And just like that, another relic of Manila’s golden days has said its goodbyes all thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.
No, we’re not talking about something that’s an actual relic. We’re talking about the cultural landmark and the “Department of Foreign Affairs” of Makati City that is Café Havana. This piece of news was first shared on Twitter by user @tammydavid with a picture and caption that ultimately spread out like wildfire on social media.
While infamously known to many as the “place teeming with foreigners and older tourists”, Café Havana is one of the several restaurants established by Larry Cruz, a Filipino restaurateur and journalist who founded LJC Restaurant Group. The café itself is said to be “Larry J. Cruz’ homage to Cuban life”, and its first location was in Malate — a district famous for its nightlife which catered to tourists and expatriates.
The cafe’s seemingly harmonious relationship with foreigners had already been in place even before the branch in Greenbelt, Makati had been opened. Due to its popularity with “older white men”, it had become an establishment that needed nothing more but a quick glance when being talked about.
Upon seeing the Tweet by user @tammydavid on Twitter, netizens were so quick to give their reactions and feelings about Makati’s pillar of international relations and “special economic zone”.
Cafe Havana was a main contributor to Philippine GDP. The end of an era 😭 https://t.co/KH072ChhFy
— kæ ⎕ (@ifyouseekkae) October 18, 2021
Cafe Havana was a special economic zone. This is so sad.
— Name cannot be blank (@egaelizondo) October 18, 2021
Omg an icon. Cafe Havana witnessed countless success stories. Marami kang binagong buhay. Saludo! Eme https://t.co/agjzYUmBvl
— Hyro P. Aguinaldo (@heyrow) October 18, 2021
RIP Cafe Havana. You did more for international relations than the government. https://t.co/4y5af1CQuF
— Amanda (@balagot_jpg) October 19, 2021
— Eje (@angeliseperion) October 19, 2021
Hindi lang Japan ang sagot sa kahirapan noon. Cafe havana din.
— MCS (@vavavoomchie) October 18, 2021
Looks like our UN Consular Office has closed down. A sad day indeed.
— Lee Chua (@LeeChua4) October 19, 2021
OWWA Makati branch, you will be missed. Charot https://t.co/WyxbOv0ysi
— V I N 🎀 (@kebsbin) October 18, 2021
Don’t worry though, Café Havana isn’t really saying goodbye. It’s been found out that it will just move to the open space where Seattle’s Best had previously stayed in. Give it a few months (and the end of the pandemic), then Makati’s pseudo-United Nations will rise again. Charot lang.
Other POP! stories you might like: