Sunday, July 31, 2011

Finding Serenity at Hannah Hotel, Boracay

July 31, 2011 8
The best way to recommend something in particular is when you've already tried it. In my case, I've only tried staying in three different accommodations from three separate Boracay trips. The first place was at Ocean Breeze Inn by Station 3 (2008), which I happen to have an old entry for. The second would be at Hannah Hotel by Station 1 (March 2011), and then Boradise Beach House by Station 1 (May 2011).

First off, let me tell you something about our stay at Hannah Hotel. We were always welcomed with a warm smile or greeting upon entering the vicinity, and was always prepared a warm breakfast every morning. Our booking actually included a daily complimentary breakfast; and the remarkable thing about it was that the owners of the hotel were serving our meals themselves. It was a world-class experience, and it was very personal. Other than that, they always had something good to say about the world around us, especially the Mom. The hotel was definitely brimming with positivity.

One more thing that I've also appreciated was their consideration to lift our reservation when we couldn't get to Boracay on time. We got stuck at the Manila Domestic Airport, waiting for our turn to fly to Kalibo. They were willing to change our booking, and to be rescheduled for the following day, in case we couldn't make it that day. The weather was pretty bad in Kalibo, but when the rain simmered down, we flew right back again. Good enough, our second try at landing in Kalibo was successful. To top it all off, the rain stopped. As soon as we rode the van that was bound for the Caticlan Sea Port, I immediately texted Hannah and Paolo that we were finally on our way. 

If you must know, Hannah Hotel has become very close to my heart. Not only were they hospitable in every aspect, they treated me, their guest, just like a close friend. I will never forget the long talks I had with Hannah and Paolo's Mom. I must say, our conversation was very intellectual. 

Besides that, the hotel itself also shows off a vintage vibe to it. There are hanged paintings everywhere, and also some lamps and shells that add up to the beach ambiance. Hannah hotel also has its own balcony on the 2nd floor. Our room was arranged with bamboo-framed beds, with a sarong hanging by the ceiling, a private T&B, TV, electrical outlets. There was also a veranda upstairs that all the guests can use. They also had free WIFI , but you'll have to go downstairs by the lobby to get a full connection.

Hannah Hotel is not beachfront. FYI. But you will only need to cross the main road to get to the beach; and it will only take you less than five minutes to get there. Their landmark is by the basketball court and church. Other than that, the hotel, which happens to be by Station 1, also offers very affordable and budget-friendly rates. For a group of four, I only had to shell out about P2200 worth for a 4D/3N stay (including free breakfast). That's P550 per day! 

Anyway, should you be planning a beach getaway, and you happen to be Boracay bound, make sure to check-out Hannah Hotel. You can contact them through these numbers: 

Hannah - 09208502264 / 09222378960 / 09154373473 
Paulo - 09279110483

Explore & Be Free!

Rain or Shine in Boracay!

July 31, 2011 24
My boyfriend and I went with a group of couples just this month of March (March 14-17, 2011 to be exact). The highlights of our stay there were the ATV tour, the cold margarita-like shots at Pat’s Creek Bar, the fire-dancers at Beach Bum Bar, the surprising dance sessions at Epic Bar with the European hotties, the fruit shakes at Jonah’s, chilled drinks at Loco Frio, the amazing food at SMOKE Restaurant, dinner by the beach at Calypso with my love, and of course, our lovely stay at Hannah Hotel Station 1. 

Yes, there were so many that I had to highlight, and it was a great 4-day vacation. And despite of the consistent morning rain, we were still able to enjoy the rest of the afternoon with our little beach escapades. Now, let some of our photos express the excitement for us.

We arrived really late in Boracay since Zestair had to delay our flight due to the bad weather in the Visayas region. Our supposedly 12pm flight only turned up 8 hours later. We were actually on the plane already, about to land on the Kalibo Airport, up until the plane maneuvered back to MNL. Crazy, right? Nonetheless, it was for everyone's safety.

