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NOVEMBER 2017 / VOL. 35 NO.17

STILL in stores



Ninety minutes. For a lot of people working in Metro Manila, that’s the amount of time required just to get to work. It’s about two episodes of your favorite Netflix series. And usually the difference between Filipino, and actual time. Fortunately, it’s also roughly the amount of time it takes to get out of the madding metro, and to the sprawling seaside sanctuary that is Pico de Loro Cove.








Concoct it yourself

Here, there, everywhere

Predominantly known to locals for the distinctly sweet taste of its mangoes, the island province of Guimaras has in its holster a plethora of gems – minus the madding crowd of tourist traps.

We let you in on the secrets to award-winning cocktails, using Don Papa Rum – one of the hottest premium brands in Europe.

From a tropical paradise retreat, and a four-week yoga series, to pre-holiday bazaars, and ballet performances – get the heads up on various evenst to fill your calendar with.




are the champions of Philippine chiropractic?

can you find the country’s first 100% Japanese Halal restaurant?

is there to do in the landlocked province of Tarlac?

aging gracefully isn’t all it's made up to be







APRIL 12-25, 2015


New bureau promises to cut gov't red tape By RICHARD RAMOS


hile red tape remains to be a major headache for both local and foreign businessmen in the Philippines, the coming months promise improvements with a new government agency looking to be more active in imposing penalties on erring government personnel who intentionally delay the processing of business documents and permits. Soon to be known as the Business AntiRed Tape and Competitiveness Bureau once the Expanded Anti-Red Tape Act (Senate Bill No. 1311) is enacted, this new body under the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) will directly oversee the various functions of government agencies nationwide and impose the corresponding penalties on guilty parties suspected of complicating business-related processes with the public. According to Sen. Miguel Zubiri, chair of the Senate Committee on trade, commerce, and entrepreneurship, he was a former victim of unnecessary delays, and even requests of several solicitations in cash and kind just to “speed up” the registration of his 400-square

meter lot, which took over four months. The senator said that simple call to a regional director resulted in the overnight resolving of the matter. Offenses and penalties Government employees are forbidden from imposing more requirements from the business representative once the bar code is in place. And if the permit is not approved after a certain deadline, the permit is considered approved. Any disapproval must be in accordance with legal procedures, and nothing else. “I understand the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) is under heat from many business sectors. The permit here takes so long to process, plus the fact that one needs to buy a certain brand of fire extinguisher or hydrants at nearly five times the price before the permit is approved. This time, the BFP is given only 10 working days and is banned from selling any fire equipment,” Zubiri told a cheering audience. He added that one will only fill out one form from the DTI dubbed the Unified Busi-

6,000 runners pack Glitter Run


olor Manila, best known for their colorful fun-runs, recently enjoyed another packed event, with its Glitter Run at the Mall of Asia grounds. More than 6,000 participants joined the early morning race by the bay, which had three race finishes -3K, 5K and 10K. The race participants also enjoyed going through the various foam stations; and the color powder and glitters that were thrown in the air. The morning ended with the color festival, where DJs spun both retro and contemporary tunes as the runners danced and partied the morn-

ing away, while color powder was thrown at them. "We're always happy to see our runners enjoy the race that we organize in detail for them. We make sure that we give them a race experience that will make them go back for more. We also make sure we give them a world-class fun-run experience," said Color Manila VP Justine Cordero. Color Manila will still have two more events for 2017, Nov. 4 for Blacklight Tanay, and Dec. 2 for CM Blacklight at Clark, Pampanga.

For more information, visit for more details.

ness Permit Application Form. This is an online transaction with no chances of corruption since this does not need a personal visit to the government office. Regarding business permits, the soon-tobe established Central Business Portal would allow frontline government offices to process applications and digitally sign documents to applicants to speed up the process. Penalties for first-time offenders are 30 days without pay. Two-time offenders will be slapped six months without pay. While third-timers will be dismissed, forfeited of retirement benefits, and slapped with criminal charges. Serving as lead agencies in the Expanded Anti-Red Tape Act is the Civil Service Commission (CSC), and the anti-red tape bureau under the DTI. The DTI will also accept complaints from the public, talk to the agency concerned, or file cases outright. Other acts such as abuse of authority by government officials involved in business permits, licenses, and tax remittances, and delaying tactics will be considered as criminal of-

fenses and treated as such. Stark figures Speaking before the Visayas Area Business Conference (VABC) held at the Oakridge Pavilion in Mandaue City, Zubiri pointed out that the Philippines placed 47th in the World Global Competitiveness Index among 190 countries in 2015, and fell to 56th place in 2016. In terms of infrastructure pillars, the Philippines ranked only 97th among 137 countries, thus indicating much room for improvement. “It takes 16 procedures to start a licensed business, but only six in Singapore and Malaysia, and only six in Laos. To register a property, the Philippines needs nine procedures, compared to only three in Singapore, and four in Thailand and Laos,” he continued. Paying taxes is even worse. Zubiri pointed out that one needs to make 36 payments to register a business with the Bureau of Internal Revenue, but only five in Singapore, 15 in Malaysia, and 27 in Brunei.

Cebu, Mactan airport shine anew By RICHARD RAMOS


ccolades continue to rain on the Visayas region with Cebu, and the MactanCebu International Airport (MCIA) once again scoring enviable ratings as Cebu and the Visayas Islands copped second place in a ranking of the world's best islands, according to the prestigious Conde Nast Traveler Reader's Choice Awards 2017, while the MCIA went up a notch to no. 13 among the best airports in the world. Three Philippine islands make the list Cebu was described as "not as wild as Phuket, Thailand with more personal ties and teeming with plenty of up-and-coming restaurants and shopping malls. The magazine also cited that Cebu was famous for its beaches on the mainland and in the surrounding islands." Copping the no. 1 spot was Boracay, a small island off Panay Island "famed for its white-sand beach and thriving nightlife scene." Palawan was ranked third after placing no. 1 in 2014 and 2015. Melanie Ng, Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) president declared that Cebu's latest accomplishment should open up new opportunities as the place continues to attract more visitors. "The increasing number of direct flights to Cebu is a sure way of getting more tourists to visit and enjoy our beautiful beaches, sumptuous food, and warm hospitality," she said in a

text message. Ranking from four to 10 respectively are the islands of Mallorca, Spain; Mykonos, Greece; Bermuda; St. Barts; Turks and Caicos; and the Cayman Islands. Carlo Suarez, president of the Hotel, Resort, Restaurant Association of Cebu (HRRAC) stated that Cebu's latest ranking should be taken as an indicator that more tourists would be more interested to visit Cebu. "Cebu is really at the peak of making waves as a premier destination. This is very timely as there will be more direct flights to Cebu due to the upcoming airport terminal. With this, we urge the community to take good care of our scenic beaches and other tourist spots so more local and foreign visitors will have the pleasure of enjoying Cebu at its best." Over 300,000 respondents sent in their choices to come up with the list, marking a new record for the magazine. Cebu's latest ranking is no fluke as Cebu has consistently placed among the Top Ten for more than a decade. In fact, another publication previously ranked Cebu as the second friendliest island in the world in 2016. About the airport Regarding the airport's latest ranking, GMCAC (GMR-Cebu Airport Authority) President Louie Ferrer expressed exuberance, saying that rising from 14th to 13th place is a good indicator that they were on the right track as a developer. More excitement is in store when the new terminal opens in June 2018. "Presently, we are focused on maximizing Cebu's connectivity and ensuring that the airport is capable of handling the increasing traffic. We just launched three new flights to China and brought in two new international carriers. New domestic flights will be launched later this year. We also seek to promote to other untapped markets in other parts of the globe," he declared. Ferrer was referring to the entry of Juneyao Air, which recently launched three weekly flights to Xi'an City and Shanghai last Oct. 30. Another new airline, Okay Airways, added another three weekly flights to Xi'an. Ferrer recalled that when GMR took over airport management in Nov. 2014, the airport had just seven international and 23 domestic destinations. Figures have since ballooned to its present day totals of 18 international routes and 35 local destinations.


APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

US-Phl complete successful military exercise


S Marines and Sailors with the 3d Marine Expeditionary Brigade, together with their Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) counterparts, successfully concluded the inaugural exercise KAMANDAG last month during a closing ceremony at Marine Barracks Rudiardo Brown, Taguig. KAMANDAG, which ran from Oct. 2 to 11, is an acronym for the Filipino phrase “Kaagapay Ng Mga Mandirigma Ng Dagat,” or “Cooperation of Warriors of the Sea.” The name emphasizes the close partnership between the Philippine and US militaries. In preparation for KAMANDAG, the service members partnered to complete humani-

tarian and civic assistance projects. Members of the AFP, Japan Ground Self Defense Force, and US military renovated C.J. Torre Elementary School, Esperanza Elementary School, and Esperanza Daycare Center, in Casiguran. U.S. military medical teams also taught basic lifesaving skills, first aid, disease prevention, and dental hygiene to children and teachers in Casiguran, Aurora as part of a cooperative health engagement. During KAMANDAG, US and Philippine service members practiced combat lifesaving techniques, live fire training, maritime search and seizure, urban terrain operations, and aviation support planning.

US Marine amphibious assault vehicles (AAV) embarked and launched from a Philippine Navy sealift vessel, the BRP Tarlac (LD-601), for the first time ever. This success expands both militaries’ operational support capabilities to provide relief during humanitarian disasters, as well as move forces ashore during a terrorist crisis. “This kind of integrated training prepares the Philippine vessel to carry Philippine Marine Corps AAVs in the future,” said Philippine Marine Corps Public Affairs Officer, Capt. Maria R. Dalmacio. She noted that the Philippine Marine Corps plans to acquire AAVs by 2019.

Harvey Law Group sets Asia expansion with Manila office


anada-based firm Harvey Law Group (HLG) recently opened its Makati office, offering immigration and business legal services to both corporations and individuals. HLG is looking to help Filipinos and Philippine residents interested in living, working, and doing business in countries and areas such as Australia, Canada, the US, UK, Cyprus, France, Greece, Italy, New Zealand, Portugal, and the Caribbean Region, to obtain permanent residency or to secure passports through citizenship-by-investment programs. "In recent years, the Philippines has emerged as an economic powerhouse," shared HLG Worldwide Managing Partner Jean François Harvey. "The country is now generating a lot of interest as an investment destination, but we also see a huge opportunity in working with high net worth Filipinos and Philippine residents establishing themselves in international markets." Harvey believes that the country's growth also offers an opportunity for Filipinos to redefine what global mobility means for the Philippines. With the Philippines enjoying strong people-to-people links with countries such as

the US, Australia, and Canada, Harvey said that Filipinos are now in a position to leverage these strong ties. "Filipinos have a reputation as one of the world's most mobile citizens. The first few stages of the Filipino diaspora involved professionals responding to the demand in talent in areas such as the US, UK, and the Middle East," added Harvey. "With the Philippines emerging as a fast-growing economy, we believe that the next chapter of Filipino mobility would involve entrepreneurs, investment programs. These programs will provide them with greater flexibility, allowing them to live, work, and own property in these countries." Regional growth Apart from the fore mentioned services, HLG also advises businesses on the following areas: mergers and acquisitions; commercial leases; shareholder and partnership agreements; joint ventures and other strategic alliances contracts; intellectual property and technology protection; property ownership structures; and cross-border trade. For over 25 years, HLG has provided the

highest caliber of legal and investment based immigration advice throughout Asia, North and South America, and the Middle East. HLG also offers immigration investment programs covering Southeast Asian economies such as Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand. "Our movement into Southeast Asia recognizes the growth that we have seen in the region over the past decade. Now home to over 600 million and a rising middle and upper class, we believe that we are at the beginning of a growing market for mobility in Southeast Asia," explained Harvey of the expansion. "If countries in the region continue to pursue initiatives that would allow more people to accumulate and grow their wealth, we can expect double digit growth figures for all members of the ASEAN Economic Community within the next 10 years."

Harvey Law Group is located at 25-E Citibank Tower, Valero cor. Villar Sts., Bel-Air, Makati; for more information, call (02) 8013233, email manila@harveylawcorporation. com or visit

High turnout enjoyed by EHEF 2017


total of 1,267 participants – composed of students, faculty, academicians, and researchers – flocked to the Grand Atrium of Shangri-La Plaza for the European Higher Education Fair (EHEF) 2017 last month. The fair featured 24 higher education institutions from 10 EU member states. EU Ambassador Franz Jessen led the opening ceremonies and was joined by Commission on Higher Education Commissioner Ronald Adamat, Belgian Ambassador Michel Goffin, Czech Ambassador Jaroslav Olsa, Ambassador Jan Top Christensen, and Charge d’Affaires Laurent Legodec of the Embassy of Denmark, Thorsten Gottiried of the Embassy of Germany, Hungarian Ambassador Jozsef Bencze, Dutch Ambassador Marion Derckx, Spanish Ambassador Jose Luis Calvo, and Lennart Jansson of the Embassy of Sweden, among others. “Studying in Europe allows one to get a different perspective, which can be incredibly useful, especially for the youth,” Ambassador Jessen said. “You have a great need for well-educated, young Filipinos here. They can use the knowledge they have obtained (in Europe) to develop your (the Philippines’) economy.” During the fair, the participants were treated to a series of lectures about the European education system and way of life. A special booth was also designated to the EU’s Erasmus+Programme. The Erasmus Programme is an EUfunded program to support projects, partnerships, events, and mobility in the areas of education, training, youth, and sports. It provides funding opportunities for cooperation in all these areas, both among European countries, and partner countries around the world. For more info, find @ehefphilippines on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

I’M ANGUS STEAKHOUSE BRINGS HOME THE BEEF NASHVILLE, Tennessee, United States – I’m Angus Steakhouse took home the coveted branding iron for Excellence in Marketing for an International Independent Restaurant, presented annually at the Certified Angus Beef ® brand’s Annual Conference held in Nashville on Sept. 27 to 29. The award honors establishments actively sharing their commitment to offering customers the world’s foremost brand of beef, which is owned by Angus farmers and ranchers across the United States. “Quality and integrity unite their focus on delivering the finest beef,” says John Stika, the beef brand’s president. “They are stars in their markets for bringing the Certified Angus Beef ® brand’s ranching heritage and focus on quality and integrity to their customers, and ultimately, consumers.” Managed and owned by Werdenberg International Corporation’s CEO, Werner Berger, I’m Angus Steakhouse has been raising the standard of excellence for steakhouse to a whole new level. Since 2009, I’m Angus has proudly the Certified Angus Beef ®

brand, taking great pride in its premium US beef offering. An affiliate of Carpaccio Ristorante Italiano and Chesa Bianca Swiss Restaurant, two of the country’s highly acclaimed fine-dining restaurants, I’m Angus Steakhouse also offers a stylish and contemporary dining ambiance. Every part of the steakhouse provides a truly comfortable and satisfying dining atmosphere and a show kitchen allows each guest to see the freshness of their food choices as the chef serves them straight off the grill. Werdenberg International Corporation remains the unparalleled giant The leading importer and distributor of food, wine and equipment products, Werdenberg International Corporation, was also given a recognition and appreciation for its outstanding performance during the Certified Angus Beef® Brand Annual Conference. Werdenberg was awarded as the Top Ten in Sales Volume in the Independent Specialty Meat Company Food Service Distributor (International category).

(Middle) Werner Berger, Chief Executive Officer; Othmar Frei, Chief Operating Officer; and Goldie San Luis, Sales Manager of Werdenberg International Corporation; together with Chef Leo Marquez and I’m Angus Steakhouse Team I’m Angus Steakhouse is located at 7431 Yakal St., San Antonio Village, Makati


