The Damosa area used to be a dusty, neglected-looking part of Davao, until recently. This part of Lanang was almost exclusively for warehouses and industrial-type buildings. When the Mindanao Kokusai Daigaku (Mindanao International College) along Mamay Road was established in 2002, its first batch of students found the area dreary and rather isolated. But things started happening a couple of years ago when the Damosa Gateway was put up.
It was a hard-start experience for the Gateway at first, what with its distant location from downtown Davao. (Dabawenyos are loathe to travel more than 15 minutes to gimmick places )
But it did pick up soon enough. So far, many of the shops that opened then are still operating now. And those that closed have been replaced by new establishments.
And then this year, the pace of development picked up considerably when Damosa Land inaugurated an arcade, Market Basket, only two Sundays ago. I’m at a shop in Market Basket called Light Repast as I write this (what is it with Dabawenyos who have a penchant for generic-sounding trade names?). The arcade is already full, with tenants offering various products and services: from groceries to spas to pets. It’s located right behind the Damosa building (from which the area got its name).
Further up Mamay Road, there’s another commercial building called (curiously enough) Sea Urchin. Its ground floor is a supermarket, while the 3rd floor is a restaurant of Mediterranean persuasion (at least according to its signboard). I didn’t get to check what was in the 2nd floor, though.
Also, sandwiched between Damosa Gateway and the college is the construction of Microtel Davao, which is part of an international hotel chain. According to Damosa Land, the hotel is scheduled to be completed late this year.
What’s spurring on the development of this area of Lanang is the upcoming I.T. park. In fact, there’s already one sizable locator, the Link2Support call center, which now has 500+ employees. The next phase will be another building for the call center’s expansion. This will surely translate to more business for the area’s cafés, restaurants, bars and other establishments.
Almost forgot to mention: across the street from Damosa is Swiss Deli, which was opened last year (or was it two years ago?). They’re the same people who operate Picobello.
Pretty soon, Davao will have more than one entertainment district, and quite removed from the downtown area. This is good because, already, Dabawenyos have begun to look for more variety in their available choices of entertainment places.
With the fast-paced increase in foot traffic (students, shop patrons, etc.) in the Damosa area, I hope the city’s planners will catch up soon. They would do well to start thinking about re-routing trucks and other heavy vehicles away from Mamay Road in the foreseeable future.
Speaking of shops and such, it’s almost Mother’s Day! Express your gratitude to your moms by sending them a special gift.