We got to the island about 10pm. Good thing the owners of Hannah Hotel were really understanding of our situation. I was on the brink of rescheduling our booking for the next day. That's if we still missed getting on the last boat trip to Caticlan. But God was really good to us, as we immediately got a van that would take us straight to the port. The trip on the road took us about a good 1 1/2 hours. Our boat trip only took 10 minutes.

Since we got on the island really late, we were left with the options of getting some late dinner and drinks at the beach. And we ended up partying at Epic Bar right after dinner, whilst meeting the three nice caucasians who danced with our group the entire night.. We had so much fun that night, that we ended up getting back at our hotel past 3 am already.

Ok, so on to the other details of our trip! Since we were 8 in a group, we opted to avail of the ATV package that consisted of the Aviary and Tanawin stop-overs. The ATV ride was a bit slow-moving for us, since there were other tourists that were also driving on our trail. Plus the Aviary stop-over wasn't really that interesting. There were just these different bird species confined in make-shift cages, and a sex-hungry monkey that felt so threatened from one of the guys we were with. But the 'Tanawin' though was a refreshing sight as we were able to see a big portion of the island.

Basically, our trip consisted of drinking and dancing sessions until the wee hours of the morning, binge-eating during lunch and merienda, and sun-basking during the afternoon. Our last day was more laid-back; and a lot of beach strolling and picture-taking were alotted during the morning. Nothing fancy really.

Rubel and I opted to have dinner, just the two of us on our last night in the island. We walked the shores of Boracay, and ended up eating at Calypso by Station 3. The food there was a bit pricey as they were offering international cuisines. The one I ordered was a German dish, I guess. It was bland so I really didn't enjoy what I ate. But what I enjoyed though was the cool breeze and the very sight of my boyfriend, munching on some seafood delight. *wink* =) Anyway, we ended the night at the Beach Bum Bar Station 1, where we watched the Fire-Dancers do their famous dance routine. 

Now, time to wrap up my first Boracay trip for this summer. Here’s to another TRAVEL EXPENSE SHEET to help you off with your future trip/s to the island of Boracay. 

Explore & Be Free!

P.S. Stay at Hannah Hotel, as they're affordable and worth your every penny! You'll surely enjoy their homey-rooms, and most especially enjoy the very company of the owners. I'd like to thank Hannah, Paolo, and their parents for being so hospitable, kind, and generous to us during our stay in their beautiful hotel. I will definitely come back!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Jeonju, Here We Come!

April 30, 2011 23
[A 2011 TRIP...]

Thank you Lord for the many blessings that you have bestowed Me, Choy, and Kuya.. Finally, everything's been updated, confirmed & secured.. WE'RE GOING TO JEONJU NEXT WEEK!!!

As I've mentioned in a previous blog piece, my Kuya - EJ SALCEDO - was invited for the  2011 Jeonju International Film Festival. His film, THIRD WORLD HAPPY (under Cinema One Originals 2010 films) will have its international premiere next week in South Korea.

So for those who might be in the Jeonju area, do check-out my Kuya's full-length film, along with other international feature films. For ticket schedules, you may browse through JIFF's ticket guide.

Explore & Be Free!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Friday, April 8, 2011

Cagayan De Oro's White Water Rafting and Bukidnon's Dual Zipline

April 08, 2011 39

[Travel post from November 2010]

Me being the organized planner, already had our river rafting tour booked even before leaving Camiguin. So when we got to Cagayan De Oro, everything was already scheduled.


When Sir Gerome, the coordinator of Great White Water Tours said that they were picking us up at 7 am, he actually meant on the dot. In short, we got into the GWWT’s Jeepney pick-up by 7:10 am. We boarded late due to unfortunate events. Sir Gerome got a little grumpy with the ‘tardiness’. But we’ve managed to put him aside since we already extended our apologies. Then again, we weren’t the only ones who boarded the jeep late.

Now, all of us decided to book the Expert Level, instead of the Beginner’s level. We were encouraged to take the former so that we may be able to enjoy what the whole rafting experience had to offer. We were also assured that taking the expert level was something that we could handle despite having no previous rafting experience. So we took on the challenge, and were shockingly challenged out of our wits!