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Monday, 16 October 2017

Filipinos can now travel to Taiwan visa-free

By On October 16, 2017
Photo by Anthena Lam

The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in the Philippines announced today, October 16, 2017 that Taiwan will allow visa-free entry for Filipinos traveling to Taiwan from November 1, 2017 to July 31, 2018.


Filipinos wishing to visit Taiwan for not more than 14 days will no longer need to apply or pay for a visa; instead, a waiver will be issued free-of-charge at the port of entry, upon presentation of a valid passport with a minimum validity of six months, a confirmed onward or return ticket, proof of accommodation (hotel) booking or host/sponsor’s contact information /or arrangements of tour, travel, visit, events and meeting etc., and no criminal record in Taiwan.

Filipinos who would like to stay up to 14 days in Taiwan for tourism activities, business, visiting relatives, attending functions or events can enjoy visa-free entry effective first day of November.
TECO said those who intend to stay in Taiwan for more than 14 days or for the purpose of study, work, missionary, employment and other gainful activities are still required to obtain appropriate visas before entering Taiwan. - TECO

"This visa-free initiative shall undergo a 9-month trial period until July 31, 2018 as part of Taiwan’s goodwill and efforts of the 'New Southbound Policy' to build closer people-to-people exchange of visits," TECO said in a statement Monday.

Other information:

1. Diplomatic and official passport holders are eligible for visa-free treatment.

2. Those who entered Taiwan with valid travel authorization certificates, as well as those with approved e-visas, before November 1, may continue their stay for up to 30 days, TECO said.

3. Those for who did not enter Taiwan before November 1, their travel authorization certificates will be no longer valid, as this "relaxed" visa application systems will be suspended during the 9-month-trial period.

4. Those who have already obtained long-term & multiple Taiwan visas which have been stamped on their passports can still use their visas to enter the Taiwan.

Friday, 29 September 2017

A Drink at Bank Bar in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig

By On September 29, 2017

I would love to say that these past few weeks of fortuitous sips of cocktail concoctions had always been about celebration—the gaiety of making new friends, of surviving the most stressful days, of partaking in a ball, and of reaching new heights in the more important aspect of adult life.   


While to me it is all about celebrating, some people drink liquor because they feel well enough to do it. For the most part, they drink to socialize and unwind. And I get it, some people just need that kick to open up and be more social. In my case, I could get drawn to "drinking" in these dim-lit spaces because of the ambiance—chill music, smoke-free, romantic yet cozy.

If you are into fine dining and sophisticated social dancing, check out Buddha Bar in Makati City. But if you just wanna chill and enjoy booze at a classy drink lounge, head to the Bank Bar at Bonifacio Global City in Taguig.

The entryway to the bar is a quest


Maybe I haven't been to a lot of pubs or bars so I'm saying this. The entrance to Bank Bar is unlike that I picture on my mind. I don't know if it is supposed to be hidden but it's tricky to find if you don't know the place. 

Google map would lead you to RCBC Savings Bank Corporate Center where no Bank Bar sign is visible. You have to go to 7 Eleven convenience store, turn left as soon as you enter into the glass door. There is a thick exit door which apparently is the entrance to the bar. There's usually a guy standing by the door. He'll collect any drink or food you have prior to entering.

The door appears to be the stockroom door which leads to the main entrance to the bar. The stockroom itself has a potential to cause sudden apprehension because of the red light filter except that it is a rather small space and goods like Jufran and Yan-Yan are all over...

A few steps later, my friend Tim Tam pulls aside the heavy curtain to reveal the "top-shelf drinking den".

Inside Bank Bar


I am impressed by the smell. I thought bars would smell anything but fresh. If my olfactory sense remembers correctly, the smell of the place has a hint of bergamot. Or is it Tim Tam? No. Probably not!

The velvet sofa and candles on the marble table make the place attractive and intimate. I couldn't perfectly scan the entire place but what I saw is enough to conclude it's a gorgeous place to hang out.

photo credit to Bank Bar IG account
   

It is worth noting that the tables easily get occupied. Most of them are reserved so better book ahead to secure a good seat.

Due Diligence


Ideally, every human being needs to exercise due diligence. In Bank Bar though, I am not sure if Due Diligence is gender-specific but two things I am certain of: (a) It is not for me (b) Tim Tam craves for it hence our Bank Bar visit.