APRIL 12-25, 2015



Mandani Bay unveiled Mandani Bay Quay in splendid dinner ceremonies held at its award-winning gallery showroom situated in Zuellig Ave., Mandaue City. The PhP12billion, Phase Two development focuses on urban energy with the future rising of four imposing towers, three of which are residential and one for office purposes. Target date of turnover is fourth quarter of 2021 with nearly all 1,200 units accounted for. Phase One consisting of Mandani Bay Suites was sold out in a year’s time. Mandani Bay is a sprawling 20-hectare masterplanned waterfront community forged through a partnership between Taft Properties and Hong Kong Land. Visit www. for more details. Isuzu Phil. Corp. (IPC) introduced its latest line-up of Blue Power models consisting of the Isuzu D-MAX pick-up and the Isuzu mu-X SUV during a three-day exhibit held at SM City Cebu Northwing. Their new EURO 4 engines provide maximum engine output, cleaner emission, superb fuel economy, and engine durability. Some of the features include multiple USB ports, Bi-LED projector headlamps, chrome radiator grille and 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels. A special addition is the Hill Start Assist and Hill Descent Control to enable better handling at inclined

terrains. IPC president Hajime Koso, who was the guest of honor at the exhibit, expressed confidence of surpassing their current market share in the region. Property 24 and OLX have joined forces to give sellers a rise in web traffic and increase in potential buyers. Bannering its new online campaign “Find all properties here,” the portal aims to help both sellers and buyers achieve their real estate needs through comprehensive property listings that considers location, price, and other factors. Sellers’ identities are verified first and avail of the Customer Relations Management (CRM) tool to enable them to monitor their posts and ad performance. While buyers benefit from the easy-to-use platform for easy browsing and filtering. Both portals have 2,087 properties added daily; 300,000 leads per month; and nearly 2 million monthly customers. Cebu City Marriott Hotel through the AyalaLand Hotels and Resorts Corp. (AHRC) has announced the conclusion of its 20-year management contract with Marriott International Hotels by the yearend. The hotel will close its doors on January 1, 2018 and will reopen after several months of refurbishment of rooms and amenities under the Seda brand, a wholly

owned hotel chain by AHRC. AHRC president and CEO Al Legaspi acknowledged the valuable role of the hotel in the growth of the Cebu Business Park as the premier business district in the region. Seda Hotels will also build another branch at the Cebu Information Technology (IT) Park, which is due to open by 2020. Dunlopillo, the leading manufacturer of luxurious beds from the UK, showcases its prominent array of lavish mattress line at the third level of the Ayala Center Cebu. Its latest collection is the Talasilver Wave, which has the “Triple Fresh” feature – a continuous purification process of unwanted odors and improvement of sleep quality. The Talasilver Wave Zenith has the Biorhythm Sleep feature, which disperses vibrational technology to the muscles for stress relief. The Talasilver Wave Fortuna has the Siluran Cool-Down has a fast drying feature designed to get rid of perspiration. While the Talasilver Wave Aries has the Cashmere Protein feature that enhances fabric softness for utmost sleep comfort. The Wellington Greens, the newest project of Paramount Property Ventures Inc (PPVI), takes root in the hilly portion of the northern municipality of Compostela. Situated less than an hour’s drive

from Cebu, the property features six Zeninspired house models along with amenities such as swimming pool with sun deck, dual play court, activity pavilion, kids’ playground, among others. Special features include an automatic entrance gate with security cameras, built-in home security system, Wi-Fi in the amenities area, and optional solar panels. PPVI aims to address the country’s housing backlog, which caters to the rising middle-income class comprising of OFWs and BPO workers. Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc.- Eduardo Aboitiz Development Studies Center (RAFI-EADSC) hosted the Understanding Choices Forum on “Waste and Water Management amidst Urbanization and Climate Change.” A host of foreign students and experts delivered their presentations on various measures to conserve marine resources, and encourage the growth of more flora species on water bodies. The event also highlighted recommendations to improve the capacity of Metro Cebu in addressing the challenges and risks of urbanization and climate change in general. This articulates the Mega Cebu vision of Making Waves: Wholesome, Advanced, Vibrant, Equitable, and Sustainable Cebu.

The first-ever Maritime and Archipelagic Nation Awareness Month (MANA MO) celebration was held last September. MANA MO was proclaimed by President Rodrigo Duterte as a special month of celebration intended to raise awareness on issues related to national maritime and archipelagic concerns, and will be celebrated every September from hereon. Bottle Nose Dolphins Gulf of Corinth © Dolphin Biology and Conservation

International School of Sustainable Tourism (ISST) president Mina Gabor receives the symbolic Gandhi tophi or Indian peasant headgear in the recent 5th Farm Tourism Conference and Festival held in Iloilo City.

A contingent of Indian agri-tourism practitioners from Maharashtra state took part in the three-day confab to share their best practices and success stories, which can be replicated locally. The delegation was led by Pandurang Taware (in photo, center), regarded as the “Father of Agri-Tourism Concept” in India and Managing Director of Agri Tourism Development Company Pvt Ltd based in Pune. The event put the spotlight in the country’s growing farm tourism industry as a driver of inclusive economic growth, and opened potential collaboration between India and the Philippines for possible hosting of the 11th World Agri Tourism Day in May 2018.


APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

Beginnings at Crimson Hotel The premier hotel in the city of Muntinlupa sets the stage for memorable matrimonies Words by ANGIE DUARTE Photos by ANDIE D. SYYAP

I DO.” Two very small words that carry huge meaning. In the fraction of a second it takes to utter that itty-bitty phrase, a lifetime of commitment is set into motion. But, before the momentous exchange of vows can take place, months – even years – of plans, plots, and painstaking preparations typically go into the making of the milestone. From the most seemingly mundane of details, such as “Ecru, white, or off-white for the invites?” to the bigger deals like theme, food and setting, gown, ceremony and reception, there is a brain-spinning number of things that go into orchestrating a truly unforgettable wedding day. After all, every soonto-be-wed couple desires to get off on the right foot – preferably taking that step (more like a leap, really!) in elegance, style, and the utmost of Instagram-worthy flair. The Crimson Hotel in Filinvest City Alabang understands both the gravity and the glory of “I Do.” So much so, that the premier hotel is committed to making it as special and as hassle-free as possible for all starry-eyed couples looking to tie the proverbial knot.




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Back detail of a Libiran bridal gown All set for a Country Wedding Table setting for the Posh Package Custom wedding cake by Crimson Hotel


Themes for dreams In its efforts to extend a helping hand and to satisfy every couple’s penchant for a unique “Big Day,” the Crimson Hotel offers a roster of themes. Each one is carefully curated and designed to suit a variety of personal preferences and dream wedding concepts. For those looking to step out in the utmost of style, there’s the Glam Wedding Package, which pulls out all the stops in the luxury department. The Crimson Posh Wedding, on the other hand exudes

a chic, romantic panache. Meanwhile, couples looking for something classic and delicate will fall in love with the Dainty Wedding theme, while those with a knack for the rustic and relaxed will revel in the Country Wedding option. Other packages, such as a quirky Art Theme, are also available. And let’s not forget the ceremony. The Crimson Hotel’s al fresco deck area provides an ideal setting for cheery, sunny day nuptials, or a magical moon-drenched union. Here comes the bride But what’s a wedding without a gown? Perhaps the focal point of every bride’s matrimonial machinations, the wedding gown must be perfect – or, beware the Bridezilla! At its recent bridal showcase, Crimson Hotel partnered with acclaimed Filipino designer, Francis Libiran to shine the spotlight on a collection that was nothing short of stunning. Gowns in all shapes and silhouettes, from extravagant and edgy to classic and charming, came down the runway, to the delight of all in attendance. The color of passion and love The color crimson has long symbolized passion and love. It is no wonder, then, that the hotel in the heart of the southern haven of Alabang is dedicated to making every wedding day as special as the story behind it. Perhaps, your unique “forever” begins at Crimson Hotel. For more information, visit

Champions of Chiropractic Having recently celebrated its 27th anniversary, United Nations Chiropractic Center continues to bring relief, the natural way By ANGIE DUARTE


rom ancient times, civilizations have recognized the impact of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems on a person’s overall wellbeing. In fact, Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine himself, urged his peers in Greece, way back in 1500 BC, to “Get knowledge of the spine, for this is the requisite for many diseases.” Dating further than that, thousands of years ago, history shows that Chinese health practitioners and Indian yogis also devoted much of their energies to spinal health, corrections, and flexibility. But it wasn’t until the late 1800’s – 1895, to be precise – that chiropractic care was founded by Daniel Dave Palmer, a teacher and magnetic healer from Iowa, USA. In the Philippines, one organization, United Nations Chiropractic Center, has championed the cause of chiropractic care for nearly three decades. Founded in 1990 by Willie Britt and Dr. Ronald Mitchell, a doctor of chiropractic, UNCC has grown from one clinic to five since its beginnings. Today, it continues to serve the Philippines with its mission to bring quality chiropractic care that is effective, safe, and affordable to reach more people. The chiropractic way Through the years, chiropractic has, by and large, been a polarizing issue:

many are sold on the tenets of this alterative form of holistic medicine, but there are those who remain undecided about it. Regardless of viewpoint, however, more and more studies point to the undeniable benefits of chiropractic care: relief from neck and back pain and other muscular maladies, relief from headaches, treatment of sciatica and pinched nerves, heightened mental sharpness, healthy blood pressure levels, improved mental health – the list goes on. All these positive results are achieved from the natural treatment of misalignments of the spine, through a series of hand techniques and adjustments. “Chiropractic provides a unique health care system which treats the cause of the symptoms rather than just masking the symptoms with medicine,” shares Britt. “Patients, in many cases, are permanently relieved for once in their lives. We make every effort for patient empowerment through education. We want the patient to be an active participant in their overall (holistic) health care,” he adds. Philippine chiropractic pioneers UNCC first came to Philippine shores in 1990 to spread the practice of chiropractic to those seeking a more conservative and natural means of healing one’s body.

