Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Victoria Court, the empowered pink card and the amazing sticker

Filipinos have a different mindset when they heared the word “motel.” Usually whenever I tell to everyone that Victoria Court is supporting me in my events, they smile, naughty smile but hey! They are very gracious and generous, they supported our  Laguna Blogging Summit lunch/dinner  for two days.  Anyway, going back to the Filipino mindset, honestly speaking, I cannot blame them because that’s the Filipino culture and maybe they haven’t been to any other countries unlike me where me and my family always had an overnight in a motel in the states because sometimes a hotel is not available in that place, motel is usually cheaper and accessible.  For many in the Philippines, one thing in their mind when they heard the word "motel" or the brand is we are talking about sex and worst, sex outside marriage and Filipinos are still not use in talking about it. Upps! Sorry, not moi.

All I can say is that, not to defend Victoria Court but to tell to the whole world that it’s the biggest motel chain in the Philippines with thematic themes, clean, good food and an extraordinary room with different unique designs to admire. I remember meeting the heir, Ian King for showing to him our Interior Designs. I am connected then to the “Purpose Store” which is the biggest Advertising Company in the Philippines, I presented our products and services to him with my CEO in tow. In VC office in Malate, it’s kinda like an art gallery with different design of ceramic and porcelain tiles. The building is posh, it’s like a designing company.

Anyway, just like to add also that Ian King is a Reproductive Health advocate. He donated 250 Tshirts to Carlos Celdran through me (Yep! I received the 50 and distributed all to my friends) as a form of his support and very vocal about this in Social Media, watta guy right? Ok here it goes, they have a promo and I am telling you, a common Juan cannot just get their accommodation because of the cost, it’s not a cheappo but just right. So this is your chance. Let’s just say that what you pay is what you get and in case of VC, it’s amazing.

I also like to spend a party at VC and looking forward for that.

Just check below. I like to get the pink card.

The Victoria Court Sticker Rate 

Victoria Court loves to innovate and always strives to be the first in introducing new ideas in the hospitality industry. Most of us know about the elite Black Card, Victoria Court's signature discount card that provides loyal guests a 20% discount on the room rates and 10% off on the food and beverage menu. The Marketing Team also followed up with the beloved Pink Card for the Ladies, giving them the right and power to choose. Empowering women to choose where they want to go. 

Now, Victoria Court is reinventing the discount card and came up with a new, cool, hip and faster way for the guest to enjoy the Black and Pink card benefits. The discounts now come with the Victoria Court Sticker. As long as you have the Victoria Court sticker at the rear window of your car, you can enjoy the 20% discount on all rooms and 10% discount on F&B items. If you plan to stay for 12 and 24 hours, you are entitled to a 5% discount too. 

Just drive and check-in at any Victoria Court Branch to get your free sticker and feel the distinction.

Friday, March 14, 2014

IBlog: The Philippine Blogging Summit on it's 10 year now

I'm just uber super duper to the max happy to be part once again of Iblog: The Philippine Blogging Summit which is on its 10th year now under Ms. Janette Toral of Digital Club Filipino and famously known as the Mother of E Commerce.  I will be a speaker/Panelsit again and it's my 4th time as speaker to this amazing convergence of Social Media influencers & for those who are just like to learn, interested or just curious to understand why Social Media is the present and the future in digital marketing, networking, connection or just to use it as a tool in reaching people. 

I can still recall in 2010, as a newbie in Philippine Blogging Community since I started blogging in 1998 in the States using Angelfire & Geocities and as a 1st time speaker at Iblog, it was a memorable event, star struck with the fellow speakers, organizers & emcee who later became my friends. Ms. Janette Toral, little I know then will be the one I will look up to as the one who gave me a break. How will I forget the 1st time I received her email that stated that my proposal as speaker was accepted and everything is history. I screamed with my lungs out.

For this year, celebrating the 10th year of Iblog, I belong now on the 1st day and as from the Iblog official page says, "We have invited speakers who were part of iBlog in the past 10 years and those who have also made a big impact to the blog and social media space." This is way big for me and I am just plain happy to be included & to talk about my passion which is engaging with people as an online writer and digital marketer. 

