Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Rediscovering the North - Part 5 -the amazing BANAWE SUNRISE and BANAWE MUSEUM.

Iggy and I were up at 4:00am today... hoping to catch the famous Banawe sunrise at the Banawe View Point # 2. This view point is 20 minutes from the place we were staying. We arrived at the view point around 5:00am. Set up our cameras and waited for the sun to come out....

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Rediscovering the North - Part 4 BANAWE- Then and Now

I have always loved this place although it was very inaccessible in the late 90's. I still braved the bad roads and the long hours on the road ( it took us almost 10 hours just to get here ) to Banawe.... but the trip was really worth it!!!!! This is my third time visiting Banawe and I never got tired of the place. I keep on looking forward in going to Banawe all the time. This time I was with my son, Iggy on a photo shoot assignment.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Rediscovering the North - Part 3- BANAWE - Answering the call of the gods

( " Welcome to BANAWE ! " )

( this is the map of Banawe -- it shows you where you can go while you are there..feel free to download it... )

The Banaue Rice Terraces of the Philippines have been said to be like the 8th wonder of the world. They were carved from the hillside by the tribes of Ifugao about 2,000 to 3,000 years ago. These people did this using their bare hands and crude implements, without using any machinery to level the steps where they plant their rice, which is what makes this wonder so attractive, aside from the fact that these rice terraces are still used today.

In 1995 the Banawe Rice Terraces were  declared a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Rediscovering the North - Part 2- TUNGNGOD, LAGAWE - home of the HUDHUD singers


I was up at 4:00am.... actually I did not have any choice but to be up early.. I was awaken by the crowing of the roosters which served as my alarm clock. They sounded like there were more than 500 roosters crowing at the same time with a sprinkling of ducks quacking, dogs barking as their chorus. And another thing that also woke me up that morning.... there was an earthquake at 4:00am. Vangie and Iggy slept thru the earthquake. I prepared my coffee and stayed by the balcony to wait for sunrise... I wanted to take a photo of Lagawe at sunrise.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Rediscovering the North - Part 1- LAGAWE, IFUGAO

This is my first trip out of town after 4 weeks of being sidelined due to a freak accident which resulted in a fractured foot. After getting a go-signal from my doctor... I was raring to go!!!! My son, Iggy, asked me to join him on his trip to Northern Luzon. Our destination?? LAGAWE, IFUGAO. Iggy was commissioned by the Filipino Heritage Festival Inc. and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts ( NCCA ) to make a video/ documentary on LAGAWE, IFUGAO and the Hu'dhud of Aliguyun and Hananga. I will talk more about this on my succeeding blogs.

We were going to be with Floy Quintos - director, Gener Caringal - choreographer of Philippine Ballet Theater, Jesse Lucas - musical director/ composer, Bert Delvo and Leo Diaz- asst. videographers of Cinematiconcepts, Del Cayetano, project manager  and Nasser Lubay - Filipino artist. This is in connection with the upcoming event----- PHILIPPINE HERITAGE MONTH 2010 for the whole month of May. I am going to be with them as we celebrate the Philippine Heritage Month 2010.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Have you ever eaten at TERRY'S SELECTION ??

Terry's Selection Segundo Piso is very spacious although it is found on the second floor of the Karvin Plaza Building in Pasong Tamo Extension, Makati. Most of you have probably heard of this place through countless features in lifestyle programs, magazines and newspapers.. They do not only serve you good Spanish food but they also have an extensive wine collection.

My family and I were invited to a baptism of my nephew's son, Pablo Carolo, and the reception was held here. Instead of the usual merienda fare--- we had TAPAS. To little Pablo, welcome to the Christian world!

Friday, March 19, 2010


Bizu started out as a kiosk at Glorietta back in 2001. They have introduced the macaroons, those circular goodies made of  pure egg whites and crushed almonds to Filipinos who thought macaroons where those coconut balls and condensed milk confections.  These macaroons are tediously handmade. There are 15 flavors more or less which is available at any given time. When I used to frequent the Glorietta before, I would make sure that I dropped by at Bizu to buy a box of macaroons to take home. Those macaroons look so good when they are packed in those little hatboxes.

Their macaroons are 35 PHP each. I would recommend that you try out their PISTACHIO, ROSE, ORANGE, LEMON and BLUEBERRY. In fact those flavors I mentioned are my personal favorites! They are one of the bestsellers of Bizu. They are small but each bite melts in your mouth and you can really taste the different flavors in each type of macaroon.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Manila Marriott Hotel- the newest 5-star hotel in the Philippines.

