Dimsum All You Can @ Lugang

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Just saw this upcoming promo and I can’t wait to share it to all of you!

Lugang Cafe has just announced that they will be having a fEAsT All You Can Promo starting this May!

Not My Photo.

For only Php 588.00, you can enjoy their famous dimsums and more!  On top of that, there’s a free glass of iced tea and DESSERT!

Ooooh, I can’t wait!

SM Aura and SM Megamall will start the promo on May 2, 2017 until June 18, 2017.  Then, SM North Edsa and The New Glorietta will continue on June 19, 2017 until the end of the promo on July 31, 2017.

Mark your calendars!

Happy Eating!

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Ryoko’s Place ← our home away from home

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When travelling to an expensive location like Japan, chances are, hotels could be very expensive too!  That is why, I am so thankful for Airbnb.  Not only do we get to save a lot from booking a hotel, we experience how it is to have a home away from home.

Ryoko is a superhost and a colleague has already booked her apartment several times.  So, being scammed isn’t going to be an issue.  

Our group consisted of 12 people all with 1 medium sized luggage and 1 handcarry luggage.  Do the math and that’s about 24 luggages in all. But Ryoko’s place is massive, so space is not a problem.

Ryoko’s place is in a quiet neighborhood.  It is actually in a high end part of Tokyo where the houses are big and pricey.

Ryoko’s is pricey also with rates going at Php 23,000.00 a night.  That doesn’t include Cleaning Fee.  However, the house can fit 14 people comfortably.  If you are more than 14, you could still fit.

Upon entering the house, there’s a mini sofa where you could sit and remove your shoes.  

Then the sala with a huge sofa set.  The black ones are actually sofa beds which can accommodate 2 to 4 people, or even 6.

There’s also a hammock for some chill time.

Photo from Ryoko’s Airbnb page

A big TV if you want to enjoy lounging at home.

Just in front is the Dining Area which could sit at least 10 people.

And then the Kitchen with complete amenities.  It has a fridge, a dishdryer, a microwave, and a coffee maker.  You could also use the plates, cups, glasses, and spoon and forks.  You can also find the washing machine there.

Then there were the bedrooms.
The only bedroom downstairs has a water bed!  It can fit 2 people.  It has its own walk in closet where you could hang your clothes or stash your luggages.  It also has its own toilet & bath.

There’s also a toilet on the 1st floor.

Up the 2nd floor, you can find 3 more bedrooms.  

The first one can fit at least 2 people.

The next bedroom has 2 single beds.

The third bedroom has a double bed also, could fit minimum 2 people.

One of these bedrooms has its own toilet and bath.

I have researched so much about Japan’s Airbnb and due to limited space of the houses in Tokyo, very seldom that you could find a house as big as this with all the beds and amenities to cater to your needs.

Definitely worth the price we paid for the duration of our stay.  Also, the house has WIFI and Ryoko lends a pocket wifi to bring along.

Her house is walkable from Shibuya, around 10 minutes give or take.  Just on the 1st street, there’s a Denny’s.  On the way, so many convenience stores, so you will never go hungry.

Ryoko is a very gracious host.  She is very accommodating.  Too bad I wasn’t able to meet her face to face.  According to my colleague, she is very beautiful too.

If you want to book her house in your future trip to Japan, just search Ryoko in Airbnb.  

Or leave a message and I will give you her contact number.

Happy Trip!

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Ichiran in Japan

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In other countries especially Hong Kong and Japan, citizens are usually inclined to fall in line for hours just to get a taste of that famous or newest resto!

Last week, as tourists in Japan, we also waited for more than an hour in line for Ichiran – a famous ramen place.  

Here we are waiting for our turn, amusing ourselves, in more or less 10 degrees.

The place could seat about 24 people at once.  So imagine 12 of us waiting in line plus the others.

Finally, our turn!  Faced with a vendo and a long line behind us, I pressed our choice of ramen and additional 1/2 boiled salted egg as side dish to complete the set.  Not realizing that 1/2 boiled salted egg meant half boiled and taking it as 1/2 of a whole egg.  Hunger overtaking my thinking brain.

After paying and choosing your set in the vendo, continue to line up.  This time though, you could personalize your choice of ramen.  Thankfully, they have English version.

Here’s my choice.

After completing my paper, I turned it in together with the paid meal tickets from the vendo machine.  One for the set of ramen and one for the additional side dish.

Again, wait.  So near yet so far.  A part of our group already went in.

This is it!  Given my booth number.  #14

In this booth, you have your own water faucet and cups.  You can always order additional what nots if you are not satisfied with your order yet.

Served the eggs.  I immediately ate 1 egg due to hunger.  The egg is so yummy.  Best egg ever!

And then my ramen was served!  Took a picture, shoot my other egg in the bowl and devoured the ramen for less than 30minutes.  

