April 15, 2018

Macau-Hong Kong Trip: Somewhat Unplanned Part II

So we traveled to Hong Kong by ferry. On our way to the ferry terminal we met a fellow Filipino and she guided us until we reached Hong Kong. We were thankful although I already know we have ridden the wrong ferry. We should have stopped at the terminal which is walking distance to our hotel. It was fine as I experienced being refused  to get out of the train station because my metro card malfunctioned again. I really don't know but trains don't like me so much. It happened in Taiwan and it happened many times in Hong Kong. It's much luck I guess! hahaha!

Since the weather is very cold for us, it was a little difficult to go out without using layers and layers of clothing, but still we tried our best to explore the place. Taking photos was extremely difficult but I did my best to do so.

It's already night time but it seems like people are not sleeping. The streets of  Hong Kong is too bright for those who are not used to it.

We are about to catch the Symphony of Lights but we can already see it had started. Just because we used most of our time in queue for a waffle, we missed it. LOL!

The famous waffle store in Tsim Tsa Tsui. The serving is huge and for small eaters like me and Gael, one order is enough but of course, we always forget to buy just one. 

Building, tall, small, colorful buildings everywhere. If you love nature, then this place is not for you.

Would I forget taking photos of them? Of course not, no matter how cold it was! 

It's his first international trip, although a short one, he enjoyed.

March 27, 2018

Macau-Hong Kong Trip: Somewhat Unplanned Part I

Booking a flight somewhere without even researching about it is somewhat crazy I know but I did anyway! Gael suggested we go hiking on her birthday but for me it seems like not a good idea. I suggested we travel somewhere in the Philippines until she suggested Macau. My fingers are so fast in typing and clicking airline sites and so after comparing prices, I booked right away. hahaha! It was a reasonable price so that's fine.

Thanks to Jel for her suggestion of not underestimating the winter season in both countries. We went shopping for winter clothes as we don't want to freeze. Shopping alone is tiring because I hate doing this but if I don't, I'll be stuck inside the hotel!

Practicing while waiting for Gael 
Our flight wasn't delayed but of course, Gael is always beating the clock whenever we fly somewhere. Peace! haha! Since I came from an 8 hour shift before the flight, I was already too sleepy while waiting for departure. Upon arriving at Macau International Airport, I was anxious to feel the cold outside! And yes it was too damn cold!  

It was difficult to find our hotel from the bus station. We had to go around same places many times until we decided to ask. Our GPS wasn't helping at all! We were so tired but we still managed to brave the cold to go out and try the local foods. Who doesn't want to eat hot and spicy noodles in the middle of an 8 degree Celsius? LOL! 

We had to go back at the hotel right away so we can sleep and wake up early the next day as we had to travel to Hong Kong. We needed to check out at 12 noon, but we planned to go around nearby places before we move to another country. Taking photos in a cold weather was really challenging! I tried hard to have my hands exposed in the cold in longer time! 

The streets of Macau is really picture perfect! Anywhere you turn, there are angles that you can see that's worth taking a shot.

These photos were taken while we are on our way to the Ruin's of St Paul's. It's nearest tourist spot from our hotel and where we can find a coffee shop so we decided to go there.

March 5, 2018

Hotel Review: San Tung Fong Commercial Inn, Macau

Finding a "cheap" accommodation in Macau was the most difficult job I had done so far. It's a casino place so what do I expect. We were hoping that Airbnb could help us but most of the cheap ones are already outside Macau. It wasn't an option due to the fact that we need visa for us to stay in mainland China. 

With so many comparisons done, we settled to stay at San Tung Fong Commercial Inn. I've booked it through which was very easy and it offered a pay at the property option. I preferred this since it's international and international or conversion charges to my credit card will cost a lot. 

It was difficult for us to find the place but after going around for several times, we were able to find it. Thanks to those people who tried to help us give the direction. 

Upon entering the hotel, all our tiredness were gone. LOL! Unfortunately, the receptionist who tried to assist us couldn't speak English so we had to wait for someone who can. You have to have a very good ear in listening to their way of speaking English. If not, it will take a long time for both of you to understand each other. My experience with zero English students finally paid off! hahaha!

