Tree Top Adventure Baguio – Experience The Extreme

Experience extreme adventure and extreme relaxation at Tree Top Adventure Baguio, the only motorized zipline in the Philippines and the only Team Building facility in Baguio. With seven outdoor activities and team building facilities, located within Camp John Hay, surrounded by pine trees and overlooking breathtaking views, Tree Top Adventure Baguio offers an adventure of a lifetime.

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MasterCard Takes You to Dream Destinations for Free with Philippine Airlines and AirPhil Express

I have been using my MasterCard every time I travel. Its the most convenient way for me to book a flight, watching out for seat sales or event re-booking my flights. I never had difficulties nor any problems using my MasterCard. So, when I was invited to an event with MarterCard and Philippine Airlines together with Air Philippines, I really made time for it. As an avid fan and user of MasterCard, I still would like to know what else I can do with it. 🙂

Held in Quezon Ballroom of Makati Shangri-la, the event was graced by several executives of Philippine Airlines, Air Philippines, MasterCard and partner banks.

Shop for the latest designer fashion along Rodeo Drive in L.A., go on an exotic adventure in Bangkok, or enjoy the underwater marvels of Palawan.  MasterCard gives you a chance to fly to the destination of your choice with the “Dream Destinations. Free Flights.” Promotion, in partnership with Philippine Airlines and AirPhil Express.

To join, simply purchase Philippine Airlines or AirPhil Express tickets from November 15, 2012  to December 4, 2012 using a Philippine-issued MasterCard credit, debit or prepaid card at any Philippine Airlines or Airphil Express ticketing office, accredited travel agency or their websites www.philippineairlines.com and www.airphilexpress.com. Visit facebook.com/Mabuhay Miles to register and earn electronic raffle entries.

Every P500 or US$12  single-receipt purchase of Philippine Airlines or AirPhil Express tickets will earn one (1) electronic raffle entry. Choose from among the 29 domestic and 31 international destinations of Philippine Airlines or AirPhil Express and you may just win a round-trip ticket to get there.

For each day from November 15 to December 4, 2012, ten (10) lucky MasterCard cardholders will be drawn. A total of 200 winners will be drawn throughout the promo period.  You could be one of them!

To know more about the “Dream Destinations. Free Flights.” promotion, check out the Mabuhay Miles Facebook page or see posters and print ads for details.

♥♥♥♥♥

About MasterCard

MasterCard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com,is a global payments and technology company. It operates the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone.  Learn more at www.mastercard.com, follow us on Twitter @MasterCardNews or join the conversation on The Heart of Commerce Blog.

Travelmob Announces Launch Today

Leading social stay marketplace securely connects global travellers with local hosts offering unique accommodations and experiences in Asia Pacific. 

Manila, Philippines – travelmob (www.travelmob.com), a leading social stay marketplace where property owners in Asia Pacific can list unique spaces to visiting travellers for short-term stays, announced its official launch today. With the launch of travelmob, travellers will now have the opportunity to find quality accommodation ataffordable rates.

Founded jointly by Turochas Fuad (“T”), ex Managing Director of Skype Asia Pacific and PrashantKirtane (”PK”), formerly Senior Director of Engineering at Yahoo! Inc,the company was started with a vision to enable travellers around the world to experience Asia Pacific like a local.

Turochas, CEO and Co-Founder of travelmob stated, “travelmob is uniquely focused on growing Asia Pacific as a destination for global travellers. We aim to be the leading marketplace offering social stays and unique experiences in the region, and are committed in offering a localized experience for our users.”

Globally, Asia Pacific is one of the fastest growing regions for tourism. According to the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), international arrivals into the region grew by 10% year-on-year in March 2012, led by Southeast Asia, which saw a strong 15% increase in visitor numbers compared to March 2011.

Besides the vast cultural diversity in Asia Pacific, which makes it an interesting destination, the hike in the region’s inbound travel can also be attributed to rising incomes among the middle classes in China, India and Southeast Asia.

China is producing 25 million new people classified as ‘middle class’ each year, and Indonesia will soon reach 60 million of its population deemed to be middle class.

travelmob provides a secure platform for property owners in Asia Pacific to list their spare room, entire apartment or vacation villa for short term stays. The site facilitates the entire booking process by providing a safe messaging platform for Guests (travellers) and Hosts (property owners) to contact each other and handles the financial transaction between both parties to ensure secure, timely payments.

Hosts can list as many properties as they like for free on travelmob and a service fee is collected only when an actual booking is made. According to Turochas, “Renting out your spare room or apartment to foreign guests visiting the country is a great way to help boost local tourism and meet new people from all around the world.travelmob provides another avenue for homeowners to monetize their properties to earn extra cash.”