“Dr. Ronald Mitchell and I were invited to the Philippines to further share the pioneering idea of chiropractic. As we often give credit where credit is due, the only licensed chiropractor practicing in the Philippines before 1990 was Dr. Jameson Uy. After numerous trips and discussions with members of the academic and health care communities, Dr. Mitchell and I established the first American chiropractic clinic in the Philippines,” Britt recalls. A few years down the road, the team grew with the addition of Dr. Walter Brush, also a doctor of chiropractic. Both Dr. Mitchell, Dr. Bush studied chiropractic and were licensed in the States, but chose to champion the cause of chiropractic on Philippine shores. Healthy spines, healthy lives Even though the practice has grown tremendously since its beginnings, the UNCC team’s mission remains noble and unchanged: to help create healthy lives through healthy spines. “When we first opened and until this day, we are not concerned about how many clinics we operate or others in the chiropractic field operate or the number of doctors working for them,” Britt notes. “Rather, we are morally bound to ensure we provide high quality health care to the general populous at afford-

able prices. Our professional concern is with just two things – your health and our reputation.” Committed to chiropractic care Holding themselves to their high moral standard and quality of care, UNCC forges on with the same dedication to providing chiropractic care, in the best way they possibly can. As Britt points out: “Whatever level of treatment we desire for our family members and close friends, we demand the same level of care and concern for our patients. Through the years we have treated thousands of patients, some with very difficult cases. We made a solemn commitment to do what is in the best interest of the patient, to include appropriate referrals to other health care providers. Caring for patients is what we are honored to do.” And, it is this solemn commitment to caring for each of their patients with the utmost in the chiropractic that will carry UNCC well into the future. From ancient roots to a modern-day setting, chiropractic is here to stay – and UNCC is here to provide it, one spinal alignment and adjustment at a time. To learn more about United Nations Chiropractic Center, www.unchiropracticmanila. com.


APRIL 12-25, 2015


Recreate these Don Papa masterpieces! YOUR LOCAL GUIDE The Philippines’ forum for international readers since 1981

Murray Hertz Founding Publisher (1928-2014) Butch C. Bonsol President & Managing Director Suzette Defensor Managing Consultant Timothy Jay Araneta Ibay Editor-in-Chief

Don Papa Rum’s recent cocktail competition births four concoctions you can try mixing yourself By VIA BAROMA


fter holding cocktail competitions in the UK, Netherlands and Denmark, Don Papa Rum recently brought the cocktail competition to the Philippine shores in recognition of the growing cocktail scene in the country. From a pool of 50, 13 bartenders were chosen to showcase their unique cocktail creations made with the equally distinctive blend of Don Papa Rum.

Four bartenders (Kathrin Osmillo of Oto, John Robert Lorenzo of Samba at Shangri-La at the Fort, Abigael Quilal-lan of ABV, and Maxniel Seruelo of Prisma Boracay) came out on top, impressing judges not only with their creations’ flavors, but with the stories behind the concoctions. The winners of the cocktail competition will go on an all-expense-paid trip to Negros Island.

Part of this prize is a visit to Don Papa Rum’s distillery, one of the Philippines’ biggest producing sugar mills, and a luxury island experience in Punta Bulata resort. Since its launch in 2012, the homegrown brand has become one of the hottest premium brands in Europe – and has expanded its distribution to 21 countries across Europe, Asia Pacific, North America, and South Africa.

Richard A. Ramos (Cebu) Via Baroma Staff Writers Angie Duarte Writer-at-Large Nikki Joy Habana Macjanry Imperio Design & Layout

La Fuerza

Leah Egamino-Palaña Sales & Advertising Officer Fevelyn Bucio Admin and Accounting Vicky Soto Sales & Advertising Executive

by Kathrin Osmillo of Oto 1 1/2 oz. Don Papa Rum 1 oz. Kamias Juice 3/4 oz. Strawberry-Cinnamon Puree Honey, Cinnamon Powder, and Cinnamon Stick (for garnish)

Our Headquarters: Unit 305 Cristina Condominium, 143 Legaspi cor. V.A. Rufino Sts., Legaspi Village, Makati City

Road Less Traveled

by Abigael Quilal-lan of ABV 1 1/2 oz. Don Papa Rum 3/4 oz. Fresh Lime Juice 1/2 oz. Home Made Passion Fruit Syrup 1/2 oz. Banana Liqueur 1 barspoon of Brauilo 2 dashes Chocolate Bitters Served in an ice block

Our telephone numbers: (+632) 840-2996 or (+632) 812-0987 You can also reach us at: and for sales and advertising: Cebu Mailing Address: MJ. Cuenco Avenue cor. C. Mina St., Mabolo, Cebu City Telefax: (032) 412-8000

Audaz Filipinos

by Maxniel Seruelo of Prisma Boracay 1 1/2 oz. Don Papa Rum 1/2 oz. Fresh Guava Juice 3/4 oz. Fresh Pineapple Juice 4 pcs. Pineapple Chunks 3/4 oz. Coconut Water 1/4 oz. Lemon Juice 1/4 oz. Simple Syrup 5 dashes Angostura Bitters

Statements, views and opinions expressed by the writers, contributors, and advertisers are their own and do not necessarily represent those of the publisher or the management. The publisher assumes no responsibility for unsolicited material.





by John Robert Lorenzo of Samba at The Shangri-la The Fort

rand Wine Experience

45 ml Don Papa Rum 10 ml Orgeat Syrup 7.5 ml Grape Fruit Juice 5 ml Campari 15 ml Homemade Piña Shrub 30 ml Roasted Coconut Cream

This year’s edition of the Grand Wine Experience

treats epicureans to more than 500 wines and spirits, expertly complemented with curated saporous victuals. Happening on Nov. 24, the 17th culinary journey is organized by the Philippine Wine Merchants, and Ralph’s Wines and Spirits, and will be held at the Grand Ballroom of the Marriott Hotel. For ticket reservations, call (02) 853-9894, 851-0172, email, or visit


APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

Enjoy the Phl’s first 100% Japanese Halal restaurant at NAIA 3

Indulge in prosperous gastronomy at Red Jade


ecently, The Manila Hotel rebranded its Mabuhay Palace Chinese Restaurant to the more succinct Red Jade. And part of the Chinese restaurant’s renewed identity comes a new gastronomic experience for diners. Red Jade’s interiors is an illustration of understated elegance and refinement. All it takes is stepping into its ornate door to discover the restaurant’s sophisticated new look, while its lineup of dishes places a strong emphasis on Chinese culture and heritage – transporting those who indulge in it to a different plane.


anking on his passion for Halal food, Hasim Salih Mammah became an epitome of Filipino resiliency when he dared to break through Japanese cuisine in Riyadh. He honed his unconventional trade by servicing the Filipino community in the Saudi Arabian capital with his home-based 100 percent Halal-Asian catering business for nearly 12 years. And while it may seem an unlikely pairing for most, the question of why there weren’t Group Meal any Japanese Halal restaurants anywhere in the Philippines, despite Islam being the second-largest religion in the country was a void he wanted to address. “In pursuit of knowledge for food concepts, I met several Japanese and Asian chefs, including a Filipino executive chef who had the experience and skills in Japanese cuisine that encouraged me to put this business venture,” Hasim said of the Philippines’ first 100 percent Japanese Halal restaurant – Samurai Halal Express. Despite having opened just this year, Samurai Halal has already been garnering excellent reviews from a diverse range of patrons. “Located in Terminal 3 at the Ninoy International Airport, Samurai Halal is at the best place to cater not only Filipino-Muslim but also international foodies who wants a fusion of Japanese Halal in their palate,” Store Manager Archie Hidalgo Ravao told Expat. Samurai Halal uses imported Halal meat and chicken and Halal-authenticated ingredients. It also uses Halal-certified ingredients from Japan, and is manned by a Filipino sushi




chef who has mastered the artistry of Japanese cuisine. Expat recommends On top of the regular Japanese selections, Samurai Halal offers several innovative menu items, such as it ramen bowl with choices of seafood, chicken, and beef – all authentic in taste. Its tempura and furai (fried shrimp), for its part, are handpicked and coated with fine special batter. Kakkiago is Samurai Halal’s crispy and delicious vegetables fritter made from mixed vegetables strips, served with savory tempura sauce, while Chicken Gyoza (steamed fried wrapped minced chicken and vegetable served with spicy home made gyoza sauce) are some of the other must-try’s in their menu. Samurai Halal is scheduled to open its second branch next year at the Mall of Asia. Samurai Halal Express is located at Level 4, Dining Area, Terminal 3, Ninoy Aquino International Airport; for more information, call (0995) 282-8176.

