Some people don’t actually start collecting toys. They just never stopped buying them since they were kids. Why do adults collect toys? One’s tendency to collect toys is usually connected to childhood memories of the toys he played with or toys he was not able to own. It may start with a boy and a superhero action figure given to him as a birthday present. He asks his mother to buy him a super-villain to play against the superhero. Before long, the boy assembles the superhero’s avenging buddies and their super-villain counterparts, and the vehicles and play sets that go along with them. Before you know it, he has amassed a shelf full of action figures. He grows up and never stops buying. These plastic figures bring back fond memories of childhood, so adults are pulled into the hobby.
Now the fun part of toy collecting entails toy hunting, where a collector searches for that treasure trove of hard-to-find collectibles, that rare holy grail of toy collections or even that cool new LEGO set. Aside from the big retail chain stores like Toy Kingdom and Toys “R” Us, where do most Filipino toy collectors explore for their hidden toy treasures? Greenhills Shopping Center is an amazing toy destination, but there are other toy spots in the metro.
3rd Level, V-Mall, Greenhills Shopping Center, Ortigas Ave., Greenhills, San Juan, Metro Manila, Philippines
Best Toys is one of the longest-running toy stores in V-Mall through its many incarnations. They stock a little bit of everything, from Gundam, Revoltech, Play Arts, Kotobukiya to LEGO and Barbie.
Unit S3029 / S3030 3rd Floor Shoppesville Building, Greenhills Shopping Center, San Juan, Metro Manila
GTO is highly recommended for the sheer amount of US and Japan toys stocked from wall to wall. They also have an online store, hence the name. The online store caters to a lot of collectors. Especially because they’re also the Philippine distributor of Japan’s top collectible toy brands like Hobby Japan, Bandai, Tamashii Nations, Megahouse, Banpresto, Goodsmile and Maxfactory.
3rd Floor Shoppesville, Greenhills Shopping Center, San Juan, Metro Manila
Anime fans flock to Wasabi Toys for their fix of Japanese toys and collectibles like Figma, Nendoroids, S.H. Figuarts, Kamen Riders and Gunpla kits. They have a pre-order system up on their online store wasabitoys.com.
Unit S-3025 3rd Floor Shoppesville, Greenhills Shopping Center, San Juan, Metro Manila
The mainstream rise of Funk Pop! vinyl toys can arguably be attributed to Big Boys Toy Store. They also sell a wide variety of collectible toys from Marvel, DC, Star Wars, Transformers, G.I. Joe, TMNT, WWE, Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead–basically all the cool stuff.
B6-971, Building 6, Bonifacio High Street, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City
This one-of-a-kind concept store-slash-café houses figures, statues, busts and maquettes from Sideshow Collectibles, Hot Toys, Enterbay, Toynami, Efx Collectibles, Gentle Giant, Funko, Hollywood Collectibles Group & Diamond Select. It’s quite an experience dining while drooling over the uber-expensive collections.
Showroom: Listening in Style, 5F Shangri-La Mall, EDSA Cor. Shaw Blvd., Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila
If 1/6th is your scale of choice, then TheaterWorks is the place for you. They offer 1/6th scale figures from the very popular Hot Toys, TTL, Enterbay, Toy City, and DID Corp.
Filbar’s Glorietta 5 2nd Floor Glorietta 5, Ayala Ave, Makati
In 1979, Filbar’s was the pioneer comic book store in the Philippines. The rebooted Filbar’s of 2013 is still a major comic book retailer, but they now sell pop culture products representing fandoms from Star Wars and Star Trek to Harry Potter and Doctor Who. For your inner geek chic, those artsy t-shirts from Threadless are also available.
Basement Level, Robinson’s Galleria, Edsa, corner Ortigas, Quezon City
Comic Odyssey has an impressive back issue bin, and stocks new and vintage comic books, graphic novels, trade paperbacks and hardcovers. For fanboys and fangirls, they also carry comic book-related collectibles from DC, Marvel, Image, Dark Horse, IDW and everything in between.