While on the 2nd day, Iblog accommodated a few topic submissions from first-time iBlog speakers to add that newbie touch while sticking to our theme of retrospective and moving forward.

I am inviting you all on April 4 and 5, 2014 at Malcolm Theater, College of Law, University of the Philippines, Diliman to listen and connect once more with the like minded individuals who might help you too with your endeavor, you never know, because for me, my very good experience, my four years under Iblog was truly amazing. I met all the right people.  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Huawei to Elabram Systems Engineers: The Best

Just recently, Elabram Systems received an email from their client (Huawei ) praising three of the Elabram Engineers for the great job done in their projects. The three Engineers are working here in the Philippines under Huawei for the two operators and they are Andrew Gabiosa, Melchor Barracas and Greg Bolaton. Idea is for the Filipinos to know that there are companies such as Elabram Systems who are helping them to have a good and better connections and that because of ever increasing of mobile phones consumers, the Telecommunication companies will expand too in no time and that good, empowered and skilled ECEs will be in demand for sure in the near future and that Filipinos are empowered and skilled and can make a difference. 

Project Manger Engr. Arnel Castaneda and Mr. Mikel Yaw

Meet Elabram Systems Group and was established in 1999 in Malaysia. We have 26 footprints around the globe and business offices in Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam and in Philippines with core expertise in providing Network Planning Optimization (NPO), Talent Acquisition & Deployment (TAD), Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) and Business Process Outsourcing (BPO).
Introducing the manpower behind your good mobile and network connectivity, the people behind the optimization of network are all Electronic and Communication Engineers (ECE) who literally checking the signal of each cell sites, going up literally to the cell sites to move the antenna on top even it’s located on top of the mountain, monitoring the performance of each equipment at operators headquarters (Globe and Smart) and closely coordinating with the vendors; Huawei, ZTE, NSN, Alcatel Lucent, Ericsson, Digi, U Mobile…in other words, you will not have a good signal without Elabram Systems.

Founder & Managing Director Mikel Yaw 

Our difference and success are based on the reliability, adaptability, expertise, on target as always in our projects and as the total on shore- off shore service provider. We own our growth to our clients who are given us the opportunity to prove our worth. We started as a Telecommunication Engineering and IT service provider specialized in Specialist Resource Provision, Project Management and Engineering Services of advance telecommunication in wireless network solutions but because of the trust of our partners and clients, we are now in our Offshore Outsourcing and Nearshore Outsourcing expansion in Indonesia and in the Philippines but we don’t settle, we are still looking for new opportunities in other countries.

 Engr. Greg Bolaton, Mr. Mikel Yaw and Engr. Andrew Gabiosa

Our clients demand quality solutions, ideas and competencies in all areas of wireless network solutions technology, and we take pride in providing them.
We owe our growth to many of our clients — global players in telecommunications equipment manufacturing and telecommunications operations — who have given us the opportunity to prove our worth in providing such solutions.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Pasaway kaba?

Pasaway is not really a negative term, as for me, I am calling myself Pasaway all the time by standing firm on my own opinion even the rest are talking against my point.

I was invited by Toni from the office of Senator Bam Aquino and as much as I wanted to come, I can’t because I have work that day. So I just sent my two colleagues from the Blogosphere to cover that event.  Anyway, to all Pasaway in the world, don’t you worry, those crazy enough are the ones who can change the world as mentioned by one very popular pasaway, Steve Jobs.

Read on about the Press Release below.

A ranking official of the National Youth Commission (NYC) encouraged young Filipinos to be “pasaway” by “standing up against the status quo” to effect positive change in their communities and the country.

“Young people [have] stood up against the status quo. Young people have changed a lot of endings in many stories,” NYC Commissioner Percival Cendaña said at the opening of the screening of the 20 finalists for the Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) Awards.

For Cendaña, the TAYO finalists epitomize the “pasaway” tag as they were able to break away from the norm and find, implement, reinvent, and provide “cool solutions" to "age-old" problems in their communities.

“Cool means appropriate, current, and relevant. Cool is a superlative to young people,” said Cendaña, hoping that the stories of these 20 finalists could inspire other youth and hopefully, the nation.

