A mother-and-son trip to the Meralco Christmas Village

RAZZLE-DAZA - Pat-P Daza - The Philippine Star
A mother-and-son trip to the Meralco Christmas Village
The warm glow of Tivoli lights that light up the path as you enter the Meralco compound.

Last week, my son Paolo invited me to accompany him to the Meralco compound along Ortigas Ave. so we could explore their Christmas village. Befitting Meralco, the theme of the glittering display was, “Maliwanag ang Pasko.”

It didn’t take much for Paolo to convince me since Meralco is just a few minutes’ walk from where we live. I have been a resident of Pasig City for more than 20 years, and the condominium building I call home is just across Meralco. From my condo, the giant logo of the electric company is clearly visible and beckons like a parol on the building facade.

As soon as it got dark, Paolo and I made our way, trekking up the Emerald Ave. footbridge and crossing Ortigas Ave. using the now pitiful footbridge. Most of its tiles are gone, and the few remaining ones are cracked. (I hope Mayor Vico Sotto can send someone to repair it.) There were no lights along the way but thankfully, Meralco’s bright lights spilled over and illuminated the footbridge.

Meralco’s Christmas decoration this year as seen from Emerald Avenue.

When we got to the Meralco pedestrian gate along Ortigas Ave., the security guards just asked for one ID and made us write our names on a piece of paper together with the number of people in our party. And I was happy to hear that there is no entrance fee to see the Christmas village.

The giant nativity scene made of copper wires with the church backdrop.

Upon entry, visitors are led to the compound by a path covered in a veil of warm Tivoli lights. As soon as the path ends, you are transported to an electric land where there’s no such thing as “kuryentipid,” where thousands upon thousands of points of light sparkle and bring out the child in you. I counted two giant Christmas trees, not to mention real living trees that were wrapped and adorned with colored lights.

A stationary mini bus that kids will enjoy.

What immediately caught my attention, though, was the giant nativity scene made of copper wires measuring at least 20 feet tall. Nearby was a silhouette of a church outlined in lights depicting a quintessential Pinoy Simbang Gabi.

Further on was the driveway, which was flanked with many multi-colored Christmas trees. Beyond that was a banchetto offering an array of foods, including barbecue, hotdogs, street eats, coffee, etc. There were also chairs and tables where you can have dinner or a snack while enjoying the display, not to mention stalls selling gift items and Meralco merchandise.

There was an interactive corner where you will find a stationary minibus and on the opposite side, there is a kiddie train that children will surely enjoy since it goes around the garden and is very similar to the kiddie train rides they have in the malls. The whole village is very Instagrammable. With all the colorful lights and display, it is surely worth the trip.

On our way out, Paolo recalled the yesteryears when he was much younger, and I would take him and his sister Gabbie to Meralco to feel the heartwarming, peaceful and joyous spirit of Christmas. Many years later, I’m glad Paolo and I had a chance to have another mother-son moment like this. Thank you, Meralco Christmas Village, for gifting me and Paolo with a wonderful, memorable evening. What made the trip truly magical for me was that my 18-year-old son still wanted to spend an evening out with his mother.

(The Meralco Christmas Village is open Monday to Thursday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. and on weekends from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.)

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