For the first time, AirAsia, the World’s Best Low Cost Carrier for nine straight years running since 2009 by Skytrax, is this year’s official airline partner of Iloilo’s Dinagyang Festival – one of the Philippines’ biggest religious and cultural festivals honoring the Santo Niño or Christ child.
Ladies and gentlemen, the captain has just turned off the fasten seatbelt sign… Flight 001 (pronounced: “flight one”), the world’s premiere travel store, has just opened its third and biggest store at the East Wing of Shangri-la Plaza Mall in Mandaluyong City, as part of their aggressive rollout plan in Asia. Whether for international jetsetters or domestic commuters, Flight 001 has practical and innovative products that enable travelers to experience the world in style and comfort.
“Flight 001 is quickly becoming a global brand, which is a vision Brad and I have had for the company from the start. And we are particularly excited and passionate about our latest expansion in the Philippines” said John Sencion, co-founder of Flight 001.
In line with Flight 001’s existing locations, the interior of the new store is designed to model the look and feel of 747 Jet fuselage. Complete with curved walls, wood paneling, and a retro-modern ticket counter, the stores are reminiscent of the glamorous Jet-Set era of the 1950s and 60s.
Check out how the awesome Flight 001 store looks like on these photos below…
I’m a sucker for food. I love eating although it doesn’t quite show now because of the drastic diet and fitness regimen that I had to go through 2 years ago wherein I lost 50lbs in roughly 4 months (185lbs. down to 135lbs.)
It takes a substantial amount of effort to stay fit. In fact, GETTING FIT and STAYING FIT are two different beasts altogether. It’s harder to maintain weight than to lose weight, in my opinion.
But that doesn’t mean I don’t indulge in a lot good food every now and then. I have to. It keeps me sane.
That being said, just last week my wife and I were invited by good friend, Ferds Bondoy, and Electrolux Philippines to go on a food tour all around the province of Pampanga. Yes. Pampanga… a province known for their rich heritage of wonderful (and sometimes exotic) dishes.
PREVIOUS PARTS: Day 1 (Part 1 of 3), Day 1 (Part 2 of 3)
Our next destination… the busy, crowded, festive and restaurant-riddled street of Jalan Alor.
This is one long strip of road that seems to never sleep at night. The entire stretch of Jalan Alor is lined with all sorts of food stalls, with tables and chairs that overflow from their respective restos and stretch out to the sidewalk and practically takes up almost a third of the street itself. If you’re into ihaw-ihaw and al fresco dining, this is the spot to hit.
If you’re familiar with banchetto, imagine that but a couple of times bigger. Best to dress down and dig in when you’re here! Just be sure to keep your wallet and valuables close to you. I enjoyed this place a whole lot! Good food, awesome crowd, party atmosphere… it’s just very Pinoy, me thinks!
PREVIOUS PART: Day 1 (Part 1 of 3)
Our first stop along the way was the new National Palace of Malaysia called, Istana Negara.
To say that Istana Negara is BIG is an understatement. Huge does not even come close to describing the place. Istana Negara is absofrickinlutely massive! You’ve got to be there to actually realize how vast and overwhelming the National Palace is.
After a good number of “Look! I’ve been here!” photos all over the outer grounds of the palace including some fun pics with the palace guards, we left Istana Negara to have late lunch. Yipee!
Though lunch was a tad late, it was very filling as much as it was fulfilling! Truly, much of a people’s culture and heritage can be learned through their food. And if eating is learning, then this particular lunch can be likened to a whole day lecture! I believe I ate more than my usual. Thank, God, I brought my stash of Carbtrim to even out the carbs I took in. *burp!*
After what seemed to be a foodfest over lunch, we went straight to our hotel – The Berjaya Times Square.
We, checked into our respective rooms and were given about an hour to freshen up, unpack and relax a bit before meeting up at the hotel lobby again to make the most of our first day.
An hour passed and sure enough, we were all gathered at the lobby ready to head out and see more of Kuala Lumpur. Let’s go!
Next stop – Kuala Lumpur City Gallery!
St. Augustine once said, “the world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page”.
As a person who has gone to quite a number of places around and beyond our country, this particular saying breathes deeper meaning to me all the more. Truly, one must not be easily satisfied with merely being stuck in his/her own corner of the world, not caring about what lies out there in the distance.
Traveling, apart from the fun and excitement that comes with it, is a means to open one’s eyes to the world around us beyond what books and stories can ever do. This, among other things, is what prods me to explore further and to travel farther… to embrace every chance to go forth and see more of the world.
So, it goes without saying that when I was recently invited to go on a familiarization tour of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia by Zest Air, AirAsia and Fleishman Hillard, I pounced at the opportunity immediately.
This tour, which took place just last May 10, 2013, coincided with ZestAir’s inaugural flights to three (3) new destinations in the region: Manila to Bacolod, Manila to Kuala Lumpur, and Manila to Kota Kinabalu.
“Tourism Malaysia is delighted that Zest Air is launching its maiden flights to Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu. This initiative certainly comes at the perfect time since Malaysia will be celebrating its fourth Visit Malaysia Year (VMY) in 2014 and this year has been designated as the VMY promotional campaign year. We seek to attract more tourists from the Philippines to Malaysia. I am confident that this enhanced connectivity will be able to boost tourist arrivals from the Philippines to Malaysia.”, said Ms. Fazdila Mansor, Director of Tourism Malaysia Manila.
I joined an awesome (and hilarious) group of cool fellow bloggers making the 3-day trip much more exciting – CA de Ramos, Alex Dizon, Ruth Floresca, Rey Belen, Jennifer Adams Juan, Enzo Luna, Mae Ilagan & Frank Ruaya, Ferds Bondoy and Azrael Coladilla.
I, personally, was excited to visit and know more about a country wherein last year, more than 500,000 Filipinos headed off to for work, business and tourism.
Notice that the flight attendants who accompanied us during the trip donned red uniforms instead of Zest Air’s usual green & orange. This is due to the fact that Zest Air presently has a strategic alliance with AirAsia. This partnership only means bigger and better things for both companies.
Another group of Zest Air guests were scheduled to fly to Kota Kinabalu at 9:35AM of the same day. This particular group was comprised of travel bloggers, passengers including celebrity singer, songwriter, and 1/3 of the my favorite APO Hiking Society, Jim Paredes.
So, off we went!
In case you aren’t aware yet, a NEW #chuckiegiveaway has just started and is currently ongoing!
Up for grabs… an awesome 6000mAh power bank called the Inboosta Travel Booster courtesy of our wonderful friends from Beyond The Box (Thanks, guys!). Everyone could use an extra… ummm… “boost” when it comes to our gadget’s battery life, doncha think?
Good luck, everyone!
A little more than a year after our very first Manila Bay dinner cruise, my wife and I were invited by Ms. Aileen Ng of Pirmi Travel Services to revisit this wonderful attraction and to enjoy the improvements and upgrades they’ve added.
And so, here we are again!
I’d like to thank Pirmi Travel for this really wonderful treat! What was already great back then has become way better. We had tons of fun. A must try for everyone… especially love birds. :)
Here is a video I made featuring this recent dinner cruise. Enjoy! :)