Throwback to Davao

Throwback to a trip in the beautiful view of Pearl Farm and the disciplined city of Davao for NIVEA Body in 2011. It was a celebration of beach, sun and my favorite food of all time, cheese!!!

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A Singapore PhotoDiary

It’s probably one of the most expensive and modern city I’ve been to. It has its own kind of pretty which I can see with how efficient people and systems are and how grand, clean and disciplined the city is. I got to spend the last days of summer 2015 with my two best friends and relatives for just a few days and below is my photo diary:

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We spent our first day at Marina Bay Sands with architecture, luxury and service that’s like no other. The pool which is located at the top of the integrated resort has this amazing view!!

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We also got to visit the Marina Bay which is connected to the resort. It’s one pretty (and eco-friendly!) entertainment, commercial and cultural center which I also dream for The Philippines!

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Marina Bay sands

Other days were spent on Resorts World Sentosa which has this beautiful and green Siloso Beach Resort where we stayed at.

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Siloso Beach Resort

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With rooms facing the South China Sea, surrounded by lush foliage

I loved this resort mainly because of what it claims: Conveniently located along Siloso Beach on the island of Sentosa. Siloso Beach Resort is a tranquil and rustic Eco resort just a few steps away from the beach front.
Every morning was indeed a comfortable (excellent services) and green stay which I’m looking at whenever I go travel.

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At Siloso Beach Resort’s Spring water landscape pool, longest in Singapore at 95m

We spent a lot of hours at their beaches and while they’re artificial, there’s this feeling that’s so calm and tranquil which Sentosa really means.

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an OOTD at a beautiful resort called Mambo where a Filipina waitress gave us drinks for Free since we’re tourists. Filipinos, generous and kind as always!

Siloso has amazing night life (like Boracay) with music festivals, parties and events but we were late for those so we just explored under intense heat and sun, and took lots of photos. I didn’t opt to visit the Universal Studios which is just a quick cable car from our place, but i enjoyed just hanging around and eating at their food courts which are really complex and unique!

 

During our last day, we had a quick tour to the Orchard road and the famous shopping centres and night spots. It was easy (and really fast) commuting in Singapore and I wish an everyday like that in Manila! My cousin asked help from a classmate-friend expat to tour us around and I was able to get a glimpse of her working conditions there.

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At Sephora

Of course, before anything else, makeup! This was my first visit at Sephora and OMG, I just skipped a heart beat when I entered the store with all the brands that a beauty geek would like to see!

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At The Pump Room in Singapore where there were Filipino performers (rock, pop and acoustic). And lots of expats.

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State of Grace @ Quezon

There is a place in the heart of Quezon province, just outside Tayabas city proper, called Grace Land, where lush landscaping erupts in a place made for peaceful afternoons and island picnics which I did with my friends this summer. I really like the food at Quezon and add the activities we’ve tried at the resort + beautiful apartelles with tropical elegance, with views of blossoming gardens, tranquil lagoon and Mount Banahaw are the backdrop. View more my photos below:

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Sample Room at Pico De Loro

Sample Room, a leading sampling website with over 10k+ members empowering them with their beauty purchases, makes its mark this summer with a fun, one-day beach getaway, the Sample Room Summer Splash Beach Getaway, for its partner bloggers, bloggers’ circle members, and Sample Room friends. With the event venue at Pico de Loro, Batangas, one of the newest and hippest beach destinations, this day is all about paying homage to this beautiful season, having fun at the beach, and bonding with girlfriends! Check out the visual diary below and what transpired at the event!

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Welcome to Pattaya, Thailand

I got really curious about Pattaya City when I watched the documentary “Ladyboys”so when I visited again Thailand, and explored this so called “ladyboy capital of the world”. Pattaya is southeast of Bangkok (around 2 hours travel time via bus or taxi/van which would cost around 2000 baht).

The Pattaya Beach is one of Asia’s largest beach resorts and is a very popular attraction in Thailand

It was my first experience to a Thai beach because I’ve never been to Phuket which I plan on going to as well, but I think that the city is really where I got interested in.

We arrived in the afternoon at around 4pm so we didn’t do much in the beach. It’s quite populated with a lot of tourists and farangs (term for their foreigners working in the country) .

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The nearby restaurants, establishments and attractions are really unique and interesting to Pattaya city. There are a lot of food choices, pubs, shopping areas that are along the main streets.

