Serious business

Business toolkit: 3 things to know when travelling to Manila

The conversation starter, the app and the cocktail bar for your next business trip to Manila

Conversation starter: Jollibee’s global expansion

Ease into a work meeting by bringing up big news in the Philippine food business. Fast food giant Jollibee Foods – owner of the Jollibee fried chicken chain – is gaining new footholds around the world. It recently became the majority shareholder of US chain Smashburger and is also buying a large stake in the firm that operates dim sum brand Tim Ho Wan outside Hong Kong. Jollibee recently also opened its first branch in Europe and has three outposts in Canada.

The app: Grab

This ride-hailing app is your best bet to get to meetings on time. Designated Grab points abound outside shopping malls and busy intersections – although you can hail them anywhere, these make it easier. Beware that there is almost always heavy traffic across Manila, and make sure you have ample time before setting off to your next destination.

After hours: The Curator

This craft cocktail bar in leafy Legazpi Village attracts the hip after-work crowd from Metro Manila’s gentrified Makati City, home to the central business district. The menu changes regularly and the bar also serves customised cocktails. The Curator is just a stone’s throw from numerous luxury hotels and the Greenbelt, a large shopping mall and park.

Sonny Thakur

Fact file

Central business district: Makati CBD

Airport to CBD: 20 mins (car)

Currency: HK$1 = 6.66 pesos

Cathay Pacific flies to Manila from Hong Kong 48 times a week

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