Due Diligence Bank Bar BGC


Apparently, Due Diligence is among the strongest drink in their menu. It is a whiskey. Tim asked me to try a small sip and I kind of did. The smell is strong. I felt the alcohol evaporate into my system by just bringing the glass near my mouth. So I used a straw. It was not best way to try a whiskey by the way.

Whiskey and other decent liquor are acquired taste for Tim, that, I haven't acquired yet. 

The Queen of them all


I must commend the bar staff who attended us that night for recommending an ultimately refreshing drink from Bank Bar menu—the Queen's Park Swizzle. Tim wanted something fruity for me but I didn't mind a minty drink.

I say this swizzle is the queen of them all because it's the only one I have tried. LOL But to be fair, Tim also liked the taste. It has grapefruit, lime, mint, rum, and muscovado syrup but it is not too sweet nor bitter. It has a nice tart flavor but not sour. I could still taste the freshness of it in my mouth by looking at the photo below.

Queen's Park Swizzle


Frequenting Bank Bar


The reason for me to come back here and hang out would be the ambiance. But for booze lovers, I'm seeing it's the wide selection of drinks in the menu—"from akvavit to absinthe, sake to single malts, grappas to gin and an extensive choice of vermouths, tonics, sodas and such," from momentgroup.ph

"Bank Bar has an impressive drinks list that includes inventive cocktails and the widest selection of any bar in Manila—from akvavit to absinthe, sake to single malts, grappas to gin and an extensive choice of vermouths, tonics, sodas and such.

Online reviews also mention that food at Bank Bar don't disappoint. A bit pricey, but netizens attest to the goodness of their Chicharon Bulaklak. If you are an expat and you don't feel like trying this Filipino delicacy in the streets, might as well order at Bank Bar.

Other food choices: pasta, burger sliders, truffle fries, deep-fried mantou, etc...


THE bar

Price Range


The cost of alcoholic drinks start from Php350 per glass. The cheapest drink you can get is coffee at Php110 plus VAT and service charge. If you are dining and drinking here, a budget of Php2000 for two people would suffice. If you are like me and Tim Tam who went here for one drink, Php1000.00 is enough.

Visit Bank Bar BGC


Bank Bar is located at Ground Floor, RCBC Savings Bank Corporate Center, 26th and 25th Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City

Contact Numbers:
02 8014862
+63 9178570852

Opening hours:
Mondays to Saturdays: 5 PM to 3 AM
Sundays: CLOSED

You can book a table here. 

Have you been to Bank Bar in BGC? What do you think about the place? Would you like to try any drink here? Let me know your thoughts below. Thank you for your time! 

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Regina Victoria Y. De Ocampo of Yamaha Supports Travelooza

By On September 19, 2017


One of the top influential business leaders in the Philippines supporting Travelooza is no other than Ms. Regina Victoria Y. De Ocampo of Yupangco Group of Companies, the grand daughter of the former Philippine President, Jose P. Laurel.


Travelooza is the first and only event that will involve all tour operators and travel agencies across the country for a day of activities aiming to promote the Philippines as premier travel destination in the world.

Presented by Asia Digital Marketing Expo on its 3rd anniversary, Travelooza will hold on September 28, 2017, from 9AM to 5PM at Makati Sports Club along Leviste Street, Salcedo Village, Makati, City.

One of the leaders in the Philippines supporting Travelooza is no other than Ms. Regina Victoria Y. De Ocampo of Yupangco Group of Companies, the grand daughter of the former Philippine President, Jose P. Laurel. According to Regina, supporting these kind of events can create awareness on the beauty of the Philippines and its great potential to be a destination like no other.

Yupangco Group of Companies consists of Yupangco Music Corporation, Yamaha Electronics, Yupangco Music Academy formerly Yamaha School of Music, Zoomanity Group, YL Finance, and many more.

This 2017, according to the company website, after 50 years, G. A. YUPANGCO & CO., INC., through its present complement of 31 stores and 35 music school centers across the Philippines, continues to serve the needs of Filipino musicians and music enthusiasts by providing the state of the art in musical instruments and sound reinforcement technology and the finest in music education, while Zoomanity Group, the Theme Park Management headed by her brother, Robert Laurel Yupangco, is the number 1 theme park destination in the country and is still expanding its attractions.



