If you didn’t already know, Marikina City is the country’s shoe capital. Finding the right pair for you will be easy with just one trip to the shoe center. Plus, they’re often very affordable.
But did you know how the city even became the shoe capital of the entire country?
Marikina was founded 383 years ago when the Jesuits arrived in 1630. At the turn of the 20th century, the Philippine Information Agency reports that Marikina had become a town of shoemakers which started in 1887. Honed by the efforts of Don Laureano “Kapitan Moy” Guevarra, the economic growth of the place became dynamic due to shoemaking. Years in shoe manufacturing, the natives had developed an industrial work ethic that prepared them for the arrival of heavy industries in the 1950s.
Today, Artes De Las Filipinas says that Marikina is known as the Shoe Capital of the Philippines because of its progressive shoe industry. It is also the home of the world’s largest pair of shoes certified by the Guinness Book of World Records. Furthermore, the Shoe Museum preserves the famous shoes of former first lady Imelda Marcos. The city prides itself in the cultural and heritage site, Kapitan Moy, the ancestral house of the father of the shoe industry in the Philippines, Don Laureano Guevara, and other numerous tourist sites.
Another fun fact is, a lot of local shoe brands that are gaining online popularity, are actually made in Marikina! Here are some of our favorites:
Cora & Bear has some of the most unique statement shoes. With a wide-ranged color palette, their collection possesses low and high heels. Designed and manufactured by hand, they use experimental materials to create a thoughtful selection of women’s shoes and accessories that are functional, contemporary, and playful. Available online.
“Timeless classics” is what GVN is going for with their styles. They source and manufacture locally made leather bags and shoes perfect for every day. They make use of synthetic or vegan leather sprouts from the advocacy of the brand, which is to shy away from the use of animal skin for their products. Available online.
Sapatero Manila is on a mission to bring back Philippine shoe-making. They make classic leather brogues that aim for a stylish but casual look for men. They are also known for their fine detailing on their crafted leather, and customized pieces. Available on Instagram.
Joco Comendador: Footwear + Art is a Filipino handcrafted footwear brand who envisions to showcase Filipino footwear craftsmanship to the entire archipelago and the world. They often hold workshops on shoe crafting, and specialize in making leather brogues and slip-ons.Available on Instagram.