Davao’s pioneering gift shop plans a facelift

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/27 January) — The Alcantara Group, one of the largest and most diversified Filipino-owned conglomerates in the country, is planning to improve its Aldevinco Shopping Center here to adjust to the city’s changing landscape.

“Aldevinco Shopping Center was the flagship property project of Conrado Alcantara, founder of the Alcantara Group. Over the past 50 years, we have seen the landscape around the shopping center evolve in sync with Davao City’s growth and development,” said Tomas I. Alcantara, chair of Alcantara Group.

Aldevinco Shopping Center celebrated its golden anniversary at SMX Davao Convention Center last Jan. 24.

Alcantara said they needed to adjust with the evolving landscape on C. M. Recto Ave., where the Aldevinco Shopping Center stands. Huge structures like Ayala’s Avida and Vivaldi Residences are being built in the area.

“Davao has a changing landscape and we are going to adjust to it. There are studies being undertaken now as to how will we continue to be at pace with the growth of the city and be able to meet its changing demands,” Alcantara said.

He said the plan to improve Aldevinco includes office spaces and condominium units. “We will be building (the project) vertically.”

“But the character of the place as a shopping center for local things will continue to remain at least at the ground level,” he added.

Aldevinco, the first shopping center in the city, is located in a 5,106 square meter property.

Aldevinco Shopping Center has about 100 shops each occupying 10-12 square meters of commercial space. It has been in the city since 1965.

Aldevinco describes itself as “the premiere shopping destination in Davao City where tourists and locals alike go for souvenirs such as Mindanao indigenous crafts and antiques, various Batik products (bags, dusters, slippers, table cloths, etc.), and brass items.”

Tourism Secretary Ramon R. Jimenez said it is a “landmark, heritage center and an active tourism exchange in Davao City that brings together under one roof local and foreign visitors, and the beautiful products of Mindanao.”

“It has been said, time and again, that a trip to the city is not complete without shopping for gifts and souvenirs at the Aldevinco. Truly, its continuing success as a bustling shopping destination is a testament to the continued growth of tourism, business and trade in Davao City, in the region and in Mindanao,” Jimenez said. (MindaNews)