July 29, 2011

Beautiful Samantha's Farm

Remember Samantha's Farm? My brother invited us over for an overnight stay at their farm, Samantha's Farm in Morong Bataan.

They did some minor tweaking inside the house since my last post: they took out the bar and replaced it with a proper dining table, put a painting in the living area, and so on and so forth. The result, a beautiful and cozy atmosphere.









We would have loved to stay longer but the place was being rented the following day and besides we need to prepare our things before coming back here to Phnom Penh.

If you're in the Philippines for a vacation, why not explore Bataan and stay at Samantha's Farm? You'll have nature at its best for company.

July 26, 2011

Maldives Memories



For this week's Tuesday Travel, I dug deeper in my photo files. I wish to share photos during my time in Maldives. I used to work there, in Fullmoon Maldives, now called Sheraton Fullmoon Maldives.

But what I am sharing now are the photos taken during my 27th birthday at Makunudo Island Resort in Maldives. That was 6 years ago. Hahaha!!! Thanks to my friend, Yvonne, for the complimentary stay there.

Speed boat ride
The speedboat ride from the airport to the resort. If memory serves me right, it was about an hour.


White sand, blue and green water...sexy ladies. Hahahaha!!!


Full emo mode. Hahaha!!!


This is my favorite shot of the batch.

I want to visit Maldives again. Sigh. I wish a fairy godmother would hand me tickets and hotel vouchers now. LOL!

A Cinema in Cambodia!

A first cinema in Cambodia screening Hollywood movies has recently opened in Phnom Penh City. Yay!

It's about time, I'd say.

I heard from friends that you need to buy tickets in advance as they easily sell out. So I bought our Kung Fu Panda 2 tickets two days in advance.

EJ and Hubby after the show. We watched Kung Fu Panda 2 in 3D. And it was awesome!

This is the ticket counter. I love it that you get to choose your seats. By the way, the ticket price is $6 for the regular seat and $8 for a VIP seat. The difference? VIP seats are bigger and that's it.

Food Counter. Every ticket comes with a free $1 voucher good for a softdrinks.


Captain America, coming soon.


I love Kung Fu Panda 2. But I love Legend Cinemas even more for bringing it here. There is no need to go to Bangkok just to watch a movie. Some people do!

For more info, visit their Fan Page at Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LegendCinema and check back often. They are giving away tickets thru competitions and lucky draws.

Legend Cinemas
3rd floor CityMall, Street Monireth
Sangkat Veal Vong, Khan 7 Makara
Phnom Penh Cambodia
Tel #088 954 9857 (Contact time: 10:00 to 22:00 Everyday)

July 25, 2011

Hotel Review: Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu

On our recent trip to Cebu, we stayed at Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu. In the beginning, I had a little difficulty choosing our hotel. Hubby voted for Marriott Cebu. I couldn't blame him. We've had great experiences with Marriott chains. But I wanted to give Radisson Blu a chance.

I read reviews and it looked like Radisson Blu wins over Marriott by a few points. That gave me the confidence to book Radisson.

And guess what, we had a great stay there!

I booked the Deluxe room with breakfast thru Agoda. I paid around $217 for two night's stay. I'd say, it was worth it.

Radisson Blu Hotel Room 1
Our Deluxe room. I loved the bed, the pillows, iPod dock and most of all the free internet in the room. You can choose either the lan cable or the wifi internet for connection. Yup, they have two connection.

Radisson Blu Hotel Room 2
With EJ making face. Our view is the SM City Cebu's parking lot and Cebu Harbour.

Radisson Bathroom
The bathroom. It's basic, no frill bathroom. No bathtub. But I did not mind. There was no time anyway for dipping in the tub.

Radisson Blu Lobby
I love the huge lobby.

Radisson Blu Lobby1
They change the flower arrangement everyday. Beautiful!

Radisson Elevators
Elevators

Radisson stairs going to pool
My son posing on the stairs going down to the pool and bar.

Radisson pool
At the pool. We did not have time for swimming though.

The hotel breakfast was also good. They had great choices and we loved the Filipino fare.

Breakfast
My husband's plate: two fried eggs, dilis, dried pusit, danggit, longganisa, and corned beef. The waiters were nice and polite. They bring your coffee and tea right away.

Another plus factor, this hotel  is just right beside SM City Cebu. So dining choices is not limited to the hotel's cafe and room service.

As I have said above, we had a fantastic stay at the hotel. I gave myself a pat in the back for following my instinct.

July 23, 2011

New Philippine Twenty Peso Bill

Hubby paid our travel tax and he was given this as change.

