SM Aura is one of the country’s most beautiful malls, featuring unique food and shopping options. The mall glows with an elegant atmosphere and I love spending time there because it’s less crowded. It’s my respite whenever I visit Bonifacio Global City, because I love basking in its airconditioning while exploring its upscale haunts. There’s always something new to discover at SM Aura, and hidden in a nook is Weekends at the Courtyard, my new favorite hangout place.
Weekends at the Courtyard was launched simultaneously with Art in Aura, an initiative promoting rising artists by inviting them to paint murals in the Grand Staircase. It’s an ongoing attempt to make art more accessible by bringing them out of the gallery and into public spaces.
Of course, art isn’t just about paintings. It includes music, too. Weekends at the Courtyard aims to introduce a slew of indie artists to a mainstream audience through the weekend fair. During the launch (which I missed because of work), Jess Connelly, Curtismith, CRWN, BP Valenzuela, and Asch serenaded mallgoers. Weekends at the Courtyard happens every weekend this May, with performers, art workshops, and merchants selling all kinds of interesting wares.
I went on Sunday, and watched Toni B., Lei, Keiko Necesario, and Janjay kill it on stage. I also went on a mini shopping spree, buying all the available gemstone soaps at The Bath House, a local comic anthology from Komiket, and a notebook from The Cool Girls Club, which I bought for my friend celebrating her birthday. They also have cute “rapping papers” with Kanye West and Drake!
Apart from these stores, there were bikinis from Style Isle, trinkets from Isla Luisa PH, Guanna, and Studio Bohemia, and art from Ku Rumillo and Bea Policarpio. Hungry hounds were served food by Sbarro and Burger Joint.
For the activities, there was dreamcatcher making by Isla Luisa PH, Collage Art by Woman, Create, a doodle wall, acrylic painting by Global Art, live portraits by Ku Rumillo, and mother and child photo portraits by Andrei Suleik. Sadly, I missed these activities because I came from another event at SM Mall of Asia.
The best part about Weekends at the Courtyard is that the performers, workshops, and merchants change every day, meaning each visit is unique!
SM Aura is hoping for Weekends at the Courtyard to be a permanent thing, and I’m wishing it, too. It has a chill and laidback vibe, and is kind of hidden from the rest of the mall. I visited on a summer night, but a gentle wind breezed by. It didn’t really matter if it was hot because there was a keg of Juan Brew nearby. I’m looking forward to visiting again!
Follow @smaurapremier and @artinaura on Instagram for more updates on the latest collaborations, featured artists, and events. Cover photo by @smaurapremier.