Similarly, travelmob provides Guests with a safe payment system and holds payments for 24hrs after the Guest has checked in, to ensure a smooth and satisfactoryexperience.

Understanding that travellers generally trust recommendations from friends and other travellers, travelmob has also built a transparent review system where Guests and Hosts can share their feedback on one another for a recent stay. In addition, the site integrates with popular social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, allowing users to share their travelmob experiences with their network and view which of their friends are fans of travelmob too.

True to its dedicated focus in Asia Pacific, travelmob has also introduced a couple of unique features for its users:

  • Localized payment options: support for 13 global currencies, 10 of which are key Asian currencies.
  • Localized language support in 5 Asian languages: Bahasa Indonesia, Vietnamese, Thai and Traditional and Simplified Chinese.
  • Local customer care in selected languages such as Chinese, Malay and Bahasa Indonesia.
  • Create Discount feature for Hosts to offer special discounts during off peak season and conduct special promotions for Guests.

Prashant, CTO and Co-Founder of travelmob said, “This is just the start. We intend to continuously gather feedback from our community and will introduceinnovative,localized features in the near future.”

With listings across Asia Pacific, travellers will be spoilt for choice on travelmob. Great steals include:

  1. Acosy2-bedroom apartment, perfect for business travellers, in Central Hong Kong at US$150 per night.
  2. A romantic getaway in a traditional Balinese villa at US$250/night.
  3. A luxuriousfamily pool villa in Koh Samui, Thailand at only US$295/night.

To celebrate its launch, travelmob is giving US$50 in credit to all of its users to be utilized for bookings made in the next 30 days, valid till 9 August 2012. Customers can visit travelmob.com/launchfor more details.

You can also find more information on travelmob at www.travelmob.com.

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About travelmob (www.travelmob.com)

travelmob is a leading online marketplace whose vision is to enable travellers around the world to experience Asia like a local. Launched in 2012, travelmob provides a secure platform for property owners in Asia Pacific to list unique accommodations and experiences, and host global travellers seeking to experience true local hospitality and culture.

You can get news and updates from travelmob on its Blog: blog.travelmob.com, Twitter: twitter.com/travelmobtweets or Facebook: www.facebook.com/travelmob.

travelmob is written in one contiguous string of characters in lowercase.

DOTC / MIAA Formalizes Agreement With Major Carriers To Integrate Terminal Fee Into Airline Tickets

Last Thursday, May 17, 2012, an intimate event was held in NAIA Terminal 3. It was the signing ceremony of Integration of the Domestic Passenger Service Charge. Led by DOTC Secretary Mar Roxas. This new system allows domestic passengers to skip one line before boarding plane.

I have been travelling a lot and I was happy to be invited to witness this historical event. And I am very familiar in making sure to be in the airport at least 2hrs before my flight. This is because I have to have enough time in lining up in checking-in and paying for the terminal fees. I find this very time consuming considering the traffic we have nowadays. 🙂

This is the reason why I am excited for this event. Domestic airline passengers lining up to pay terminal fee at the country’s airports will soon be a thing of the past as the Department of Transportation and Communications and the Manila International Airport Authority formalized the agreement with major airline companies to integrate the fees into the total cost of airline tickets.

A memorandum of agreement was signed by DOTC/MIAA with major carriers in a signing ceremony today at NAIA Terminal 3 attended by Transportation secretary Mar Roxas and top officials of airline companies.

The government was represented by Jose Angel Honrado, general manager of MIAA while the airline companies were led by their top executives. They include Inigo Zobel, president and CEO of Air Philippines; Lance Gokongwei, president and CEO of Cebu Air, Inc; Ramon Ang, president and COO of PAL; Avelino Zapanta, president and CEO of Seair Inc.; Ramon Guico III, president and CEO Sky Pasada; and Alfredo M. Yao, president and CEO of Zest Air.

The new system for domestic flights takes effect from 01 August 2012.

“We appreciate the airline companies’ full cooperation ‘who worked assiduously’ in instituting the new system to provide a better and efficient airport service to air travelers,” Roxas said.

The integration of terminal fee into the airline tickets had been previously rejected by carriers due to the perceived complexity of sorting out the amount due to the number of exemptions granted by the government to different passenger groups.

This is expected to save time and add convenience to 70% domestic passengers who are not entitled to any exemptions. Only exempted passengers such as athletes, overseas workers, senior citizens and babies under 2-years old, will line up at designated claim booths for refund.

