The Elephant House, a famed Scottish authors’ café hailed as the “birthplace” of Harry Potter, is preparing to open its first international branch outside of Edinburgh, which is good news for Harry Potter fans in the Philippines. The eagerly awaited venue will be located in the bustling center of the brand-new Greenhills Mall and provide Filipino book lovers with a one-of-a-kind experience steeped in literary heritage.
Greenhills Mall in San Juan City has long been a refuge for hobby shops that cater to collectors with a variety of interests. The enormous collection of items available here for collectors to peruse includes toys, figurines, trading cards, and K-pop photo cards. A thriving collection of eateries and cafes awaits outside the mall, offering a tantalizing range of cuisines to satisfy every palate. It will proudly host the first International Elephant House Café in the Philippines in December 2023, bringing a little magic to the already thriving dining and shopping scene.
“We‘re beyond excited for Greenhills Mall to be the home of The Elephant House in the Philippines. Greenhills Mall has always supported the many interests and hobbies of our shoppers, and the Harry Potter fandom will soon experience the magic themselves,” says Arch. Renee Bacani, Vice President of Ortigas Malls.
The Elephant House, in collaboration with retail brand Museum Context, has formed a groundbreaking partnership with Philippine restaurant group Visum Ventures. This marks the first international venture for Elephant House under its Elephant House International brand. The renowned Museum Context, located on the vibrant and picturesque Victoria Street in Edinburgh—a beloved destination for Potter enthusiasts due to its resemblance to Diagon Alley—will soon be accessible to Harry Potter fans of all ages.
Elephant House owner David Taylor and retail entrepreneur Andrew McRae, creator and curator of unique private label products and officially licensed Harry Potter merchandise available through his Museum Context stores, launched their partnership in December 2022. Scottish food producers are set to benefit from the enterprise which will see unique Elephant House blend coffee, teas, and menus featuring tried and tested recipes alongside Scottish produce such as Walker’s shortbread, Loch Fyne smoked salmon and Barr’s Irn Bru.
The Elephant House, which first opened in Scotland in 1995, has developed into a well-known tourist attraction that enthralls people who love the Harry Potter universe. The magic continues inside, as Museum Context has offered a variety of Harry Potter items that are legitimately licensed, along with numerous elephant-themed embellishments. It’s a special place where fans may bond over their shared passion of the popular series.
Customers can savor the cafe’s delectable treats, which include teas, delicious Scottish food, and the distinctive Elephant House mix coffee. It will accurately reproduce the atmosphere and menu in the Philippines. As dusk falls, the cafe will open a whisky bar as an added treat for nocturnal customers. Without a doubt, with Visum Ventures’ assistance, this flagship store will grow into a must-see destination for Potterheads looking for a fully realized magical encounter.
An amazing lineup of food and beverage brands, including well-known ones like Koomi, Oh My Greek, and ZIG as well as fresh ones like Salt & Ice and Crown Street Kitchen, has been assembled by Visum Ventures, a business located in the Philippines.
John-Michael Hilton, the company’s founder and CEO, has also partnered with well-known companies like Tsokolateria, Bebang, No. 1 Malatang, and T2. On February 28, Hilton made a trip to Edinburgh where he signed an exclusive contract giving Visum Ventures the authority to launch Elephant House International in the Philippines.
“Our portfolio is expanding with the exciting addition of Elephant House International. This franchise will offer Filipinos and tourists a unique and appealing experience, combining Harry Potter fandom, immersive ambiance, and merchandise sales,” says Hilton. He added that the “Philippines has a flourishing cafe culture, a local customer base, and tourist population seeking a distinctive and unforgettable cafe experience.”
The Elephant House International CEO and co-founder, Andrew McRae said: “We are thrilled to sign our first partnership with an organization that has the caliber and track record of Visum Ventures and underlines the international appeal of the one-of-a-kind brand experience we have created.”
“Filipino consumers are always looking for new and exciting food and beverage options, and The Elephant House offer of innovative products and experiences has the potential to do extremely well in this market. Our range of exclusive and niche products are not available in other retail stores which gives us a unique selling proposition that will surely stand out in a crowded retail market.”
The arrival of The Elephant House in Greenhills Mall signifies a momentous achievement for Ortigas Malls, as they consistently strive to provide Filipinos with exceptional experiences. The profound impact of the Harry Potter series, encompassing both the books and movies, has touched the lives of countless individuals. Now, from December 15 onwards, they can immerse themselves in a touch of magic right in Greenhills.
This is just one of the many concepts that Greenhills Mall will offer. Be sure to stay tuned via Greenhills Mall’s Facebook (@greenhillsshoppingcenter) and Instagram (@greenhillsph) pages to see more exciting concepts in the future.
For more information on The Elephant House and updates on other activities, download the Ortigas Malls app and register for the Ortigas Community Card to enjoy exclusive perks.