Meet the new Philippine Twenty Peso Bill

According to the person manning the travel tax booth, the new Philippine Peso bill are out and the old ones will no longer be accepted by end of 2012.

Do you have the new Peso bills?

July 22, 2011

Signs of Independence

We were having ice cream at Haagen Daz Megamall that afternoon. As most of the time when eating ice cream, EJ's shirt got dirty. I wouldn't have minded except that we still have some errands to do that day and a dirty boy by my side didn't suit me. LOL!

So off we went to a nearby GAP store to buy a new shirt for him.

When we were inside GAP, I left him with the sales attendant because they were chit chatting. When I found the shirt I went back to them.

EJ was already trying on a shoes. The attendant was helping him. EJ looked up. He said excitedly "Mom, this shoe is the same size as my shoes."

Okayyyy..I said. I watched in fascination. Then he said with a cute smile and pleading eyes "Mom, I am going to wear this everyday."

For the record, EJ does not like shopping. He is not impressed with what I buy for him - shoes or any clothes. He has never asked me to buy any. Come to think of it, he doesn't really ask much even inside a toy store. I am proud of that fact.

That moment when he asked me subtly to buy that shoes for him, I felt proud. Not because he's learning the art of shopping but because I feel that he's becoming an independent young man. He knows what he wants and he knows what is good for him.

Here is the shoes:

When I took this picture, I asked him to put his feet together. But he said, it's nicer if it's slightly apart.

After buying the shoes, he's stood to his words. He wears the shoes everyday. LOL! I do hope though that after giving in to his request (of buying the shoes) doesn't give him the idea that he can have whatever he wants and start asking us to buy things like newgy ping pong table.

He is turning 5 years old in less than three weeks. He's growing up so fast. Everyday I am amazed with what he can do.

July 21, 2011

Visiting Cebu

I can't remember the last time I was in Cebu. It's been probably ten years or even more.

When I was planning our Philippines trip a few months ago, I suggested to hubby a short trip to Cebu. Hubby heartily agreed. It's been a while for him too. He's curious about the recent developments in the city. For me, I just want to taste again Cebu's famous lechon, otap and dried mango. LOL!

So after a 5-day stay in my home province, we went to Cebu. We took a Cebu Pacific plane from Surigao City. After 45 minutes up in the air, we were in Cebu already. It was fast. If only, CebuPac wasn't delayed we would have been in Cebu 3 hours ahead. Oh well.

We booked our accommodation at Radisson Blu Hotel Cebu. And I couldn't have booked for a better one. It was a pleasure to stay in this hotel.


Huge lobby. That's me and EJ.



The room, comes with free wifi and cable internet.



Elevators


Radisson Blu is just right beside SM City Cebu so dining choices is not limited to the hotel's cafe. Speaking of the hotel's cafe, Feria, their breakfast buffet was wonderful. And the staff were just great.

We did not want our stay in Cebu to be all about eating so made an effort to go around some spots like the Magellan's cross and Sto. Nino Church.



At the Magellan's cross.

Hubby and EJ lighting candles at Sto. Nino church. After this, we went to Ayala Terraces. I have been to Ayala before and I was surprised to see that it is now bigger and much nicer.

Ayala Malls are known for its nice malls and this one is no different. I love the huge open space with garden.

Cebu has changed a lot since my last visit. But the old charm is still there. I could see myself living in this city.

We did enjoy our short stay in Cebu. Unfortunately I wasn't able to eat lechon while we were there because we kept on postponing the trip to that famous lechon place until there was no more time. Too bad. But I got to eat otap and dried mangoes. Lots of it actually so I was happy. LOL!

July 20, 2011

Angkor Archaeological Park Tour


This is my first time to join Tuesday Travel and here is my entry.

We went to Siem Reap last year. It's about a 4-hour bus ride from Cambodia's capital, Phnom Penh. On our second day there, we went to Angkor Archaeological Park, where the magnificent Angkor Wat is located together with the rest of the Angkor Temples.

Banteay Kdei 2
This is at the entrance of Banteay Kdei.

Banteay Kdei
Inside Banteay Kdei

Bayon
In Bayon

Ta Prohm
At Ta Prohm. Do you recognize this somehow? It's made famous by Angelina Jolie's movie called Tomb Raider.

Angkor Wat
This is the Angkor Wat. We were not able to get closer because it was scorching hot and there were hundreds maybe even thousands of locals going inside. We did not anticipate this. After all, it was a holiday and in this particular holiday locals pay homage to their ancestors who built this awe-inspiring structure.

I hope to be able to come back here again so I can truly appreciate its beauty.

