Visual Gears: The edge in customized eye care

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Sunday, February 2, 2014


WHILE it's almost a given to find an optical shop or two in every mall or commercial center, not all of them are equal. Visual Gears at the ground level of Abreeza of the Ayala Malls not only has superior ophthalmic lens and frames; its resident optometrist also offers customized service that sets it apart from the rest.

Dr. Michael Monterola owns and runs Visual Gears, opening its doors to the public in October last year. While the shop may be a newbie in the market, Dr. Mike is a veteran in the industry. He comes from a family of optometrists in Davao; all of his siblings are licensed optometrists, owning a number of optical shops in the city.

Dr. Mike put up his own shop armed with over a dozen years of local and international experience.

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He acquired his professional license after earning his degree in optometry at the Centro Escolar University in 1989.

Dr. Mike then worked as an optometrist in Brunei, Miri Sarawak and Kota Kinabalu in Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait for almost 15 years, gaining significant experience and vast knowledge on the industry. He also spent four years as a Sales and Lens Consultant for Essilor Philippines, part of the prestigious French company Essilor International, the world leader in ophthalmic lenses and ophthalmic optical equipment.

"As the consultant for Mindanao, I traveled all over the island to update optometrists and ophthalmologists about the latest products and innovations of Essilor lenses, as well as trouble shoot and implement sales and marketing strategies," Dr. Mike said, adding that he received his technical training in Singapore from Essilor, which also owns Nikon ophthalmic lenses and Swissflex frame products, the eyeglass frame of choice of Hollywood A-listers.

His work experience has made him an authority on the latest innovations in ophthalmic lenses which, coupled with his 15 years of experience as an optometrist, makes him an eye doctor that is a cut above the rest.

His technical knowledge is an advantage he makes full use of when serving his clients, catering to their specific needs and providing customized service.

Dr. Mike's technical know-how allows him to guide laboratories in developing two-toned transition lenses and those that are up to 80percent to 90percent darker (the usual is 70percent), something that only he can do given his product knowledge and training abroad. He also banks on his work ethics to guide him in dealing with patients.

"It's important to get accurate and complete information from my patients so I can match the product to their work habits, activities, and lifestyle. I give them all the options available to them and let them decide what they need and want," he said. With so many products available in the market today,

Dr. Mike ensures his patients are able to make informed choices by giving them the facts and advice they need.

He advises those nearing or turning 40 to get regular eye checkups because this is the stage when a person's eyesight deteriorates, and to keep a healthier diet and lifestyle, all of which can adversely affect eye health.

Visual Gears is open during mall hours of Abreeza to cater to patients who need eye refraction services and get the latest and the best ophthalmic lens and frames, and even fashionable eyewear. Get the most out of your visit to Visual Gears by making sure Dr. Mike is around by calling 082 324-0658, 0917-630-7163, 0925-743-1967 and ask for an appointment. Or simply walk up to Visual Gears fronting Robinson's Supermarket when in Abreeza.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 03, 2014.

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