The hotel required a MOP100 deposit which was understandable considering the room almost has all the things you need. We booked a deluxe family room which cost us HK$900. It's expensive but it was worth the money. The room was spacious for 3 people, the beds were really comfortable you don't want to get up. The room includes a flat screen TV, a percolator (preferable for coffee addicts like us), drinking glasses and a hair dryer! This is necessary during the winter season! 

February 16, 2018

Being A The Kapihan Ambassadress

You open your Facebook messenger and you got the message that you are chosen to be an ambassadress of a coffee shop you love to go to. What a surprise!

Being one was a privilege. I was not only given discounts on all the food and drinks I ordered but I was able to share the discounts to my friends and family members. I tried my best to taste all of the menus but due to restrictions I wasn't able to. I have a very sensitive throat so I always refrain from cold drinks hence I always order hot drinks. Therefore, my in-laws were the ones who enjoyed the cold drinks. I was also in the process of staying away from any foods containing pork so I was not able to taste some of their delicious-looking snacks. I just relied on my companion's taste buds. LOL! 

As the Kapihan was improving, their menus has improved a lot too. They have added other varieties of drinks and snacks. I always order either the single pour over or the french press but then they have added italian roast which was a lot stronger than the two. Does it suits my coffee taste buds? Definitely! Although it is far from the taste of my ultimate favorite coffee, I still can live with it. 

Being an ambassadress of the Kapihan had taught me a lot. One is to not overuse the privilege given to me, I hope I didn't. LOL! And the second one, I learned to love local coffee shops. This experience was broaden when Gael and I visited Taiwan. Local coffee shops are everywhere in Taiwan which made both of us fall in love with the place. We are really hoping to go back and stay longer there, and drink so much coffee! hahaha!

One thing I wish the Kapihan should implement is the clean as you go. We Filipinos are accustomed to having our trash being cleaned by others and perhaps that's one of the reason why we tend to scatter our trash anyway. In addition, I do hope as the Kapihan grows, they will have the suspended coffee program or the pay it forward coffee. I'd be willing to share what I can. Just my two cents though.

My sincerest thanks to all the staffs of the Kapihan for giving me such a privilege. My apologies for not visiting in a long time as my work schedule became a restriction. If you happen to open 24 hours, I'll be your company everyday. hahaha!

January 15, 2018

Hotel Review: Adriatico Arms Hotel

I was a little skeptic to go to the city on holidays because I am aware there are so many people especially foreign tourists who might be checking in hotels during those times. But since I am having a lot of issues with my internet connection and at the same time I wanted to spend a quiet Christmas, I then risked to book a hotel. It is more difficult when you are looking for an accommodation for 3 people. 

I searched from all the possible booking sites to get a good deal. My favorite booking site didn't offer a wide range of choices hence I had to use other sites I know. I wanted to stay in just one hotel until my companions arrived but it doesn't seem to be practical since it is more expensive. I then looked for another hotel nearby where I stayed alone and luckily I found one with acceptable reviews. Although I was doubtful considering some of the bad reviews I have read about it, I told myself, there's no harm in trying. Besides, we will just be staying for 2 nights. I got a good deal from agoda for $4,089.96 for 2 nights for 3 people; it's their deluxe room. 

Since I was already nearby, I checked out earlier from Leez Inn right after my work shift to check-in earlier at Adriatico Arms Hotel as I was already feeling sleepy. Just by looking at the map, it's 13 minutes away on foot but I was wondering if I could make it because I was carrying a 3 liter water bottle, my camera bag with my laptop in it and all the lenses and accessories plus my bag of clothes. Upon checking out I know the staffs of Leez Inn were just staring at me perhaps wondering why I had to bring that water bottle. LOL! 

I tried to take a walk however my sleepiness is telling me to take a ride. I hailed for a tricycle but my brain was totally in shock when the driver overpriced me. I am not tight-fisted but then it was too much. Luckily, a pedicab driver saw me and gave me half the fare the tricycle driver asked. I then gave the pedicab driver more than he asked thanking him for not overpricing me. 

I was 3 hours early for check-in but the receptionist just let me check-in for 1 hour early check in fee for 150 php. Outside, the hotel seems to be uninteresting but inside, I was in awe! The guard on duty was all smiles, the receptionist was very welcoming and the ambiance just wants to make me stay longer. 

The room is really spacious. I chose 1 single bed and 1 double bed. It is equipped with a closet with hangers in it.