Cebu Parklane International Hotel lights up a tree made out of old newspapers fashioned into autumn-colored leaves with the nativity scene as centerpiece to usher in the Christmas season.
Sugilanon sa Pasko-The Cebu Parklane Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony is a retelling of how this most important of events came to be celebrated in the Philippines.
Basil Ting, hotel president, said Parklane is putting emphasis on the Christmas story to highlight its real meaning and essence.
Tree-lighting guests, which included Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, were treated to amazing performances by the Fidelis Choir and MDF Productions.
The hotel also served a sumptuous feast that included its signature local dishes as well as delicacies from the town’s of Liloan, Asturias, Aloguinsan, Bogo, and Catmon.
Parklane continues to live up to its tradition of using recycled materials for its tree.
According to the hotel, “To many, a Christmas Tree is just a tree full of lights, trinkets and decorations. But for Parklane, behind the tree’s shimmer and glitter is a purpose and a reminder for us to nurture, sustain and preserve our environment.”
It also continues to assist children with cancer through fund-raising activities during the Christmas season.
Holidaymakers are in for a season filled with excitement as Quest Hotel & Conference Center Cebu unveils The Dazzling Days of Christmas, a celebration highlighted by fun activities, impressive dining options, and heartwarming gift-giving opportunities for guests. It was unveiled at the hotel’s Bell-Ringing Ceremony last November 13.
American Idol singing sensation Jessica Sanchez is returning to Cebu with her first major concert here on November 29 at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.
Sanchez rose to prominence in her stint with American Idol, which included a dramatic save by the judges after she was nearly voted off. She was just 16, a petite singer with a soaring voice highlighted when she performed “And I am Telling You.” Her season culminated with a masterclass vocal calisthenics with Jennifer Holliday in the series finale, which many still litigate on YouTube that she should have won.
After its successful run last year, PLDT wireless arm Smart Communications, Inc (Smart) has partnered with The SM Store once again to give loyal customers some holiday rewards through the Scratch and Win promo.
Shoppers can conveniently top up their Smart, TNT, and Sun prepaid phones at The SM Store, SM Hypermarket, and other SM affiliates, to get a digital scratch card and get instant freebies. They can also join the raffle for a chance to win one of 800 top-of-the-line Bose speakers.
The Vibo Group of Companies greets the start of the festive season with the lighting of not one but three Christmas trees, fireworks, music, and a sample of the sumptuous food now available in flagship establishment Cebu Grand Hotel.
Gerardo Borromeo, president, opened the event with a warm welcome for guests that included tenants of the different companies.
With less than 100 days before Christmas, it is time to get a headstart on your holiday shopping with Landers Superstore’s Super Crazy Sale from October 16 to 20, 2019, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Get exciting surprises, member-exclusive discounts of up to 50% and Buy 1 Get 1 deals on their selection of local and premium international goods plus discounts on food and drinks at their New York-style diner Landers Central and coffee shop Doppio.
Landers Superstore offers the true membership shopping experience with its wide range of products from grocery items to general merchandise. Members enjoy exclusive perks from fuel discounts of up to Php 9 per liter at Landers Caltex Gasoline Station; online grocery shopping at http://landers.ph with same day delivery; free haircut, shampoo and blow-dry at Federal Barbers; and lowest-priced medicines at Capital Care Pharmacy.
To promote European culture and celebrate the link between Europe and the Philippines that started almost 500 years ago, Cine Europa 22 will visit 8 cities in the country up to November 2019 with 12 films for free screening.
The Cebu leg of the film festival started last Thursday, October 3, and will run up to Sunday, October 6 at Cinema 1 in SM City Cebu.
Spanish Ambassador to the Philippines Jorge Moragas said the event becomes more important in light of the upcoming celebration of the first circumnavigation of the world where Cebu, in particular the island of Mactan, played a crucial role.
“It was a multinational expedition with sailors from almost all European countries—Spanish, German, Polish, French, Greek, and of course, Portuguese—that left Seville in Spain 500 years ago,” he added.
