Ever wonder what it would be like to wield a bow and arrow, like Hawkeye or Katniss Everdeen? Well, now you can feel the rush without the element of danger, and be healthy to boot, at Gandiva Archery and Café.
Located in Ortigas, Pasig City, this unique business was set up by the Bismark family because of their passion for both archery and healthy living. “[Archery] runs in the blood,” said Chad Bismark, Gandiva Inc. president. When his father, Joseph, discovered the sport, he encouraged Chad, along with his siblings and cousins, to take it up too.
The public’s perception of archery has changed since Gandiva opened seven years ago. Gandiva’s instructors offer a 1-hour archery package, basic archery lessons, enhancement lessons, and compound bow lessons. They also provide archery-themed events and mobile setups for team-building sessions, or to add an unconventional twist to parties.
These days, both café and range are often full. “Movies and series like The Hunger Games, The Avengers, and The Walking Dead helped introduce the sport to the Philippine market,” said Bismark, but adds that archery’s true appeal is that it is open to pros and newbies alike. And although it does require arm strength, it is really more of a mental sport.
Pop culture-based hype aside, Gandiva plans to make the sport more accessible to Filipinos. From a small 4-lane space, the range has already expanded to nine lanes with an 18-meter shooting distance.
A discounted 1-hour archery trial package is priced at P980 ($21), while range rental and equipment rental are priced at P350 ($7.50).
“Gandiva grew not just in terms of store space, but also to the public. We were able to open doors to first timers [and] provide them with an experience of archery,” said Bismark.
Zar is a freelance writer and press relations consultant for local tech startups. Follow her on Twitter,@zar_castro.
This article was originally published in the February 2015 issue of Entrepreneur Philippines magazine. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editors.