Archive for February 2010
Welcome back! How was your trip? Di me, di me!
After being under inclement weather house arrest for a day and a half, it became apparent that a night out somewhere, anywhere was in order. And there’s no better way to spend your “re-emergence” back into the bright lights and big city than with a bunch of your friends. So we all met up in this pan-latin restaurant called Agua Dulce. Apparently, agua dulce means fresh water, which I found odd because I coulda sworn it meant sweet water. But I digress. They take pride in serving their own fresh, filtered and flavored waters, which I didn’t get to try. I was a little more interested in their flavored alcohol than their flavored water. Haha!
Its a vibrant place nestled in the west side of the city and seems to be a pretty popular one too. If you’re looking for a quiet and tranquil place for dinner, this shouldn’t be in your short list. The loud music sets the tone which I actually liked. Here is my ATTEMPT to capture the mood and ambience. I really liked the wrought iron grills used as dividers, somehow gave the space a more vintage feel.
This is what we ate.
I have to thank the Little Twin-friends for holding off on enjoying their dishes so that I can shoot them for the sake of our blog. Here they are.
After dinner we walked down to Kyotofu to get our japanese dessert fix. I know what you are thinking. I was tempting the gods of restriction by going to a dessert bar when I sacrificed desserts for Lent. But I emerged victorious! A little cranky but victorious nonetheless. There was a bit of a wait so we whiled the time admiring the full moon…
While Little Twin-ham whiled his time admiring and testing his weather resilient boots.
From its name, I think you will easily figure out what the main base ingredient of this place is: soybean. Check out what we…i mean THEY had (Grrrr!).
And what did I have you dare ask? While their sweet teeth were overindulging, I had this…
And as if sitting through all that wasn’t torment enough, they send us complementary brownies.
The next shots are just random photos of us playing with the camera. I also took shots of the interior. Nice clean lines. I really like the high cushion back rest.
Here’s a distant shot of the kitchen.
I will definitely hit this place up after Easter Sunday. Those desserts were just so hard to resist. Join me?
Y tu? Tell me about your trip.
While you are living it up in the desert, I am STILL stuck in winter wonderland. As we enter the month of March, we’re still packing it in with deceptively pretty powder white precipitation. Good news: we were sent home early today…yay! Bad news: it was horrendous in the commute home…boo! So I thought I’d make my walk home worthwhile and show you the huge flakes falling and continuing to fall as I share this with you.
This is Washington Street (Hoboken’s main street) about to be blanketed in snow. I think you can imagine how tomorrow morning will look like…
These next ones were taken from the park I cut through to get home. Pretty surreal to see this park deserted.
I passed by the supermarket to stock up on food and buy some chocolate tablets for hot chocolate! Then I remembered I gave up anything chocolate for Lent. Booooo!
Hope your trip is going well…AND SAFE. I have to admit that I’m missing our morning chats. So come home soon!
UPADTE: Thought I’d give you a glimpse of the after math. This was taken from my apartment window so please ignore my window’s screen mesh.
In the latter part of fall 09, I biked up to a quaint little village in New York’s Rockland County called Piermont. It’s a lovely little destination town right by the Hudson River, which also serves as a pit stop for weekend cyclists (bisikleta na naman!). I can only describe it as Sausalito meets Nantucket if that makes any sense to you. And hopefully my pictures will show you what I mean.
Last weekend was one of the few milder and sunnier weekends we’ve had here in a while. So it was a nice opportunity to go up to Piermont. Tell me, how picturesque is this? Have you ever seen marshlands this pretty? I also love the effect of melting snow on the fringes.
And then as you enter the village, the main street is lined with typical small town shops. Very pretty.
Of course there are the New England-esque homes overlooking the river. I thought that they were just so precious.
I also took some shots of the marina and the Hudson.
The great thing about this place is that it isn’t so far from the city. So you can have a place of respite and refuge without having to travel too far a remote area.
It’s an ideal bike destination. It’s calm and tranquil aura meets you just when you think you are about to die on that bloody saddle. It’s like seeing a soothing light at the end of the tunnel. And once you’ve taken all this splendor in, it hits you: It’s not over, you still gotta bike back to where you came from!
Rocio: Mom, are you also “rising an Aquarius”?
Lala: Nope. I’m Leo rising
Rocio: What’s that?
Lala: It means you like to be the star and you can be very direct.
Rocio: So I must have some Leo too because I like to be the star.
Lala: Well Kris Aquino is Aquarius… and Noynoy is too, I think.
Rocio: Well, he was BORN to be a star and everyone knows it.
Gotta love him. I post this in honor of our BNE with royalty.
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There simply aren’t enough words to express how great I think Shangri-La Boracay Island Resort and Spa is. I’m telling you now that whatever I write or post won’t do the place any justice. I’m tempted to grab photos from their official website but I figure the stuff on my camera will make this a more honest review (which is not to say their website is misleading). Shangri-Lala Land is something to be experienced first hand.
So here’s what it looks like when you fly by it…
It’s situated at the northwestern tip of our fave island and has two beaches. One of which is exclusively Shang’s. (The other one is shared with Club Panoly).
Getting there is easy. You take the 45 minute flight from Manila. When you land in Caticlan, the transfers are seamless. There’s a 2 minute ride to the port where Shang has it’s own lounge. Refreshments are served while your stuff is loaded on the speedboat and from there it’s less than 15 minutes to the resort.
So what’re the beach and pool like?
Still, it’s all good I guess since my LittleTwinBrats had no issues about playing with this quality sand. Though their excitement was at an altogether different level when they got to feel the island’s “real” sand outside the resort.
Having said that, the sand and beaches were far superior to anything I’ve seen in other places like Phuket or Bali. And at Shang you absolutely get the exclusivity you pay for.
The pool side is a welcome alternative to the beach. (Late January waters were a wee bit too chilly – at least for the first few minutes you get in). The pool is laid out with lots of little nooks and crannies where you’ll find “jacuzzi beds” and other charming water features.
If for any reason you tire of the the water (I didn’t but LittleTwinBrat numero uno did), there’s still lots to do. Welcome to Adventure Zone…
There’s also the Entertainment Center which has billiards, pingpong, unlimited internet access on what looked like at least two dozen big screen computers, arcade basketball shooting, Wii, Playstation, boardgames – all for free and open till 1am in peak season.
On to the accommodations. The resort has over 200 rooms and villas. We stayed in the rooms which were very, very spacious.
Upon our request, we got to check out the different types of villas in the resort.
This is the Villa Palmera which has two bedrooms…
This is the Villa Kanluran…
Moving on… they brought us to the honeymooners’ split level villas which are made to house two adults (and two kids) max. This is the Loft Villa which are the little cream and brown houses you see on the hill from the shore.
This is the Tree House villa which you see as the all-brown houses perched at the resort’s highest elevation.
We also took a look at the resort’s (overpriced!) Chi Spa…
Shang Bora has something for everyone – as you’ve just seen. While the island’s rep as a party place precedes it, LittleTwinHub and I found a much cooler place for a night cap. We came across it by accident really. We had wanted to hang out at the Entertainment Zone one night but it was closed. So as we were strolling by the beach we noticed there were lights on on this cliff…
The roving security guy told us that it was the seafood restaurant and the bar. Whooohooo! The two are right beside each other in open but discreet spaces. I loved it because they built right on the jagged grey coral rock so sit and sip and admire nature’s work.
So save up so we can go together next time. (This on top of our other fab travel plans, of course!) The local resident’s rate is expensive but doable when it’s off peak season.