Angeles City News
We haven't seen this much construction at one time in years - - if ever.
Construction on the NEW CENTRAL PARK HOTEL is progressing quickly. Guy & Roselle have also managed to get the street paved this week into the site of the new hotel. I'm sure this will be one of the premier hotels in Angeles for those looking for a clean, well managed hotel, at a reasonable price. Book your Christmas season rooms in September if you want to get a room. For more, see their webpage:
|Right next to the New Central Park Hotel, progress on the WILD ORCHID CONDO's also appears to be on schedule. Obviously this is having an impact on Santos Street and only time will tell what the area will look like when this project is finished and the stalls on the first floor of the condos are leased out for businesses.|
|Gerard's new hotel project near the intersection of Fields Ave & Mc Arthur Highway is on hold for now while the purchase of additional properties is being finalized.|
|Another building is rising rapidly on lower Perimeter Road near Checkpoint. It sure looks like a hotel and the rumor is that it is a hotel being built by one of "the Dutch guys." Should have more information on this project in the near future.|
|At the former home of Jerry's Cafe, a new building is under construction. Word is a new group of three guys are trying something new. Well, new for that location anyway. A bar, restaurant/cocktail lounge on the main floor and hotel rooms on the second floor. They will probably have exotic drinks like Rum & Coke! All these new hotel rooms will help keep the room rates down or they will be empty. More serious information on this hotel & club when I meet the new owners.|
|The Blue's theme club BIG EASY is nearing completion at the former site of Cleopatra. It is scheduled for opening the second week of May 2006. Steve is reportedly moving from the manager of Nero's to be the manager at this new club.|
|Richard is at it again! The 3-4 story Golden Nile is rising between Bedrock & Cambodia Clubs. When done, customers will be able to walk from Cambodia to Blue Nile Executive Club (going through Golden Nile, Bedrock, Nero's Forum, & Blue Nile) using the connecting tunnels. Additionally, another club, Golden Nile 2 (being referred to as Slots & Sluts), will be open shortly off the east side of Blue Nile. This club will also feature high-tech, state of the art, slot machines and dancers.|
|Construction on a "commercial center" on the end of the Maharajah Hotel on Perimeter Road are also nearing completion. If this contains a reasonable grocery/quick stop store it will do very well. Many expats pass this location on their way home every day. The few stores in the area are very over priced and carry limited items.|
|The former home of Rick's Cafe is now an empty lot awaiting construction by the owners of La Pasha. Rumor here is they will put up a three story building with bars on two floors and apartments or rooms for rent on the top floor. Construction is suppose to start sometime in June, but could be delayed as it appears that Dollhouse is 3 inches over the property line into this lot and the pipes from Dollhouse extend another 6 inches into the lot.|
|The new DOLLHOUSE building has looked ready for opening for several weeks, but rumors are it is being delayed by lack of the mayors permit. It is located across the street from the Dollhouse. Reportedly it will be a 24 hour hangout with cocktails & pool tables and even a swimming pool on the roof (lets hope we don't have any big earthquakes like the one in 1989 that took out the swimming pool on top of Cocktails & Dreams.|
|Here is a sure winner! The EZ Riders Cafe also looks like it will open any day. One of the keys to many businesses is "Location, location, location." This one will do good any where in town with the right management. The time is right for a good motorcycle orientated hangout in Angeles. Oh Yeah, it is located on Perimeter Road near the Friendship gate. Good luck guys!|
|The former PICK UP DISCO has been purchased by Rolf (Champagne Group) and is being converted into a two story club with a see through dance floor on the second level (similar to Baccara in Bangkok).|
OPEN FOR BUSINESS
Some new& some old places worth a new look
|At the top of my list in this category is the COLD DROP BAR & GRILL on Friendship Highway. I mentioned this quiet bar (then the Dew Drop Inn?) about a year ago. Then there were rumors that it had closed, but apparently it was resurrected. I stopped in a few weeks ago and was pleasantly surprised. They now have an air-conditioned bar/dining area. They now have a pretty big menu with items ranging from snacks like spring rolls to a "Family Feast" with a whole leg of lamb and appropriate side dishes. We sampled their pizza and in my opinion, it was the best I've had in Angeles in years. They have free delivery for orders of P300 or above. Phone # 893-7828 or 0920-405-9197.|