We stayed in Hotel Vista which my cousin and Tito who often go to Bangkok. They knew about this hotel when they were shopping near the Platinum Mall – they also have one there. The hotel is really neat and luxurious at a very affordable price (around 2500 baht per night for two people). The service is also very good especially because it is partly owned by a Filipino and it employs fellow Pinoy chefs, hotel managers and assistants. 🙂

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The hotel has a clean pool and very relaxing and modern feel. What I also like with the hotel is that it is not so far from the Pattaya bay area which is the main attraction really (you can just walk or take a tuktuk).

Moreover, the restaurant and gastro bar inside it look beautiful, with different food and beverage choices. They serve mostly seafood and dishes that are quite Filipino (because their head chef is)

During my stay at the hotel, I took the time for some OOTD’s. I brought comfortable clothes because I knew that it was going to be very hot and humid there (March – June)  because of its wet and dry tropical climate.

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The next day, we asked our fellow kababayans who work for the hotel about the city attractions. I like that the hotels have good connections with the tours in the city. They arranged our transportation and bookings to the famous spots there.

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We went to the Nong Nooch Botanical Garden which is an affordable yet leading tourist attraction in Southeast of Thailand.

It’s a man-made garden that showcases a lot of things about Thai culture. The tour in this place could take around 1-2 hours, also because there are cultural shows that feature Thai traditional dances and performances (like Muay Thai).  There are elephant shows too, photo op’s with costume rentals, food trippin’ feat. famous local delicacies and street food and a lot more. There’s a time limit when you do via the tours, and I felt like I haven’t explored and watched much hehe. I highly recommend this place for tourists, especially those who are first timers in Pattaya, or even Thailand in general.

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I got super tired from the tour (Part 2 feauturing the ladyboys here) that I wasn’t able to go to the famous Walking Street of Pattaya. The city is one that I would recommend for adventures and a busier beach life.

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The El Nido Resorts

A few weeks ago,  I was lucky to experience El Nido, thanks to NIVEA’s very exciting summer getaway. Just recently, El Nido Resorts in the municipalities of El Nido and Taytay, Palawan, was named as one of 12 finalists worldwide in the 2013 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards (TTA), one of the most prestigious and highest accolades in the global travel and tourism industry. It was also named “one of the best places in the world to take your girlfriend in 2014” by GQ Magazine. I got curious about El Nido and I’m sharing more about it here:

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The municipality of El Nido is a small archipelago composed of 45 islands. In 1981, Miniloc Island Resort was established by Ten Knots Development Corporation. A second resort with 51 rooms was constructed in 1998 in Lagen Island, while the third was opened in 2010 on Apulit island, which is in the municipality of Taytay, and has 50 rooms. The fourth resort with 42 villas on Pangulasian Island opened its doors a few months ago.

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The way the people of this resort protect the environment is award-winning as well and I noticed this during my stay (more details on my next post!). Laurent Lamasuta, president of Ten Knots Development Corporation, explained the company’s commitment to environmental protection: “We safeguard the vital resources upon which our business is founded. In so doing, we create long-term value for our shareholders and our host communities.”

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The group of resorts has been operating for the past 30 years and proof of its commitment to sustainability is the fact that snorkeling in Miniloc Island, where its oldest property is located, remains a spectacular showcase of biodiversity. Mariglo Laririt, El Nido Resorts’ director for sustainability, observes: “That can only have been made possible by the fact that we have a well-maintained sewage treatment plant and a solid waste program that is uncompromising. That is also because we have well-trained nature guides who steer snorkelers’ fins away from the fragile corals while sharing with them scientific names.”

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Moreover, the harmonious relationship between the operators of the four eco-resorts and of the locals “has enabled us to continue with business unhindered, purchasing, recruiting and promoting from among them,” she says. Ninety per cent of all the employees are locals and turnover rate at the resort has remained low.

All employees likewise go through a program on environmental conservation called Be GREEN (Guard, Respect, Educate El Nido). This same program has been adopted by some of the local elementary and high schools. Better yet, El Nido Resorts supervisors are required to run programs for locals on food and beverage, kitchen and housekeeping skills among others. Although not all trainees are hired by El Nido, participants get a training certificate issued by local NGO partner El Nido Foundation thus, increasing their chances of employment in the other resorts in the area.

