Com­ing soon: Ikea in Mall of Asia, tallest tower on Ayala

The Philippine Star - - BUSINESS - VIC­TOR C. AGUSTIN

The guess­ing game is over. Swedish fur­ni­ture gi­ant Ikea is open­ing its first Philip­pine store be­side the Mall of Asia, this we have on good au­thor­ity.

The Ikea store will have its own stand­alone ware­house­like foot­print on what is now an open carpark be­tween the SMX con­ven­tion cen­ter and the arena.

Ac­cord­ing to the horse’s mouth, Ikea has struck a longterm lease agree­ment with the SM Group, with a sec­ond store to be opened be­side SM Fairview to serve Que­zon City and the north­ern bed­room com­mu­ni­ties.

In ad­di­tion to Ikea, the SM Group will also open a new cam­pus of their school sub­sidiary, Na­tional Univer­sity, on the two top floors of the carpark build­ings across the MOA Arena.

Com­plet­ing the tri­fecta of ma­jor projects for MOA this year is a spe­cial­ist med­i­cal fa­cil­ity that will be op­er­ated by a Sin­ga­porean hos­pi­tal group whose iden­tity is be­ing with­held pend­ing for­mal si­mul­ta­ne­ous an­nounce­ments.

Over in Makati, the joint ven­ture of the SM and the Metrobank groups would build a lux­ury con­do­minium on the last re­main­ing va­cant lot along Ayala Av­enue, promis­ing to dwarf the com­pe­ti­tion not only in size, but also in price.

Ac­cord­ing to the grapevine, units at The Es­tate, as the planned condo is called, will be of­fered at an eye-wa­ter­ing P400,000 per square me­ter, com­pared to the P300,000/ sqm av­er­age price when Ayala Land launched the Park Cen­tral Tow­ers a cou­ple of years ago.

And at 270 square me­ters, The Es­tate will also tower above its next-door neigh­bor, Dis­cov­ery Primea, which stands at 250 sqm.

The Es­tate – cho­sen be­cause of its pho­netic ref­er­ence to the prin­ci­pals Sy and Ty – will ac­tu­ally be the tallest along the coun­try’s Wall Street, eclips­ing even the coun­try’s record-holder, the 259-me­ter tall PBCom.

Heard through the grapevine

What a dif­fer­ence three decades make. Af­ter de­nounc­ing the profli­gacy of the Mar­coses dur­ing the pre-Edsa 1 days, Cory Aquino speech­writer and now Am­bas­sador to the United Na­tions Teodoro Loc­sin Jr. finds not only him­self, but also his ex­tended fam­ily en­joy­ing the Mar­cos life­style in fab­u­lous New York.

Loc­sin has in­vited his brother Henry for a month-long hol­i­day in the US and to stay with him at the so-called Imelda town­house, now Loc­sin’s of­fi­cial res­i­dence, in the up­per­crust Up­per East Side.

The planned June trip is all but a go, save for a mi­nor hitch: the brother, who is fac­ing gov­ern­ment cor­rup­tion­re­lated case, needs a Sandi­gan­bayan per­mis­sion to travel.

E-mail: mon­ey­gor­ound.manila@ya­hoo.com

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