Coming in a city where you’re not familiar with can sometimes be challenging especially if there’s no one that can tour you around. Good thing we have this high technology where everything you need has an answer—just one click and Google got you covered.
If you’re coming here in Cebu City, one thing that you’ll surely visit is the shopping mall—and as you know it, shopping malls here are a few of the biggest in Asia so expect for a taxing day of walking around the shopping center.
There are plenty of shopping malls in Cebu City but the ones popular and sought-after are SM Seaside, SM City, Ayala Center Cebu (Old Ayala Mall), Ayala Central Block (Newest Ayala Mall in IT Park).
Let’s start with the 14th largest mall in the world—SM Seaside.
1. SM Seaside
Location: Seaside Ave, Cebu South Coastal Rd, Cebu City, Cebu
This humongous SM Seaside is bigger than SM Mall of Asia—owned and developed by SM Prime Holdings in Cebu City. The mall was opened in November of 2015.
SM Seaside is pet-friendly and has a magnificent view of the ocean and the sunset. These little things definitely sets them apart from other shopping centers—and personally, it’s what I love the most about it. What’s more, they have these rental scooters that you can enjoy while wandering around the bustling mall. The mall is open at 10AM to 9PM.
2. SM City
Location: Juan Luna Ave Ext, Cebu City, Cebu (SM City in Mabolo)
SM City Cebu, also called SM Cebu or SM Mabolo, is a large shopping center situated in Cebu City. It’s believed to be the 4th shopping mall owned and developed by SM Prime Holdings. This mall was opened in 1993 which makes it 22 years older than SM Seaside.
In comparison with the first mall, SM City probably has more people coz the location is more accessible. Besides, you can find anything you need in SM City without the hassle of going far away from the city center—except the eye-catching view of the outdoor that you’ll only see in Seaside though. And by the way, SM City welcomes fur-babies too, so if you love bringing your cats and dogs with you all the time, then this place is perfect for your cute family.
You don’t even need to show anything to the security guards like your dog’s vaccination card, diaper, or whatever—they’re very accommodating and very trusting that you’re a responsible pet owner. What I suggest though is for you to bring the vaccination card of your pet at all times, a plastic bag or some sort of thing you can use to pick up the poopies, and tissues too of course! You’ll need a ton of tissues for cleaning the fecal matter and wee-wee. The mall is open at 10AM to 9PM.
3. Ayala Center Cebu
Location: Archbishop Reyes Ave, Cebu City, 6000 Cebu
Ayala Center Cebu (Old Ayala Mall) is a large shopping mall owned by Ayala Land Corporation in Cebu City. It’s the first Ayala mall located outside of Metro Manila. It opened in 1994, just a year after the opening of their rival shopping mall, SM City.
The ambiance of Ayala (in my opinion) is quite different from other malls in the sense that it’s upmarket than others. However, the unappealing part is they’re not that pet-friendly—unlike SM malls that welcome four-legged kiddies even with no ID’s or vaccination card.
Just very recently though during this pandemic, Ayala Center Cebu temporarily allows pets–provided that they wear diapers and must be carried by pet owners at all times when inside the mall. They’re only allowed to walk around within the terraces area and strictly with leash.
4. Ayala Central Block
Location: Central Bloc, Cebu AsiaTown IT Park, I. Villa St, Cebu City, Cebu
Ayala Central Block (Newest Ayala Mall in IT Park) is a big shopping center developed by Cebu Holdings Incorporated in Cebu City. It’s the second Ayala Mall in the region and located at the center of IT Park—the mecca of retail, dining, and business.
In contrast with the old Ayala Mall, Ayala Central Block is very pet-friendly. In fact, it’s one of my favorites—mainly for that reason. Another thing, they have these spots or reading nooks everywhere the mall where you can sit or chill with your friends—I mean, you can just go there and find a space to sit, study, read a book, eat some fries, gossip with friends, and just have some peace. Moreover, Central Block is at the center of IT Park so expect that you’re in an area surrounded with a plethora of dining options. They’re open at 10AM to 9PM.