Gladz is literally my first friend when I first set foot here in the sandpit 5 years ago. She was my roommate and the only person who taught me how to cook adobo. I can still remember those days when we were just sharing a double deck bed in a 3 bedroom apartment where i think 20 people lives. It was during that time when I was welcomed to the reality of adulthood, what OFW life is like and how to live on your own. We were happy just having a 5 dirham shawarma every night for dinner. Well, those were the days. Look how far we’ve come now. She’s now getting married and I finally got my own apartment!
…but some of the posts were not.
It’s been a while! This website has been on hiatus since I can’t even remember when. For some very weird reason, I deleted everything and I didn’t have any backup. So basically mostly all of my posts from the past few years were gone with the wind. I managed to revive some. It’s very sad but I don’t have the time to sulk and cry on it. It’s the new year and I’m blogging from the beautiful island of BALI so I don’t have time to complain at all. I’ve never been this tanned and happy! All I know is I will try my very best to blog more this year! I will try to share some snippets of my design and travel adventures so stay tuned! Continue “My blog is back!”
I just wanted to share one of the nicest projects I got a chance to work on over the last few months. I had the privilege to work on redesigning Burj Al Arab’s Minibar and Amenities Packaging. For people who don’t know, Burj Al Arab is an iconic seven star luxury hotel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. It is managed by the Jumeirah Group and is the world’s 3rd tallest hotel.
The client has requested a redesign of their current minibar and amenities packaging so since I haven’t set foot to Burj Al Arab, the first thing I did was to do my research and look for the hotel’s interior.
I found out that hotel’s interior has an opulent and exuberant colour scheme which also involves lots of patterns. It’s like entering a kaleidoscope.
Based on the colours and patterns, here’s what I came up with and happy to say that the concept was approved and now under production. 🙂
Street Nights DXB is back! In collaboration with the Dubai Food Festival, Bay Avenue came alive with street art, music and delicious street-food. Last night was a good night as I got a chance to witness some of Dubai’s best graffiti artists paint live as well as a BBOY battle while munching on some good street food.
Just to give you an idea of what’s going on here are some snaps last night.
Of course I had to start the event by eating. I already started to have a good time with my mouth-watering doner from Doner Deli while enjoying the view of the tallest building in the world.
But to be honest, I had a hard time choosing what to eat. There were so many choices. It was food truck overload.
After my food coma, I was able to wander around and catch up with some friends who also went to the event.
One cool part of the event was the street art.
different forms of art were present during the eventThe crowd was just amazing. Unfortunately, I was too short to take a pic of what’s happening on the BBOY dance battle. But it was too fun to watch.Aside from the dance battle, street art and food. There were also lots of different stalls which sells all sorts of stuff.
People were just chillin while listenin to some mad beats by DJ Lobito Brigante. Seriously, who would still want to stay at home, Netflix and chill when you’ve got these types of events? (believe me I had a hard time getting out of my bed as well and stop myself from binge watching House of Cards and Dexter abut I was so glad I did).
Check more info about Street Nights DXB here.
For me nothing beats the definition of a good weekend but good breakfast. Good breakfast meaning good coffee over having intellectual conversations with someone you want to share your life with.
This is what happened to me one weekend when I’ve discovered this cute place hiding inside Dubai Garden Centre. One early morning, me and my boyfriend went there to shop for plants and while we were there, we smelled this good aroma of fresh brewed coffee and then the rest was history.
This cafè mocha is good. Nothing like what your regular “quick coffee fix” place serves.
Heavenly. One of the best carrot cakes I’ve tasted. So moist and not too sweet.
Divine. It was a perfect morning and the atmosphere was so nice and cosy you’ll instantly feel energised and inspired after your breakfast.
The ambience was just like you’re inside a greenhouse. So peaceful and serene plus you get to smell fresh plants and flowers.
Always a good morning with this one. 🙂
Overall, this place is highly recommended. Definitely a must-go for dates, me-time, meetings etc. Service was good too. Ambience was perfect. Somehow, it made me forget that I live in the desert. It already became one of my favorite cafès in Dubai. It’s a delightful experience. Definitely one of the top breakfast spot in Dubai.
Well it would be Satwa (if you really want to have a glimpse of what Manila is like, here in Dubai), but in this case there’s a newly opened restaurant in Murraqabat, Deira that is called Little Manila. It’s not really a restaurant. When we went there, it looks like a mini food court. At Little Manila, you’ll see six of Philippine’s famous food brands like Binalot, Jay-J’s, Fruitas, Zagu, FifTea, Mochi Crème along with their in house brand Bread Shop and Kwekie Bites.