EU Delegation First Counsellor Rafael de Bustamante said Cebu is the first city visited by Cine Europa 22 outside of Manila. The group’s next stop is Iloilo City with the Dutch ambassador as key person.
He revealed that they have a system where an EU ambassador travels to a city where the film festival would be held and the opening movie would be from his country.
CINE EUROPA 22. EU Delegation First Counsellor Rafael de Bustamante, Spanish Ambassador to the Philippines Jorge Moragas, SM Prime Holdings Inc. Vice President Marissa Fernan, a member of the delegation, Information Officer Robert Leon during the opening of Cine Europa 22 in SM City Cebu.
Ambassador Moragas said Spain picked Cebu, where they showed the multi-awarded Spanish movie 10,000 Kilometros and translated for English-language viewing as “Long Distance.”
While the movie doesn’t have a direct connection to the circumnavigation, it makes sense in the context of Spain and the Philippines because it touches on human relations and bridging the distance between peoples. The distance 10,000 kilometers is also more or less the distance between Spain and the Philippines, he added.
Cine Europa 22 films
For today, Saturday, Cinema One in SM City Cebu will show three European films, starting with Belgium’s Achter De Wolken (Behind the Clouds) at 2 p.m., Hungary’s Béúk (Happy New Year) at 4:30 pm, and De Marathon (The Marathon) by The Netherlands at 7 pm.
Behind the Clouds, with a PG rating, is a story about two lovers whose lives took different paths but met and fell in love again after 40 years.
Happy New Year, on the other hand, is R-13 and tells of a group of friends that has been celebrating New Year’s Eve together for years. They agreed to play a game that started out playfully enough but quickly turned serious when secrets, lies, and betrayals that were kept secret came to light.
The Marathon (R-13) is about four out-of-shape men who trained for a marathon hoping to win money to pay off a tax debt.
Sunday’s screenings include: Teorie Tygra (The Tiger Theory, PG rating) of the Czech Republic at 2 pm, Tour de France (R-13) of France at 4:30 pm, and Mary Shelley (R-13) of the United Kingdom at 7:00 pm.
Cebu’s filmmaking industry is young and fragmented and the Cebu International Film Festival (Cebu.IFF) is working to become the platform for showcasing and reviving love for local films.
Festival Director Peachy Fajatin said the Cebu film scene is growing but it’s in the early stages and divided into several small groups.
And while there are promising Cebuano filmmakers, many of them leave for Manila so they can practice their craft, added Cebu.IFF President Mel Allego.
FILM FESTIVAL IN CEBU. Organizers of the Cebu International Film Festival (Cebu.IFF) hold a press conference on the event that will run from September 25 to 27. From left are Cebu.IFF President Mel Allego, Festival Director Peachy Fajatin, and Board Members Christelle Dychangco and Lilu Aliño.
One of the objectives of Cebu.IFF will be to encourage the creation of films with global reach, according to Board Member Lilu Aliño. She added that they continue to hold the festival to raise enthusiasm for filmmaking and improve the status of the industry.
The Cebu International Film Festival 2019, which is the event’s 8th edition, will run from September 25-27 and takes on the theme “Celebrating 100 years of Philippine Cinema.”
Fajatin said they will be screening over 100 films that are competing under the full length and short feature categories for international and Philippine focus, animation, and student group.
This year, Cebu.IFF will introduce for the first time a pitching event that includes a workshop and pitch market where local filmmakers can find co-producers or funding for their films.
The workshops scheduled for September 25 are another festival highlight. These include the talk on “Setting up Your Animation Studio with No Capital” by Emot Amodia and “Film Storytelling and Animation Workshops: Ideas Into Action” by Crispo Mojica.
Festival organizers urged Cebuanos to take advantage of free screenings of films submitted by filmmakers from 17 countries in the following venues: USC-SAFAD Theatre, St. Theresa’s College, and USC South Campus.
Aliño said one of the challenges of the local filmmaking industry is the lack of interest from the audience. She hoped that Cebuanos would make time to watch the full length, short feature, and animation film submissions by filmmakers from the US, Australia, Turkey, Russia, Japan, India, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Argentine, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine, France, Germany, and the Philippines.
