The Araneta Coliseum is the largest indoor facility in Southeast Asia (dome diameter: 108 meters). It is located in Quezon City, Philippines.
The “Big Dome” hosts sporting and entertainment events in the country.rnrnAraneta Coliseum came from J. Amado Araneta’s purchase of a 350,000 square metre Cubao property that is now the Araneta Center from Radio Corporation of America (RCA). The property which includes the Araneta family home is bounded by Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue, Aurora Boulevard, P. Tuazon and 15th Avenue. It is the centerpiece of the Araneta Center, offering a one-stop shopping, dining and entertainment experience.
Construction of the Araneta Coliseum was started in 1957 and finished in late 1959. In 1960 to 1963, the Coliseum received international recognition as the “Biggest covered coliseum in the world”. Even today, it still remains as one of the largest clear span dome in the world and the largest indoor facility in Southeast Asia with a dome diameter of 108 meters. It occupies a total land area of almost 40,000 square metres and has a floor area or 2,300 square metres.
The coliseum opened on March 16, 1960, with Gabriel “Flash” Elorde wresting the World Junior Lightweight crown from American Harold Gomes. More than 33,000 spectators watched the contest. General admission then was 80 centavos and reserve section was five pesos.
Throughout the years, the Araneta Coliseum management adheres to the commitment of J. Amado Araneta to provide the Filipino people with the best entertainment at the lowest admission possible. Some of the most remembered performances were the “Thrilla in Manila” which was the Ali-World Heavyweight Championship Fight, the Philippine Basketball Association Games, and annually, the Binibining Pilipinas Beauty Pageant.
1999, the coliseum underwent a major renovation for the first time since it was opened in 1960. The largest crowd in the Big Dome in recent times was the WWE RAW Live Tour, with a crowd of 16,735 spectators. Notable Events: Sports events * PBA: Regular Season (selected games), Playoffs (selected games), PBA Finalsrn * UAAP Basketball: Opening Ceremonies, Regular Season (selected games), Cheerdance Competition, Final Four and UAAP Finalsrn * NCAA Basketball: Opening Ceremonies, Cheerdance Competition, NCAA Finalsrn * Thrilla in Manila . Entertainment events * Star Circle Kid Quest: Grand Questor’s Night (2004) * Star Circle Teen Quest: Grand Questor’s Night (2004) * StarStruck: The Final Judgment (2004 and 2005) * Pinoy Pop Superstar: The Grand Showdown (2005) * Binibining Pilipinas (Annually)rn * MTV Music Summit * WWE RAW Live Tour: Manila (2006)
Famous performers. A stroll at the Upper Box corridor reveals the famous people who have performed at the Big Dome. * Andrea Bocelli * Disney on Icern * 1978 Washington Bullets * Magic Johnson * Shaquille O’Nealrn * Kobe Bryant * The Corrs * 98 Degrees* Alicia Keys * Mandy Moore * Michael Buble * Mariah Carey * Beach Boys * 50 Cent * Avril Lavigne * Ja Rule * 2006 WWE RAW Superstars * Darryl Dawkins * Dennis Rodman * Sidney Moncrief * Alex English * Harlem Globetrotters * Paul Anka
Bars and Restaurants
by Donna Corpin
From Singaporean to Japanese to Mediterranean to good ol’ Pinoy food, the Coliseum Circle doesn’t run out of options for when you watch a concert or after a UAAP game at the Araneta Coliseum. Let’s start where the green gate is (where the VIPs get off in their ritzy cars, parade in their fashionable outfits, preen for the cams, and get inside to where the stage is) and move around to the red gate (where the rest of us “normal people” enter).
Dencio’s is an all-Pinoy restaurant that serves sisig to rival that of Gerry’s Grill. Forget breakfast here; it’s only open from 11AM-12MN. But come for lunch and dinner and guaranteed you’ll be satisfied. Take a group of five and you’d still have change for your thousand bucks (if you’re not a company of gluttons, that is).
Next to Dencio’s is a Singaporean restaurant called Rasa. It’s a good bet the name came from the Sanskrit for “taste” (Singapore is, after all, home to many who are originally from India). It’s a fairly new restaurant at the Coliseum celebrating its first year this month, having opened September 17 last year. It serves Malay/Singaporean favorites like chicken rice, satay, and chili crabs.
