#Bangcock Day 1: NAIA and Suvarnabhumi, Baiyoke, and shopping (also, money matters when traveling)

But first, let me take a selfie

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And -fies of random afams in the airport. Hello, Northern European-looking guy!

20141118_085223IMG_5832IMG_5833I want this pop art-inspired luggage cover!

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NAIA Terminal 2 was still a bit gloomy, yet buzzing with travelers, when we got to the airport. A lot were boarding for different flights so we easily found a spot to lounge. We arrived an hour early and we were enjoying the silence… when the President arrived for a flight… (What were we thinking, it’s the national carrier PAL’s terminal after all.) Lol, no pictures because I was so tired, coming from work and shit.

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The flight to Bangkok was usual – though I can bet a finger that PAL’s food could improve. And I hope there were no crying kids, because god knows I needed sleep that day. Seeing Suvarnabhumi airport again was refreshing though! The space-inspired international hub was in its usual hustle and it was energizing to be back!

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First order of business though when we landed was to get some baht. I used to lug around dollar notes when I’m traveling but due to recommendations from Val and the internet, I had to try withdrawing from the local ATM. I was curious if I can save a few hundred pesos… but turns out it’s just the same. The exchange rate in the Philippines for buying baht was at 1.6, and I think I saved only a couple of ten pesos, since essentially the Bank in Thailand will convert your pesos to dollars then to baht… plus fees from both banks. Basically, I approximately got an exchange rate of 1.45. If you have some tricks up your sleeve with these currency exchange, please hit me up huhuhu.

IMG_5842Hello, photobomber!

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This time around, we opted to stay at Baiyoke Sky Hotel, only Bangkok’s tallest skyscraper at 89 floors. Thanks to Val who treated us the hotel room, being it her birthday treat! The hotel is kinda old though… you can literally smell it. The actual lobby is at the 18th floor and if you go down on lunch time be prepared to the swarm of tourist groups as the tower is also a tourist attraction. So. Many. PEOPLE. FML (for my life, that is.)

IMG_5849IMG_5850Well I have to give it to them for having a fruit stand — INSIDE THE HOTEL LOBBY!

IMG_5851IMG_5852The bar near the smoking area on the 18th floor also has a driving range. If you got golf skills, time to show off!

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The view of the Pratunam skyline from the room pays for what seems to be things that need attention. For one, I think Baiyoke needs to be more conscious about attendant’s behavior — especially those who are in the front desk… Everything’s bearable if their people are smiling.

/endrant

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There’s nothing much to do at the hotel, so off to the nearest mall/market we went! Right outside the hotel is the Pratunam Market and it’s a hella big market – food, clothes, accessories, and all sort of Asian Market fare can be found there. If you walk a little further, it’ll bring you to Platinum Fashion Mall – where you’d find one the best deals on clothes, all the more if you buy in bulk. I guess, businesses here in Manila who source in Bangkok get their stuff here! Plenty of good stuff… and I love their foodcourt – where you need to exchange your money for a card you swipe to buy food. Snazzy!

IMG_5863IMG_5864The first of many Tom Yum Goongs for this trip!

IMG_5866IMG_5867IMG_5869IMG_5870IMG_5871IMG_5872IMG_5874Almost bought this!!!!

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It was just the first day, but coming from work I just felt very tired and I crashed the minute I saw my bed after walking in the humongous Platinum mall. We even rode the tuktuk, who totally scammed us with a 100 baht charge, but kebs we’re too tired to argue.

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The next day we’ve had the party of our lives so stay tuned for more stories!

*With photos from Con and Val

 

Weekend Diary: HL x Uniqlo, Jessica Zafra x Ayala Museum, and Meeting Friends!

I think I’ve pretty much said everytime that I live for the weekends. Basically, it’s when I have time to do things for myself and meet friends and sleep more than I should. I also kind of splurge *gulp* because hey I endure 5 days working in the office and I think everyone deserves a rewarding weekend *wink*

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So I went around the mall last weekend to find myself a new belt. Now if you need to know something about me… sometimes I really don’t believe in the saying the more, the merrier. I tend to buy stuff one at a time. This means that I can’t justify to myself to buy two things that are essentially alike unless the other is worn out (this applies mainly for clothes, not food haha!) like this pair of Vans sneakers that I really need to replace – which leads me to that I am thrilled that Zalora carries a couple of cool Vans stuff! Time to shop, then eh?

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I know these are not photos of the belt (wait for me to justify ok, hahaha) but because it is hoodie weather in Manila, and practically all my hoodies are gone (idk really where they’ve been) so I fitted out some stuff over at my favorite brand Uniqlo. And oh god, they really do use the best fabrics. I can literally live inside them… and I might just break that rule of not buying the same shit because I want them all hoodies… in all colors!!!