A special screening of Japanese Director Takuya Fukushima’s film “FLOATING” is also scheduled on September 25, 9 am-12 pm, at the USC-SAFAD Theatre.
It all started when Vladimir, our tour guide in Davao City, sang a Kim Chiu song over the bus PA system.
We were headed to our hotel from another full day of school visits and government courtesy calls. Traffic was terrible. To while away the gridlock, Vladimir asked everyone in the bus – students, teachers, and journalists from both the Philippines and China who are part of the Fujian Youth Exchange Program – to introduce themselves and answer a cliche beauty pageant question: if you were a fruit, what would you be and why?
In celebration of Marco Polo’s 765th birthday, Marco Polo Plaza is throwing an Italian party at the El Viento Restaurant and Pool Bar.
Guest Chef Luca Genco
From September 11 to 15, eat and drink Italian at the hotel’s poolside restaurant. The special event is done in collaboration with Giuseppe Pizzeria & Sicilian Roast. Together with the Marco Polo culinary team, Marco Polo will feature the delectable Italian culinary masterpieces of Chef Giuseppe Genco and Chef Luca Genco.
Enjoy traditional Sicilian comfort food and indulge in delicately prepared Italian pastas such as Spinach Ravioli, Rigatoni Pasta, Farfalle Seafood pasta, Penne Pesto Genovese and Italian Sausage Cannelloni. Hand-made and wood-fired cooked pizzas are a must-try together with different kinds of Sicilian Roasts. Of course, this fete would not be complete without a glass of Italian wine to complete the Italian experience.
PIZZA SLICING CEREMONY.Opening La Dolce Vita with a pizza-slicing ceremony are (from left) Marco Polo Plaza General Manager Brian Connelly and guest chefs Giuseppe Genco and Luca Genco.
Get ready for out-of-this-world deals on such popular attractions as Universal Studios Japan and Hong Kong Disnyland or activities like the Crazy Rich Asians tour in Singapore at the upcoming Klook Travel Fest 2019 on September 7-8, 2019 at SM City Cebu.
TRAVEL FESTIVAL. Klook market lead for the Philippines Michelle Cruz says the Klook Travel Fest 2019 on September 7-8 at SM City Cebu will be an exceptional two-day community-powered festival of music, food, and travel offers that include airfare promos through event partner Cebu Pacific and bookable activities in over 300 major destinations across the world.
Klook promises an exceptional two-day community-powered festival of music, food, and travel offers that include airfare promos through event partner Cebu Pacific and bookable activities in over 300 major destinations across the world, said Michelle Cruz, the company’s market lead in the Philippines.
Cruz said they strive to bring travel experiences to customers through offline events, and the Klook Travel Fest 2019 will be held simultaneously in Manila and Cebu during the company’s anniversary month in September.
Exclusive Cebu Pacific sale
Cebuanos can also enjoy low fares through the Cebu Pacific sale happening exclusively during the Klook Travel Fest.
“We have always been a firm believer in making travel more accessible and affordable to every Juan,” said Cebu Pacific Corporate Communications Specialist Michelle Lim.
Cebu Pacific’s partnership with Klook allows the airline to go not only provide affordable flights to customers but provide them access as well to budget-friendly activities and attractions in their chosen destinations, she added.
EXCLUSIVE SALE. Cebu Pacific Corporate Communications Specialist Michelle Lim says the airline will be holding an exclusive sale during the event.
Klook Travel Fest 2019
Klook is able to offer amazing deals on tours, attractions, and activities through its good relationship with its partners.
By making available a range of services, from airport transfers and wifi services to bookable activities, it has allowed tourists to go on hassle-free vacations.
After a successful first run last year, the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale 2019 will happen in Cebu this month with over a million brand-new English books priced down by 50 to 90 percent.
Book lovers and new readers will have time to search for their favorite titles and authors as the BBW Book Sale will be open 24 hours daily from Aug. 16-26, 2019 at the IEC Convention Center (IC3) in Cebu City and entrance is free.
