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I want to be a student forever ... but onLy if I receive an aLLowance.

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Yehey! Fully Booked! Manila's answer to Kinokuniya and Barnes & Noble

Thursday, December 4, 2008
From Architect to Bookseller?

What began as a young architect's passion for the books of his trade turned, within a decade, into a bookstore chain that's now the Philippines' leading seller of the world's best and most sought-after books.

In the early '90s, no one would have thought that Jaime Daez would become a professional bookseller, perhaps least of all Jaime himself. He had just completed his architectural studies at Navarre in Spain and was enrolled in a Philippine university for the same degree, believing it was the perfect compromise between science and art. He had also imbibed the culture of Europe and the Spanish language, which he now spoke like a native.

At first, he just wanted to build up his own collection of architectural books. There was this Spanish publisher, El Croquis, whose avant-garde books he coveted. When he returned to Manila from Spain, he was dissatisfied with what was locally available, so he wrote El Croquis and presented himself as a possible distributor.

Today, the business that Jaime started with an investment of just P10,000--about $400 in those years-- has become a formidable figure in the Philippine bookselling industry.

Daez's bookstore chain goes by the shingle of "FULLY BOOKED," an apt description for a shop that sells everything from the latest Washington Beltway sizzlers and Booker Prize winners to Neil Gaiman's modern classics and some of the world's lushest, plushest books on photography, travel, food, and interior design.

After his foray into door-to-door bookselling, Daez opened his first bookshop in 1997- a small hole-in-the-wall on Pasong Tamo in Makati called Bibliarch. He the went through what he now calls a "painful but instructive" period of franchisee of a Singaporean chain before deciding to go all out with Fully Booked at the Rockwell Center.

From a small hole-in-the-wall bookshop, Fully Booked has grown to six branches around Metro Manila and the recently opened branches at Shangri-la and Ayala Center, Cebu. Two more branches are expected to rise at Greenbelt 5 and Trinoma.

A diehard comic-book fan and collector whose walls are filled with original cover art, Daez- born 1971- knows what his generation wants, and more. Fully Booked is his way of giving it to Filipinos, of keeping the locals and visitors in touch with the latest and the best of whatever comes out of New York and London.

A state-of-the-art basement theater

Source: Mabuhay Magazine

Here are some pictures taken at Fully Booked event last November 28 at Bonifacio High Street.
Thanks to Yehey! for this another successful blog event.
Of course, Elaine Uy, Kan Kan Ramos and Laszlo.

Kudos also to Hizon's Catering for the sumptuous foods they served us. Great food!!!

And of course to Fully Booked for giving us 2 books each which I haven't read it yet, whew!!!

Photo courtesy of Azrael

and it ends with a high jump...

For more pictures, click here