April 29, 2012

Mid-day impressions

At La Luz Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas.
cabanas at La Luz Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas Cabanas for day-trippers. If you're willing to rough it, you can stay here overnight too, falling asleep to the sound of the waves. (We stayed in a beach-front air-conditioned room—we're wusses.)
rocks on the shoreline of La Luz Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas Small rocks…

big rock on the shoreline of La Luz Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas lead to a big rock at the end of the cove which make up the beaches of Laiya and Hugom. The big rock also marks the end of La Luz's property.
 a bangka named Lady Jane at La Luz Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas Lady Jane. The bangka is the most common fishing boat and water transport in the country-archipelago that is the Philippines. It is an outrigger canoe, and the outriggers are usually made of bamboo. The roof is optional, and, for smaller boats, so is the engine.
 a floating platform at La Luz Beach Resort in San Juan, Batangas A floating platform for swimmers who have no fear of deep ocean water.

Will I recommend La Luz Beach Resort? I guess it depends on what kind of accommodations you like when at the beach. Me, I like to constantly feel that I am at the beach, not in a fancy hotel that can be in any city. When I walk out the room, I want to feel sand between my toes after a few steps. And I want to be able to walk around anywhere in my swimsuit, dripping wet and trailing sand, and not have to worry about messing up furniture or carpets. If that sounds like you too, then yes, I highly recommend La Luz.

April 28, 2012


dogs on Laiya Beach in Batangas The dogs of the small villages around the area use the beaches of Laiya and Hugom in San Juan, Batangas as their early morning play and exercise grounds. When resort guests wake up and start arriving on the beach, they head back home.

April 27, 2012

It's going to be a wonderful day

sunrise from La Luz Resort in San Juan, Batangas 5:40am at La Luz Beach Resort in the municipality of San Juan in the province of Batangas, about 115 kilometers south of Manila, where my husband and I spent four lazy days last week. The beaches of Laiya and Hugom are on Tayabas Bay, like Bellarocca Island Resort in the island province of Marinduque from two years ago.

April 26, 2012


TriNoma Transport Terminal Since the Manila Metro Rail Transit (MRT) System's last northern station is beside TriNoma mall (see previous post), the mall's management converted a portion of its outdoor parking lot into a transport terminal for jeepneys and their air-conditioned counterparts (Asian Utility Vehicles licensed as public transport vehicles). It's a service to commuters and it probably translates to more customers for the mall too. What's a few shopping errands between the train and the jeepney?

April 24, 2012

End of the line

north end of the Manila Metro Rail Transit (MRT)
The Manila Metro Rail Transit System, better known locally as the MRT, stretches for most of the length of Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA), one of Metro Manila's longest, largest and most important thoroughfares. Its last northern stop is, appropriately enough, near North Avenue beside TriNoma mall in Quezon City. There were plans of extending the line to Caloocan City and the track actually extends beyond North Avenue, but it still isn't open to the public and I have not heard any news that it will open anytime soon. Right now, the extra track seems to be a parking and holding area for the trains.

April 23, 2012


John Patrick Delaney, SJ
In 2001, the Ateneo High School Class of 1950 installed a sculpture of one of their beloved mentors in a small garden in the campus.  Fr. John Patrick Delaney, SJ was born in 1906 in Liverpool, England and came to the Philippines in 1928 as a young scholastic, teaching in the Ateneo when it was still located in Intramuros. As a priest, he was assigned at various times to Rome and the U.S. but he eventually came back to the Philippines in 1945, staying until his death in 1956. He served for a few more years in the Ateneo then was assigned to the University of the Philippines – Diliman to serve as a chaplain to the Catholic student community in the state, and therefore non-sectarian, university. Written just below his name in the pedestal: Irish by descent, English by birth, American by nationality, Filipino by choice.

April 17, 2012

Plastic planets

Globe-shaped floor lamps are installed around the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub's central plaza (see yesterday's post). The lights change colors every few seconds. Needless to say, kids love them. Adults too.

globe lights that change colors at the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub
globe lights that change colors at the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub
globe lights that change colors at the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub
Don't make the mistake of leaning on one, however. The light fixture is on the ground and the globes are really just large lampshades; they're made of some kind of light, translucent plastic material and even a child can easily topple them over. How do I know, you say? Someone made that mistake the night we were there. I could see the guy's embarrassment from his body language from across the plaza.

April 16, 2012

But of course!

restaurants and retail stores at the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub
The UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub (see previous post) has a small public plaza surrounded by maybe a dozen restaurants and a few other retail establishments.

Ayala Land calls this tiled plaza a park, but without any grass, I just can't.

April 10, 2012


office buildings at the UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub
In 2008, the University of the Philippines–Diliman and property developer Ayala Land teamed up to create an information technology park in a section of the state university's unused land. Located in the northern-most side of the campus, the 38-hectare UP-AyalaLand TechnoHub is a low-density complex made especially for Business Process Outsourcing and technology firms. Many of its current tenants are large contact centers but, as befits the mission of the higher education institution half of the partnership, it is also a technology business incubator and is home to several small high technology companies.

April 9, 2012

Baby balls

zorbs for children at Eastwood Mall
If the zorbs that were temporarily available at Eastwood Mall were bigger, I would have loved to try them. Alas, they were only for children.

April 8, 2012

Eggs in a basket

Easter  Bunny
The Philippines may still be predominantly Catholic, but who can resist the Easter Bunny, especially when she comes with such pretty Easter Eggs?

Happy Easter!

April 7, 2012


outside the Centennial Terminal of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport
My sister and her entire family came for a too short visit two weeks ago. They chose Philippine Airlines (PAL), which has sole use of the Centennial Terminal of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

April 1, 2012


Julie Lluch's sculpture of St. Ignatius of Loyola at the Ateneo de Manila High School
The sculpture of St. Ignatius of Loyola at the Ateneo de Manila High School is by artist Julie Lluch, who works both in terracotta and bronze. He is depicted as holding a book, which represents his Spiritual Exercises. Both the book and his kneeling stance signify that this is a representation of his time at the town of Manresa in Catalonia, Spain where his ideas for the Spiritual Exercises germinated, at the banks of the Cardoner River.