How to Register for Travelooza


For more information about and how to to register for Travelooza, please send inquiries to events@travelooza.asia or call 09166299381 or 02 9170213


Press Release by Tag Media

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

44L CabinZero Bag - Perfect Carry-on Travel Bag

By On September 12, 2017

For the record, I am not stingy. 

My ex used to complain about my fondness for "cheap travels" and lectured me on why I need to adopt some luxury in my "life". Whatever.

If he were a single parent, he'd probably be more lenient toward practicality. That is to say: I am a single mom and I am very conscious about where I spend my money on. And that I am not stingy, I just choose to be economical.

I wouldn't wanna shell out thousands of pesos for expensive flights or private rides... neither for an extravagant cruise nor iPhone 8... But I'd rather for a pair of trainers... and a durable travel bag.

Recently, I've been traveling quite a lot and I realized it's about time I invest in travel blogger necessities such as power bank (yeah I don't have a power bank), a selfie stick (also this one obviously), a go pro, and a DURABLE TRAVEL BAG - preferably not a suitcase!


Kind of tribute to my Floral Yellow Voyager suitcase


Technically, I can still use my suitcase. But IT'S WORN OUT.

I love that Floral Yellow Voyager luggage. But it is bulky and very beach inappropriate. Got it in January of 2015 and had used it every month since. It packs efficiently. But also tolerates my inability to pack light.

Back then, I was a backpacker without THE backpack. I really wished I had a carry-on travel bag I could wear comfortably on my back without straining my shoulders (or ruining my outfit). But I wasn't really keen on getting a black hiker bag and I kind of found the small backpack I gave to my cousin handy and so me - it was mint green...!

Fast forward to the summer of this year, I saw my blogger friends Travelosyo and Terrific Traveler flaunt their travel bags. One has a camouflage design (and his friend's has a good desert sand shade). My friend Mon's has a bright blue color.

All those travel bags are CabinZero.


What is CabinZero? 


That was a question for myself. Such a shame! I wasn't informed about this British brand of travel bags. But it's never too late to get acquainted with new things, right?

So I did my research, checked CabinZero website, browsed on their products, and read my blogger friends reviews.

Days later, I received my 44L CabinZero Galactic Green Urban Backpack.

Now, I've become a full-fledged CabinZero brand ambassador and I am listing down here the things I love about CabinZero Urban Bags and why I recommend them to you based on my experience traveling with CabinZero!


   


CabinZero Bag Features


Cabin sized


CabinZero bags are accepted as carry on by all the major airlines.

If you've experienced lost luggage or the jostling for space whilst waiting what seems like forever for your luggage to come down the carousel then you'll appreciate the fact that your CabinZero bag will never have to leave your side.

Lightweight


CabinZero bags are light! Their classic collection weighs in at approx. 760g and their military collection is approx. 960g.

CabinZero knows there's nothing worse than traveling with a heavy suitcase so they've designed their bags lightweight.

Okoban tracking


CabinZero bags have built in lost and found tags. This ensures your bag is able to be traced back to you in the event it is lost (or even stolen).

The system is also linked directly into the Airline's own baggage tracing system. You just need to register the tag online with Okoban.com as soon as you receive the bag. Your bag then has lifetime protection using this lost and found system.

Spacious interior


CabinZero bags are spacious. With your CabinZero bag, you sure have a lot of room to fit everything you need on your travels.

25 year warranty


Every CabinZero bag comes with a 10 year warranty. If you go over to their Facebook page and like CabinZero then they'll automatically upgrade your warranty to 25 years!


CabinZero Bag Selections


CabinZero has 28L36L42L, and 44L bags that come in different colors and style.


Some travelers with the'r CabinZero Bags - Photos from (c) CabinZero Instagram account

My Classic 44L Galactic Green Bag


As I have mentioned, my CabinZero is a Classic 44L Galactic Green Bag. The color is perfect for my personality and compliments my shocking pink running shoes. The size is big yet not bulky. The shoulder straps are comfortable. My shoulders didn't complain after a few hours of street walking and a traverse to MRT Shaw Blvd station :p




What I love about #MyCabinZero


✓ It is the perfect carry on because it is cabin-sized


Didn't have any trouble with my bag's dimension because it's built for the cabin. The length, height, thickness - fit perfectly in the overhead bin.

