nav-left cat-right


Busy Lately

I have been busy for the past week helping a friend open a second and smaller restaurant. He currently owns an Indian Cuisine Restaurant, Taj Minar in the Damosa Gateway strip mall on Mamay Road just off JP Laurel in Lanang.

A small distance away, near Victoria Mall is a Hospital and medical school, DMSF, Davao Medical School Foundation. This school has a lot of students from India with more to arrive in the near future.

The restaurant delivers about 30 meals to some of the students at the hospital twice a day, for lunch and for dinner. To make life and eating easier for the students, be able to offer menus specials and vary daily menus the owner decide to open a Carenderia or Canteen style open air restaurant close to the school. We found a location right outside the gate by the hospital/school.

The owner asked me to help him by project managing the construction, finding the contractors and pricing and locating the materials.

Here in the Philippines there are different ways to hire someone for construction. You can have him quote for the complete job including laborers and materials. You can also just contract for the labor which includes all laborers. Another way is hire per day. This can include or not the transportation meals and snacks.
I have found the best is hire for the labor by the contractor. He hires his laborers, pays for their transportation, meal and snacks.

With this, after getting a materials list, I needed to go purchase all materials. We have a tile man, an electrician, a plumber and a carpenter so far. Next I need to find a painter.

To get the correct materials and best prices, I usually take the tradesman to his supplier to help get the supplies and get contractor prices.

My electrician introduced me to the electrical supply manager, mentioned that I am an Architectural Designer and got me signed up as a contractor. Now I can go alone and get the low contractor prices.

You do need to have in mind what you want accomplished and what level of quality you need. The owner went with the carpenter to purchase the lumber for some shelving and they ended up with 1/4 inch plywood. If the carpenter a thicker board, it would not need as much support.

One thing interesting here, in America tradesmen have all the modern tools. Table saws, skill saws, jigsaws, electric drill, electric chisels to put holes in concrete. Here they mostly use hand tools and just the basic ones. For chipping concrete they have a short length of rubber house with a concrete nail through on end. The hose is a handle and they hammer the nail to chip out concrete. For saws they have a keyhole saw and a rip saw and can create wonderful items that look as professional as you would see in the States or Europe.

Working with these tradesmen and trying to communicate has been a wonderful learning experience for me. We have gained the respect from each other and a good working relationship.

In the future, look for an article and photos of the new Taj Minar II Restaurant.
As always I welcome comments and replies.

2 Responses to “Busy Lately”

  1. Ellen says:

    I would be interested to know what the cost per sq meter is. Thanks.

  2. Bruce says:

    I do not know all the particulars. The place is small, about 52 sq meters with a mezzinene of about 28 sq meters. I heard rent is 9,000 Php.
    We added alot of electrical, did some carpentry, plumbing, tiles kitchen and will paint the place.
    Some of the trades I got and some trades and supplies the owner hired and paid.
    This got difficult to keep my eye on all the costs.

Leave a Reply