B Hotel celebrates 7th year with classic Pinoy dishes n celebration of its seventh year in the industry, B Hotel Alabang recently introduced classic additions to its Filipino fare, offering local cuisine enthusiasts a true gastronomic treat. At the cocktail party held at B Hotel’s Prime Café, Head Chef Ricky Galon and his culinary team prepared a sampling of the restaurant’s array of sumptuous Filipino dishes, which includes Chicken Inasal perfectly grilled in lava rock, Adobo Flakes Pizza, their take on the classic Pork Sisig, Chicken Salpicao, Pork Sinuglaw (grilled pork and fish ceviche in spicy vinegar), and the delectable Sizzling Crispy Belly. The reimagined additions to Prime Café’s menu add to the allure of B Hotel’s promise of providing fivestar accommodations and service at three-star rates. Since the hotel’s opening in 2010, B Hotel has become a top choice for families and business travelers alike, with its more spacious than expected rooms, dining op-

The Manila Hotel opens its reimagined Chinese restaurant

tions, and top-notch service. About B Hotel Located at the Madrigal Business Park (just a short walk away from the Alabang Town Center, and the Molito Lifestyle Mall), B Hotel is situated in the part of Alabang that offers a bevy of lifestyle options, while also being in close proximity to business centers. For reservations, contact (02) 828-8181, or email For more information, visit

Sizzling Crispy Belly

Expat recommends Start off a delectable meal with various appetizer and barbecued specialties such as Red Jade’s five-dish combination, suckling pig combination, roasted suckling pig, and roasted Peking duck—which can be served three different ways: Hong Kong-style roasted pigeon, cold prawn salad and marinated jelly fish with chili paste, and with century eggs and ginger pickles. As well, experience the restaurant’s superb selection of bird’s nest abalone and sea cucumber dishes, as well as traditional hearty soups. Dimsum lovers can delight in Red Jade’s selection, which includes classics such as: steamed pork and shrimp “siomai”, steamed shrimp dumpling “har gao”, steamed xiao long bao, steamed cristal bao, pan-fried radish cake “bi fung tang” style, steamed red bean, and chestnut bun and pan-fried taro cake sausage.

Lobster Glazed with Sliced Almonds

There are live seafood cooked to your preference of either steamed, with salt and pepper, hot pot with vermicelli, ginger onion sauce, Singapore chili sauce, deep-fried with salted egg yolk or bean curd. Other seafood fare includes baked pit lobster, steamed white sea bass fillet in celery sauce, stirfried Australian scallops with cauliflower in X.O. sauce, and stir-fried tiger prawns. In the Chinese culture, red symbolizes happiness, and a time of celebration, while jade is often associated with good luck. The Manila Hotel carries on the tradition with the reimagined Red Jade—combining prosperity and gastronomy with its delectable menu, and superb dining experience. Red Jade is located on the Ground Floor of The Manila Hotel. For reservations and inquiries, call (02) 527-0011 ext. 1262 to 1264 or email


APRIL 12-25, 2015




through and through

Have more than just a stopover in this underrated province with this travel guide Words and photos by CELINE REYES

Tarlac is a landlocked province in what is known as the Central Luzon Plain. It's most famous for crops like sugar cane, and is rife with historical significance. Yet, somehow, it has been relegated as a mere pit stop for those heading north. Go beyond the road tripper-friendly establishments and check out some of the bests this province has to offer. EATING THERE

Victor's Lechon and Barbecue All that activity would surely leave you famished, and good thing there's Victor's – a popular roadside grill that serves juicy rotisserie chicken. The interiors are nothing fancy but the food is tasty and well worth the price.

Monasterio de Tarlac Nestled on Mt. Resurrecion in the town of San Jose, Monasterio de Tarlac is famous for two things: A 30-foot statue of Christ the Redeemer, and a relic of the True Cross. The Monasterio also has a view deck that affords a panorama of undulating hills and swaths of forests.

Tarlac Recreational Park The Tarlac Recreational Park alone can make your trip worth it. It has an oval track, and courts for badminton, basketball, and tennis. It also has a mini waterpark that features an Olympicsized pool and a set of kid-friendly waterslides. There's also a lake for fishing and several picnic tables. ATV rides and wall climbing can also be done here.

Monasterio de Tarlac is open to the public daily from 7AM to Tarlac Recreational Park is located in San Juan de Valdez, San 6PM. Call (45) 493-3002 for more details. Jose, Tarlac. Contact (0999) 885-3981 or (45) 493-2471 for rates and reservations.

Kart City

If you've a need for speed, then Kart City's the place to be. Realize your dreams of becoming a racing superstar (if only just Aquino Center and Museum for a few minutes) by hopping on a go-kart and challenging Located within the Luisita Industrial Park, the Aquino Center your friends to a round of racing in Kart City's tracks. and Museum is one of the most fascinating places to visit in Victor's Lechon Manok and Barbecue is located along the Mac- For only PhP250/head you can enjoy a five-minute go around Tarlac, particularly for history buffs. This place houses memoArthur Highway in Tarlac City. For reservations, call (45) 491- Kart City’s tracks. Kiddie carts are also available for rent for rabilia and personal effects of Ninoy and Cory Aquino, which won’t find anywhere else. The museum provides valuable in0538. Php120. The place is located just across SM City Tarlac and is sights from one side to what transpired during Martial Law that open from 3 p.m. to 2 a.m. Mondays to Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 2 ultimately led to the EDSA Revolution. a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Aquino Center and Museum is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and has a regular entrance fee of PhP100/head. Students may avail of the discounted rate of PhP50/head. Contact (45) 985-0968 for group tours and other inquiries. STAYING THERE

The Game Room Sportsbar To cap off the day, head to the Game Room – the in-house restaurant of Kart City. This place has a chill, hangout vibe with its sleek paneled bar and pair of billiard tables. The menu is a tried and tested combination of Filipino favorites and Western staples like sinigang, burgers, and the pair-it-with-a-beer crispy pata.

Luisita Golf Park If you're into the sport, a trip to the Luisita Golf Park is a must. Its world-class facilities have played host to many international competitions and is hailed as one of the country's finest. The sprawling property also makes for a great background for your Instagram shots.

Microtel Luisita

The Game Room Sportsbar at Kart City is open from 3 p.m. to 2 Luisita Golf and Country Club is located in Luisita Industrial If you want to escape the fast-paced city life, but don’t want a.m. on Mondays to Fridays, and 10AM to 2 a.m. on Saturdays Park Road, Tarlac City. For inquiries, call (45) 985-0810. to sacrifice its comforts, Microtel Luisita is where you should and Sundays. spend the night. The hotel, with a highly photogenic facade, is located inside the Luisita Industrial Park and just a few minutes away from the Aquino Center and Museum. With its chiropractor-approved mattresses, a good night's sleep is always guaranteed. Plus, the hotel offers transportation serGetting there vices to take you to any of the places mentioned above. They can also customized tours depending on you and your group’s There are buses bound for Tarlac in terminals in Pasay and Cubao. Buses heading to the Ilocos region preferences. also pass through the province. Victory Liner, Partas, Five Star, and Genesis are some of the bus lines that have regular trips to Tarlac.

For reservations and inquiries, call (45) 985-1770 or visit www.


APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

Pico de Loro Cove

Beach resort living made easy Ninety minutes. For a lot of people working in Metro Manila, that’s the amount of time required just to get to work. It’s about two episodes of your favorite Netflix series. And usually the difference between Filipino, and actual time. Fortunately, it’s also roughly the amount of time it takes to get out of the madding metro, and to the sprawling seaside sanctuary that is Pico de Loro Cove. By TIMOTHY JAY IBAY


t was race weekend at Pico de Loro Cove at Hamilo Coast, and the third in a string of long weekends in the Philippines. I figured, judging from the muted brunch crowd that Friday at the resort, that people might have had their fill of getaways the past two weekends. Apparently, I didn’t know anything about Aboitiz Tri – one of the country’s premier Olympic distance triathlon events. Sure enough, after settling into our nook for the weekend – a lagoon-side room at Pico Sands Hotel – the lobby steadily increased in bustle, with the athletes and their families checking in, while tugging along an air of excitement in the lead up to the culmination of years of training. Bond haven With its unique location at the head of the Nasugbu, Batangas coastline, its rolling terrain that offers gorgeous views, and a multitude of leisure and recreational activities, Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club has become a popular venue for similar outdoor sporting and fitness events. “Race-cations” have become an annual thing for triathletes and their families, with the recent Aboitiz Tri being the fourth year that such a race has been held in Pico de Loro, while the Hobbie Challenge has also become an annual event at the premier seaside development. Apart from its natural gifts though, and perhaps, more importantly, the way Pico de Loro gives the athletes’ support systems a breadth of recreational activity options

throughout their stay is what makes the residential resort village a haven for nurturing bonds. Leisure and recreation trove Most resorts like to say it has something for everyone. But we all know that most of the time, that just isn’t true. And while it isn’t really part of Pico de Loro’s branding, it definitely should, as every single one in the family – from tots and tweens, to millennials and parents, all the way to granny and gramps – will surely find something right up their alley to enjoy. There’s Club Pico—a childproof playroom for kids; videogame rooms for those who can’t get enough of their screens; basketball, badminton, squash, and tennis courts, as well as a fitness center for the endorphin fiends; and bowling alleys, billiard tables, and music rooms for some good old family bonding time. And that’s not even mentioning the outdoor options. By the beach, you can kayak, jetski, or simply lounge by Pico Beach’s Reef Bar and Grill. A cove tour can be booked that would take you to some of Hamilo Coast’s 13 coves – including Santelmo, which has its own slice of white beach, and a trail for trekking. At Pico de Loro, it’s almost like if you can whim it, you can enjoy it.


Pleasure in your leisure Similarly, you have a healthy choice of accommodation options at Pico de Loro. There’s Pico Sands Hotel—a seven-storey, 154-room facility with spacious, and tastefully decorated guest rooms offering views of the surrounding mountainscapes and the tranquil manmade lagoon. There are also eight mid-rise residential buildings (that have 1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom units), which you can rent (through Airbnb), and are ideal for bigger groups. There are dining options to be found whether you’re at the hotel, Country Club, or at the beach. Everything is within walking distance – all at your leisure. The enviable location, plethora of facilities and activities, and accessibility make Pico de Loro Cove the perfect seaside getaway for metro dwellers. And with another long weekend on the horizon, you’d be wise to experience it yourself.







1 Pico de Loro’s fine cream sands are sandwiched between hues of green and blue - elements any beach bum would love 2 The resort’s facilities ensure everyone in the family gets their fix – whatever it may be 3 Similarly, there are a number of pools for each member of the family 4 If you fancy a bit of a rush, aqueous adventures are also available 5 Pico de Loro offers a soothing panorama, from virtually every angle 6 The Abotiz Tri athletes before takeoff 7 Make sure to treat yourself to a Herbal Poultice massage at Pico de Loro’s spa


APRIL 12-25, 2015


SG52: ‘One Nation Together’


t was definitely a night of smiles, cheers and camaraderie as the Republic of Singapore hosted a colorful affair to celebrate Singapore’s 52nd year as a nation. In her address, Singaporean Ambassador Kok Li Peng commended the courage of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, and the people of Marawi City who bravely fought terrorism and religious extremism. “This isn’t something that we wish on any country, but the fact is that the issue is here and we’re facing it squarely and head-on, so my thanks and appreciation goes to all the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Whether business or diplomatic, we should really seriously think about how we can help out with the rehabilitation and rebuilding, which will be a very long process and solely needed soon by the people,” the Ambassador said. The Ambassador also credited the ASEAN National Organizing Council for

Words and photos by VIA BAROMA

organizing a wonderful celebration of the ASEAN’s 50th anniversary. Ambassador Kok Li Peng likewise congratulated the recently concluded Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, which produced a substantial Joint Communique addressing the key challenges today. The Singaporean Ambassador ended her speech with a stanza of her favorite poem, “If ” by Rudyard Kipling: “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you, If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, but make allowance for their doubting to; If you can wait and not be tired of waiting, Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies, Or being hated, don’t give way to hating, And yet don’t look too good, nor talk to wise.” To Ambassador Kok Li Peng, the Embassy of Singapore and its people, the Expat team raises their glasses to your 52nd National day!

Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Millicent Cruz-Paredes; Singaporean Ambassador Kok Li Peng; and Vice Dean of the Diplomatic Corps Christian Anthony Virhuri

South African Ambassador Martin Slabber and Czech Ambassador Jaroslav Japanese Ambassador Kazuhide Ishikawa and Mme. Yuko Ishikawa Olsa, Jr.

Singaporean Ambassador Kok Li Peng, Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Millicent Cruz-Paredes and Vice Dean of the Diplomatic Corps Christian Anthony Virhuri share a ceremonial toast

Singaporean Ambassador Kok Li Peng and Tycoon and the late Washington SyCip

Guatemalan Consul Mellie Ablaza; and Angeles Rubio Santocildes

Jaime Ricohermoso; Cambodian Ambassador Tuot Panha with her daughter

Guatemalan Consul Mellie Ablaza; Mexican Ambassador Gerardo Lozano; and Mo- LT Group, Inc. President Michael Tan; Business Development Asia Vice President Manuel M. de Jesus; and Estoñian Consul Fernando Peña naco Consul Fortune Ledesma

Mexican Ambassador Gerardo Lozano; Australian Ambassador Amanda Gorely; and Monaco Consul Singaporean Ambassador Kok Li Peng and Guatemalan Consul Mellie Ablaza Fortune Ledesma

EU Ambassador Franz Jessen; Monaco Consul Fortune Ledesma; Mme. Wang Qi; and Papua New Guinea Ambassador Christian Anthony Vihruri

Mme. Yuko Ishikawa; Japanese Ambassador Kazuhide Ishikawa; and South Korean Ambassador Kim Jae Shin


APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

Advocates of music, art, and culture


n commemoration of their 38th anniversary, the Friends for Cultural Concerns of the Philippines (FCCP), under the helm of president and Annual Ball Committee overall chair Nonie Basilio alongside vice president and Annual Ball Committee director-in-charge Tessie Rodrigo and Annual Ball Committee chairman Rose Lazaro, recently held their 2017 Annual Ball with the theme Rhapsody in Blue at the Rizal Ballroom of the Makati Shangri-La, Manila in Makati City. Attended by prominent personalities from the business, social, cultural and diplomatic circles, most of whom have been supporting FCCP and its beneficiaries for years, the celebration was highlighted by superb performances from the Philippine Ballet Theatre, the nation’s premier ballet company, and renowned pianist Dr. Raul Sunico, who received the first FCCP Award for Excellence in Music during the event. A most enjoyable evening of rhapsodic music, lively dancing and warm fellowship was immensely enjoyed by all. Congratulations to the Friends for Cultural Concerns of the Philippines for a successful celebration!

Jo Acebedo and Dr. Jennie Francisco-Diaz

Friends for Cultural Concerns of the Philippines (FCCP) vice president and Annual Ball (From left) Annabelle Adriano, Linda Cruz, Connie Garcia, Gina Ty, Baby Ramos and Jane Raymundo Committee director-in-charge Tessie Rodrigo with president and Annual Ball Committee overall chair Nonie Basilio

Maru Go with Cecille Twitt

Betina and Lydia Reyes with Lolette Carillo

Madam Susan and husband Swedish ambassador Harald Fries

Alice Samson, Mila Navarro and Nona Ricafort

Baby Tan

Renowned painter Tam Austria, ambassador Theo Arnold and Divine Austria

Hoseki founder Faico, corporate affairs director Zabeth Co and chief creative officer Knoi Esmane with Martin Lopez

(From left) Grace Mercado, Natalia Abad, Lizzie Concepcion, Joy Basilio, Cris Coronel and Teresa Ilagan


APRIL 12-25, 2015



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APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

Compiled by VIA BAROMA


•Noel Christmas Bazaar

•Zonta Christmas Carnivale Bazaar

Nov. 16 to 19 and Nov. 24 to 30 (World Trade Center Manila) Nov. 30 to Dec. 3 (The Filinvest Tent, Alabang) Dec. 14 to 17 (SMX Convention Center Manila)

Nov. 25 to 26; Filinvest Tent, Spectrum Midway corner Commerce Ave., Alabang, Muntinlupa City; for more information, call (02) 509-3601 or (0936) 967-9725; or email zontaalabangbazaar2014@

Noel Bazaar, renowned as the one-stop shop for the holiday season, promises to give the absolute best Christmas shopping experience. The bazaars will be featuring a wide range of concessionaires with offerings that include fashion and beauty items, home decor, food products, novelties, Christmas trimmings, and other unique and affordable gift items for the upcoming holiday season and beyond.