✓ It has a built in Global Tracker powered by Okoban


I registered my bag so I am confident I'd easily track it in case I lose it at the airport.


✓ It has YKK lockable zippers


With lockable zippers, I could leave my bag in the dormitory without worrying anyone would steal something.

✓ It has thick padded shoulder straps


The straps are easy on my shoulders. I didn't have difficulty wearing them for a relatively longer period of time.

✓ It has 25 year warranty

I know if something unfortunate happens to my backpack, I can return it to CabinZero and have it replaced — even after I’ve used it. How awesome is that?!

✓ It has 44L capacity and it is lightweight


I need to squeeze in a lot of stuff into my backpack like my lenses and tripod - by the way, I want to say I was able to fit my tripod into my backpack! Amazing - so I cannot rely on 28L bag. I need 44L capacity.

In my recent travel to Palawan, I packed my 6 day stuff into my bag and they fit just quite right:

Camera lenses
Tripod
Clothes
Snacks
Snorkeling gear
Shoes
Extra bag
Toiletries
Make-up kit
Laptop
Chargers
Hair iron
Hat

✓ It is made with strong, durable materials


I know it is early for me to say but I have a strong feeling that it is sturdy and durable enough. My friends also attest to this as some of them got their bags a year ago. Wash the bag and it immediately looks brand new! The material easily dries off! It is water resistant too!

✓ The price is just right


Backpacks in the US usually range from 99 USD to 299 USD. CabinZero is just around 80 USD! I know it is still slightly costly converted to Philippine peso, but with the quality, convenience, and warranty you are getting - it's just worth having!


The Girl with the Muji Hat with her Cabin Zero Bag


Parting Words


I am utterly happy to have my CabinZero bag. My recent travel packing was efficient and comfortable because of it.

I am excited to travel to my next destination with my CabinZero bag. No more baggage check-ins, no more leaving my suitcase in coin lockers. My travel bag can stay right by my side (well on my back) wherever I go, whenever I am on the go.


***If you want to get your own CabinZero Bag

you can use my CODE to get 10% DISCOUNT!***



What do you think about CabinZero carry-on travel bag? Do you want to have one for yourself? Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below! Thanks!


Sunday, 10 September 2017

Solo Travel Budget for Puerto Princesa and El Nido, Palawan

By On September 10, 2017

What is the cheapest budget for traveling solo in Puerto Princesa and El Nido?

I created this post to answer a pressing inquiry from our solo travelers Facebook group. I admit I am mainly too lazy to respond to the discussion thread and I thought this could be helpful to some local travelers too, so I decided to create this quick post.

How much budget do you need to enjoy Puerto Princesa and El Nido, Palawan? Let me list down the expenses to help you plan your trip. 


AIR FARE AND TERMINAL FEE


Cheapest round trip airfare with Cebu Pacific would be P2600 from Manila to Puerto Princesa. If you want to head straight to El Nido from Manila, you can take a direct flight with Philippine Airlines which would cost you more.

The terminal fee for domestic flight is paid at Puerto Princesa airport before you go back to Manila.

Local - P 200
Foreigner - P 700

LCC Cebu Pacific at Puerto Princesa Airport


TRANSPORTATION


Tricycle fare from Puerto Princesa Airport to downtown would be P 150 - P 200 depending on the distance. At most, you'd need to pay P 300. If the tricycle driver asks for P500 and you are just going to Robinson's or a hotel close by or to the van terminal to El Nido, politely negotiate.  

Multi-cabs get around the city with minimum fare of P 8.00. If you are like my Spanish friend who's fond of traveling like a local, try public transportation such as town tricycle or multi-cabs.

PRO TIP: Look like you know where you are going or like you've been in Palawan for long

Van from Puerto Princesa to El Nido is P 600 per person. The travel time is 6 hours including stops. When I traveled from El Nido to Puerto Prinsesa, it took a relatively shorter time. Ironically, the driver was actually picking passengers along the way. I thought it should've taken us longer.

Tricycle ride from downtown El Nido to the van terminal is P50.00


FOOD


If you are like me who don't eat rice at night, then your dinner can be as cheap as P25.00 for one short order of Adobo or a vegetable dish in a "karinderya" or a street-side Filipino diner.

