The 9 Top Things To Do In Washington SyCip Park + A Visit To Jaime Velasquez Park

February 14, 2018

A visit to Washington SyCip Park provides a great breather from the stress and pressure of the office.

Washington SyCip Park is like an oasis set in the midst of the corporate jungle in Makati City. It is filled with trees and abundant shrubs, as well as works of art, making Washington SyCip Park the perfect venue to recharge one’s weary mind and body from the daily routine in the cube farm.

Exploring Washington SyCip Park

The 9 Top Things To Do In Washington SyCip Park + A Visit To Jaime Velasquez Park

    About Washington SyCip Park

    Located behind the Asian Institute of Management building, Washington SyCip Park probably had the densest foliage among all parks in Makati. It was named after Mr. Washington SyCip, one of the foremost accounting practitioners in the Philippines and in Asia.

    Washington SyCip Park signage

    The Park was presented to Mr. SyCip in June 2006, on his 85th birthday, in honor of his numerous excellent contributions to the Philippine business community. It was developed by Ayala Land, Inc., the Makati Commercial Estate Association, the City of Makati, Barangay San Lorenzo, and SGV. & Co.

    Top things to do in Washington SyCip Park

    A few years ago, when I had the chance to take a long break from work, I spent some mornings exploring Washington Sycip Park. 

    I have long wanted to see it for myself, having been intrigued with the lush greens whenever we pass by that area of Makati. I thought it was a good decision to visit Washington SyCip Park because I was many things that were really interesting, mostly works of art.

    Anyway, here are some of the things that you can see inside Washington SyCip Park:

    1. Crane and Turtle Garden

    Crane and Turtle Garden marker in Washington SyCip Park

    The crane and the turtle are both traditional symbols of long life in Asia. The crane and turtle symbolize the lasting friendship between the Philippines and Japan. 

    Inscription at the Crane and Turtle Garden in Washington SyCip Park

    The garden also is a celebration of life, nature, harmony, culture, and art. It was also dedicated to the enduring ties between the Filipino and Japanese People.

    2. Wishing Stone

    Located near the middle section of Washington SyCip Park is the Wishing Stone, made by the renowned sculptor Impy Pilapil. From afar, it looked like a fancy stone table. One may even mistake it for a bench where one can have his afternoon snack. But that is not so when it is seen up close. 

    Wish Stone at Washington SyCip Park

    The inscription on the marker beckons the onlooker to pick up the brush, dip it in water, write a wish or prayer on the stone, and let the cosmic forces take it to heaven. 

    It was an invitation that was too hard to resist. I did not use the pen and water though; I wrote my prayer with my fingers and let the cool morning breeze take it to the stars.

    3. The Mangrove 

    A few feet away from the Wish Stone is “The Mangrove - Nature’s Embrace,” another artwork by Impy Pilapil. The inscription on the marker said that the artist interpreted the prominent roots of mangrove trees as the apt symbol of nature’s unity with mankind. 

    The Mangrove at Washington SyCip Park

    As a highly productive ecosystem that thrives between land and water, mangroves provide an all-embracing, protective, and nurturing habitat that serves the life cycle of a whole range of marine life and land-dwelling species; and also prevents soil erosion. 

    The human challenge is to find a fine balance between advancing technologically while maintaining environmental consciousness.

    4. The Entry

    The Entry at Washington SyCip Park

    The "Entry" is another artwork made of stone. It had two columns that support a vertical slab of stone on top. A shiny ball that appears to be made of metal is suspended on the stone slab.

    5. Sungka

    There is also a sungka made of stone in one of the gazebos inside Washington Sycip Park. If you want to play sungka, you can maybe bring with you small stones or puka shells the next time you visit the park.

    For those who are unfamiliar, sungka is a traditional game played by two people. It uses a carved boat-like board with 7 holes on each side. Seeds or stones are dropped on each hole. The goal is for one player to take all the stones or seeds of the other player, which meant that the losing player would have no more moves.

