Mabuhay Homeland 2014

July – August 2014
Summer Holiday

Tagaytay; Davao City; Boracay Island, Philippines
Shanghai, China

One of the perks of working as a teacher is the summer vacation we get to have at the end of each school year, which is about two months of uninterrupted laziness, waking-up-late morning days, staying-up-late evenings, traveling, eating, movie marathons and all imaginable things worth doing.

To be honest though, on my fourth no-work-day back in June 2014, my body was already used to being in work mode that I got a bit anxious and bored. I was already itching to get back to work so I can do my normal routine –  but that did not last very long. Who was I kidding?

I wanted to go somewhere close, preferably travel time not to exceed 3-4 hours. I packed my bag and left Shanghai to visit my homeland, the Philippines.

Amazing view from People’s Park in the Sky, Tagaytay
Met up with my classmates (since primary school until high school) 
over coffee and loads of calorie-filled sweets
Shared a seafood fiesta dinner with one of our adorkable former Pisay student 
(dishes currently being prepared when this picture was taken)
Reconnected with former work colleagues
Re-lived childhood memories at the beach


Spent a weekend at the beach with the family
Embraced the cool ocean breeze
Celebrated my 4th year as Shanghai expats over brunch at Azur, Renaissance Hotel with Ronald  
Apparently, I was a diligent writer back in 2011 and as my life got crazier and busier, I wrote less. Well, I will try to write more this time, I think I can still fill 2014 up.

Mabuhay Makati

July 14, 2012, Saturday
10:00sh AM
Hotel Celeste,
San Lorenzo Drive, corner Arnaiz Avenue, Makati
Mareng Wing and I decided to hang out around Makati before I go back to Shanghai. Convinced by a few, good reviews online, we decided to give Hotel Celeste a try. The location was convenient, it is only a stone’s throw away from the busy Ayala Center Malls and a short, cab ride away to Bonifacio Global City, Taguig. 
According to some people in the blogosphere, it is one quaint, boutique hotel, with every room having its own unique interior design.
A view from our room overlooking Ayala Center Malls

What happened to the twin bed room request?
Satisfaction served.

The hotel had a celestial weekend promo, for a weekend stay, you get Welcome Drinks (Read: Cool and refreshing bottled water), Overnight Accommodation in a Deluxe Room (with L’Occitane toiletries for the guests who are easily enamored by signature labels), Buffet Breakfast for 2 Persons, Welcome Foot & Leg Massage (Available on Fridays and Saturdays only: Yep, we did get this in room service, by a masseur at that. It took a lot of courage for me to keep a straight face and trust the masseur to do his work), Set Dinner for 2 Persons at Celi’s Restaurant, 50% Off on 1-hr Full Body Massage, In-Room WiFi Access, Php 1,500 worth of Services at Slimmers World. (We did not avail of the Full Body Massage and the Slimmer’s World offers). 

The only negative comment I had is that one of the day-shift hotel receptionists had an attitude, she should not be be allowed to do hotel reception duty because clearly, she was not welcoming and not friendly at all. Fortunately, the night-shift hotel receptionist was the exact opposite. Overall, the accommodation was great and I would certainly recommend it to my friends. In fact, I would definitely come back.

For more insightful view of the hotel’s interior, let me direct you to other satisfied guests. I can vouched for its accuracy.

* Disclaimer: We actually arrived too early, that our room was not available yet. We managed to get into the comfort of our hotel room around past 2:00sh PM. By that time, we were able to check out the Mind Museum in Taguig.