|The PLATINUM SPORTS BAR is located just around the corner from the Wild Orchid Resort (In the rear of Wild Orchid Resort). it has been open for a few months and I've heard a few good reports, but I'm afraid "location" isn't going to help this club to succeed as it is off the beaten track in the day time and not in the best location for after dark visits.|
|Located next to the Platinum Sports Bar is MINISTRY OF MUSIC DISCO. I haven't heard much about this one and don't hold your breath for me to visit any disco and do a report on it. (I think I still have my DISCO SUCKS t-shirt from the 80's). Based on the location, on the side street between the Wild Orchid and Johnny's Grocery, my guess it is aimed more at the locals than tourists.|
|The HANG OUT opened next to Blue Nile a few months ago. It serves a variety of Filipino food and is very popular at night with the girls from the clubs on that end of the street.|
|The SWISS CHALET Hotel addition has been finished finished between Central Park & Santos Street. This hotel is not on the list of hotels we represent, but as with almost all hotels in Angeles City, our reservations department will be glad to assist you in making reservations at this hotel at no cost. Just send a email to email@example.com with your name and the dates of your visit. They don't have a pool, but the rooms are moderately priced for the area. And, even if you aren't staying there, you may want to give the restaurant a try. I have heard only good reviews on their food.|
|OK, I haven't tried this restaurant yet, but it is on my list of places to visit. In fact there are a number of new restaurants in the Friendship area. Most are aimed at the Korean & Japanese tourists so the prices might be a little higher than places like Margarita Station, but if they are packing in the Asian customers, the food and service must be pretty good. I'll try to report on a few more of these in the next newsletter.|
|Several blocks off of Fields Ave at the end of Raymond Street there are some new businesses worth a look. The Duke of York has moved in here along with a massage parlor and what appears to be a small go-go club that will be open soon, if not already.|
||RICK'S INTERNET & GIFT CENTER: Rick sold Rick's Cafe last month and relocated his Internet Gift Center into a small office in the rear of Margarita Station. Then after the unexpected death of the owner of the Checkmark Internet Cafe located in Margarita Station, Rick decided to come out of retirement earlier than expected. After some renovations the NEW Rick's Internet Cafe is expected to open early next week (1st week of May).|
|Over a year ago a number of businesses donated a bunch of money for the city to pave Real Street. The city did pave the street and eventually tore down all the squatter shacks on the south side of the street. Within months these shacks began to reemerge. Initially as very temporary shelters then as more permanent structures. Now, apparently in an effort to make life difficult for these squatters, the city has begun dumping ash and rubble in the area thereby blocking the street everyone paid to have paved to promote tourism. Hopefully Real Street will be cleaned up before the grand opening of the Big Easy.|
LIVING IN THE PI: There are many
reasons why individuals from around the globe end up living in a place
like Angeles City. Several of the main reasons for many is the
cost of living & a lifestyle very different than their home
country. Over the years I've seen some good friends move to
Angeles City only to "throw in the towel" after about a
year. Although it may be cheaper to live here, this is still a
third world country with some peculiar idiosyncrasies that some people
cannot adapt to. In this line I'd like to relate a couple of
|A BAD MONTH This last month has not been a good one for foreigners in Angeles City. We have seen 3 deaths and one serious assault.|
|Sadly, George Bottrell, the owner of
Checkmark Trading Services, Inc passed away in the first week of
April from a long illness. George is survived by his wife
"Baby." George was one of the "good
EXPATS" in Angeles. A quiet, gentle man, he expanded
his business over the years from a small phone service to numerous internet cafes in
Angeles City and Manila (to include the large internet center in the
rear of Margarita Station).
