The Food Tour of Ivan Man Dy (of Old Manila Walks fame) in Bonifacio Global City last April 24 was great! It's actually a restaurant tour organized by Bonifacio Global City management to promote selected restaurants in Serendra, Bonifacio High Street (BHS) and Fort Strip.
The best thing about it is it's for FREE and open to BHS, Serendra and Fort Strip visitors. You can register as walk-in guests at the Concierge Desk in Bonifacio High Street for the upcoming May 1, 2pm tour.
Here are some of my interesting discoveries during the food tour...
Manila's getting served -- in a good way! We are in the middle of the fight between City Delivery 87878 and Delivery 21 (formerly Quick Delivery) 2121212 for Delivery Supremacy in Manila. Because of this "war", a lot of innovation is happening in the food delivery industry and the foodies are getting improved service faster. Let me know if you have any feedback regarding your experience with both delivery services.
It's the first time I've seen so many Koi at one time! Some of them were literally out of the water already as they were being fed. It started as a mix of small and adult carps until they flourished so well in the lake environment with minimal mortality rate.
Feeding the fish, boating around the lagoon and dining al fresco beside the lake are recommended activities with your kids when you visit Solenad, the first retail area in Nuvali.
Why “Solenad”? Solenad comes from “sol” meaning sun and “nad” from the word promenade. Solenad does justice to its name given its outdoor scenery, parks and lush greens within a neighborhood center.
Here is a photo essay of our Fish Feeding and Boating experience...
The second part of the Bellarocca series focuses on why the food needs a lot of improvement in the resort. This post is not meant to discourage you from going to Bellarocca but to be straightforward about what to expect and what will you be paying for.
Also, I want to challenge Bellarocca to improve its dishes because it is really unfair to serve not-so-good food at such expensive prices. We don't want the Philippines to be known for having 5-star resorts with ho-hum food, do we?
Greek Salad (P420 +10%sc). Feta cheese, tomato, cucumber, bell peppers, onions, olives. Served with red wine vinegar and olive oil dressing.
This salad is one of the few Greek-inspired food in this Santorini-themed resort's menu. The vegetables are good -- not freshly picked but at least they don't look tired. The dressing's healthy but forgettable.
Bellarocca, which means beautiful rock, is the latest, much-talked about destination in the country. I would like to share our experience with you to sort through the hype. We did have an awesome experience in Bellarocca but with a few disappointments -- particularly with the food.
The Santorini-themed geometric architecture (with its super white walls against a backdrop of deep blue sea and clear blue sky) is psychologically refreshing when you see it. To have the best experience, reserve the garden or cliffside villas where you can have a private scenic view that you can enjoy in your own infinity pool.
People visit this rock island off the coast of Marinduque to re-energize and have a relaxing, incognito escape. I was expecting to have decent food for its 5 star-hotel priced menu, but the food was not good for me. Also, with its Greek theme, we were expecting some Mediterranean options at least, but it was only limited to continental and Filipino dishes. I felt robbed every time I ate because we were "captive customers" of their food for 2-3 days. I don't mind paying for overpriced good food but paying for overpriced ho-hum food is a bit insane.
Quality of food aside, the overall Bellarocca experience rocks because of the unique ambiance and the French GM who interacts with every single guest. To think, the resort is allegedly second to Amanpulo in terms of revenue even with its not-so-good food and not-so-great beach. I'm amazed actually by how they were able to market the place. (I salute the PR agency that promoted this island rock, turning it into one of the hottest places to go this 2010.)
Join us for the last culinary tours for this summer in four of the hottest places to go to this May!
May 1 – 3 – Ultimate Pagudpud and Vigan Culinary and Heritage Tour
Tour Description: It's about time you experience the ABCs of the Ilocandia: antiques, bagnet and churches! In Ilocos, nature and history is intertwined. But at Ultimate Philippines, we think this is combo best savored with bagnet and beer so we're exploring this provincial belle… our style!
Let's journey up to the north and take a time-warp through the colonial city of Vigan. We'll walk through cobbles, munching our way through the town's traditional street fare and home-cooked feasts, from yummy empanadas to tasty longganisas.
More historical bites and pinakbet pizza as we take a peek at the life of ex-strongman Ferdinand Marcos in the town of Batac and admire two masterpieces of Ilocos' unique Earthquake Baroque architecture: Paoay and Santa Maria Church.
Capping off, we'll surf through the waves of Mairaira Beach in Pagudpud ending our journey in time to join the revelries of the annual Tres de Mayo fiesta in Vigan.
( My freelance writer friends are launching their first How to Jumpstart Your Freelance Writing Career Workshop this coming Saturday, April 24. They are among the best Freelance Writers in the country today. I've asked them to share some of their learnings with OAP readers. Enjoy! )
Like any other business, you need to organize a working system to manage your own freelance career – all three of us found that out the hard way. We want to share with you what we have learned from our personal experiences, so you’ll know what mistakes to steer clear of and what to do about it. Here are 10 tips to help you become more successful as a freelance writer.
1. Never take contracts for granted. As a freelancer, the only person who can ensure your financial and professional security is yourself. Pay special attention to contracts and terms of reference, and don't be satisfied with simple verbal agreements. Learn to operate like a small business and keep yourself protected from abusive colleagues or from lawsuits from clients.
2. Be clear about the scope of work. It's easy to assume your scope of work when you're simply writing an article for a publication. However, the minute you start taking on larger projects with more tasks and more coordination work (managing a publication, for example), be clear about your scope of work and expectations from both your clients and team mates. Never assume anything and always put terms, conditions, and payment agreements in black-and-white.
3. Even when dealing with friends, be professional. It's easy to cross professional boundaries when dealing with friends whom you've known for a long time and whom you trust. However, when it comes to freelancing and managing your own micro-enterprise, you need to draw professional lines. Let friends sign contracts and agreements, prepare payment vouchers, mind your paperwork, do everything professionally.