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Some years ago, EL Nido Resorts made a decision to offer a more sustainable menu to guests, according to its website www.elnidoresorts.com. This meant using as many local organically-grown ingredients as possible to contribute to the growth of the local economy. Today, as much as 58 per cent of all ingredients used by the resorts are sourced from locals.

Known in the province of Palawan to have pioneered in island resorts development, El Nido Resorts’ standards has become over the years a template that has been acknowledged by the local government as well as other resort operators. I am excited to share what I experience in this beautiful island in my photo diaries but let’s celebrate and congratulate the successes of El Nido!

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For inquiries and bookings, visit www.elnidoresorts.com. They are participating in different travel conferences wherein you can book and inquire. View the schedules at www.instagram.com/elnidoresortsPhotos and information courtesy of El Nido Resorts

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Embracing The Sun At Lagen Island, Palawan

The timing was utterly perfect. It was in the latter part of January, when the cooler season was starting to recede, and the summer sunshine was slowly taking over. The pristine waters and the beautiful, breathtaking view of El Nido, Palawan were all that was needed to officially kick off summer, and NIVEA SUN made it happen. It was probably the most beautiful place I’ve seen in my life, such that it made me cry over sunsets and sunrises, made me clear my head from all the worries, and made me just enjoy days under the sun, and nights near the waters. Below is my visual diary!

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It was also the perfect timing for the world’s no.1 sunscreen brand to launch a breakthrough in skin tanning with its newest product, Protect & Bronze. This will be the first time that suntan lovers can completely and fearlessly embrace the sun without worrying about skin damage. No more compromising on protection when you want to achieve that glowing tan.

NIVEA SUN Protect & Bronze is a sunscreen spray that comes with the highest SPF available in the Philippine market to keep skin protected against harmful UVA and UVB radiation, which are responsible for causing premature skin aging and sun damage. But the best part is that this product supports the skin’s natural tanning process by stimulating melanin production. No artificial colorants, no bronzing agents. NIVEA SUN Protect & Bronze naturally works with your skin’s own tanning process! So just imagine having that natural and even tan all over, while keeping your skin properly protected.

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It was also the time to bond with fellow bloggers in this island, where we got to test the power of this new tanning product. I was able to tan my skin a bit! Below are more OOTD’s and activities (day 2 and 3!)

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A Leisure Farm at Lemery, Batangas

Leisure Farms is the first hobby-farming community located in Lemery, Batangas which has become the most popular weekend farm destination featuring some of the most unique vacation homes in the Philippines. We don’t have a house yet in this community but I’m excited as a farm-loving city dweller! Leisure Farms seamlessly integrates residential resort features with high-value modern farming. Every once in a while, my family and I look for that weekend farming lifestyle and we go here for camping, swimming and just breathing clear air at the club house with very affordable fee per head.

Usually, we go to Tagaytay before or after, and Fantasy World (see grid below), which you’ll pass by going here but is closing soon. We’re quite disappointed with that place as we were expecting a very nice leisure experience after years of signing, but all it can be now is a nice fantasy backdrop.

See my visual diary below.

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Sawasdee, Bangkok!

It was my first time to travel internationally after a long time, after incidentally “tampering” my passport so of course I had that excitement to travel and just explore a city that articles prove to be identical to The Philippines.

And it was, in some ways that I didn’t anticipate: tricycle/taxi drivers showing hospitality like no other, hotel attendants treating you like a member of their family, shopping malls that are just crazy with selection and prices (hello Platinum Mall, Central World, Siam Paragon) and of course, high-end clubs that doesn’t allow trangenders in their establishment due to my gender marker shown by my passport.  I spent my last night with my college friends at Soi 11 which is quite similar to the Fort except for bars along the streets and inside cars, and that incident happened again. And that only goes to show that presence of LGBT community doesn’t equate easily to acceptance.

Nonetheless, it was a really fun trip with two of my best friends such that we’re already planning the next one!!

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#SoulSurf at La Union

I think this was one of the best out-of-town trips/work I had last year. In general, I’m starting to like music festivals because it exposes me to new and unfamiliar things. It was my birthday during that time and that alone was different because I would usually celebrate with the people I know like family but this was really fun and just cool. More photos below and I’m really hoping I could go back to La Union and really surf! Thanks Ray-Ban for this experience!!

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