Currently, passengers had to complete four procedures – the initial screening upon entering the terminal, check-in counter to get their boarding pass, payment of terminal fee, and the final security screening – before boarding their flights. The new system enables all departing domestic passengers to skip one line before they board the plane. They no longer need to queue and pay terminal fees in all domestic airports in the country, allowing passengers to do other things before boarding the plane.

This is really good also for me since I usually stay in the terminal for a couple of hours to eat before boarding the plane. 🙂

“This is just one part of the whole program we are implementing to smooth and speed up the ground operations of our airports, and ensure the convenience of air passengers,” Roxas said.

What about those who already bought their tickets for their flights next year? The transition time to fully implement the new system is expected to last until middle of next year as there will still be a terminal fee collection booth for those who have already bought their tickets without terminal fee. Before the end of the year, terminal fees for international flights will also be incorporated in the plane ticket. Nice! 🙂

The event was also graced by different groups and sectors of MIAA, DOTC and Media.

It was really nice to have some discussions with the other groups. There were also other Bloggers who I met for the first time. I enjoyed our discussions which actually boiled down to our excitement on this implementation. I guess, we are all a traveler and we know that this will be very time saving and more convenient to the passengers like us.

Meanwhile, the DOTC earlier unveiled several short- and long-term measures to solve the problem of runway congestion at NAIA.

To address the issue and to support local airline companies’ expansion program, Roxas said the government will continue to enhance the infrastructure of the country’s major airports. From just an airline fleet population of 62 five years ago, the airline industry’s total fleet number has almost doubled to 119 today.

Part of this effort, the government has allocated P800M to night-rate 14 additional airports in Tagbilaran, Legazpi, Dumaguete, Butuan, Ozamis, Cotabato, Naga, Dipolog, Roxas, Pagadian, Tuguegarao, Busuanga, Surigao and San Jose, Mindoro. Isn’t this amazing?! I just hope the government can sustain the budget on maintaining the new and existing airports in the country. 🙂

The rehabilitation of NAIA Terminal 1 is also in progress. “The structural work, together with the mechanical-electrical-plumbing and fire-protection (MEPF) work at NAIA T1will be completed next year,” he said.

NAIA Terminal 3 will be in full operation early next year once the 23 airport systems, including baggage handling system and closed-circuit televisions that will cover all areas of the terminal, are delivered by Takenaka Corp.

This ground-breaking step by DOTC will be a great help to all consumers and passengers. A lot of time will be saved and of course. Good luck DOTC and congratulations!

DOTC Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/DOTC/114547705229202?rf=108141952546941

DOTC – Department of Transportation and Communications
NAIA – Ninoy Aquino International Airport
MIAA – Manila International Airport Authority

Caleruega : Closer to Nature, Closer to God

When I was planning for my wedding a little over a year ago, Caleruega actually made it to my list of churches. I haven’t been there during that time that I was scouting for churches but I have heard a lot of good things about it. “Beautiful, awesome, enchanting” and many more good words about it. But unfortunately, it is located a bit far in Manila which will be very inconvenient for my guests.. 😦 But recently, finally we were able to visit the place and see it ourselves how beautiful it is.

Caleruega is located on top a hill somewhere in between Nasugbu, Batangas and Tagaytay. Caleruega is found in Barrio Kaylaway, Batulao in the town of Nasugbu. It is just across the boundary of Cavite and Batangas. And around 15 to 20 minutes drive from Tagaytay City. It was a bit raining when we arrived and we had some hard time getting our car parked because there’s a wedding going on that time.

The solemnity of the place was awesome. The cool breeze of wind, the sound of the birds with the view of beautiful garden. I was really amazed with the rare flowers all over the humongous garden. Before you can get to the garden, you will be welcomed with a very nice lobby showcasing its amazing structural designs – then, you will be headed to their patio.

             

I didn’t mind the long walk going to the hill in where the transfiguration chapel was located. I was busy looking around . Words cannot actually describe the feeling of looking at these wonderful spots in the area. Not to mention the breath-taking view as you go up the hill. As you work on your breathing exercise while walking, you will be accommodated by the station of the cross. Then you say “hi” to exotic flowers around the area. I was all smiles. My jaws literally fell down looking around.

The looong walk was really worth it. At first, you will be really tired that you would want to just sit down on one of the benches around and wait for your family to just come back, but as you get nearer and nearer to the chapel, makes you really motivated to continue walking. Every stop that you will make, you will enjoy the view. Left and right, there’s no area that’s not filled with solemnity and graceness.

          

         

          

          

Our family enjoyed this trip. This place is something to be really proud of. I will be making another post with the shots inside the chapel, soon.

       

If you are planning to visit Caleruega, It only cost 30 pesos for the entrance fee and another 30 pesos for the parking area. The travel time takes 2 and a half hours from Manila.

