The Jollibee in Milan: the “Mecca” of Expatriate Filipinos

As I keep saying in my posts, marrying a Filipina entails marrying a woman who comes from a culture that has been massively shaped by the USA.

In the Philippines there are shopping malls and fast-food restaurants everywhere and if your Filipino spouse moves to your country she will most likely want to spend much of her free time going to the mall or eating out at some fast-food restaurant.

I live in Italy and, theoretically, in my country there are plenty of places where a couple could enjoy romantic moments together, like walking hand in hand on a street of cobblestones under an old street lamp in downtown Rome for example.

Yet, the reason why many Filipinos like going downtown Rome is not the ancient buildings or the streets of cobblestones, rather it is because near the main train station there is a KFC restaurant, it is because of the Mc Donald’s restaurant near the famous Spanish Steps and so on.

But, because most shopping malls and fast-food chains are situated in the outskirts of Rome, most Filipinos would rather go to a mall in the suburbs than to the magnificent historic section of Rome.

Nowadays Filipinos in Italy have one more place to visit in the country and this place is becoming a sort of Mecca where hundreds of Filipinos go on some sort of “pilgrimage” from various parts of Italy: the Jollibee in Milan, the first one in Europe.

Jollibee is the largest fast food chain in the Philippines, operating a nationwide network of over 1100 stores. The company has also embarked on an aggressive international expansion plan in the USA, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Brunei and now Europe and it’s considered a Top 20 Employer in Asia.

So, even if you come from a country filled with natural or historic beauty and places that would be ideal to spend romantic moments together, there is a much greater chance that you will end up doing some “romantic” window shopping at the mall or, if you live in Europe, you will go on a “pilgrimage” to Milan’s Jollibee!

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