July 18, 2011

Images From My Hometown

It's not even 7pm yet but EJ is already asleep. That's early, even for him. I guess he's still recovering from our hectic schedule in the Philippines.

I have been yawning too since 6pm but I don't want to sleep early because I don't want to wake up too early tomorrow.

So instead I am browsing photos from our vacation.

It surprised me that during the first 5-day of our vacation which was spent in Manila, we don't have a single photo. Not even when we had dinner with my siblings at Dampa Macapagal.

I don't know why. Maybe because of excitement?

I have photos the rest of our trip, like in Surigao, Cebu and Bataan. Still, not that much.

Let me share some photos we took in Surigao.

Multicab. Mode of transportation from one town to another. They come in different vibrant colors.

EJ, thinking how to cross the sea. LOL! My relatives were amazed how big EJ is now. They said they'll start preparing gifts for a college graduate soon. Hahaha!!!

We call this kinilaw na nukos. It's a kinilaw na pusit. For english readers, it's a fresh squid mixed with vinegar, lime/lemon, ginger, onions and a pinch of salt. It's like the national food in our place. I haven't met anyone who doesn't eat this one. Even my sister who does not eat kinilaw na isda or any kinilaw for that matter makes an exception for this. It's really that good.

Puto, biko, fresh fruits and sawsawan "inato" style. "Inato" means just the way we do it in our place. Ahhh...I am missing these foods now.

My town, Madrid, Surigao del Sur is about 3 hours away from Surigao City (Surigao del Norte) by road. Before you reach our beautiful place, you have to go through bumpy road and mountains. When it's rainy season, you might say it's like hell. I do hope that the local government or the national government will hear our pleas. It's been long enough that we have been neglected. We need good roads please.

Anyway, we stayed there for 5 days only. But during those five days, I felt like I have consumed food good for a month or so already. LOL!

I hope to be able to visit again soon.

So Tired

We're back in Cambodia. We arrived last night via Thai Airways from Manila with a short stop over in Bangkok.

The 17-day vacation in Philippines ended yesterday. It was so short and I feel "bitin". We had lined up so many activities.

Last night, we arrived exhausted and just feeling drained.

I really wished we had more time in the Philippines. I even contemplated of staying behind with EJ while hubby returns to work. But I changed my mind. Staying in Manila without hubby is not just the same.

I don't have that much of photos this time compared to our previous vacations but I am just too tired to go through them now.

I will post stories and pictures once I get my mojo back.

I have to sort out things here at home first.

Sorry if I haven't been to your blogs for a while. I promise to visit again soon.

July 17, 2011

Leaving

We're going back to Cambodia today. My heart is heavy. I don't want to go. At least not yet. I still want to enjoy Manila.

The last few days were hectic. We have been moving around Philippines. We went to Surigao, to Cebu, and Bataan.

In less than two week's time we managed to visit the three big islands in the Philippines - Mindanao, Visayas and Luzon. LOL!

We also had a birthday party to attend to but we had to decline. I just had to
buy birthday gifts online and send it via mail.

I wish we could visit Pinas every month. There's really no place like home.

July 13, 2011

Back to Internet World

We're back in Manila again after spending a week in my hometown - Madrid, Surigao del Sur, and a 3-day stay in Cebu City. It was a short trip. I would have loved to stay longer but we just can't afford it. Hubby's work is missing him =)

Nevertheless it was a great trip, mostly a food trip and bonding with family and relatives.

Here's one food I've been missing in Cambodia that I have indulged in the province - Sinugba na Bangus (Inihaw na Bangus/Grilled Milkfish)

We have the electric grill at home but we did not use it. Instead we used the uling (charcoal) we got from the market. This bangus was sooo yummy. Dipped in soysauce with kalamansi and chili, it was perfect!

We have until Sunday here in Manila and it's back to Cambodia after that. Ahh...if only I could stay longer, if only Cambodia is nearer...

July 2, 2011

Home Sweet Home

Good morning Ortigas!

It feels good to be in the Philippines. We had our first meal, a late dinner at McDo last night. Not really a Filipino meal but we had no choice as it was already late.

Today, we are going to the doctors for routine check ups. EJ with his pedia and I with my OB. Hubby wants to see a dentist too. So many expenses! Not to mention the shopping. LOL! I should have told hubby to avail of the payday advances. We might run out of batteries while here. Hahahaha!!!

Later on, we are going to have dinner with my family at MOA. I am so excited to see my beautiful nieces again.

It's bright and sunny today.

I can't wait to go out.

My boys are still sleeping though.

And I am already thinking what to order at Jollibee for my breakfast. Wake up boys. LOL!