In some small restaurants, you can eat rice meals at P 99.00.

Cheapest dinner in El Nido down town is at P50.

Water is P20 per bottle.

Filipino breakfast at Austria's in El Nido


ACCOMMODATION


Cheapest accommodation in Puerto Princesa is P 204.00 per night  for a bunk bed with shared bathroom and unlimited coffee.

In particular, you can check YOUR SPACE. The room here is air conditioned. The staff are friendly. You can book a room via Travelbook.ph booking site. You don't need a credit card to book a room. You can pay at the hotel when you check-in.

Cheapest accommodation in El Nido is P200 per night in a camping site that is an hour away from the airport.

In downtown, I recommend AUSTRIA'S PLACE. For a private fan room with shared bathroom and inclusive breakfast, it would cost you P450 per night including city tax and other charges.

If you want an awesome hotel in Puerto Princesa, you can check the stylish, design forward Hue Hotels and Resorts Puerto Princesa. It is not cheap though.

Bunk bed room at YOUR SPACE, Puerto Princesa, Palawan


MOBILE DATA


If you buy a sim card for P40.00, you can register your network for an unlimited internet browsing for 7 days. The cost is P70.00.


ACCESSORIES


I need to mention this because I found this useful. Dry bags for your stuff is sold at P300. But you can just use garbage bag to protect your bags. Some tours actually provide these for the guests.

Smartphone waterproof case is P100.00.

Snorkeling rental in Honda bay is 150.00.

Shops in Puerto Princesa Subterranean River Port


ACTIVITIES & TOURS


I highly recommend you book your tours with Northern Hope Tours El Nido. They specialize in El Nido island hopping tours but they also provide island and in land tours in Puerto Princesa. I am posting a review for my experience with them in another blog post.

I made a video from the clips I took from the tours I enjoyed with Northern Hope Tours.



The activities you can try in Puerto Princesa and El Nido with Northern Hope Tours are:

1. Underground River Tour in Puerto Princesa 


Rate: 2,000 Pesos/person

Duration: 7AM to 5PM

Includes round trip air-conditioned van transfer, buffet lunch, Underground River Permit, Boat Transfers, Paddle Boat Tour inside the Underground River, Environmental Fee and Licensed Tour Guide to assist you.

The Girl with the Muji Hat at Underground River Tour

2. Honda Bay Tour Puerto Princesa


Rate: 1,300 Pesos/person

Duration: 7 AM to 4 PM

Includes air conditioned van transfer, lunch, entrance fees, boat for island hopping and licensed tour guide to assist you.

3. City Tour Puerto Princesa


Rate: 600 Pesos/person

Places to visit: Bay walk, Immaculate Concepcion Cathedral, Plaza Cuartel, Princess Eulalia Park
Souvenir shop/market, Mitra’s Ranch, Baker’s Hill, Binuatan Weaving Center and Crocodile Farm

Duration:
Half-Day (4 hours)
Morning – 8AM to 12NN
Afternoon – 1PM to 5PM

Includes: Air conditioned Van Transfers, Guide, Entrance Fees and Small Snack

4. El Nido Tour A


Rate: 1,200 Pesos/person

Places to visit: Big Lagoon, Small Lagoon, Simizu Island, Secret Lagoon and 7 Commandos Beach

Schedule: 9 AM to 4 PM

Includes: Lunch, mask & snorkel, life vest and guides to assist you

Lovely shot by a traveler I met during the tour


5. El Nido Tour B


Rate: 1,300 Pesos/person

Places to visit: Entalula Island, Pinagbuyutan Island, Snake Island, Cudugnon Cave and Cathedral Cave

Schedule: 9 AM to 4 PM

Includes: Lunch, mask & snorkel, life vest and guides to assist you

6. El Nido Tour C


Rate: 1,400 Pesos/person

Places to visit: Hidden Beach, Helicopter Island, Secret Beach, Matinloc Shrine and Star Beach

Schedule: 9 AM to 4 PM

Includes: Lunch, mask & snorkel, life vest and guides to assist you

7. El Nido Tour D


Rate: 1,200 Pesos/person

Places to visit: Bukal Island, Ipil Beach, Nat-Nat Beach, Cadlao Lagoon and Paradise Beach

Schedule: 9 AM to 4 PM

Includes: Lunch, mask & snorkel, life vest and guides to assist you

8. Kayaking on the lagoons


Rate: P300 per Kayak (for 2 people)

Kayaking on the big lagoon

9. El Nido land tours


Roundtrip Tricycle Rental: 1,500 Pesos/tricycle (whole day) - A tricycle can fit up to 3 persons

Places to visit: Nacpan Beach, Waterfall, Maregmeg Beach


GO PRO RENTAL


Go pro rental is P 1000 per day. You can also coordinate with Northern Hope Tours if you want to rent a Go Pro.


