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Rocco DiSpirito

Nowadays restaurants offer more than your average set meal. Some have found a way to entertain their guests and customers – not just through their palate but through other senses as well. Here are the top ten restaurants where you can dine in – and play a round of archery, sip some wine, read a couple of books, and others. So this is not just about the food.



Gandiva Café and Archery Range

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This is the first archery restaurant in the country geared towards promoting a healthy lifestyle. The place has an 18-meter range that offers armory clinics and is home to at least several archery competitions. Some professionals are also at hand to give you lessons which range from beginners to advanced categories. But if you would just like to shoot some arrows, you can also avail of their hourly rate of P600 that includes the gear and the trainer.


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Oh, and as for the food, vegetarians or those on a diet would love it here. Gandiva serves pastries that contain no milk and eggs and they also have goodies for the lacto-ovo vegetarians too. Try the Gandiva Veggie Burger (P208) which is a homemade burger buns with iceberg lettuce, yellow onion rings, fresh tomato slices, pickles, ketchup and eggless mayonnaise served with fries; and the Garlic Beef Salpicao (P198) which is garlic paste and veggie beef. They also have pastas and rice meals.

Gandiva Cafe and Archery Range
Unit 703-705 One Corporate Center, Julia Vargas corner Meralco Ave, Ortigas Center, Pasig City
(02) 638-4549, (02) 638-8771
Facebook: Gandiva Café and Archery Range



Sip and Gogh Paint and Sip Studio

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Foodies and artists unite in this one-of-a-kind concept that makes you mix wine with paint. Diners can have a plate of complimentary snacks and drinks while their creative imaginations go wild. With watercolors and crayons as their choice of weapons, they paint, sketch and learn the proper use of strokes. Some who are not into such artistic work can be guided by instructors.  To start working on your masterpiece, you can choose from a selection of canvasses on display or you can actually make your own. The cost of discovering an inner artist within you is around P1,000 which is inclusive of non-alcoholic beverages and some light snacks. At the end of the session, you bring home your painting to show to your friends.

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When it comes to the food, Sip and Gogh provides crackers and cheese and some fruits such as grapes. For those who are well past their teens, the café also has choices of wines to sip, of course.

Sip and Gogh Paint and Sip Studio
1 Capitol Hills Drive, Quezon City
(02) 961-1248 or (63)999887 – 6190
Facebook: Sipandgogh



Citykart Racing at the Circuit

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Those who want to live life on the edge, and love to dabble with speed and accuracy can surely enjoy the latest offering that Citykart Racing can give. As the name of the company says, this one has a 700-meter asphalted karting track that lets you experience the winding road, the ups and down and a trail that veers suddenly to the left or to the right. Its curves seem unexpected and endless. This is ideal for individuals and groups, for beginners and for advanced players, and for companies on a team building agenda. Citykart also stages competitions to test your brute and unequaled strength when driving on the field and the road. For the rental fees, it is P590 per 12 minute run but for first-timers, there is a registration fee of P160 which is paid one-time.

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Meanwhile its restaurant has just opened. Known as Wagas Real, which is called an urban farm table, the restaurant offers soups, salads, sandwiches, Asian meals and cakes. If you throat is parched from too much shouting out in the open road, grab some smoothies or some pressed juices.

Citykart Racing at the Circuit
Circuit Makati, Barangay Carmona, Makati City
(63)917455-1060 or (63)999166-1060



The Library Comedy Bar and Restaurant

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Witness a dose of humor, laughter and guffaws as performers extraordinaire take the stage every night to lift your spirit ups, take away all your worries (even for just a night) and transform you into a free-spirited individual. Since 1986, the walls of The Library has been constantly reverberating with music, opera hits and the latest news delivered by stand-up comedians. Among the performers who started here include Ai Ai delas Alas, Phillip Lazaro, Allan K, Wally Bayola and a host of others. This is perfect for families, students, young professionals and all those looking to have a grand time.

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When it comes to the food, though, it is nothing really special. Just the average meals are served, which also includes alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.

The Library Comedy Bar and Restaurant
1739 Ma. Orosa Street, Malate, Manila
(02) 522-2484



Isabelo Garden Restaurant

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Who wouldn’t want to dine in the middle of a forest with trees swaying in the breeze and classical music playing softly to the ears? This and other features are what make Isabelo Garden Restaurant quite unique and celebratory, given that it looks like the restaurant has sprouted in the middle of the garden. And maybe it did. So while other restaurants make you play a game or laugh out loud to your heart’s content, this one gives you a relaxing atmosphere you won’t easily forget. Loosen up, let go and enjoy your meal. Oh, before heading out, it is important that you reserve your seats first.

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For a scrumptious taste, order the spinach and artichoke dip (P350) as appetizer, the Lemon Parslied Garlic Rice (P210) which is good for 5 people, the Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms (P525), and the Roast Pork Crackling (P1,250). You can also have the Quattro Formaggi Pizza (P450).  For desserts, try the Mango Float (P110).

