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“Ayala Museum - Nice 2-3hr activity if in the Greenbelt area of Makati”
Review of Ayala Museum

Ayala Museum
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Manila Layover Tour: Overnight City sightseeing with Round-Trip Airport Transfer
Ranked #3 of 69 things to do in Makati
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Stairs / elevator
Hong Kong, China
Level 6 Contributor
5,698 reviews
3,700 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12,211 helpful votes
“Ayala Museum - Nice 2-3hr activity if in the Greenbelt area of Makati”
Reviewed May 19, 2013

We recently visited the Ayala Museum (P450 foreign adult, P225 local adult) during a quick stopover in Makati and found this to be a decent private museum. In general there were things we liked about our visit and others that we didn't care for so much.

What we liked
We very much enjoyed the 4th floor floor temporary exhibit called 'The Gold of our Ancestors' which was a well-organised, well-presented collection and made for an enjoyable hour of examining the various gold pieces on display, most from the 10th to 13th century. We found the opening video effective at setting the stage for the items which were shown and the pieces themselves very interesting (some being quite impressive). Overall this was a very nice gallery experience and the highlight of our visit to the Ayala Museum.

The 2nd floor - Diorama Experience: This offered around 60 displays, each offering a fairly good imagery of important moments in The Philippines history as well as synopsis style information that was not overly texty. The displays covered events from the pre-colonial period, the Spanish and American colonial periods as well as the post-colonial period namely under the Marcos and more recent administrations. We felt that visitors not too familiar with Philippines history would find this a good 'snapshot' introduction to the subject matter. You can do a quick walk through in 10-15minutes in this section or spend up to 1.5 hours if you care to read the captions.

There is a decent maritime (boat) gallery with some historic vessels that include Chinese Junk, Lorcha and some Spanish Ramada style ship models. These were nice to look over, particularly if you like sea vessels.

On the ground floor there were some works by the Philippine Artist, Juan Luna that we enjoyed, not sure if this part of the permanent or temporary exhibits in the Ayala Museum.

What we didn't like
Entry price discrimination: Charging foreigners almost twice the amount of locals is a tacky practice, not something you expect from well-financed institutions like the Ayala Foundation. This is something we are not big fans of seeing, particularly with credible private museums.

No photography allowed within the galleries, although this is a common practice at private museums so it is ok. It would be better though if the museum shop sold postcards of selected pieces from the "Gold of Ancestors" exhibit (in such cases, we normally buy these for souvenir) but there were none available for purchase.

3rd Floor - Pioneers of Philippine art galleries: This is a matter of personal taste of course, but the galleries featuring the works of Fernando Amorsolo and Fernando Zobel were underwhelming and left us uninspired. We much preferred a few of the works by Juan Luna on the ground floor.

Overall, we had mixed feelings about our visit in the Ayala Museum, finding the dual pricing a distasteful practice and somewhat disappointed with the limited art in the permanent exhibit. Additionally, without the temporary exhibit on the 4/F, the admission fee for G/F - 3/F collections (PHP350) do not seem worth it for foreign visitors. Still there were a few things worth seeing within the museum, particularly the temporary exhibit on pre-colonial/ancestral gold, making it still a good attraction to spend an hour or two if you are planning to spend time in the Greenbelt area of Makati.

Visited May 2013
4 Thank BradJill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed May 18, 2013

This has the potential to be a really great museum. I went this morning, paid my entrance fee (475 pesos) and off I went. The exhibitions of ceramics and gold are very good. However, what I really wanted was to learn about the history of the Philippines. When I got to the diorama section I found that the audio information service was broken - so I could look at the dioramas but some of them meant very little with no explanation or background information. At the end of the display, there are three films about the modern history of the Philippines. Unfortunately the three screens are fairly close together, and all three films were running simultaneously and VERY loudly so it was impossible to listen to any one of them.

I can't comment on the shop as it was closed the entire time I was there. I actually went back to the ticket desk to complain and to ask if the screens could be fixed so that I could watch the 3 films, but there was no-one there to complain to! I just wish they had said before selling me a ticket that the audio service was broken and that the shop would be closed. I might have decided to visit on a different day.

Visited May 2013
2 Thank Clare091
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alajuela, Costa Rica
Level 6 Contributor
146 reviews
80 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Treasure of a museum”
Reviewed May 17, 2013

This is a well designed, user friendly, educational and beautiful museum. It contains a magnificent collection of porcelains dating from the 9th century on which are all professionally displayed and give you the opportunity to view each object 360 degrees. There is also a pre Columbian gold exhibit showing many different examples of the gold smithing that was done in early times in the Philippines, some very, very sophisticated and gorgeous works. There is a braided gold cord worn over the shoulder and chest that weighed in at over 9 lbs! It is a one of a kind find in this part of the world. Many different influences from Asia seen in the workmanship. Another part of the museum shows textiles and clothing styles, which is most interesting. The first floor is devoted to a wonderful art collection. We spent a good three hours just savoring this museum. Don't miss it. It is also located in the Greenbelt area, where there is a large, modern, upscale shopping area loaded with restaurants and a park with gardens. This is a good way to spend a day in the environs of Manila. All is located in Makati.

Visited May 2013
Thank costaricajoan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Easily accessible, small museum - great lectures”
Reviewed May 16, 2013

Ayala Museum is well known for the dioramas. One must watch out for the lectures - they are the biggest draw. The gift shop has interesting items - a cut above what one gets in souvenir shops. I recommend a visit to the museum for better pieces of souvenirs/artifacts. This museum is an institution and deserves a visit. Can be done in 2-3 hours.

Visited July 2012
Thank GLS_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level 6 Contributor
225 reviews
89 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
“Small but Informative”
Reviewed May 9, 2013

Small Museum but very well organised and helpful staff. It gives complete history of Manila. Also, not very huge so doesn't bore you. Simple and worth a visit. fees for foreigners are high but thats ok.

Visited April 2013
Thank dhruvdp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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