HIN Manila Day 1 Thoughts
Report on Hot Import Nights Manila 2012. First Days Coverage.
After eating at the hotel’s complimentary breakfast buffet, I had a few hours left before I had to go to the World Trade Center and watched some anime in my room. I was impressed. There were a few channels dedicated to only Anime. Around 11am in the morning, I had all my gear and went down to the lobby. There was a taxi parked outside of the glass door and I slipped right into the seat next to the driver.
“World Trade Center, please” I said. Then I started asking him to turn on the meter. At this point, the meter was at 300 pesos. The taxi didn’t move. The meter didn’t change. 300 pesos was still there. I kept on telling him, I want the meter on. After a few minutes of repeating that I wanted the meter, I was told flat out that he wouldn’t take me. Fine.
I got out and another taxi picked me up just as I left the first taxi. That’s what it’s like with the taxi’s in Manila. If the taxi driver doesn’t turn on his meter, get out. There’s bound to be another one, hell, taxis are everywhere in Malate.
The second taxi driver was good. He weaved among the other cars and didn’t follow the lanes, because, well, some parts of Roxas Blvd don’t have any lanes on the road at all. When the car arrived at the World Trade Center, the police were checking under the car and the trunk for bombs I guess.
Paid the taxi driver 100 pesos, and that included tip. Total cost was about $2.25.
I arrived about an hour early and there was already a small crowd lounging outside. There was no lines, just people standing about outside. I just stood with them, just waiting for something to happen. We stayed like that for almost an hour until people coalesced into a big fat line that winded its way to the side of the World Trade Center. Looking back at that line, I was glad that I came early because that line just disappeared from my view after some time. I don’t know how far back it went, but it looked long!
Finally got into the building and there it was – the entrance doors.
I went in.
Wow. Looks smaller than what I thought it would be. If I had to compare it with another modified tuner car show it would be very similar to the interior of the Hot Import Nights – Nightshift that was held early March at the Pomona Fairplex.
Took out my camera and flash from my bag next to the wall and transform! The two units became one as the independent flash module connected to the top of the Digital SLR body in one sweeping swoosh as the two units connected and became… the camera! Started to walk the car show floor and explore the first HIN Manila!
Wasn’t really familiar with any of the vendors. One of the big vendors was Repsol that had a big area where they had some luxury cars and some of the hottest promotional models at the car show! As I’m writing this, I still didn’t know what Repsol was selling. After doing a little search, it looks like they are a big Spanish Oil company and in the Philippines they sell motor oil. Ah shit, it makes sense why they were representing at HIN Manila! You know the only place I’ve heard of Repsol is in the Philippines and you know what? I didn’t give a rats ass what they did until now. My curiosity meter wasn’t very curios about Repsol, but good to know right? I wonder why the brand isn’t in the United States.
I’m back in Los Angeles and I now have some time to continue my thoughts on HIN Manila 2012. Everything from here on are fragments from memory from my short stay in Manila.
So there I was taking pictures at Hot Import Nights Manila. As the hours went by, the crowds got bigger. So big that it was hard taking pictures of the cars or import models! My gods, a lot of the people who attended were taking pictures with their tablets. In California, I’ve seen a few people do this, but this was in a different league. What I saw was the majority of people who used tablets were using iPads, and then I saw a few Android tablets and a Sony tablet with its curve design.
About the crowd. Well, it was different from what I’ve seen in California. The demographics of the local crowd in Manila was made up of all sorts of people from families, teenagers, young adults, couples, and photographers. In regards to families, there were parents with their teens, babies, little kids, and grandparents. I was amazed that HIN Manila reached out to a very broad spectrum of car show attendees. Likewise, the import scene in California is mainly guys who sometimes brings their wives or girlfriends. Sometimes you’d see a kid tagging along. You’d practically never see anyone bringing their grandparents!
Yea, thinking about the crowd demographers, I think import tuner shows in the Philippines have a better chance to capture a bigger market. Unlike Stateside, where its a niche market that has a small following in general, in the Philippines, its seen as a family event for most folks, where the family can participate and see some fantastic cars one rarely sees in the streets of Manila, get free swag from local vendors, see pretty promotional models and see some entertainment.
I stayed until near the end when the VIP part was going on. The VIP part of HIN Manila was the part where the stage entertainment was held. This was where the bikini contest, and other raunchy entertainment was held. I was at the back of the crowd so I didn’t get any pictures or videos of the bikini contest or any activity on stage, which sucked. I then roamed the car show floor and took pictures of the cars because everyone was at the stage area watching the show!
I’m going to abruptly stop here and continue with the coverage on Day 2 of HIN Manila. I need to put my thoughts in order and try to remember what the hell I saw and thought, but the first day was really good. I was so tired after I returned to the hotel room that I went straight to bed.
Before ending this coverage, there was one thing that I found incredible about the car show. Every time I went to the lobby to buy some food and sat down on the floor to eat my meal, I watched the long line going strong – really strong! I must have gone to the lobby to either get a drink, a snack or eat a meal a few times throughout the day. Each time I looked at the ticket line, it never wavered, and it never became small. The line was always packed! Insane. Just insane.
Tags: 2012, asian, car show, HIN, hot girls, hot import models, Hot Import Nights, import models, import tuner, Manila, March, modified cars, Pasay, Philippines, pictures, show girls, Southeast Asia, World Trade Center Metro Manila
Going to HIN Manila pre-flight
HIN Nightshift on April 13/14 in Phoeniz, Arizona!