BOOZE


I am not really sure about the exact price but I believe in grocery shops you can buy san mig light in can for P40 pesos or around that cost. Don't ask me about cigarettes. Maybe you should try Buko juice if you feel some cravings. Coconuts are sold for P50.00.

Buko Juice at Seven Commando Beach, El Nido, Palawan



SUMMARY OF EXPENSES


Given the costs I have collated above, you can see in this table a plausible day to day expenses for your solo travel:


You see, if you are a foreigner traveling solo to Palawan and you intend to enjoy the best tours in Puerto Prinsesa and El Nido, you would need P13,859 or around 272 USD

But if you're a local traveler and don't need to rent go pro, you can subtract 1500 from that total cost - and that would be P 12,359. AHHH You can less the souvenir expenses too! So around, P11,900 for a 5 day travel!

USD 272 for 5 days and 4 nights in Puerto Princesa and El Nido maybe cheap for foreign travelers, but HEY things can GET even CHEAPER.

The Girl with the Muji Hat with Northern Hope Tours


Parting Words


Upon comparing, it is more budget friendly to avail Northern Hope Tours 5-Days-4-Nights Package for 2 people for Puerto Princesa and El Nido. I will discuss this more in my next blog post.

For now, let me leave you with this information in hope to help you in your planning!

Have you been to Puerto Princesa and El Nido? How much money did you spend for a 5 days travel? Do you want to go solo traveling in Palawan? Let me hear your thoughts below. And if you have questions you know where to reach me. Finally, if you find this article useful, you know what to do. Share! Thank you so much! 

Saturday, 9 September 2017

HUE Hotels and Resorts, Puerto Princesa, Palawan: Hotel Review

By On September 09, 2017


Confession: as soon as the airport shuttle approached Hue Hotels & Resorts' front entrance, I was stunned by the romantic edge of the hotel facade. 


I've seen numerous photos of the hotel online and for the most part I found them all to be lovely. But I didn't think looking at the hotel in person would be captivating with all its night lights and design-forward architecture. 

I asked the driver to stop the van so I could take photos. Unfortunately, my skill vaguely gave justice to what I saw. I decided to keep the photos to myself. 

Subsequent to the failed night photography attempts, the van went on and parked at the hotel entrance. I got off the shuttle. The driver helped me out with my stuff just like what he did when I met him at the airport. 

The driver is a chatty type. But I didn't mind listening to him because he was talking about Palawan and the hotel itself. It seems he is very keen on giving guests a warm welcome. Plus, I was the only passenger at the shuttle, I sensed he didn't want that awkward silence.


HUE welcomed me 


The lobby is neat and contemporary. The space is finished with clean white walls with some sections brushed with obvious texture, some with artificial wall-mounted plants, and some with 3D bird art. The wall art is inspired by Swiflets, locally known as "balinsasayaw". These birds are found in the towering limestone cliffs of Palawan and famous exotic ingredient in Bird’s Nest soup. 

I remembered Changi by Fraser Hotel in Singapore when I saw the wall of balinsasayaw

The check-in counter has colorful triangular patterns. I'm not really sure about the material, but the patterns are also present in some sections of my room. 

Two receptionists greeted me with a lovely smile and gave me hand towels and a welcome drink. The check-in didn't take long. Although I insisted on staying at the lobby for  a bit to savor the lemongrass drink and observe more on the creative hotel interior.


Hotel foyer


There are at least five styles of seats at Hue Hotels' lobby. These coloured furniture are comfortable to sit on and are positioned well against patterned wall dividers.   

Just before you take the stairs on the right or go further to the elevator on the left, there is the selfie ready HUE letters. 