This is definitely worth it. 😀

For Inquiries and Reservation – Caleruega Philippines
(+6343)7060348; (+63921)2709890
email: caleruega_philippines@yahoo.com

Travel: Pink Sisters Convent

With my husband’s family, we went to several churches on the last day of March. This is to offer thanksgiving because my brother-in-law is graduating as Summa cum Laude in their Law School. How cool is that??!! 😀 We rented a van so the kiddos can also join us. After visiting and attending mass in a few churches here in Manila, we headed to Tagaytay – in the Pink Sister’s Convent. We just had breakfast before heading there I was pretty much sleeping the whole time we were travelling to Tagaytay. I just woke up we were in the gate already. Haha!!

The place was so quiet even though there were a lot of people already doing their station of the cross rituals. I also noticed 6 buses full of elderly women touring the place. Imagine that! So, the place was kinda jampacked. But as I said, the place was so quiet and solemn.. When we arrived, it was almost an hour before lunch time. And the pink sisters were all at the altar praying and actually preparing for their usual praise songs before they have their lunch. So, the guard was a bit strict in terms of noise. Kids weren’t allowed to roam around the chapel. They should just be sitting beside their parents. Camera’s were also not allowed near the chapel. If ever, people will be taking pictures, make sure flash is turned-off and the camera is in silent-mode.

Pink Sisters was founded by St.Arnold Janssen

One thing which amazed me during our visit here is that each of the Pink Sisters takes turn to adore and offer prayers to the blessed sacrament and keep the prayerful vigil for 24hrs a day, 7 days a week.

Inside the chapel

There’s the Pink Sisters

The parking area which is guarded by the statue of St.Michael the Archangel

Right after the parking area is a huge garden which I must say is very well taken cared of. The plants and flowers were awesome. Nothing really unusual on the plants – they’re just the ordinary ones we have on our gardens too, but, you can really see the cleanliness of the place.  There was this old woman who was sweeping the dried leaves who’s also wearing pink (just like a pajama terno). She just didn’t agree to have her picture with us.

A huge crucifix right in front of the chapel

The ten commandments in stone along with the crucifix

                  

Sacred Heart’s statue at the side of the chapel

                                                

This place is really awesome. I’m glad I was able to visit this and offer thanksgiving. I hope to visit here again, soon. 🙂

                                             

Travel: The Cebu Cathedral Museum

When Francis and I were in Cebu last February 9-12, 2012, we wanted to make sure we visit all those place we love when we we’re still based here. Churches and most specially, the restaurants! We love the food here, so much. Aside from they’re a lot cheaper than in Manila, they’re all really yummy. 😛 Before heading to our food fiesta itenerary, we went to visit the 2 famous churches in Cebu which are also really close to our hearts – Sto.Niño Basilica and Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral. We attended mass and bought some Sto.Niño’s. Then we went to Cebu Cathedral Museum. Just crossing the street beside the cathedral is the museum already. It was a bit raining and there we’re groupd of toddlers having their educational tour here. They’re sooo cutie! 🙂

We we’re welcomed by their security guard, the receptionist and a golden retriever, all of ’em we’re friendly. I love it when the dog started waiving his tail when he saw us. It’s like he knew us. For those who will visit this place, don’t be scared of the guard dog – he’s friendly. 🙂

At the start, I can say that this place is well-loved and well-preserved. Though the place is really old, you can feel the positive vibes and the cool breeze of air flowing. I just felt sad when the receptionist mentioned to us that it has years that they’re gathering funds for its renovation… Since 1800, this has survived eartquakes, typhoons, war and all other elements, this museum building is the rectory of Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral and now serves as ecclesiastical museum showcasing regional church facade and artifacts. Not to mention that this is Cardinal Vidal’s baby.

Now let me take you to a tour around the museum. First stop, the Carmen Collection, this their small-restored chapel just right after the museum entrance.

And here’s the collections displayed on the second floor fo the museum.

When we are checking out what’s on the back door area, we saw the car that Pope John II used when he was in Cebu. Felt bad that the car was just outside and I think, needs a litle cleaning up to preserve it, too.

The car used by Pope John Paul II when he was in Cebu

The museum is very organized. Each piece of artifact is carefully displayed with captions about them for the visitors to read and learn. The backyard is also big enough for functions like birthdays, weddings and other celebrations which the building Admin accepts. I think, this will be a very nice place for our lolo and lola’s golden wedding anniversary or even our parent’s wedding anniversary.

If you will have to visit Cebu, I recommend you include this in your itenerary. This way, you get to learn about the religious side of the city and at the same time, you get to help on raising funds for their renovation and restoration of the building.. 😛