The world’s favorite coffee shop cannot be missing at the Big Dome. Always full with its loyal following, this Starbucks branch has a door opening from inside the Coliseum itself for those who get a craving for coffee and other Starbucks goodies while in the middle of a show, concert or game. Budget? You know a purple buck is never enough. Why settle for a tall glass that’s not tall enough when a grande (the next size) costs only ten pesos more?
Café Bola maintains a Filipino menu with Italian offerings. It’s perfect for after-basketball games, when your mind is still caught up on bolas. But the restaurant is actually named for the meatballs it serves, not the ball that you dribble. Try its bestseller, the adobo flakes with keso (cheese). Get a gulp of its unusual drinks, too, one of which is the kamias shake that’s sure to moisten your parched throat.
Sachi has been serving up Japanese food since year 2000. Specializing in beef, Sachi’s steaks can cost anywhere between 3,000 and 1,000–not for the cheapsteak, er, cheapskate. But the chow is worth the price, especially if there’s an occasion to celebrate. There are also chicken and seafood on the menu. Pair the steak with green tea and shake, and you’ll never feel a dent on your pocket.
For Mediterranean fare, go to Istanbul Express that specializes on kebabs, pizza and Turkish salad. It’s where the humus is thick and overflowing. The runaway bestseller, of course, is shawarma. It comes in beef and chicken–just like it should, just like Arabs enjoy it. You can’t have your share of shawarma in the morning, though; the establishment is only open for lunch and dinner.
You wouldn’t know that Gloriamaris serves Chinese food until you get a look at the menu. The restaurant has a wide selection of dimsum, congee, noodles, rice toppings, roast, seafoods, chicken, pork, beef, beancurd and vegetables. Ravenous groups of athletes go here before or after a draining game. If you’re on a budget, however, you best be a chooser and go for the rice toppings, the most affordable in the menu.
Most establishments so far offer meals. If you prefer to simply snack just to tide you over till the next big meal, however, you can go crazy at Gonuts Donuts (its name is very suggestive). Its array of donuts are the most delectable this side of the Araneta, and you can choose from many flavors (amazing glaze, strawberry glaze, those with peanut butter, chocolate or peanut butter toppings, etc) that can go in boxes of 3s, 6s or 9s. Take ‘em home or eat ‘em here, where small round tables make it perfect to delight in those olicooks (just another fancy name for those small ring-shaped cakes made of rich, light dough that is fried in deep fat…um, it’s up to you to let that cruel reminder stop you from indulging).
This music bar is open for lunch and dinner from 11 AM to 3 AM. Wednesday nights are dubbed Ladies’ Nights at this branch where games and surprises are concocted especially for, well, the ladies. And nightly, it features hit music by the latest and greatest bands or DJs. And they’re not kidding; they’ve had such artists as Bamboo, Orange and Lemons, and the latest, Hale. For bumpin’ and grindin’ to the latest beats over good food and great beer, the compass no doubt points to Padi’s.
Klownz is the comedy bar jointly owned by famous comics Ai-Ai delas Alas and Allan K. It features equally famous comedians and comediennes, plus other entertainers who have a knock for poking fun at themselves, if not at you. There’s no more apt place to clown around than here, where you’re sure to spot a TV personality on any given night.
It’s easy to miss Klownz Kape because it’s at the farthest right of this side of the Coliseum. It occupies minimal space as compared to its sister establishment, Klownz. There are only about four tables inside and more outside, but it’ll be a shame to miss this cozy little café that offers Pinoy brekky staples (tocilog, tapsilong, longsilog), Italian pasta, cakes and sweets, plus of course the reason for its being–coffee. The frappuccino concoctions whipped up by the owners themselves, and you’d want to try some blends for their intriguing names alone: Vanilla Magnifica, Double Chocolate Fantasy, Mocha Mudslide. Surprisingly, they are every bit as good as those in bigger coffee chains, you won’t feel robbed although they’re priced competitively (P110-130). The café is open from 3 PM-6 PM, obviously to accommodate the celebrity night owls after the latter’s stop at Klownz. And who said you can’t hang out with the like?
- Araneta Coliseum
- Araneta Center
- Cubao Republic Blog
- Review – Araneta Coliseum
Data as of September 2008