Like a normal newly opened Filipino food joint here in Dubai (e.g Jollibee, Max’s), it was expected that it will be flocked with dozens of fellow Pinoy so it really wasn’t advisable to visit this place while the hype is still on but since it was EID and it’s a holiday and we’re so stubborn, we still gave it a go.
The moment you enter inside Little Manila, you will hear staff saying order numbers using a microphone. We thought there was a Bingo game happening :D. As expected, there were so many people queuing on the food stalls and there weren’t any available table for me and my friends to sit in but we’ve expected that so it’s alright.
Isn’t it weird that the Toilet signage was placed aboved the Binalot signage?
I grew up eating at Binalot as a kid (or Binalot sa Dahon) so when we went there and saw Binalot, I immediately ordered at Jay-J’s lol. I haven’t really heard much about the food from Jay-J’s so I thought although I miss Binalot, why not give Jay-J’s a try. While waiting for our turn to order, I’ve noticed there weren’t so much queue at Fruitas so I immediately went there and ordered their famous Mango shake. I didn’t even bother to try Zagu because the queue was quite long.
The staff of Jay-J’s advised us that order will take about 50 minutes minimum. I know, that’s a long wait but whatever we’re hoping for good food so it should be worth the wait. And because we already knew we’re going to wait long, we’ve decided to grab some mini bites because we’re a bit hungry as well. We tried to queue at Kwekie Bites but unfortunately their cash register isn’t working so they had to stop taking orders. Meh. We went to Bake Shop instead and good thing their Ensaymada didn’t disappoint.
If you’re going to Little Manila, I suggest bring something to kill time. In our case we brought sketchbooks. 50 minutes was over and they still haven’t called our queue number. We were starving, even if we ate Ensaymada. After a whopping 2 hours, we finally got our food but wait there’s more, well the order wasn’t complete as our whole chicken wasn’t really whole and our ensaladang mangga didn’t include alamang or shrimp paste but oh well we were so starving we have no time to complain. We’ve ordered Ensaladang Mangga, Chicken Inasal, Inihaw na Pusit and Chicken Sisig. We wanted to order their Bulalo but unfortunately it isn’t available yet.
Their Ensaladang Mangga tastes like… well it tastes like Ensaladang Mangga. hehe but their alamang (shrimp paste) was really good. It tastes really fresh.
Their inihaw na pusit tastes so sweet which is a bit weird but it was ok.
The chicken inasal wasn’t bad but it was just ok. I didn’t find it mind blowing but it’s good enough for the starved ones.
Their Chicken Sisig is a must try. It definitely was the star of the show. It was so good. You can really taste the mayonnaise (well im not sure but seems like it) but it’s not too overpowering. It was perfectly cooked although it wasn’t sizzling enough when it was delivered to us.
We paid a total of 158 dirhams for 4 pax. To be honest, I find it a bit pricey considering the service, taste of food and how the food was presented. I personally think that they can do better with the plates like maybe instead of using styro plates they can use bamboo plate holders – you know the ones we use during fiestas? and then maybe they can place banana leaves on it to have a more Filipino feel.
Overall, I can say that the food is good though not overwhelming. If you forget the long wait and queue, it was a good experience. Somehow, they gave us a chance to satisfy our Filipino food cravings. I highly suggest visiting them after the hype is over.
Little Manila is located in K6 Building on Al Muraqqabat Street, Deira, Dubai (opposite Coral Hotel). You can visit their Facebook page here.
The past few weeks has been really busy and hectic but it was productive so I thought of sharing the highlights of my week. It started with a very good breakfast by the beach at Leopold’s of London in Jumeirah Beach Residence.
I ordered their September Special which includes rhubarb yogurt, toasts, salmon, turkey ham, asparagus, avocados and eggs. I think it was pricey but given the quality of service they have i think it was fair enough.
My boyfriend ordered their Eggs benedict and he thinks it was really good (and with this picture you can really tell it is!) For about 40 dhs he thinks it’s worth the price.Their Mocha Frappe is so good!Cappucino.
Nothing beats sipping coffee while enjoying the beach view.Enough with the food posts. I’ve also started to try something new. Since I am kinda obsessed with typography, I am trying to learn the art of Calligraphy. It is pretty tough. You have to mange to do the right angle every time and I kinda suck at it but hey practice makes perfect.Me and my boyfriend started to do skateboarding as well so whenever we have free time during the week we try our best to skate even if it’s freaking 45 degrees outside (even at night time).
We usually go to Emaar Boulevard at Downtown (near Burj Khalifa). It’s quite a nice place to skate to. Then afterwards we head over to IHOP for some munchies 😀
Whenever me and my boyfriend goes to IHOP, we always try our best to just order appetizers so it’s not too heavy (although most of the time we still can’t finish it).Look at that fluffiness!!!How can you resist not to order some volcano shrimps (although we still think PF Chang’s Dynamite Shrimps are unbeatable).