The soup’s rich broth, the melt in your mouth chasyu and of course, my other egg.  Not to mention, the right texture of the noodle, what could I ask for more?

It didn’t fail me.  My expectations were high due to the long line.  Ichiran Tokyo delivered and it’s a memorable dinner altogether.

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Stregato Gelateria

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On our trip to Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar, we had a lunch stopover at Bataan.  We looked for Stregato Gelateria and we didn’t regret that we looked for it.

It is located in the city plaza.  We are in Balanga, Bataan so it just is right to see a balanga symbol in the plaza.

The facade and the interior of Stregato is so dainty and feminine.  You will get that very homey feel. 

The gelato stand will greet you as you enter the place.

We tried different dishes and everything satisfied our palates.

From the freshly made potato wedges to the super yummy Lasagna.

The Ravioli is excellent too!

They have a variety of chicken dishes.

And of course, beef dishes.

Since this is a gelateria, kids won’t miss out on the gelato.

Make that side trip and enjoy Stregato Gelateria before heading to Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar!

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Las Casas Filipinas De Acuzar

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I have always wished to go to Las Casas.  One weekend, my wish came true. We went on a road trip!
Taking the NLEX and SCTEX definitely made the drive shorter, around 3 hours.  Yes, it’s a little expensive with the toll fees but if it’s gonna give you more time, why not?  Relax and enjoy the view!

We stopped over at Burger King in NLEX to have some breakfast.  Then at Balanga to have some lunch.  A trip is not a trip without food!  Read about our lunch at Stregato Gelateria here.

After lunch, we proceeded to our destination.  Off the highway and on the main road to Las Casas, the drive’s smooth and easy.

Don’t forget to load Waze as it is super helpful.

Just as we entered, a magnificent sculpture welcomed us.

What a treat!  There’s Casa New Manila where all guests need to register.  Since Las Casas is huge, you’ll be given a map and they will explain where the facilities are.  

When all that is set, you can drop your things at your hotel and go back to the Parking Area to park your car.  They don’t allow guests to use their cars.  They have their own modes of transportation.  

They have the Tram, it’s wooden by the way.  They also have the Jeepney.  Mind you, these 2 are free!  You can also choose to ride a Calesa, for a minimal fee.  You can even rent a bike and roam around.
 

Just before we get too excited to go down the beach, let me tell you about our hotel first.
The facade is so beautiful.  

Since everything’s old school, there’s no elevator.  We got a family room and it’s on the top floor so we need to exercise to go up and down.  Anyway, we were given a massive room!  If not for the wonderful scenery outside, I would have spent our stay inside our room.

The room has 2 Double Beds.  Got a TV and DVD player.  There’s a personal ref with 4 bottles of water.  A table for sipping coffee.  They also gave us 4 pairs of slippers. 

The bathroom is huge also.  It has a bath tub, a separate shower area.  They have complete toiletries.  The most important part – ang lakas ng tubig! (water supply’s strong) 

The only downside of the huge room is that the aircon is only 1 so it can’t make the whole room super cool.

So, bags are put down, we went to check the tour as we don’t have time to join the next day.

These houses were transferred piece by piece, block by block from its original location to Las Casas.  The developer bought these houses so they can be preserved and taken care of.

Some of these houses can be rented as a whole for as low as Php 20,000.00 or as much as Php150,000.00.  Check out this website for the prices.

This is what Escolta looked like before.  They also made it a hotel and it houses some stores like the Fotografia dela Escolta where you could schedule a photoshoot wearing Baro’t Saya.

The kids were getting bored so we went back to the hotel.  They got ready and changed into their swimsuits.  We are just in time for the carabao race and parade, and for the palosebo (racing up a kawayan stick to get a flag).

The sun is setting down and I can’t help but be amazed.  Sometimes, you just have to stop and gaze at your surroundings to realize that the world we live in is really a wonderful place.

Kids enjoyed playing in the fine sand and basking in the cold and clear water.

If not for the lifeguard who told us that swimming is until 6pm only, the kids would have stayed until they couldn’t see the beach anymore.

That whole beach time made our tummy go growling, so we went to dinner.  It was like being transported into a different place.  With all the lights up, the buildings and the houses looked different.

Even the doors and pathways looked great.

With the kids so tired from all their activities during the day, me and hubby had a little us time.  We strolled and took pictures of the night scene at Las Casas.

These pictures don’t really do justice to the breathtaking view of Las Casas.  You really have to be there to appreciate the beauty more.

That night, the weather’s cooperating.  The wind is windy, no more blazing sun, super nice to walk around.

Morning came and the kids were up and about.  We had breakfast, we strolled.  It was a bright and sunny day.