The Big Bad Wolf is not just a book sale but an organization that advocates reading and English literacy, its founder Jacqueline Ng told media and bloggers during a press conference yesterday, August 2.
BACK TO CEBU. (From left) Gawad Kalinga representative Toby Florendo, Big Bad Wolf Books founder Jacqueline Ng, and Philippines Country Manager Narisa dela Peña discuss the upcoming return of the book sale to Cebu in a recent press conference.
“The Filipinos are readers and know the value and importance of books. There are other people out there who don’t. The Big Bad Wolf creates the market for books—the desire to know more, learn more—and aims to convert the non-reader,” she added.
VIP Day passes
Ng said the Cebu leg of the BBW Book Sale in 2018 welcomed over 200,000 visitors. She added there had been many requests for the Book Sale to return to Cebu since then and they were more than happy to oblige.
The BBW Book Sale 2019 in Cebu will carry various genres, including fiction, non-fiction, children’s books, and rare titles. It will be adding eight more titles to interactive books with augmented reality technology that range from fairy tales to educational, bringing the total to 12.
“We’ve been to many places in the Philippines these past two years from Manila, Cebu, Davao, and Pampanga. It has been amazing to see droves of people, young and old, come together for the love of books. It surely affirms that reading is a beloved hobby, very much alive, and an effective tool for learning,” Ng added.
Book buying behavior
Big Bad Wolf Books Philippines Country Manager Narisa dela Peña said one of her realizations in the Book Sale is that Filipinos prefer fiction books.
She said she noticed from the book sales held in Manila, Pampanga, Davao, and Cebu that people buy more works of fiction over other genres.
The Filipinos are readers and know the value and importance of books. There are other people out there who don’t. The Big Bad Wolf creates the market for books—the desire to know more, learn more—and aims to convert the non-reader
Jacqueline Ng, Big Bad Wolf founder
Ng said book buying behavior is different in the Philippines compared to other countries where BBW Books also hold sales. In Taiwan, a country with high disposable income but with limited English proficiency, parents invest on their kids and around 90 percent of titles sold are children’s books. It’s the same situation in the Book Sale’s biggest market, Indonesia, where 75-80 percent of books bought are for kids.
The ratio for adult and children’s books is 60-40 percent in the Philippines, according to Ng, who added that Filipinos love fiction and are also into such range of categories as history, religion, music, health and wellness.
As a way of giving back to the community, BBW Books continues its Red Readerhood Programme partnership with Gawad Kalinga through a donation of 500 books to the group. They also appeal to customers to take part in the advocacy by doing their own donation.
Gawad Kalinga (GK) representative Toby Florendo said they believe that everyone, regardless of status and age, has a right to learn. His group has the same goal as BBW Books and that is to unleash an individual’s potential.
“Big Bad Wolf Books always makes sure to give back and help make a difference in every place they visit. We share in their advocacy and are grateful to have worked with them since their very first sale in the country. Dozens of partner communities around the country have benefitted in their work to promote literacy and education with both children and adults discovering the joys and benefits of reading as we believe reading is meant for all, regardless of their status,” Florendo added in a statement released during the press conference.
BBW Books is now on its 10th hear and has held book sales in such countries as Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. It held its first event in the Philippines in 2018, specifically in Manila in February, followed by Cebu in July, and Davao in November.
Big Bad Wolf Book Sale Cebu press conference
OVER A MILLION BOOKS. Big Bad Wolf Books Philippines Country Manager Narisa dela Peña, founder Jacqueline Ng, and Gawad Kalinga representative Toby Florendo.
If you love cheese, sausages, chocolates, and everything Swiss, head to Cafe Marco in Marco Polo Plaza as the award-winning food outlet celebrates Swissness from A to Z.
The event is part of the hotel’s Culinary Journeys: a series of events held throughout the year to celebrate food and culture.
Until August 5, Cafe Marco will serve Swiss chocolates, raclette, cheese fondues and meats such as Alpine dried beef to Zurich-style sliced meat on top of its international buffet spread for lunch and dinner.
Cervelat and Emmentalier, Gherkins Salad with onion chives
Lunch buffet rate at Cafe Marco is P1,300 while dinner is P1,600.
