Tuesday, February 10, 2009
The Starmall renovation projects
I always believe that you get your next project from your last (excellent) project. That's enough reason to keep doing the best job you can.
I think The Manuela Corporation people took note of the work I did with the Ayala Malls and thought I could do something with their malls. The work that began with the renovation of Starmall EDSA grew - we then worked on Metropolis Alabang (now Starmall Alabang), and MStar Las Piñas.
Thin budgets constrain developers to completely tear down old malls and create new ones. The solution: renovation. That was my job: renovate an old mall to make it look like a new and inviting mall. That was what I was set out to do.
I'm VERY proud of the work I did with Manuela. With a great great team (client, suppliers AND contractors), I think we were able to accomplish the job.
With careful design, coordination and new materials, I told the team - we have to do it QUICKLY - so as the people don't even notice that we are actually just covering the facade with new color, materials and design (I wanted to cover the whole building a la Christo while we were at work - but there was no budget for it).
I think we did it. When the Starmall EDSA facade was done, I had comments that the building was "bigger". Some people thought Starmall was part of EDSA Shang-gri-la Mall. I'd like to think that the investment the clients made on me, construction and production came back to them a hundredfold. A new lease on life for an old mall.
When we started the project Manuela Mall was in a word: scary. When we did the job, it was a complete turn around. I remember watching people come in (I was thrilled when women came into the mall - women hardly came into Manuela before the renovation). The Manuela projects were very fulfilling - it's absolutely wonderful when the design you see in your mind comes into reality!