Finding Beauty in the Community | Inquirer Lifestyle
SMDC Community

Finding Beauty in the Community

SMDC resident grateful for a community that supports her passion

With a lot of things going on, life can often feel like a blur. Nowadays, it is rare to see beauty amid all the adversities. But not for this creative soul. 

“We are surrounded by beauty. Everything God has created is good and is beautiful,” said Dara Plan, a professional hair and makeup artist, and beauty guru.

SMDC Beauty

To be in the business of beauty has always been Dara’s dream. Ever since she was young, Dara has been fascinated with all things pretty and chic. “When I saw my mom putting on makeup, I fell in love with the idea of helping other people be beautiful and confident. She’s influenced me—from dressing up to doing my hair and makeup—and thanks to her, I appreciated beauty even more,” said Dara, a hairstyling trainer at the College of Saint Benilde.

Growing up, Dara was surrounded by people who supported her love for hair and makeup. Until today, Dara is fortunate enough to have a community that helps her develop her craft. And that community is SMDC’s Jazz Residences.

A community that fuels one’s passion

Living in Jazz Residences is a blessing in disguise for Dara. During the pandemic, her SMDC community has been her refuge.

“I felt safe here. I don’t need to go far to get my essentials. I just have to go down to get what I need!” Dara exclaimed.

SMDC, the country’s largest & fastest growing real estate developer, takes integrated living to the next level. Where Dara lives, everything is at an arm’s length—a complete list of resort-style amenities; health and wellness facilities; and a Jazz Mall that houses restaurants, coffee shops , service establishments, and its very own SM Hypermarket. One is also greeted by beautiful hotel-like lobbies when one steps foot in Jazz Residences.  

“If I need to meet with my clients, I just go to the nearest coffee shop, which is right within my community. If I need to run some errands, the mall is right there. All my essentials are here,” she said. Dara also feels she is well taken care of by the residence, especially that concierge services like reception and doorman elevate her living experience here. 

She also shared that the proximity of her SMDC community to places that matter, made her love her address even more. Situated in the Makati business district, SMDC’s Jazz Residences offers unmatched accessibility for a busy person like Dara.

SMDC Community

But more than the security, accessibility, and convenience, Dara is always at home at SMDC Jazz Residences. She feels connected to the community.

“SMDC is my sanctuary. I feel happy going home to my unit after a long day. My community takes care of me, and I feel safe and assured. And also, they help my business grow,” the beauty guru added.

Because of the pandemic, SMDC residents could not l go to the salon. This is where Dara’s expertise has been essential to the community.

“My neighbors here are helping me fulfill one of my dreams. I may not have a salon yet, but it already feels like I have one. I feel challenged and excited at the same time whenever my neighbors ask me to do their hair and makeup,” said Dara. 

Beauty with a purpose: Inspiring young people, one class at a time

Dara has always been fond of motivating people to be the best version of themselves. “I want to leave a legacy—to teach the young ones and share with them my knowledge.”

SMDC Beauty

Dara regularly conducts workshops for the GlamBox Beauty Studio and Suesh Studio. She also does seminars for corporate clients, and is a beauty consultant for brands like Watsons and Rustan’s.

“I could be a makeup artist for celebrities, yet I chose to teach people. I want to help those who have the desire to uplift their status in life through hair and makeup,” Dara explained.

She also shared that she would tell her students not to give up on their dreams and to stay driven no matter what. “There will be naysayers who will always let us down. But once you’ve found your passion, it becomes your purpose in life. Nothing and no one can ever bring you down,” she said. 

SMDC: A beautiful place to live in

But stress and negativities are inevitable in life. So to help herself not to be overwhelmed by these, Dara would take meditation walks in the lush gardens of SMDC two to three times a week to feel refreshed and at peace.

“I love taking walks now and then. I think this has helped me a lot as a creative person. Not only does this help me push my creativity, but it has also become very therapeutic. Slowing down and noticing the beauty around me has given me lots of opportunities to expand every possibility there is,” added Dara.

SMDC Community

One of the most crucial things for Dara as a creative soul is being in touch with nature and the environment. “This is super important for me because it recharges me. I don’t need to travel to feel rejuvenated. I can go to the poolside to clear my mind. I can also work out here because we have ample space to move. And yes, even if we’re in the middle of a bustling city, I get to breathe fresh air because we have nature here,” she added.

There are so many wonderful things in her community that make SMDC a great place to live. But being in a place where Dara has found and can fulfill her purpose in life makes SMDC an even more beautiful community to settle down in.

Dara Plan is part of SMDC’s ongoing program for talented, passionate, and driven individuals called The Good Guys Got Talent. She graduated with a degree in Mass Communication from the Assumption College San Lorenzo Makati. She became a newscaster for GMA 7’s Business Today, a radio newscaster for 99.5 RT, and a commercial model before pursuing her love for hair and makeup. She was a scholar at the Melbourne Australian College of Hair Design and Beauty. 

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