The culinary event is held in celebration of Switzerland’s National Day on August 1.
“Cafe Marco will feature all things Swiss from appetizers to desserts alongside its international buffet spread,” Marco Polo said in a press release.
OPENING. Marco Polo Plaza General Manager Brian Connelly rings the bell to mark the opening of the media preview of Swissness from A to Z. With Connelly to lead the opening is Resident Manager Michaela Priesner.
As an added treat, guests who dine during the event will have a chance to win a special merchandise from Swiss brand Victorinox.
Fox Racing, the global leader in MX and MTB gear and apparel, announced its continued support for the annual holiday of mountain biking known as “International Ride Mountain Bike Day” on July 20.
Globally recognized as #RIDEMTBDAY, the movement is composed of community-based events that take place around the globe with mountain bike brands, media, professionals, retailers, parks and local riders. They hold group rides, fundraisers, races and demos every July 20.
With promotion and support from a number of mountain bike brands, advocacy groups and athletes, the first annual #RIDEMTBDAY in 2018 included participants from over 40 countries. It generated tens of thousands of social media impressions.
For 2019, Fox plans to take #RIDEMTBDAY to the next level by helping promote the day with even more industry partners around the world. Fox will be supporting a number of events globally and promoting the fact that #RIDEMTBDAY doesn’t belong to any one person or group.
To celebrate, Fox Racing Philippines partnered with R.O.X. and The Bike Playground in Quezon City and prepared activities fit for all ages. Activities like The Pump Track Challenge, Time Trial, Bike Clinic, Strider Cup and more will be held on that day.
Since this is the official day of mountain biking, the event will be joined by other brands as well. Brands like GT Cycles, BMC Bicycles, Shimano, Dan’s Bike Shop, Gran Trail Cycles, Columbia Sportswear, DC, Nalgene, Osprey, Sea to Summit, The North Face, and more.
To join, you may visit FOX SM City Cebu, FOX SM Seaside, or ROX Ayala. Or register online at https://forms.gle/qHhiVdt4tgCcveit5. Bring your bikes on July 20 and celebrate with us!
Travelers who shop and dine at the Mactan Cebu International Airport will get the chance to win a Mercedes-Benz A Class A180 2019 model and round trip tickets via Royal Air to various destinations throughout the country.
MCIA and its partners launched the Shop and Win raffle promo on Monday in MCIA Terminal 2. The promo will run from July 1, 2019 to October 15, 2019.
“This is our way of giving back and thanking all the travelers, passengers, and stakeholders for MCIA’s successful operations and the continued support the past years, especially since the opening of Terminal 2 a year ago,” said Ravishankar Saravu, Chief Commercial Advisor of GMR Megawide Cebu Airport Corporation.
Mactan airport retail
Saravu said the promo is also a way to encourage people to explore the retail areas of the airport. He said currently the shops are in Terminal 2, which hosts international flights, but more will open when work on Terminal 1 is done before the end of the year.
“What you see here are not just international and branded items but also Filipino products. If you explore a bit more, you will see the best of food options and the best of souvenir products from the Philippines,” Saravu said in an interview. “We want the travelers to explore a bit more.”
MCIA PROMO. Unveiling the grand prize for the Shop and Win raffle promo in Terminal 2 of the Mactan Cebu International Airport are (from left) Royal Air Marketing Manager Joanna Marie Garcia, Royal Air VP Commercial Margarita Obejas, Standard Insurance Marketing Manager Anna Lisa Opay, Standard Insurance Vice President Joy Alampay, GMCAC Chief Commercial Advisor Ravishankar Saravu, Global Star Owner and President Edward Onglatco, Global Star General Manager Ritchell Selma, Global Star Sales & Marketing Manager Aimee Ting, and GMCAC Deputy Chief Commercial Officer Ma. Cristina Angan.
Ritchell Selma, General Manager of Global Star, exclusive distributor of Mercedes-Benz, said they partnered with MCIA because travelers comprise a wide new market they want to reach out to.
