Staycation at Hotel H20 For My Daughter’s 7th Birthday

One unique resort hotel that you can find in the Philippines is the Hotel H2O. It is imbued with relaxing and luxurious indulgence that every businessman or traveller will surely love. With the marine-theme which is first in the Philippines, one can feel a different and euphoric experience.

Staying at Hotel H20 to celebrate my daughter’s 7th birthday was an awesome idea! Credit to me of course! We were contemplating of going to HK Disneyland or Boracay but because of some unavoidable circumstances, we ended up looking for a place near Manila. And for kids and the kids-at-heart mommy, after votation, we finally booked at Hotel H20. Yipee! And we didnt just stay in the hotel, we also bought tickets for the Manila Ocean Park! Awesome! (I will post another for Manila Ocean Park)

The Good Points

  • Excellent service. Nothing beats a superb service with a friendly and accommodating staff. No matter what time you arrived at the place, the staff of Hotel H2O are always ready to serve. From the Concierge down to the Housekeeping, they were courteous.
  • Unique. Its authenticity is pretty obvious. There is nothing like Hotel H2O in the Philippines. Its mere marine-theme foster a relaxing yet romantic ambiance. Nonetheless, it will blow your mind in astonishment.
  • Worth the price. At Hotel H2O, you will experience ecstatic perks for less. Name whatever feature you are looking for a hotel, this marine resort hotel got it for you. Whether it is perfect functionality, cleanliness, service, facilities and amenities, or top-notch security the Hotel H20 offers more than what you pay.
  • All-in-one facilities and amenities. Aside from the unobstructed view of the bay, the place also offers superb facilities such as meeting room, front desk, fitness center, amusement park, and club lounge. In addition to this, the standard-size room is just adequate for every occupant. Also, it comes with a free toothbrush, soap, and a whole lot more. But I don’t normally use these free stuff (took them home :)) as I always carry with me my family travel essentials.
  • Location. The geographical setting of the hotel feels just right. In fact, it will only take you minutes to the Mall of Asia or U.S. embassy.

The Downsides

The Hotel H2O is not at all a five-star hotel to everybody. It has its flaws, but it only accounts to a minor percentage and is of course acceptable.

  • Buffet Breakfast. Our booking comes with 2 free buffet breakfast. I had to pay for 2 more persons (kids rate), Alexa was free of charge luckily! As she only ate cereals and milk. Would have been pricey to pay for that amount of food only. The food was delectable, quite a number of variants actually but only took some as I was full with 2 cups of brewed coffee. And with 3 kids in tow, its quite exhausting to watch them.
  • Some rooms have no windows.  But no worries, instead of windows, you will see a blue aquarium filled with fishes. If you sometimes want to take a glimpse of the outside world, there are some times that you cannot do so. It is because some rooms have no windows.
  • Swimming pool is small. Yes, since this hotel is constructed inside Manila Ocean Park, so they didn’t give much importance for the swimming pool. Of course, you will visit Hotel H20 simply because its in Manila Ocean Park. But anyhow, though small but it serves its purpose! The kids still enjoyed their short stay there! They wanted to come back the next day but ended up staying in the room watching the fishes.

With all that are said, the Hotel H2O is still a nice place to spend a vacation or leisurely travel. It provides a whole new experience making life exciting.

Overall, we enjoyed our staycation! It was indeed a nice place to celebrate the 7th birthday of my daughter Alexa. Don’t grow up so fast little darling!

Here are some of my staycation photos:

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Family Holiday Staycation At Solaire Resorts

Holidays only mean one thing – family bonding! After weeks of hustle and bustle, you long for that quiet, relaxing and soothing bonding moments with your loved one. The kids, the spouse and you of course, do deserve a treat. While most families plan their holiday vacations abroad, there are those who could only spare a few days off. But this doesn’t mean that you have to settle for anything less than grand. For a holiday staycation treat for your family, the best place to go is the hottest hotel resort destination near you – Solaire Resorts.

We celebrated my birthday this year at Solaire. It was a wonderful and meaningful stay, we got to bond with my kids for straight 24 hours. Most of the time spent at the swimming pool.

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Nothing would ever compare to the grand luxury that Solaire Resorts can offer. The lobby itself smell of a posh 5-Star Hotel to greet you and your family with a wow-factor. The rooms are spacious enough to accommodate an entire gang. You can either sink your weary bodies on the room’s king sized bed with lux covers or those plush arm chairs with ottomans. You’d be surprised at how fast their internet connection is! For fun with the kids, the swimming pool looks quite inviting and you can never resist the urge to take a dip. Solaire also have their fair share of restaurants to satisfy any cravings. You can sample oriental dishes at the Red Lantern or stuff yourselves full at the Fresh Buffet Restaurant. So, give your family a treat!

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Christmas Vacation in Bukidnon

Christmas is just around the corner. There will be lights, gifts and foods to share. I will not be buying gifts this year as I am saving for our planned travel to Bukidnon. This will be first time my kids will set foot in Mindanao and I want it to be extra special. I want to introduce to them my life as the daughter of a farmer thus planning of bringing them in the farm to help in something. It is going to be a different life, a simple life. Free from complications.

At first, they disagreed but after I told them that they can ride horses, carabaos and cows. They can swim in the rivers and lakes. They showed great enthusiam and now always talking about that. Oh well, my problem is now we don’t have horses and carabaos.. lol

It will be a different Christmas for the kids but I want to surprise them too with some little gifts only if I can get some red envelope discounts. Perhaps, some small toys or PSP games that they can play with while on board the plane as playing the PSP is always their main gadget to entertain themselves. Its a long journey from Manila to Bukidnon but we will not make it in one day. Perhaps, we will stay in Cagayan de Oro for 2 to 3 days then travel by land to Bukidnon.

