SM City Bataan reflects the values of the local community with over 96% of the mall’s administration staff being Bataeños, including two in leadership roles.
With a workforce of over a thousand across mall tenants—and still increasing, the mall proudly showcases the skills and expertise of the community.
The 83rd SM mall and the first in the Bataan province, SM City Bataan is located at Lerma St., Brgy. Ibayo, City of Balanga.
Congressman Albert S. Garcia, Bataan’s 2nd District Representative, joined thousands of Bataeños on the opening of SM City Bataan, the first SM mall in the province and the 83rd nationwide, expressing his support and heralding the positive economic implications of the mall’s establishment to the province as a whole.
Cong. Garcia said, “When we had the ocular for the different stores during the blessing, we found out that almost everyone working there is from Bataan. They are residents of Balanga, Pilar, Orani, Orion, or Hermosa. I’m happy to know that these jobs are filled by Bataeños. That is really what we were aiming for, to begin with – to present more job opportunities that will help make the lives of every Bataeño better.”
Roberto Santos, the owner of Chedeng’s Snack Bar, expressed his joy at the presence of many local brands that are now in SM City Bataan. “It’s a big thing that homegrown local brands are now in SM,” he said. “In addition to helping fellow Bataeños, many will be motivated as well to go out and do business with SM to promote the local food industries of the province.”
Garcia also lauded SM City Bataan’s effort to extend support to the province’s local development by featuring homegrown businesses (including family-owned brands and locally managed franchises) in different prominent spaces within the mall which makes it a hub that truly connects communities across the province.
SM City Bataan, the 83rd SM mall and the first mall in the province of Bataan, opened last May 19. Leading the ceremonial ribbon cutting are (L-R) SM Engineering Design and Development Corp. President Hans T. Sy Jr, SM Supermalls President Steven T. Tan, Bataan Vice Governor Cristina M. Garcia, His Excellency Most Rev. Ruperto Santos, D.D. Bishop of Balanga, Vice Mayor City of Balanga Vianca Lita Gozon, 2nd District Representative Albert S. Garcia, SM Prime Holdings Inc. President Jeffrey C. Lim, and Super Value Inc. President Herbert T. Sy.
Positioned as a major destination in Bataan
Located in Downtown Balanga, Bataan’s capital city, the newest mall from SM stands as a reliable community partner with its residents not only through its contribution to the local economy but by serving as a center of accessibility with the incorporation of the Bataan Common Terminal in the mall compound.
“The common terminal serves all public utility vehicles in and out of the city,” said Jhoanalyn Gatdula, assistant mall manager of SM City Bataan. “Not only will this help the general workforce of the mall, but it will also bring comfort to all our commuting customers.
Accessibility does not end with the mall’s physical structure alone. The 24th mall in North Luzon developed by SM Prime Holdings, Inc., the property arm of SM Investments Corporation, SM City Bataan is strategically located in the capital.
Through the terminal hubs surrounding SM City Bataan, the mall provides a venue for visitors to conveniently explore what the province has to offer — whether it’s the stone-throw Spanish-inspired Plaza Mayor in the capital, or the hidden gem that is Dunsulan Falls behind Mt. Samat, tourists and Bataeños alike can explore to their heart’s content.
A mini-showcase of Bataan inside the mall
As visitors step into SM City Bataan, they are greeted by a mural with clay pots or ‘banga’ that capture an aspect of the cultural identity of its residents celebrating the namesake of its capital Balanga. Entrance two on the other end renews the province’s commitment to preserving its environment as gel lights-formed birds representing the Ibong Dayo festival were integrated into another mural as a nod to the efforts of the city’s Wetland and Nature Park, an outdoor sanctuary in the protection of migratory birds.
Leveling up the mall experience
True to the notion that every SM City is unique, SM City Bataan takes pride in its lively and modern take on how a shopping mall should make one feel. Beyond the abundance of shopping and dining options, there are also installations such as The Art In Motion that elevate the mall experience.
Once there, viewers are taken on a captivating journey through various natural backdrops, creating an immersive and dynamic atmosphere within the mall. It goes naturally with the wood-like accents and earthy tones throughout SM City Bataan.
Overall, SM City Bataan attempts to go beyond the ‘box-type’ feel usually seen in other malls. From the mall design to the tenants it houses, it aims to give back to the warmth it received from the community and celebrate the identity of the province and the people it serves.