( courtesy of Manila Marriott )

It is common knowledge for business travelers and frequent flyers like me that airport hotels are disappointing. But today I got a pleasant surprise..... The MANILA MARRIOTT HOTEL was definitely an exception to the rule. Today tourists will soon bid goodbye to long airport transfers to their local destinations. MANILA MARRIOTT HOTEL has opened its doors to the public last October 2009.

Monday, March 8, 2010

IGMAAN Seafood Restaurant at Dampa, Pasay City -Seafood so good!!


IGMAAN  means " a place to have lunch/dinner " and it comes from the word " IGMA " which simply means lunch in Karay-a -- which is a dialect in Iloilo, a province in the western central part of the Philippines. This restaurant is managed by Noriel Ricaforte and Bobby Dimalata, a new breed of Ilonggo entrepeneurs which gives a new twist to the old " paluto " ( cooking ) way while keeping the rich taste and flavor of the seafood  selected in the nearby " palengke " ( market ).

Saturday, March 6, 2010

ARA KOREAN RESTAURANT - my kind of Korean Restaurant

My love with Korean food may be pale in comparison to my obsession with Japanese food. Nonetheless, I always enjoy every Korean experience. So whenever the opportunity comes around like today, who was I to say no??? My family and I enjoy a good Korean meal once in a while. We used to frequent KAYA restaurant ( in Jupiter ), Korean garden ( also in Jupiter ) and CHAM CHAM ( at the Korean town just behind Rockwell.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


As I said in my previous blogs... I am a MEAT LOVER... to make it more specific... I am a hardcore canivore and I am very particular about my steaks. I know good meat when I eat it... and the best Angus beef I have tasted are from Santi's Delicatessen.  I always buy my beef at Santi's Delicatessen. Whether it is for sukiyaki, beefsteak or just plain STEAK... I  simply love the beef of Santi's. Santi's  Delicatessen is one of the Werdenberg Group of Companies that own several restaurants such as:  Carpaccio Ristorante Italiano, Bianca's Swiss Restaurant and I'M ANGUS Steakhouse. Santi's is famous for their outstanding Angus beef. They have a good reputation about having the best ANGUS beef . Their steaks  probably might be in the high end but... you GET the best meat... and the best quality for the best price. Today, my son Iggy, Cris and I are going to try I'M ANGUS STEAKHOUSE.

Monday, March 1, 2010

BAJA MEXICAN CANTINA at Greenbelt 3, Makati

We have started experiencing our daily brownouts today . As usual we were not informed as to what time our " rotating " brownouts of 2 hours will be..  it has caught me off guard.... I was not able to  prepare dinner early. At least Iggy and his  family were at home when it happened.. we decided to go and have dinner at Greenbelt instead of sweating it out at home -- waiting for the lights to come back on.

While deciding where and what food to eat... Iggy told me that Tom ( my other son ) mentioned that there was a mexican restaurant in Greenbelt .. called BAJA MEXICAN CANTINA located at the third floor of Greenbelt 3 Mall. Tom said it was good.... so... Iggy, Cris, little Una and I decided to  have an early dinner at BAJA MEXICAN CANTINA at Greenbelt 3. I like Mexican food and have tried some of the Mexican restaurants here in Manila.  There was one particular Mexican restaurant that served good Mexican food before called NINA'S PAPAGAYO.. I remember it  was a quaint, dim-lit Mexican Restaurant somewhere in Makati Avenue.  I have been trying to find out if that restaurant still exists but so far I was not lucky...Today-- most of the restaurants that served Mexican food are more of TEX - MEX... not the authentic Mexican food that I had eaten before. I wondered if the food here at BAJA MEXICAN CANTINA would be as good as NINA'S...  My favorite restaurant that serves  TEX  - MEX food so far is Chili's..... But trying not to play favorites on the places I go for lunch/ dinner..... I decided to give BAJA a try......

Here is what we ordered:

Cheese Quesadilla ( 175 PHP )..
 I played safe and ordered Cheese Quesadilla. This was good. But I had to ask the waitress to bring me some guacamole ( their guacamole is yummy ) and sour cream.

I ordered the WET BURRITO (  275 PHP )..
It was okay but they had placed too much rice in it. You had a choice of chicken or beef in the filling. I chose beef. It was served with their SALSA.. but their burrito lack the spiciness I was looking for.

Iggy and Cris shared the Chicken Enchillada ( 280 PHP ).

Overall, I would give this place a  satisfaction rating of 2 out of 5. Though I should say that their staff is very friendly and the service was fast.... we only waited for 15 minutes for all our orders to be served. The pricing on their food is low considering they are in Greenbelt 3.


Greenbelt 3, Third Floor
Ayala Center, Makati