Short Trip To Bukidnon

Lucky or not, but I am sure leaving for Cagayan de Oro on Sunday. Why lucky? Because, it’s the Cagayan de Oro Fiesta or locally called as Kagay-anon Festival. The last time I celebrated their festival was when I was still in Grade 5 at Lapasan Elementary School. Literally speaking, although I grew up on this city and partly in Bukidnon, but the next time I visit, its like a different place.

Unlucky? Not really, it’s just that the typhoon Mina is in the Philippines and I dislike traveling with turbulence. It’s so uncomfortable and yes – risky too!

Anyway, excited as I am, checking now on rates for my different accommodation. There are plenty of reasonable and affordable hotel and resort in the area so not really a problem. But I will try to check on the nearest place to my mom as I will also check for a possible resort clerk jobs for my brother and sister-in-law.

Adventure Race at Caliraya Resort Club

I posted several locations for teambuilding but we chose Caliraya Resort Club for its location and amenities.

Overnight package for Php 1,400 per person including 3 buffet meals (lunch, dinner and breakfast) and availed of a teambuilding facilitator for Php 150.00 per person. We are 40 in a group but we were charge only for 37 pax as they have an ongoing promo of 10+1.

An opening prayer lead by our accountant, Ms. Marichu to bless our food and Ms. Shirley, production manager, for a safe journey.

The activity started with a boodle fight breakfast at the warehouse  Pink Mango Canteen served with dried fish, longanisa, salted eggs, scrambled eggs, atchara, fried eggplant and smoked fish. Now the contest started, nah.. the food eating contest!

For a group tour, its really advisable to get a bus so we can have fun while in the bus. We prepared a wacky video to be played while on board but unfortunately, it didnt work so we just watched it when we arrived in the office. It took us around 3 hours to arrive at our final destination – from Bacoor, Cavite to Barangay Lewin, Lumban, Laguna.

We rented a bus from Edsheil Transport for Php 20,000 good for 2 days. Not bad.

We arrived at Caliraya at around 9:00 AM, to get to the resort, you have to take a boat which is really an added amenities of the resort. Imagine a free boat ride.

Main building which housed the hotel guest and the entertainment center. The buffet food are also served in this building. You have to climb the stairs or take a jeep on the way up, it belongs to the property so it is free of charge.

 

View taken from the hotel. There are 2 swimming pools for adult while another one for kids. For sports aficionados, you can play basketball, volleyball, soft ball, soccer ball, badminton, and earth ball.

Duplex accommodation with double-deck beds that can accommodate for up to 12 to 15 persons. We rented 3. The rooms are surprisingly well maintained with nice pillows and clean white towels.

The Nipa Huts. I just took a photo but never get inside.

Since we availed of their teambuilding package, Mark, our facilitator, suggested the Adventure Race. After a brief discussion, we had whole morning for ourselves just getting to know the place.

At 12:00 NN, we walked to the main building to familiarize with the place. We were served with buffet lunch. The food was delicious and has many varieties with a big reminder posted on the wall: “Take all you can, eat all you take”

Some of our Adventure Race photos:

Caliraya Resort Club
Barangay Lewin, Lumban,
Laguna, Philippines
Tel: (63-2) 632 1010, 638 6515, 637 7027
Web: www.caliraya.net

This is my entry for My World Tuesday.

The Travel Cafe Philippines

We had a lunch meeting at Italiannis, Greenbelt yesterday. While waiting for the 2nd meeting, we were strolling along Greenbelt and we came across Trave Cafe Philippines. Is this a Cafe? A bookstore? Or a Travel Agency? But wheww.. All in ONE! Great!

The Travel Cafe Philippines is a pioneering branding initiative of the Philippine Department of Tourism that presents a unique and creative alternative in marketing the Philippines abroad and establishing a strong global “brand” for Philippine tourism.

The philosophy behind the TRAVEL CAFÉ PHILIPPINES® Philippine Business Model is Coffee, Travel, and More… By Coffee, we mean “Philippine Coffee”; by Travel, we mean “travel to the Philippines”; and by More, we mean “more on the Philippines as a great destination”.

What a good idea to promote tourism! Nice ambiance and great coffee!

12 Little Things Every Filipino Can Do To Help Our Country

While we were waiting for our flight to Jakarta, I came across a bookstore in the airport. Too many books to choose.. Twilight.. New Moon… I know a lot of us would want to know the next chapter of Twilight.. but no, I want to watch it so I will just patiently wait for the movie.

When I was about to leave the bookstore, I saw a tiny book entitled “12 Little Things Every Filipino Can Do To Help Our Country” by Alexander L. Lacson. As a Filipino citizen, I want to do little things, I want to help my country, my yutang natawhan!

So here it goes, I want to share to all of you:

1. Follow traffic rules. Follow the law.
2. Whenever you buy or pay for anything, always ask for an official receipt.
3. Don’t buy smuggled goods. Buy local. Buy Filipino.
4. When you talk to others, especially foreigners, speak positively about us and our country.
5. Respect your traffic officer, policeman and soldier.
6. Do not litter. Dispose your garbage properly. Segregate. Recycle. Conserve.
7. Support your church.
8. During elections, do your solemn duty.
9. Pay your employees well.
10. Pay your taxes.
11. Adopt a scholar or a poor child.
12. Be a good parent. Teach your kids to follow the law and love our country.

Lets help our country by doing this 12 little things.