarro, among other casual-dining outlets.

Wellness salons have also set up shop, like one named Island Foot Spa.

Winding our way back to Station 1, we just opt for beer in a convenience store since all live music stops at midnight. “Can I drink this outside?” we ask the store attendant. “Yes, but not on the beach near the water,” she replies.

True enough, cops don’t mind us as we take swigs while taking in the sights and sounds.

At past 11 p.m. some of the restaurants get ready to close for the night. Business looks rather slow for a few of them on this day.

We feel glad to spot Kasbah, the Moroccan restaurant which features the quirky and talented musician Noli Aurillo as a live acoustic act. But he’s not here now… maybe next month or so, says one of the resto staff, who points to a sign near the door announcing the scheduled performer on Sundays: a belly dancer.

Today being Easter Sunday, we expect Boracay to be bursting at the seams with holiday revelry.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Boracay , Cinema One , Discovery Shores , Nightlife , Noli Aurillo , San Mig Light , Sunset Strip , Tourist Mecca , Travel



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  2. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  3. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  4. This is not just a farm
  5. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  6. Clams and garlic, softshell crab risotto–not your usual seafood fare for Holy Week
  7. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  8. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  9. Moist, extra-tender blueberry muffins
  10. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  1. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  2. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  3. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  4. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  5. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  6. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  7. France makes work beyond 6 p.m. illegal
  8. Ever heard of HydroBob?
  9. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  10. Boots Anson-Roa to wed in Eddie Baddeo
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  4. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer
  10. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?

News

  • 14 killed in car bombing in Homs
  • 57-nation group plays key Ukraine monitoring role
  • French President Hollande’s top aide resigns
  • Japan to redesign Antarctic whale hunt after UN court ruling
  • Vietnam battles fatal measles outbreak
  • Sports

  • Pacquiao shorts in Bradley fight sold for P1.7M in LA auction
  • Ryu pitches Dodgers past Giants
  • Alonso sets the pace in Chinese GP practice
  • Heat seek Three-peat but Spurs, Pacers top seeds
  • Can Spurs get back at Heat? Can they survive West?
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Whoopi Goldberg debuts as marijuana columnist
  • ‘X-men’ director accused of sex assault on teen boy
  • Business

  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Oil prices mixed ahead of long Easter weekend
  • Technology

  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Filipinos #PrayForSouthKorea
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • DoH denies Filipino nurse no longer positive for MERS virus
  • WHO warns vs spread of MERS-Cov, urges vigilance in taking precautions
  • Last call for nominations to ’14 Presidential Awards
  • San Francisco business coalition slams proposed tax on sugary drinks
  • A ‘time-travel’ production of ‘Les Miserable’ at Stanford
    Marketplace