Tuesday, June 4, 2019

First Time To Fly With Singapore Airlines

I was a ball of energy when the fambam arrived at the NAIA Terminal 3. I can't help but smile to myself because, in just a few hours, we'll be arriving in Singapore after 8 long years! My son Tutapel was merely 3 when we first visited the place and although we were there for four days, we weren't able to see much because of the rainy weather. (Note to self: Don't fly to Singapore in late November to December.)

Another reason for my excitement was flying aboard Singapore Airlines for the very first time.  I've heard quite a number of favorable reviews about this particular air carrier that's why I can't help but be curious about what sets it apart from the rest, at least, as far as economy flights are concerned.

Singapore Airlines

One thing I noticed was that containers of complimentary earphones were stationed before boarding so you can have your pick right away.

A plethora of HD touchscreen monitors were peppered all throughout the plane quite similar to the set-up of Cathay Pacific.

Singapore Airlines' New Economy Class

What distinguished Singapore Airline's inflight entertainment from Cathay Pacific's was a more vast array of movies (yes, there are Korean and Bollywood, mind you), TV programs and games,  available with just a touch on the screen.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

What I Think of The Bund Hotel in Shanghai, China

few days after we landed in the stunning city of Hangzhou, the capital of

Zhejiang, we went on a 2-hour 30-minute bus ride to Shanghai, the largest city

in China by population and the second most densely populated city in the world.

From Hangzhou's sprawling scenery and admirable infrastructure, the ride

provided an unhindered view of Shanghai's equally formidable edifices and

skyscrapers mixed with equally cared for scenery and waterfronts. 

That's why when we were scheduled to visit The Bund, a highly-recommended

attraction that's a fitting fusion of both worlds, I for one, can't wait for it to

actually, happen.

Tutapel near the Orient Pearl Tower just opposite of The Bund

It was already nighttime when we arrived at The Bund Hotel located along

Guangdong Road in the Huangpu District. The hotel lighting for instance added

a splash of elegance to the exterior which was of course more of a necessity

rather than of sheer opulence.

 The Bund Hotel at night

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Mayon Volcano: The Muse Behind Catriona Gray's Ms. Universe-Worthy Gown

If  the intricate beading and fiery color were not enough hints for figuring out

the inspiration behind Catriona Gray's Ms. Universe-winning attire, then I guess

its moniker "Lava Gown" was a dead giveaway.

I never expected anything associated with the term "lava" to be synonymous

with something sexy; but, designer Mak Tumang proved everyone wrong when

Catriona Gray had donned the intense-looking gown before she strutted down

the 2018 Ms. Universe stage with what we now call as the "lava walk."  

Having seen the Mayon Volcano up close, it's no wonder that the designer and 

the new Ms. Universe were so captivated to the point of creating an evening 

gown because of it.

The first time we saw this natural wonder located in Albay, the volcano's perfect 

cone was barely visible due to a group of obstinate clouds unwilling to let 

visitors bask in the volcano's complete glory.  Old folks, however, have a 

different interpretation on this matter. 

Legend has it that whenever the clouds envelop the mountain, Panganoron

the brave warrior who loved Magayon, the only daughter of the tribal chief of 

Rawis, is indeed kissing her; and, when the rains do trickle down the slopes, 

they are actually Panganoron's tears as he mourns for his lost love.

Clouds swirling around the world-famous Mayon Volcano in Albay

Thursday, December 20, 2018

What Starbucks Was Like In Hangzhou & Shanghai (China)

Several months ago, Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson announced that the coffee giant will close down about 150 stores in the US by 2019.

I can't help but ask whether this decision will affect its global satellite branches as well?

Though I'm in no position to speculate about such financial matters, I guess I have a thing or two to say about customer service in Starbucks' international stores like in China. What I'm pretty sure is that Starbucks in Mainland China handles clients differently from my home country, the Philippines. 🤓

Starbucks in Hangzhou Songcheng Park

If you're flying to China this holiday season, chances are, you're more than likely to get your cup of java and frappe fix from good ole Starbucks. Some people maybe biased against this juggernaut for a number of reasons with the La Boulange Mess at the helm of its most controversial business decisions. 😠

Despite this ill-fated, heart wrenching yet premeditated tactical maneuver, as some sectors believe, we can't deny the incredible pull we feel whenever we're confronted by Starbucks' delectable array of Hot Drinks, Frappes, Cakes and Pastas.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Revisiting Hui Lau Shan Desserts in Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong

Despite the gnawing chill that day, the fambam braved the 11 degrees Celsius temp to visit my fave desserts bar, Hui Lau Shan Healthy Desserts. It might be ironic, to say the least, but the best way to beat the cold weather is by eating cool stuff as well.

