A world of luck at the Mall of Asia
by Chit A. Tribiana
Need to stock up on luck? See you at the mall!
But not any mall will do. It has to be the country’s largest. Good
luck comes in different forms and sizes at Unit 239 at the second floor
of the Entertainment Mall of the humongous SM Mall of Asia Complex at
the Manila Bay area. Step right into the World of Feng Shui boutique.
Tailing the unquestionable success of its two earlier outlets— the
flagship boutique at The Podium in Ortigas Center, and a second one at
SM City Cebu—the opening of a third WOFS shop in less than 16 months
says a lot about the luck peddling business model. It’s either that or
WOFS must be doing something really lucky; and before some people have
a monopoly of good fortune, perhaps, we too, should pay heed.
World of Feng Shui had a soft launch last May 18, three days before
the mall was formally opened to the public, because Marites Allen,
president and chief executive officer of WOFS Philippines, says it was
a more auspicious day to start a business. True enough, it only took a
few of her invited friends to see a lot of the shop’s prized
merchandise move. Would-be entrepreneurs should take note of that
advice—choose your dates well, as some are indeed, luckier than others.
No need to sweat it out, there’s the Annual Feng Shui Almanac to guide
you on lucky dates to schedule important events, such as traveling,
moving houses, renovations, getting married, and starting a business.
In an RSVP affair for selected clients and the media last May 20,
Marites led her staff in presenting her latest selection of cures and
luck enhancers. How to make sense of all the stuff at the shop is a
valid concern, as they easily run into thousands. Unlike most shops,
however, WOFS has taken pains to label most items, including details on
how they should be used. To further simplify things, Marites explains
that our aspirations basically fall under eight categories: wealth,
fame, love and relationships, descendant luck, mentor luck, career,
education, and health/family. There are specific products meant to
enhance these various aspects, but they can only be counted to do that
if they are placed in auspicious locations inside the home or office.
Special tip for those who are into speculative pursuits: Look for
the lock coin, an unusually shaped coin that bears the characters meant
to safeguard luck at the stock market and the horse races. There is
also Chai Shen Poh, the female version of the Wealth God, whose image
is believed to bring gambling luck if displayed in the southeast sector
of your living room.
Asked which among the items at WOFS shops are their best sellers,
Jocelle Echon, WOFS Podium boutique manager says wealth enhancers are
selling briskly, but WOFS staff are trained to help their clients cover
the feng shui basics first before attempting other energizers; that way
they can be sure that the annual flying stars are taken care of. Flying
what? Jocelle goes on to explain that each year, the annual flying
stars (good and bad energies) change positions, and that we should both
energize the lucky sectors and remedy afflicted sectors of the home.
This is the reason the shop always runs out of Wu Lous and five-element
pagodas, which are known cures for illness or conflict stars. Another
staff noted that customers favor the wearable and portable items, such
as prosperity coins, various types of charms, dzi bracelets and
necklaces. Talk about looking good and being lucky at the same time.
Clearly, all members of the WOFS staff have done their homework.
Jocelle herself took a course in boutique management in Kuala Lumpur,
and reads a lot about feng shui. Prior to WOFS, she used to operate a
coffee shop in her place in Quezon City. Unfortunately, she had to
close it and it was only when she came to WOFS that she started to
understand why the business did not prosper. She failed to apply
directional feng shui, but now she knows better, and everything seems
to be going well with her and all the “WOFS angels,” as a frequent shop
visitor calls the staff at the shop. The term is well-earned, as they
are all capable of assisting clients with their various requirements.
Creating your own wealth vase
The highlight of the May 20 opening was a demonstration on how to
assemble a wealth vase, which Marites says, is one of the best kept
secrets of old Chinese families to make sure that they stay prosperous
through the ages. She walked her audience through the different wealth
enhancers that should go into the vase, how to layer them properly, and
some “secret ingredients” to take care of all her aspirations. The
finished product went into a specific section of the shop to make it
even more auspicious. For those who missed her presentation, Marites
will be glad to talk about it in detail, if you only visit her in any
of the shops or e-mail her at
vase kits, complete with vases and instructional CDs, are available at
all WOFS shops at The Podium (914-7112/914-7888), at WOFS Mall of Asia
(556-0615) and at WOFS in Cebu (032-231-4088). You may also send your
inquiries to WOFS 286 (for Smart subscribers).
Not just for Chinese
Banish the thought that feng shui only works for the Chinese
because the profile of the guests and the walk-in crowd at WOFS says
otherwise. The only difference noted was that the Chinese among us buy
a lot more than what you and I probably do. Again, one might ask, “is
that why they are richer than most of us?” Go figure. Among WOFS’ loyal
clients is Irene Yu, an entrepreneur, who was seen loading up on a
number of feng shui charms. Irene shares that most of the items she
bought were for her personal use, but some of them were “orders” from
friends. Feng shui as a source of additional income? Why not, indeed?
Businessman Enrique Tansipek jokes that he has a large collection
of WOFS items already that he might as well start a shop of his own.
When asked what benefits his collection has brought, he says: “Feng
shui makes you feel good, and those different placements give you a
sense of well-being and before you know it, after some time, things
just start to happen.” From the look on his face, it was easy to
imagine that he meant positive things.
So if you’re planning to have a look-see at the country’s latest
megastructure, remember to be in your most comfortable attire as
there’s a lot of ground to cover. Make the most of your visit—shop till
you drop, experience state-of-the-art theater technology, or simply
have coffee while watching the famous Manila Bay sunset. And to make
your first visit truly worthwhile, why not bring home some luck symbols
Who knows, in time, you might be as fortunate as those people who keep coming back to shop at the World of Feng Shui.