Suite at the third floor


The pretty receptionist told me my room is a Suite at 330. Buffet breakfast is at Matiz and starts at 6AM. She then gave me the key card that says "the key to a vibrant island getaway is with U". 

The other receptionist named Angel escorted me to my room. 

Upon entering, she began to explain about the room facilities specifically the room service call button. There is no need to hang a room service card by the door, guests just need to click the button for requests. 

In my Instagram post, I mentioned that there are many things to love about the Suite but I didn't enumerate.

Now let me tell you about what I love about Hue Hotels and Resorts Suite:


1. Room service requests is faster because of the installed room service button.

2. Vibrant color accents seen on the rattan carpet, pillows, mirror design, toiletries, couch, and compliments. 

3. King bed is soft, smooth, fragrant, and has snug pillows and duvet. The headboard is artistic and Instagrammable :p

4. The room is quiet even if the hotel is located along the main road.

5. The room is well-lit with stylish and elegant lamps.

6. The complimentary water bottle is unique.

7. The room has plenty of power outlets, I didn't have troubles charging my gadgets.

8. THE WIFI CONNECTION IS STABLE AND FAST! 

9. The bathroom!


I watched TV from the tub


I felt like Kristina Kuzmik in the bathtub minus the wine and overflowing bubbles. That is to say: I was completely relaxed. I drank tea and watched TV while soaked into the tub.

Truth be told, I am a sucker for bathtub. It is among my considerations when choosing hotel rooms because my soul is Japanese! I am kidding. I just find it comforting to have hot bath before bedtime. 

I loved the bathroom though I had an issue on the shower room. It doesn't have soap holder and the shower handle was tricky to operate.

PRO TIP: Immediately ask for help

In my case, I tried to figure it out until I gave up and succumb to the bathtub. 

The restroom has toiletries that are neither generic nor incomplete.


Pool area

Hue Hotels' roof deck has a pool area and bar for dining, drinking, and leisure. Here, guests need not go out for dinner or night life.

At the bar, there are wide selections of drinks to choose from.

Lounge chairs line up the pool that is lit up at night.



Spa treatment at Amihan 


Just past the service elevator is the Amihan Spa. Guests can enjoy traditional body massage in this relaxing place after a whole day of island touring. 

Breakfast at Matiz


The buffet breakfast at Matiz is not to be missed. The food selections are plenty. Guests can enjoy Filipino favorites like bagnet, sinigang, tinapa (smoked fish) pinakbet, sisig, pickled quail eggs, pickled papaya, longganisa, etc. Italian, Chinese, and Spanish dishes like Paella are also in the menu. The taste of the food is not to die for but already enjoyable and filling.

The staff are attentive and polite. They refill drinks right away. Clean up the tables and replenish food trays at once.

The interior of the Matiz is everything to me. I like the suspended tables, the mixture of bare and worn-out wooden walls. I'm stunned by the collection of pendant lighting that hangs from the ceiling adding warmth to the restaurant's predominantly rustic interior.


Tours for you from HUE 


If you are too busy to arrange tours for yourself or your group, you can leave the planning to the hotel. You can just sit back and relax. The rest is up to #HUE.

For the tours I highly recommend you try Puerto Princesa Underground River Tour and Honda Bay Tour.



Location


Hue Hotels and Resorts Puerto Princesa is approximately a 15 minute drive from Puerto Princesa Airport. It is located at Km. 3 Puerto Princesa North Road, Brgy. San Manuel, Puerto Princesa City, Palawan, Philippines 5300 next to Robinson's Mall.  


You can contact Hue Hotels at:


TELEPHONE

Manila Office:
(+632) 896 9999 / 896 4061 / 896 3740
Palawan Property:
(048) 717 88 88


E-MAIL

reservations@thehuehotel.com ; palawanreservations@thehuehotel.com ; palawan@thehuehotel.com

To know more about Hue Hotels and Resorts Puerto Princesa, check out their Facebook page. You can also follow them on Instagram account for ongoing promotions and events. 



Parting words


Hue Hotels & Resorts Puerto Princesa is a sensible choice if you're looking for a modern, well-polished property with appreciation of Filipino culture and reasonably-priced amenities to accommodate you in your great Palawan escape. 