    6. Quotes by Mr. Washington SyCip

    Quote by Mr. Washington SyCip

    Mr. Washington SyCip is highly-regarded for his knowledge. Thus, it is but fitting to feature quotes by him all over the park.

    7. Large trees

    If you love the shade of large trees, then you will like it in Washington Sycip Park. There are several large trees inside the park, you'd feel as if you were walking in a mini-forest. 

    A large tree inside Washington SyCip Park

    The shade and the cool breeze would make you think twice if you are still in Makati City.

    8. A multi-purpose gazebo beside a pond

    Gazebo at Washington SyCip Park

    There is a multi-purpose gazebo inside the Washington Sycip Park that can be used for small events. It looks suitable for art exhibits, small garden concerts, and even poetry-reading nights.

    9. The Faith

    The "Faith" is a sculpture made of a single piece of marble. It is pointed on top, which can be interpreted as symbolically pointing to the heavens.

    Visiting Jaime C. Velasquez Park

    After a visit to Washington SyCip Park, I also went to the Jaime C. Velasquez Park, which is located in Salcedo Village. 

    Central portion of Jaime Velasquez Park

    Because of its location, Jaime C. Velasquez Park is also commonly referred to as Salcedo Park. It was named in the honor of Col. Jaime C. Velasquez, one of the primary forces behind the development of the Makati Central Business district.

    It is a small pocket park that is popular among joggers and small children as there is a playground located within its confines. One may also seek refuge from the noise outside by enjoying a quiet moment in one of the stone benches around the park. If you have a lot of time to spare, you may even read a book under the shade of a tall tree.

    Jogger path in Jaime Velasquez Park

    On weekends, however, the park comes alive and bustling with activities as this is also the venue of the popular Salcedo Weekend Market where one may buy fresh and organic produce and home-cooked food.


    So the next time you need a breather from the hustle and bustle at work, why don’t you take a brief escape from your workstation and breathe in some fresh air by visiting Washington SyCip Park or Jaime Velasquez Park.

    Things to do in Washington SyCip Park in Makati City

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    1. Wonderful photography of a wonderful serene place. Thanks for sharing.

      1. Thank you for your kind words! I'm glad that you regularly visit my site.

    2. What lovely parks--it's so wonderful to have getaways in the middle of the city. I will have to look for Makati on the map. I really don't know the Philippines very well at all, I'm ashamed to say. Many people here in the USA are, like me, pretty ignorant of the geography of other countries. It is a real cultural failing, I believe. Now I'm going to go look up Makati. Thank you for introducing me to a new part of the world! :)

      1. Hi, Timi. It's ok, and thank you for the effort to look up Makati and research about my country. If you like beaches, you would love it here. We have lots of beautiful beaches in the Philippines. Thank you also for visiting my site!

    3. Wow, I see that Makati is in the Manila Metro Region. What amazing skyscrapers! It is especially delightful then that you have spent time in these lovely parks... :)

      1. Hi, Timi. Yes, Makati is the financial capital of the Philippines. Lots of skyscrapers and concrete pavements. It's nice to find oases within this bustling city.

    4. Oh, Washington SyCip Park! Went there to celebrate a friend's birthday some years ago, right smack in the middle of that gazebo. :) And Impy Pilapil's art installations were originally installed in the Ateneo grounds for a considerable period of time, before being transferred there.

      1. Yup, the park is really beautiful and well-maintained. Thanks for that little trivia about Impy Pilapil's artworks.

    5. Welcome!

      Now that you posted it, SyCip's comment regarding the rising dragon that is China is a prophecy that is coming true as we speak.

      1. Oh, yeah. It was a foreshadowing. Washington SyCip was indeed a visionary.

    6. My office is around Washington SyCip and Legazpi active park, too! Unfortunately we will be moving out later this year. Ugggh ayala :(

      1. Oh, sayang! I've always thought the offices around Washington SyCip Park are lucky. Must be nice to take a quick walk during lunch break.


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