One of southern Metro Manila’s most awaited pre-Christmas events, Zonta Club of Alabang’s Christmas Carnivale Bazaar has something in store for everyone in the family. The bazaar has been renowned for creating a shopper’s paradise in the midst of carnival-themed attractions such as the man on stilts, clowns, jugglers, fire-eaters and balloon twisters. In addition, an ample food court gives weary shoppers and non-shoppers alike a place to refuel, while dining on their favorite gourmet food items. Musical entertainment will be provided by acoustic musicians, live bands, and Christmas carolers.


•Kundalini Yoga and Meditation: Release Fear 4-week Yoga Series

•Flow Retreats: Wise Woman Within Retreat

Nov. 9, 16, 23, and 30; Yoga+Express Legazpi, 6/F Cojuangco Bldg., 119 Dela Rosa St., Legazpi Village, Makati; for more information, email rosancruz@gmail. com or call (0918) 888-9198.

Nov. 23 to 26; El Nido, Palawan; for more information, visit www.flowretreats. com or email

Join an inspiring four-week series of Kundalini Yoga and Meditation to dissolve fear and awaken the love of the unknown on: Conquering one’s imagined disabilities (Nov. 9); Unloading your pain and fear (Nov. 16); Removing fear of the future (Nov. 23); and Releasing fear and becoming a conscious leader (Nov. 30). Each class includes various elements of the ancient practice of Kundalini Yoga such as breathing exercises (pranayama), kriyas (yoga poses), mudras (hand gestures), chanting, meditation and more. Sound healing using a gong will be played at the end of the class. Registration fee is priced at PhP2,100 for pre-registration for all four classes; and PhP600 for drop in rate. Participants are advised to bring a yoga mat and water bottle and to wear comfortable clothes.

Ready for the most rejuvenating and inspiring holiday break at one of the most beautiful tropical islands in the world? For creative, talented, and artistic women in pursuit of using their gifts to create soulnourishing success, these four days of bliss provide the perfect potion for reviving the goddess within you. Rest and relax, find clarity and support, and rediscover your deepest connection with artist, creative entrepreneur and women’s wellness coach, Roshni Rebecca. Experience the beauty of El Nido at your own pace. Cruise in inviting waters and get to the different islands in its magnificent tropical paradise then ready yourself for an adventure to the highest peak of Taraw Cliff for an exceptional panoramic view. Registration fee is priced at PhP33,900 for Suite (4pax); PhP31,750 for Suite (5-6pax); PhP33,000 for Queen (2pax); PhP30,850 for Queen (3pax); PhP28,425 for Dorm Room (46pax). Inclusive of three night shared accommodation, roundtrip airfare via Airswift, roundtrip airport transfers, daily breakfast, Island Voyage with Skipper Charters (lunch meal included), two Transformational Workshops, one Yoga Class, Workshop, Taraw Cliff Hike, shirt and goodie bag, travel insurance, and airport taxes.


•Lisa Macuja Elizalde’s Snow White

•Edna Vida’s The Nutcracker

Nov. 25, 26, Dec. 2 and 3; Aliw Theater, Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex, Pasay City; for more information, call (02) 552-7502 or (02) 8777696; or visit

Dec. 1, 2, 3, 8, 9 and 10; Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo, CCP Main Theater, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay City; for more information, visit or call (02) 891-9999

The time-honored story of Snow White gets a decidedly classical ballet treatment. Following the success of last season’s “Cinderella,” Ballet Manila Artistic Director and Prima Ballerina brings to life another fairy tale in an interpretation uniquely Lisa Macuja-Elizalde’s own. Her “Snow White” is based loosely on the original Brothers Grimm tale while incorporating elements from the more popular versions of wellloved story. Ticket for at least two season shows are priced at PhP4,500 (3 tickets) and PhP3,000 (2 tickets) for Gold Regular; PhP3,150 (3 tickets) and PhP2,100 (2 tickets) for Gold Subscriber; PhP3,000 (3 tickets) and PhP2,000 (2 tickets) for Silver Regular; PhP2,100 (3 tickets) and PhP1,400 (2 tickets) for Silver Subscriber; PhP1,500 (3 tickets) and PhP1,000 (2 tickets) for Bronze Regular; PhP1,050 (3 tickets) and PhP700 (2 tickets) for Bronze Subscriber.

The Cultural Center of the Philippines and Ballet Philippines present Edna Vida’s The Nutcracker Ballet Philippines 48th Season: Quintessence. Experience the timeless Christmas story in true Filipino splendor. Set in the Philippines during the Spanish colonial era, Vida’s retelling of the holiday classic conjures up familiar images of Noche Buena, Rigodon de Honor, fireflies, bougainvilleas, and of course, toys and sweets. With costume and set designs by National Artist Salvador Bernal, this is a holiday treat not to be missed! Tickets are priced at PhP1,500 for Price Zone 1; PhP1,200 for Price Zone 2; PhP1,000 for Price Zone 3; PhP600 for Price Zone 4; PhP500 for Price Zone 5; and PhP300 for Price Zone 6. Shows with live orchestra is priced at PhP3,000 for Price Zone 1; PhP2,500 for Price Zone 2; PhP1,500 for Price Zone 3; PhP600 for Price Zone 4; PhP500 for Price Zone 5; PhP300 for Price Zone 6.


APRIL 12-25, 2015


Guimaras' sweet treats By BERNARD L SUPETRAN


he gorgeous island province of Guimaras has been synonymous with its renowned sweet-tasting mango, and for good reason. This once-obscure territory across mainland Iloilo was previously nothing but a vast orchard in a 604.57-sqaure kilometer land, which yields export-quality harvests of the country’s national fruit. So when it created a summer festivity to mark its founding as an independent province in 1992, it could be no other than in honor of its famed tropical fruit—Manggahan Festival, an extravaganza which puts to fore the local mango industry and its cultural and historical heritage. But beyond its succulent mangoes, which have tickled the world’s taste buds, Guimaras takes pride in its string of enticing beaches, secluded islands, religious retreats, agri-tourism farms and adventure spots which make it a consummate getaway, minus the madding crowd of tourist traps.

Islands in the sun Scattered across the main island are chains of equally idyllic islets, each with a distinct beach character and an interesting story to tell. Needless to say, island hopping is a must-do in Guimaras Siete Pecados, which means “seven sins,” it is a cluster of seven legendary rock islands, one of which has a Spanish lighthouse that has guided merchant ships over the centuries. Roca Encantadais fairy summer house built on top of a huge rock, overlooks Siete Pecados and a fascinating seascape of Guimaras Strait. Built by the Lopez family in 1910, it was declared by the National Historical Commission as a heritage house. The cozy private islands of Isla Naburot, Costa Aguada and Nagarao are worlds unto themselves, but can be accessed by visitors with prior arrangement. Beach bumming With a virtual infinity of coastline, Guimaras is blessed with pockets of white and beige sand beaches, which take you back to the essence of what an island hideaway is. Its most popular beach resort colony is at Alubihod Cove in Nueva Valencia, a 150meter patch of powdery sand and crystalline waters panoramically framed by two rock cliffs. The cove is dotted with no-frills family resorts that offer a mesmerizing beachfront seat. The tranquil water and coral formations a few feet below make it ideal for snorkeling and kayaking. The more adventurous can paddle to the picturesque adjoining coves.

Andana Resort Photo by Terence Ver Angsioco

Alubihod is also the jump-off to the SEAFDEC aquatic farm, which breeds various species of edible fish to help repopulate fishing grounds around Guimaras. Funded by Southeast Asian countries, it is offers a unique tour to help visitors appreciate the importance of preserving the marine ecosystem. Bala-an Bukid Literally meaning “Holy Mountain,” it is a pilgrimage site for Catholic devotees especially during Holy Week situated atop the highestpoint in the capital town of Jordan. It is the endpoint of the Pagtaltalsa Guimaras passion play held on Good Friday. Along the climb are the Stations of the Cross, and on its summit is the Chapel of Ave Maria Purisima and a big, white cross overlooking the island. Trappist Monastery This obligatory whistle-stop is the first men’s monastery in the country run by Cistercian Order of Strict Observance, established in 1972. This place is open to those who seek the solace and retreat from the ways of the world. It also has a guesthouse and a souvenir shop with products produced by the monks. Great outdoors Get your adrenaline fix at Camp Alfredo with its 375-meter zipline, obstacle course, hanging bridge, and rappelling facility. Those who opt for a slower pace can laze at the camping grounds, feast on Ilonggo specialties at the restaurant, fish at the manmade lagoon, or stay overnight immersing in nature.