Senator Bam Aquino, chairman of the panel of judges and a co-founder of the annual TAYO Awards, said that the “pasaway mindset” has enabled advocates to push for reforms and help make “sustainable change happen.”

“Meaningful change doesn’t happen when people just stand by and accept the status quo. Long-term, sustainable change happens when people are willing to challenge the norm and take risks,” Sen. Aquino stressed.

The lawmaker also said that the TAYO finalists are already winners for effecting change in their respective communities through different programs and projects.

The 20 finalists bested over 300 entries from around the country, for the innovative and changemaking projects that they started in their local communities, schools, and workplaces.

Redefining "pasaway"

The Medical Missions Incorporated Student Group is a group of students from the University of Sto. Tomas who recently launched a week-long medical mission, including free check-up, medications, and surgical operations in General Santos City.

Meanwhile, members of the Phi Kappa Mu Fraternity from the University of the Philippines-Manila started the Operating Room Assistance Program, or “Project OpeRA, which creates ways and means for indigent pediatric patients to receive quality and timely surgical interventions at the Philippine General Hospital and other government hospitals.

The Love Yourself Inc., a youth group from Taguig City, provides awareness, counseling, and education to help prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS among Men having Sex with Men (MSM), the youth sector, and other high risk groups.

A volunteer youth group, the Tulong sa Kapwa Kapatid has been teaching and providing financial assistance to an impoverished community in Payatas, Quezon City, where they also incorporate parents and Catechism lessons for values formation.

Upsilon Sigma Phi, a fraternity from UP-Diliman and the finalist from the National Capital Region, started Mission: Katutubo Village in Porac, Pampanga. The organization adopted an indigenous community where they work on a long-term development plan involving social, educational, material, health, and empowerment interventions.

Meanwhile, the Association of Filipino Forestry Students-UPLB established a two-hectare mangrove stand in Brgy. Pinagbayanan in Pagbilao, Quezon in its effort to make a mark in environment protection and contribute to the community’s socio-economic growth.

The Ateneo Sarong Bangui Junior Eagles Club from the Ateneo de Naga University has the “Tarpadyak” program, where they convert used tarpaulins into durable protective pedicab coverings to promote waste management and tourism.

Kawil Tours, on the other hand, has played a large role in boosting tourism in Culion, Palawan through eco-tourism; while Maestro Club, composed of education students, produces an interactive newsletter for children and their families promoting environmental awareness in Tuguegarao, the hottest place in the Philippines.

The Tanay Mountaineers Incorporated started a Disaster Risk Reduction Advocacy Program, through which they train youth residents of Tanay, Rizal to serve as first responders and as primary local resources on multiple disaster risk reduction trainings.

In the Visayas, the youth also actively participate in community building projects and programs that address the problems of sexual assault, health, juvenile delinquency and education.

In Cebu City, the Gualandi Volunteer Service Program, Inc. started the “Break The Silence Network Project”, a youth-led NGO fighting against sexual assault of deaf children and women.

In Ormoc City , the Hayag Youth Organization began the Langoy Para sa Kaluwasan Program, which addresses the lack of swimming skills, water safety awareness, and disaster preparedness through a three-day swim camp for 70-plus children and youth from the city’s 10 poorest barangays.

The Rescue Assistance Peacekeeping Intelligence Detail (RAPID) Inc. focuses on gathering "rugby boys" in Cebu City with the help of local police, and helps reintegrate them back into society.

The United Architects of the Philippines Student Auxiliary Foundation University Chapter in Dumaguete City launched the Estudio Damgo-Dungga Daycare Center , an architecture program where senior students design and build an actual structure for their chosen community.

In Mandaue City, the University of San Carlos-Pathways started "Bridging the Gap", where 31 high school students from five different local schools are provided a four-week program of tutorials, seminars, and workshops in preparation for college.

In Mindanao, the Association of Locally Empowered Youth-NM promotes entrepreneurship to youths in urban slums in the cities of Dipolog and Dapitan, by teaching them to produce vegetables through hydroponics or soil-less cultivation.