IMG_5261.JPGWay back in college I used to always wear one

PLUS, I am so excited about their new collaboration with Austrian fashion house, Helmut Lang. Below are some of my favorites from the sneak peek:

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Then I went to see Jessica Zafra again with friends! This time, her talk was about Game of Thrones, Fantasy and Science Fiction, and Geek Civilization. I really had tons of fun listening to her (well duh I can’t imagine what geek wouldn’t) and we were literally in the middle of legit geeks. I really tend to think that I am not geek enough so I call them legit. Plus, got to tour around Ayala Museum again. We need more museums here in Manila (with free entrance, that is!)

IMG_5262.JPGThe tita that I never had. 

She has one more talk on October 4 where she will talk about another thing she likes the most: world domination! If you’re not familiar with Jessica Zafra, this is one topic she just won’t quit on. And there are a lot more interesting lectures happening in Ayala Museum so be sure to check them out!

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IMG_5264.JPGCollege trio: Jonver, Hanna, Ella

As always, I really love spending weekends with friends. If only I can push myself to be awake for more than 24 hours just to hang out with every one of them. I really miss them a lot! One day, I’ll be able to do that maybe. But until I have a stronger body, I’ll just try to meet them one weekend at a time.

IMG_5266.JPGNica just came back from Paris.

SIDE NOTE: I just joined this Instagram contest by Yardstrick and I really want to win (mainly because they’re giving away cool coffee stuff and coffee workshops so yes I want to win) You may click on the photo to like my post (idk if this counts but I guess it helps?)

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And I will shamelessly ask you too to follow me on Instagram!!

Three more days til the weekend and I just can’t wait anymore!

Local takes spotlight at Zalora Marketplace

The indie scene is indeed flourishing in the country. Every where you look, people start opening their own businesses apart from the constraints of a well-established corporation. Filipinos take risks more nowadays – every nook has a new eatery, a new boutique, or even a new website where they sell their stuff. Evolved, as it may seem, it still needs support to fuel growth. They need to make a buck after all. And that’s where the Zalora Marketplace enters.

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As the mother brand Zalora has made waves in other countries and now has gained traction in our local shopping scene – with big brands even joining the bandwagon, the Marketplace is indeed a welcome portal where our indie designers can sell their products while enjoying the hassle-free COD model introduced by the shopping website. Though I’m more like to spend using my card, it will always boil down to the simplest mode of payment to reach even the pickiest shoppers online. You know you can’t complain when you give your cash and get your stuff immediately – no more waiting for deliveries! Now, indie local designers have access to this. And not to mention the network Zalora already has.

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I’ll never go without recommending a brand, too. Nica and I will absolutely agree that waxed-canvas baggage brand Gouache is one of the best young local brands out there! I am really planning to buy a new knapsack and wouldn’t it be cool to travel and show off a local brand?

Uh yes!

There are also a lot of other local brands in the marketplace. Wear local!

20140704-220459-79499096.jpg Outtake from the launch at 12 Monkeys

Christmas Gift Ideas: Geeky Totes

We’re in a roll here because if you’re like me, and you see random *good* things in the internet and haven’t done your gift shopping LIKE me, then this is the least I can do to help myself and you as well. But mostly, these are just justifications on posting/making a mental note to self to buy these even if Christmas season is done.

I cannot stress it enough though how much I wanted these totes from The Yard! You cannot get geekier than this, or your geeky friend can kiss you on the lips on reflex if you gave them one of these. Personally, if you’re reading my blog (friends!) to find out what I want for Christmas, I’d say get me the Death Star (technically Death Star 1.0) but this and the Ocean totes are currently out of stock (boo-hoo!) TARDIS and Platform 9 and 3/4 are still perfect though! Still geeky!

The Yard is a small online shop “made up of two sisters who like to make stuff, usually concerning things we love like art and a mishmash of geekery.” There aren’t much in their shop but who knows they might make more beautiful geekery. Love, love, love!
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The Yard
www.theyard.ph

P.S. Special mention to Thysz for tagging me the beautiful, beautiful Death Star tote, which is sold out 🙁

It’s so hot, what to wear?!

The sun is up so proudly, radiating its heat waves to us, and never standing down. And it’s not going away any sooner.

If ever you get the dilemma what to wear in an everyday basis, I think it’s high time for you and me for a change in wardrobe. Well, of course, all this summer heat does not give us grace to even travel to the mall. That’s how online shops, like Zalora, comes into mind.

When shopping for summer, there are some things to remember. Read up on some tips how you can make an efficient use of your summer wardrobe budget!  Read more

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