This isn’t bad at all for about 120 dhs.
During the week, we always make sure to have time for books, so this week we’re lucky enough to be able to find a time to visit our favorite book shop in Dubai – Kinokuniya in Dubai Mall. It’s our own piece of heaven.
Before heading to the books section we usually check out the art supplies first. Copics, Pencils, Moleskines, Sketchbooks and the likes. Then we head on to the graphic design books and graffiti books section although we dont usually buy them because most of the time, the books that we like are pretty expensive but we love to kill time though browsing and skimming the books over this section. If we really like one book we save up for it.
This week it was pretty unusual for me because instead of graphic design books I found myself on the cook books section of Kinokuniya. lol. This book called Adobo Road by Marvin Gapultos kind of caught my attention and I actually bought it which is not really normal haha. I guess I liked the cover that’s why. I just feel that it’s not your usual Filipino cookbook featuring Maggi Savor and Ajino Moto.
Well, that’s pretty much it. Most of the week was spent on work. I’m a corporate slaveeeee. On another note, I’m starting to like working on an advertising agency but I miss working inhouse though. It’s so stressful but it’s fun and I’m learning quite a lot.
I’ve been meaning to visit my former manager, Manjeet and her newborn child, Jordan (plus their new home) since ages but I’ve been busy the previous month and I’ve only had the chance to visit them last weekend.
Babies nowadays grow up so fast. I feel that it was just yesterday when Manjeet was still pregnant and we catch up while munching sweet potato fries at cheesecake factory.
Here’s a photobomb of an impromptu photoshoot of Jordy:
First of all. I wasn’t prepared for this shoot. I just felt like bringing my 60D during my visit and it turned out to be a good idea.
I learned so many things while doing this impromptu photoshoot. First, you need to be patient coz there will be times that no matter how much effort you do the baby will not smile and he will be all grumpy. Second, you gotta be an entertainer. You need to be able to make the baby smile and laugh. Third, you need to be ready. You’ll never know when he’ll be in the mood to smile or make cute expressions and lastly, you always to have to ensure that no matter what you do, the safety of the baby is always your priority.
If I have a chance, I will do this again, with a proper theme in place and definitely with props. Although a bit tiring, I found the whole experience wonderful and fascinating. I think me and my friend lady who’s helped me during the photoshoot enjoyed it. We had a wonderful time trying to make Jordan do some cute and silly poses (which includes forcing him to take selfies with us).
Jordan is adorbs! He may not know what was happening during the photoshoot but i’m sure he’ll appreciate this pictures when he grows up.
I was commissioned by a photographer based in Dubai to do her branding identity. The client wanted a rustic, vintage yet sophisticated look and feel for her personal branding. I immediately thought of burlap, floral accents, pastels and a scrift font with some serif.
Here’s the final output:
I had an awesome weekend last week as me and my partner tried Escape Quest: A unique live escape game experience.
So here’s the drill: you are trapped in a room with no idea of what to do. Basically you have to find clues, , solve puzzles(I think it has at least 20 puzzles or maybe more?) and put lots of information together to work your way out in under an hour. Forget Google and forget Wikipedia as it will not help you. This is a real life brain teaser, a test of brainpower and a test of willpower.
Escape Quest reminded me of those escape games online I used to play before (college computer laboratory days haha… those simple flash based point and click games where you need to click around to find clues e.g Doritos’ HOTEL626 and SINTHAI’s The House ). But in real life it was my first escape game experience so I really don’t know what to expect.
Just a tip: don’t take clues unless you really need them, challenge yourself. I’m highly recommending this activity for team building exercises or it could be a great idea for a first date as it allows you and your partner to enjoy each other’s company while working together. In our case, I was quite amazed how escape quest showed me and my partner’s teamwork skills and it made me appreciate him more. I was amazed how we trusted each other and we didn’t argue at all. I also love the adrenaline rush while we’re solving the clues under time pressure. We were running around the room finding and solving clues like crazy little kids. We felt so accomplished after solving the game with still 10 minutes time left remaining. It left us with a feeling of achievement and we can’t stop talking how awesome our experience was even days after.
P.S. I would love to get my hands on the Mensa Puzzle Box and that DaVinci Cryptex once again!
Thank you very much Steve and team! We heard there’s a new Mad Scientist themed room comin’ up and we can’t wait to try it.
Escape Quest is open seven days a week from 10am to 11pm, and prices range from Dh90 to Dh120 a person, depending on the size of the group. They are located at Office 2004 (20th Floor) HDS Business Centre, Cluster M, Jumeirah Lakes Towers. You can book online here.