INVASION ? In
a reported "home invasion." a long time
resident, Hanz Holtz was murdered. As with the next incident,
there may be more to this story than was published in the local Sun Star
newspaper. It is a little difficult to believe that individuals
would commit such a violent crime and then take only a few items in the
robbery. Several rumors are already floating through the expat
community and hopefully we will know the whole story soon.
SUN STAR Sunday, April 16, 2006 'Robbers' kill German
BREAK-IN or SELF INFLICTED INJURIES ? During
the 3rd week of April, Jerry Walsh, a long term visitor said he was stabbed
multiple times inside his hotel room at the Clarkton Hotel. He had
arrived from Subic and checked into the Clarkton for one night
with plans to fly to Hong Kong the next day. Reportedly he woke up
at approximately 9 AM to find a Filipino male inside his room. He
said he tried to stop the intruder/thief and was stabbed three times.
His wounds were not fatal. He
was treated at Philippine International Hospital where they
reportedly removed a
knife with a eight inch blade. He is in stable
condition. The thief reportedly made off with $1200 in US
Jerry has told friends that he thinks the door was locked. But, I'm told by reliable sources that the night lock cannot be opened by the hotel staff. This would mean that he either forgot to lock the door, or a departing night guest left the door unlocked and possibly called a friend and told them the door was unlocked. The odds of a thief hitting a random room at 9 am and getting past the dead bolt are pretty low. And then to hit the jackpot and get $1200! Overall, something about this one doesn't say random room break-in to me. And why wasn't the cash in the in-room safe? Still some questions here that don't add up.
Friends that stay at the Clarkton on a regular basis say that the hotel security is pretty good, but do report an occasional uninvited female guests knocking on their doors from time to time. I could believe that a cute girl can get past the security by saying there are visiting Mr. Jones in 302, but I would think the hotel security and the desk clerks would notice a single Filipino male going into the room area at 9 am. And, the fact that he was able to leave the hotel, probably with some blood on his clothing, without being noticed is more than a little questionable.
As of 4 May 2006 the police say they doubt any break-in occurred. There are just too many things about this incident that don't ring true. To strengthen the case against the break-in, a local business owner told me he lent Jerry P 10,000 to clear up his over-stay with Immigration so he could leave country. So where did $1200 come from?? Maybe the crack Angeles City CSI team will determine what really happened.
Given all this, would I stay at the Clarkton? YES, with no hesitation. It is a good hotel with reasonable priced rooms. I believe there security was pretty good before this incident and from what I have heard they have increased their security since the incident.
DEATH: (22 April )
AN AMERICAN tourist was found dead in his
hotel room in Angeles City, Pampanga province, some 83 kilometers
northwest of Manila at dawn Saturday ,
police said. Investigators have ruled out foul play. Dr.
Froilan Canlas of the Angeles City Foundation Memorial Center reported
that Christopher James Sullivan, 51, died in his sleep from a heart
attack, said Angeles City police director Senior Superintendent
Policarpio Segubre. Sullivan checked into Wild Orchids Hotel
in Balibago village with his Filipina girlfriend on Friday evening, the
report said. When the woman woke up at 5:45 a.m. Saturday, she
noticed that Sullivan seemed to have stopped breathing, prompting her to
call for help. Segubre said it was the hotel management who called in
the doctor to check on the tourist's condition.
NOTE: Chris (Coach) Sullivan was a DoD physical education teacher on Okinawa. He will be missed by his fellow teachers and his students.
|Many GI's that did a tour at Clark between 1965 and 1991 had a uniform or some quality clothes made at Neek's Tailor Shop. Sadly "Neek" passed away from stomach cancer during the last week of March 2006.|
LAST - AND MAYBE LEAST
|It's that time of year again! The Operation TULE Summer Promo is back. This year you can get your "painless" circumcision for less than $8 (including all the medicine).|