Andana Resort Room Photo by Terence Ver Angsioco

Meanwhile, the 28-hectare Guimaras Adventure Park offers a wide range of outdoor recreation for paintball, war games, rappelling, target shooting, and camping. Bikers will be delighted to know that the province is positioning itself as a paradise for enthusiasts, with its scenic and bike-friendly roads. A bike tourism project has given birth to the Padyak Series, a bikathon held thrice a year to promote Guimaras as a biking capital. An emerging outdoor spot is the San Lorenzo Wind Farm Project, a 54-megawattwindmill energy project, which has unwittingly become a tourist magnet because of its postcard-pretty composition. Agri-tourism circuit Showcasung the province as an agricultural powerhouse is a travel circuit that links farms frequented by visitors. A usual first stop is the Guimaras National Crop Research Development Support Center, an 8.87-hectare area for mango trees used for research and production.The center also features various mango derivatives and value-added products that display its culinary versatility. Guests on pre-arranged tours can watch the preparation of its own concoction, the mango pasta. Guimaras Wonder’s Farm is an integrated agri-eco tourism destination for high-value crops and fruit trees devoted to organic farming, reforestation and food processing, while Dagsaan Eco Park is a 133-hectare protected forest area with an organized upland farmers’ group to preserve the area, and has a view deck 117 meters above sea level.

Guimaras Mango Photo by Terence Ver Angsioco

A touch of class Enhancing the rustic setting is the upscale 70-room Andana Resort in Nueva Valencia, lending a taste of luxury to visitors who seek a consummate stay in the island. The Mediterranean-themed hotel, which will open by yearend, offers a mesmerizing vista of the coves and outlying in Alobihod beach area and promises to be the best accommodation in the island. The resort also takes pride in its well-appointed rooms, scenic infinity pool which glistens at night, and a bar and restaurant offering international and local delights. Claiming to be an “aspirational destination,” Andana promises to be the hub for travelers seeking to explore Guimaras with the unique country style flair. Indeed, beyond its sweet mangoes, Guimaras is a land of the sweet smiles of its warm people and sweet experiences of a tourism frontier. Getting There: The province can be reached in a 15-minute boat ride to Jordan from the Ortiz Wharf in Iloilo City, or via San Lorenzo from Pulupandan and Valladolid in Negros Occidental.

Kayaking at Alobijod Cove


APRIL 12-25, 2015 NOVEMBER 2017

On Aging Gracefully

(and other lies we’ve been told) By ANGIE DUARTE


ecently, I turned 49 (good Lord, where has the time gone?). A few days before that my 97-year-old grandmother, Mamita Pat, took her last breath on earth. She was a strong, stubborn, fiery woman, and though her last months were fraught with pain and suffering (on account of inoperable melanoma), she fought the good fight ‘til the end. Heck, her doctors gave her a few months to live, upon diagnosis. She defied them all and lived for two years after that. That’s just the way she lived her close to 10 decades – and that’s the way she chose to go out, as well. Had she not been stricken with illness, she would have carried on in her usual, indefatigable manner, living life to the hilt These recent events have me thinking of a term we have all heard, countless times. A phrase with which you become very wellacquainted when you “push a certain age.” AGING GRACEFULLY. Whatever. I will admit, I am not a fan of the phrase. I am not a fan of the implications of those two words, joined together. To my mind (and this could just be me being paranoid) the term implies a certain bowing out of the game of life; a quiet, gentle exit that is expected of more mature people. It connotes a defeatist mentality. Like aging is something

we unquestioningly accept with the virtue of ten saints or the diplomacy of Switzerland. Tale as old as time True – aging is inevitable; though the quest for unending youthfulness is as classic as it gets. Literature dating back to the 5th century BC, in the writings of Herodotus, chronicle the search for the elusive, legendary Fountain of Youth. Furthermore, this theme is a universal one, and is recurrent in literature, art, and mythical accounts from across the globe. From Oscar Wilde’s literary character Dorian Gray to historical Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon and his journey to the mythical land of Bimini (supposedly to find the fountain), there are countless examples that clue is in: the quest is real. Note, I never said the Fountain of Youth was real – if it is and if you’ve found it, hit me up! The desire to find it, however, is as palpable as the distaste most of us have for growing old (that is, if we are honest enough to admit it!). In fact, to date, thousands of tourists still visit Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park in Florida (where the explorer actually landed, on his search for Bimini) to drink from its waters (ok, that’s

kind of eeewwwwy!). Rage against! While aging is inevitable, we do not have to accept it with a defeatist mindset. My Mamita Pat certainly showed me that you can – and should – stay strong, until the end! She worked up until almost her very last days on earth – because she had to, yes, but also because she wanted to. In this day and age of social media and online everything, far too much emphasis is placed on youth and external beauty – so much so that young people feel like they can no longer live up to ”the standard” (but that’s another discussion entirely), and older people feel like yesterday’s trash out on the curb. The Cult of Personality has become younger than ever, on a silver-lined cloud all on its own, and generations are suffering for it. I have had many chats with colleagues who, at the age of 30, feel “OLD!” Seriously??? That is what it has all come to. Especially here in the Philippines, which, ironically enough, despite cultural respect for “one’s elders” also has many cultural

Cast Away to Malawmawan Island


he province of Sorsogon on the northernmost tip of the Bicol Peninsula in Luzon may not be as popular as its neighbor province Albay, but it has equally, if not more, beautiful destinations just waiting for the curious adventurer. Off the coast of the town of Castilla is the island of Malawmawan. One of the scattering of islands along the Sorsogon Bay, Malawamawan Island (also spelled Malaumauan) boasts of a tadpole-shaped stretch of pristine beach with ochre sands and turquoise waters. Island lowdown The island is privately owned but tourists are permitted to visit. The water that surrounds the island is clear and, according to locals, is almost always calm – making it perfect for bathing. The light brown sands are pebbly, but the shore is clean and lined with coconut

trees and palms. In just three hours, you can explore and go around the entire island. As of writing, entrance to the island is free. Preparing for your visit There are no resorts here. Only the caretaker, his wife, and a couple of Bantay-Dagat (coast guards) personnel live on the island in a small nipa hut. If you're planning to stay the night, you can stay at the hut or you can pitch your own tent and sleep under the stars. Just make sure to bring enough food supplies, as there are no stores and no sources of fresh water on the island. Make sure also to bring extra batteries for your gadgets, as there is no electricity, and even mobile reception is patchy at best. Don't forget to make arrangements with

biases against more mature individuals. Have you tried looking through the classifieds? Anyone past 35 is put out to pasture; taken out of the equation so that they can knit a scarf in some corner, as they age gracefully. I say, ENOUGH. Rage against the dying of the light, as Dylan Thomas would say. Take care of your health. Feed your mind. Stay relevant. You do not need a Fountain of Youth to cultivate youthfulness within you. Your inner child is not dead – you may have buried him or her alive, though, so get your shovels ready and dig him or her up! I am not aging gracefully. No way; forget it. I am going down swinging. Join me, anyone?

All you need to know about having a getaway on this off-the-grid island

y o u r boatmen to fetch you and bring you back to the mainland. If you're only going for a day tour, you can wash up in the port where there are houses that are willing to let you use their restrooms. You can also stock up on supplies at the said port, as there are plenty of carinderia and sari-sari stores in the area. -----------Getting there From the Sorsogon town proper, ride a jeepney bound for Cumadcad. Fare is PhP30 per person and travel time to the public market where you should alight is about two hours. From the Cumadcad market, there is a jeepney terminal bound to Macalaya – the barangay


that serves as the jump-off point to the island. It'll take you 45 minutes to arrive at said barangay, which is the last stop in the jeepney route. Fare is Php20. Once in the barangay, walk to the port. There will be boatmen who'll be able to take you to the island for PhP500 to PhP1000 two-way, depending on how many you are in the group. The boat ride takes about an hour. TIP: If it's a beautiful sunny day, ask your boatmen to take you to a side trip to the nearby Panumbagan Atoll – an uninhabited small island known for its beautiful sandbar. 1 The tail of the tadpole-shaped island 2 The ochre shores of the island is pebbly and littered with shells 3 Clear, calm, and turqoise waters await visitors in the Malawmawan Island


Expat Newspaper Volume 35 No. 17 Expat Newspaper November 1 - November 30, 2017