My stay here was pleasant, remarkable, and fun. The management did a great job in pulling off coordinated aesthetic details of the hotel's design that left me a memorable impression. My experience with the staff, the amenities, and food makes me scream it's indeed #NicetomeetHUE!

I'd love to go back to Hue Hotels and Resorts if I find myself in Puerto Princesa again. I also recommend you to stay here!


You can book a room here:


What do you think about HUE Hotels and Resorts Puerto Princesa? Have you been here? If not, would you like to stay? What are your considerations when choosing a hotel? Let me hear your comments below! If you find this review helpful, please do share! 


Thursday, 17 August 2017

All-new Pizza Hut Flagship Store at SM Mall of Asia Opens

By On August 17, 2017

Pizza Hut on Tuesday, August 15, unveiled its all-new flagship store at SM Mall of Asia with a fast casual dining concept and additional services.

The celebration was graced by the top executives of Philippine Pizza Inc. and SM Prime Holdings, some media friends, and the reigning Bb. Pilipinas, led by Bb. Pilipinas Universe Rachel Peters, Pizza Hut’s Brand Ambassador.


Bb. Pilipinas Winners and Philippine Pizza Inc. Top Executives posing for a "Pizza Slicing Ceremony"

Now open to serve your favorite pizza, the 385 square meter redesigned store is the biggest in the Philippines with 175 seating capacity, wider dining space, show kitchen, merchandise corner, and new set of menu.

Philippine Pizza Inc. Chief Operating Officer Mr. Phil Reed talks about Pizza Hut's modest beginning and where it is heading

Fifty nine years ago, Pizza Hut started as a small pizza restaurant in Wichita, Kansas put up by two enterprising college students Frank and Dan Carney. The two siblings borrowed 600USD from their mother and used such meager amount to sell pizza in their hometown.   

To date, Pizza Hut is the world’s largest and most popular pizza chain with more than 15, 600 restaurants in 90 countries. 

Philippine Pizza Inc. Chief Marketing Officer Mr. Lorent Adrias talks about Pizza Hut SM Mall of Asia's dining concept 

Pizza Huts popularity is also apparent in the Philippines. Pizza lovers can enjoy its Dine-in Restaurants, Delivery Units, and Express Counters all in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces as well as in Visayas and Mindanao.   

Philippine Pizza Inc. Chief Marketing Officer Mr. Lorent Adrias interacting with some bloggers

For almost six decades, Pizza Hut has retained its popularity by keeping up with the times while staying true to its battle cry—great pizza for all! 

"At Pizza Hut, pizza lovers are guaranteed not only of the best-tasting pizza, pasta, and chicken wings, but also of excellent customer-oriented service and that feeling of being in your own happy place with friends and family." 

Pizza Hut SM Mal of Asia management performing their powerful cheer

What can we expect from Pizza Hut SM Mall of Asia?


The newly renovated Pizza Hut store in SM Mall of Asia switched from a formal dining concept to a rather fast casual that is easy to access and to avail of. 

"What we are offering in our new flagship store at SM Mall of Asia is a more immediate and less tedious dining concept," says Lorent Adrias, Chief Marketing Officer of Philippine Pizza Inc. "The move to renovate and make the store in SM Mall of Asia bigger, better, and a venue to experience the total pizza experience is also made possible by Pizza Hut's strong partnership with SM Prime Holdings, Inc., SM Mall's subsidiary," adds Adrias. 

1. More spacious dining space



2. Show Kitchen



3. Tastier pasta, pizza, and chicken to love



4. Coffee and Dessert bar



5. Excellent customer-oriented service from its lovely staff



6. Merchandise Corner




Flashing my Pizza Hutstuff: CAP AND SLING BAG...

Another thing you can expect from Pizza Hut SM Mall of Asia is frequency of a beauty queen. So if you are a fan of the reigning Bb. Pilipinas Universe Ms. Rachel Peters, chances are you gonna bump into her at Pizza Hut SM Mall of Asia. Why? Because: 1. It is near her place. 2. She is a Pizza Hut super fan!  

Enjoy your pizza moment with family and friends at Pizza Hut SM Mall of Asia located at Level 1 Main Mall Entrance. For more information you can follow them at their website


What do you think about Pizza Hut? Have you dined at their flagship store in SM Mall of Asia? Do you like Pizza Chains? Let me know your thoughts below! 

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