Under the mechanics of the promo, travelers must have a single receipt purchase as follows:
P500 from T1 Food and Beverage shops, T1 retail shops, T1 or T2 WH Smith, T2 K2 Pharmacy, and T2 PArk & Fly
P1,000 from T2 F&B shops, T2 The Spa at Cebu, T2 Plaza Premium Lounge, and T2 Aerotel
US$50 from T2 Mactan Travel Retail, T1 or T2 Duty Free Philippines shops
1st Raffle Draw – July 31, 2019 (Wednesday) 3 winners of 2 round trip tickets to and from Cebu to Puerto Princesa
2nd Raffle Draw – August 30, 2019 (Friday) 3 winners of 2 round trip tickets to and from Cebu to Cagayan De Oro
3rd Raffle Draw – September 30, 2019 (Monday) 3 winners of 2 round trip tickets to from Cebu to Davao
Grand Raffle Draw – October 16, 2019 (Wednesday) 1 winner of Mercedes Bens A Class A180 2019 model and 2 winners of 2 round trip tickets to and from Cebu to Manila
Rico’s Lechon will open its biggest restaurant this Friday, June 28, in Cebu, bringing back the particular taste of its roasted pigs that has become popular with diners.
Meat Concepts Corporation President George N. Pua said in yesterday’s media preview for the Mandaue branch that Rico’s Lechon has changed ownership but the quality and taste of its roasted pigs remain the same. Pua heads the company that now owns the lechon chain.
NOT JUST LECHON. Rico’s Lechon will serve Filipino favorites on top of its renowned lechon.
The 500-square meter branch, which is the brand’s flagship outlet and newest restaurant, is located at Unit F1 Jamestown, Mantawi International Drive, Mandaue City.
Pua added they will soon work double time to have the branch in Axis Entertainment Avenue along Escario St. in Cebu City reopened by July.
Rico’s Lechon menu
Rico’s will continue to serve its famous lechon in two flavors, original and spicy. It will also offer such Filipino favorites like special boneless bangus, sizzling lechon sisig, monggos, Bicol express, kinilaw na tangigue, calamares, camaron rebosado, garlicky squid balls, sinigang, pinakbet, chopsuey, and pancit canton.
NEW OWNER, SAME LECHON QUALITY, TASTE. Meat Concepts Corporation President George N. Pua said in yesterday’s media preview that Rico’s Lechon has changed ownership but the quality and taste of its roasted pigs remain the same.
When it opens, the Mandaue branch will introduce as well new dishes like the grilled pork belly, grilled daing na bangus, ginataang laing, chicken binakol, beef ampalaya, sizzling adobong pusit, buttered mixed seafoods, seaweed salad, sisig fried rice, chorizo fried rice, sinigang na boneless bangus, sinigang na baka at baboy, and seafood sotanghon.
Pua said all their pigs are sourced from local suppliers, adding that they’ve hired the services of an abattoir and outsourced the roasting to another group.
Rico’s flagship outlet in Mandaue is the second in Cebu, the other being in Mactan Promenade, and the seventh overall.
There are currently five Rico’s Lechon branches in Manila but two more — along Balintawak and in SM North Edsa — will be added soon, according to Pua.
Rico’s Lechon Mandaue has a seating capacity of 300, with four VIP rooms for meetings, gatherings, and special functions with family and friends. The largest room can seat up to 80 guests while the other three can fit up to 20 persons each.
Pua said they wanted to achieve a fiesta ambience, hence the colorful restaurant interior. The chandeliers are made from lechon plates and are manufactured in Cebu together with the furniture.
Traditional Cebu lechon
Founded in 1997 by Enrico Dionson, Rico’s Lechon will turn 22 in August 2019. It serves traditional Cebu lechon roasted to perfection and mixed with garlic and leeks.
Some years back, Pua said he came to Cebu, which is known for having the best lechon, and tried the products of different outlets. He came to the conclusion that Rico’s Lechon has the best roasted pig and proposed a partnership deal.
He added that Dionson wasn’t interested then but later changed his mind and sold the restaurant chain six years after that initial proposal.