I have to credit my dear Gyu Hye Sun who portrayed Geum Jandi in Boys Over Flowers for that nugget of wisdom. While filming one of my all-time fave K-Dramas, she was asked how she dealt with the freezing temperature and she answered matter-of-factly, "By eating ice." 

                                       Second Time's a Charm @ Hui Lau Shan Healthy Desserts Hong Kong

That rather interesting "nugget of wisdom" led us to improvise a little by pairing the proverbial ice with fruit royalty such as mango in all its glorious forms- pureed, sliced, and even frozen.  

                                                                                                                                                 Hui Lau Shan Healthy Desserts Hong Kong

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Revisiting Charlie Brown Café, This Time, In Hong Kong

Our son Tutapel was three when we visited our very first Peanuts Comic Strip themed café.

As authentic Snoopy fans, it was indeed one of the highlights of our trip. Even the rest of the fambam didn't have any problems admitting this fact. 

Six years after and several pounds heavier, thank God, Tuts as we fondly call him, had a blast with the rest of the fambam, this time, at the Charlie Brown Café Tsim Sha Tsui branch in Hong Kong.

The coffee shop here is several times bigger than the Singapore themed café located at 313 Somerset that we've been to.

The two times that we've been to the Tsim Sha Tsui branch, the cafe was full-packed! All the novelty perhaps made the place a tourist magnet, explaining why we've been there twice in just a span of a few days.

Charlie Brown Café Tsim Sha Tsui in Hong Kong

All Day Breakfast Served with Brewed Coffee/Tea/Orange Juice (HKD 162 or approximately Php 1069)

Hubby Bala ordered this overflowing plate for sharing with darling Tuts. The meal boasted of smoked salmon, veal sausage, scrambled egg, crispy bacon, cherry tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms, coleslaw, potato wedge, baked bean, and toast. Whew!!! That's a mouthful yet totally mouthwatering, huh? 

Charlie Brown Café Tsim Sha Tsui in Hong Kong

Thursday, October 26, 2017

TWG Tea & Boutique Greenbelt 5

"Publish your Passions, Your Way."

Thanks to blogger.com's catchy phrase, I've been reminded of my wilful disregard of this particular blog.

Just reading the witty tagline helped me remember how extremely happy and fulfilled I am whenever I write and press the publish button.  

One of the things that I'm most enthusiastic about is to share things that I find interesting and inspiring.

You see my son is a rather picky eater. 

He's very specific in what he's looking for in a dish.

When he was very young, he was just fond of  Jollibee Chickenjoy and Jolly Spaghetti.

But now, his tastebuds have evolved.

To our surprise, he's now into cream and oil-based pastas which are not usually served in fast food joints.

The whens and whys of this drastic change are still unknown to me but we try very much to accommodate his request; but of course, if it's well within budget.

At least once or twice a year, we visit TWG Tea & Boutique @ Greenbelt 5, not only to enjoy my son Tutapel's favorite seafood pasta; but, to also experience its famed Afternoon Tea which usually commences with the tea of our choice served in an elegant tea pot with a mirror-finish gold-plated warmer.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

   TWG Tea Greenbelt 5

I have a kick whenever I see the "golden pot" for it somehow reminds me of that charming Aesop Fable "The Goose that Laid the Golden Eggs."  Instead of eggs however a free flow of comforting tea comes out.  

Shrimp Linguine. (Php 495)

Seared marinated shrimps, accompanied by linguine pasta served with haricot verts tossed  in a creamy tomato Arrabiata sauce infused with Eternal Summer Tea and topped with shaved parmesan cheese.

I always have a thing for deliciously written menu descriptions for my dining experience officially begins with that. In my mind, if a resto paid someone to write this beautifully, then their food must be something to look forward to. 

However, I came across some blogs downplaying that mouthwatering claim; but, in all fairness, our 19 kilometer drive wasn't put to waste when we finally sunk our teeth to this beauty. 

My picky eater was all praises that's why whenever we go to Makati, it would be a crime in his oh so innocent mind not to have this particular pasta to-go. 

                                                                                           TWG Tea Greenbelt 5