The Tagum-based TC Youth Laboratory Cooperative teaches youth the value of savings and financial security by “bringing the bank to the schools” while Team BUNDOL Mountaineers from Alabel, Sarangani conducts environmental activities and outreach programs to far-flung communities as part of their climb.

Volunteer Service Provider, a finalist from Davao City, constructs and deploys man-made, dome-shaped structures with holes, on "conducive but de-coralized seabeds", to serve as fish shelters and to help boost the fish population in the area; while the Watershed Management Youth Council share its love for environment through music and fashion.

From the 20 finalists, 10 organizations will be chosen as the TAYO winners.  Aside from the specially commissioned trophy sculpted by Mr. Toym De Leon Imao, the winning organizations will receive a grant of P50,000 that they can use to fund new projects or continue their long-term programs.

Over a decade of defining a new norm

Now on its 11th year, the annual TAYO Awards is the country's premier recognition program for youth organizations. It was co-founded in 2002 by former Senator Kiko Pangilinan and now-Senator Bam Aquino, together with the TAYO Awards Foundation and the National Youth Commission. Through the years, over 2,000 youth organizations from different parts of the Philippines have vied for the awards.

It is currently headed by TAYO President Aika Robredo, presented by the Coca-Cola Foundation Philippines, and supported by Smart Communications, Jollibee, Philippine Airlines, and Lenovo.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine: Truly Filipino with a twist

When you're at Quezon City and would like a revolutionary twist for the local dishes from different regions in the Philippines, there's one place now, not hidden but happy to serve their evolving dishes for everyone, head to Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine. 

Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine 

When my group went there to try the different signature dishes, we are amazed that they have many unique but from the traditional Filipino dishes as their dishes is evolved from the different regions in the Philippines add up also that the owners of this interesting restaurant made sure that the dishes will not be the usual home cooked food from our Grandmas table. 

Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine is like eating Al Fresco because of the design of the infrastructure & exposed but architecturally designed PVC pipes that served as the lamp posts. I love the traditional display of old photographs, books and furniture that made me ratatouille like think about the past, when were still living in the province under our grandparents home. The restaurant is  home away from home. 

The ambiance is suitable for celebrations and for just relaxing with family

I love the decor

Here's what we had for lunch and joyfully served us by Sigrid  Aragona Buendia, one of the owners of the restaurant. 

 Revolutionary food for your taste

Chopsuy Salad. The twist here is that, it's a mixture of our local dish from the cooked chopsuy but now with fresh vegetables and made just like a salad with dressing. 

Inihaw na Tilapia roll. This unique dish is not just pleasing to my eyes but for my taste. I love the mustasa leaves and fermented rice, I tasted same dish like this at Angeles, Pampanga when the Mayor of that town invited us at their fiesta celebration. I will surely go back at Tiago because of this. The grilled fish inside the mustasa with the buro is a must to try for everyone. Very healthy for all the figure conscious ladies out there.

Pinausukang Chicken and Pork is another dish I will never forget. A combination of two meat in one. A unique blend for every bite. According to Sigrid, it took the chef hours to cooked this. That made the Pinausukang Chicken and Pork so tender. 

Pork Sisig is another recipe to die for. It's a common dish for Filipinos but made more delicious under the progressive and evolving taste of the owners. Sisig at Tiago is made of pork cheeks and nape with onions. 


 Delicious Leche Flan

Leche Flan. Filipinos have sweet tooth and obviously, we all love Leche Plan and will order lots for take out because of the unique blend and interesting toppings of this favorite dessert. Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine Leche Plan is topped with sweetened pearls and banana, a new twist to usual Leche  Flan preparation.  

Suman. Occasionally our favorite kakanin is the usual Suman, another dessert that is made of rice. At Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine, it's crunchy because it's fried. Salivating because of the tablea chocolate sauce and sweet latik, a must try. 

Sigrid, Dianne and me

Me and Sigrid

Reviewing the article I did for Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine made me lke to go back as soon as possible, the taste of the different dishes will make you schedule a trip with the whole family.

The restaurant is newly opened at the corner of Tomas Morato Avenue and Scout Fuentabella Street and open from Tiesdays to Sundays from 11:00am to 11:00 pm. 

 Tiago Progressive Filipino Cuisine: Truly Filipino with a twist