Isabelo Garden Restaurant
Isabelo Mendoza Street, San Roque, Marikina City
Facebook: Isabelo Garden Restaurant



Ludo: Boardgame Bar and Café

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This café and restaurant, in which its name means “I play” in Latin, defies all odds simply because instead of customers waiting patiently for their food while hammering their nails on the desks, they can choose to play. Yes, this is virtually a play center with more than 300 board games available for everyone, some even imported by the owners themselves! From the usual and the ordinary to the truly challenging, the board games at Ludo seek to test your mental and emotional capacity. There are some added bonuses, though. If you don’t know how to play the game, the staff can teach you. If you decide to buy the board games, you can do so. Ludo also stages competitions for those who want to try out their mettle.

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This is not only a café but a Japanese restaurant as well. They have Cheese Gyoza (5 pieces for P300), Donburis such as the Tonkatsu (P195) with tea and even nachos (P250) good for 2 to 3 people) that can fill your hungry tummy. You can also avail of the following: Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese Dip (P250), Curry Katsu (P185) and the Toridon (P195). For drinks, you can avail of the green tea (hot, P60, iced tea P80) or the café mocha (P80).

Ludo: Boardgame Bar and Café
Scout Fuentebella Street Corner Scout Torillo, Quezon City
Facebook: Ludogamescafe



Cafe Noriter

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Students, especially those from the University Belt, often frequent this place – and for a good reason. Not just for the food and the snacks that the place serves, but also for its eloquent and vibrant ambiance fit for studying, lazing around – and to some degree, even sleeping. The interiors of Café Noriter have a cozy and homey ambiance filled with bright and decadent colors that shout at you as you get inside. But more than that, it has bunk beds and pillows where customers can study, do their projects and rest for a bit.

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Since this is a café, don’t expect much from the food. There are snacks, though, such as the waffles, honey bread and the ciabatta. As for the drinks, they have plenty – the menu consists of coffees, teas and smoothies. You can also order a frappuccino on the side.

Café Noriter
Taft Avenue, Manila
Facebook: Café Noriter



Paeng’s Bowl and Billiard Room

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Named after one of the ultimate greats and six-time World Champion in bowling, Paeng Nepomuceno, Paeng’s Bowl and Billiard Room has all the amenities to make a champion out of you: 20 bowling lanes, 15 billiard tables and 5 electronic dart boards. The bowling lanes are also kid-friendly as it includes glow-in-the-dark balls, pins and lanes which have fences on them so if you are not a good bowler, you don’t have to fret. Your balls definitely won’t go down the pits and alleyways. Open every day, the rates for the bowling alley are P120-P140, depending on the time of day that you visit; P250-P280 per hour for the billiard table while the dart is P220 per hour.

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The menu, on the other hand, includes Pinoy dishes such as sisig and different kinds of pulutan such as tacos. Order a round pf pizza as well.

Paeng’s Bowl and Billiard Room
4th Level, Citywalk 2 Building, Eastwood, Libis, Quezon City
(02) 687-6424 / (02) 687-6426
Facebook: Paeng’s Eastwood Bowl and Billiards Room



Designer Blooms Café

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The name of this restaurant and café immediately exudes a fragrant aura. They sell flowers and plants, first hand – you name it, they have it. From natural, artificial, dried, to fresh-cut, this is a unique blend of floral arrangements sure to liven up anyone’s home and families. Among the varieties available include the potted sunflower (P795), the potted English daisies (P895) the potted hydrangea (P995) and the tulips in a vase which range from P2,500-P3,500. Aside from the flowers, they also sell custom-made balloons (P225), chocolates (P475) and stuffed toys (P1,300) for the romantics and the young at heart.

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When it comes to the café, it has an airy and chic quality to it – what with perfumery flowers and plants surrounding you while you eat. The menu features an assortment of kind such as salads, sandwiches, soups, pastas and pizzas. You can order the bruschetta with grilled mushroom salpicao (P235) or the tinapa mousse with flat bread (P235). For the beverage, they also offer tea for the non-drinkers and beer and wine for the drinkers.

Designer Blooms Café
Molito Lifestyle Center, Alabang
(02) 808-9569
Facebook: Designer Blooms Cafe



Cool Beans Library Café

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Bibliophiles would love to hang out here – all day and all night. A whole wall is smashed with all kind of books – from history to fiction to romance and horror to non-fiction and adventure and bestseller novels. Some of these books are owned by the owners of the place while others are acquired. Plus the sofas just parallel to the shelves of books make you want to lie down and stretch your aching body – while gorging yourself on the latest book craze and eating pastas and drinking coffee. It is this good.

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This is a coffee shop, true, but lunch and dinner can also be served here. Among the specialties are the rice meals which can go anywhere from P150 to P160, depending on your choice; and the pastas which is less than P200. They also serve all-day breakfast meals. For drinks, try the coffee and the frappuccino.

Cool Beans Library Café
67A Maginhawa Street, UP Village, Quezon City
Facebook: Cool Beans Cafe



Photo Credits: Sip and Gogh Foursquare user Emman M, The Library Foursquare User Jayr A and Arnel A, Cafe Noriter Foursquare User Anjanive Marie C and Rezza Joy E., Paeng’s Bowl and Billiard Room Foursquare User Yeosef and Kathy B

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Excel Dyquiangco

Excel Dyquiangco

Aside from writing for websites and magazines, Excel Dyquiangco also writes children's books during his spare time. He loves to read, surf the internet, and travel.
Excel Dyquiangco