Kids can’t wait any longer they wanted to go to the pool area.  They made it “Batis-Like.”  With various sizes of rocks surrounding the area and separating the adult and kid area.

Like the beach, the water is so cold.  But they didn’t mind.

I didn’t mind lounging by the pool as well.

While we were at the pool area, we saw some characters of Noli Me Tangere.  You could have your picture taken just like that lady in shorts.

There are so many other activities in Las Casas.  You just have to let them know what you are interested in.

Some Sabong maybe? 


Thinking about all the things we could have done, or we could have not done (for the lazy ones), we should have stayed another night.  I would have lounged at the beach longer.  Stayed for Bonfire at night while drinking a can of beer.  Could have rented a bike and roamed the whole place.  Or just sat and chill by the tree beside the lake.

So realizing all these, I would definitely be back.  Maybe sometime on the 2nd half of the year.  

Relax and unwind.  Yeah, definitely.  Take that tram now and be lost in time.

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Starbucks celebrates Earth Day!

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Calling Starbucks lovers out there!

In celebration of Earth Day, Starbucks will be selling this limited edition Starbucks Night Sky Reusable Cup for only Php 100.00! 

Photo from Starbucks Philippines FB Page

You just need to purchase any Grande Handcrafted Beverage.  There is no limit as long as you purchase the required number of Grande Handcrafted Beverage.  
This will be available on April 21 and April 22 in all Starbucks stores across the Philippines!

You also get a Beverage Star for every purchase when you use your Starbucks Card.

Can’t wait to get mine.

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makansutra

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A trip to Megamall one Saturday led us to Singapore.  Yes, to Singapore!

Makansutra is a like a food hub with various restos and each of them has its own Singaporean food specialty.

The place is interestingly nice.  I like its artistic interior here and there.  Even the tables and chairs stand out on their own.

They have Real Sugarcane Juice.  They do it on the spot.  This drink is believed to be nutritious and refreshing.

For other refreshments, they have a Central Area where you can order whatever suits you.

Take a look at their restos.

Curry Flurry is where we ordered Prata.  It was a last minute order so we weren’t able to eat it there.  We just took it home.  The prata is not chewy. The filling is hot though.

Donald and Lily is the one serving Laksa.  We weren’t able to order one.  This is for next time.

Geylang Clay Pot is where we ordered their famous Clay Pot Chicken and Mushroom Rice.  Their small size is definitely not small.

The claypot is not only full of rice, it is full of chicken meat and mushrooms and veggies.  Soy based but not all salty.

Next is the Hong Kong Street Old Chun Kee.

More like Chinese style cooking than Singaporean style cooking.  We ordered Seafood Fried Noodles and Sweet & Sour Pork.

Noodle sauce a bit salty though.  

Sweet & Sour Pork delicious.  Still crunchy pork bits despite being stir fried with the sauce.

I forgot to take a shot of the resto that sells Satay.  But this is the best of them all.  Tasty and Tender.

Some of the restos we weren’t able to try.

Very good food experience for us.  And the greater the service we received that day.

Employees are so friendly.  They are attentive to your needs.  No wonder because their boss is as friendly as they are.

I approached him and asked for a picture with my 2 kids.  He happily agreed.

The owner of makansutra is the famous Singaporean KF Seetoh.  He is known to be the Food Guide Maven.  Check out www.makansutra.com for more about him.

In addition, I would also like to thank the manager for encouraging the kids to participate in a game.  Even if she didn’t guess right, they still gave her a prize.  

I would also like to commend the clean and artistic rest room and wash area.

Definitely going back to Makansutra to try the other hawkers!  See you there!

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Pay Travel Tax Online

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Avoid the Holy Week Rush!  Pay your Philippine Travel Tax Online.

Go to www.tieza.gov.ph

Click Travel Tax, on the dropdown menu, select Pay Travel Tax Online.

You will be directed to this page.  Register and be a member. 

Once you are registered.  Paying your Travel Tax is so easy.  A registered member can pay for a maximum of 4 companions at a time.  

Click the Yellow Button that says Click here to fill up Travel Tax Payment Form.

The member’s name will be on default for every application.  You can choose to add member to input the name of your companion.  Fill up the form, you will be needing your Booking Reference Number.  Make sure you choose the right type of travel tax to pay.  For regular passengers on Economy, Travel Tax is Php 1,620.00.

Check all details then Click Confirm Payment.

There will be a fee of Php28.35 for each Travel Tax you pay online.  They call it Service Fee.  It is very minimal in exchange for the hassle of lining up and paying in Cash in the airport.

Once you confirm your payment, you will already see your Digitized Travel Tax Receipt.

There will be 4 copies.  2 copies in a page.  Print it in Landscape Form and cut.

There you go.  Travel Tax out of your way when you go to the airport.  

Saves us all the hassle.  Happy Vacation!

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