Search and You Shall Find in My World

24 October 2014

Look who is going to Mars


11 October 2014

BOHOL, A YEAR AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE

On October 15, 2013, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the island province of Bohol and the nearby island of Cebu at 8 in the morning, sending people out of their homes in fear and panic. The epicenter of the quake was in the town of Sagbayan but almost half of the island lay shattered and devastated. The old churches, Bohol’s pride, were hugely damaged, some of them crumpled to the ground, as were the case of Loboc, Loon and Maribojoc.

Tubigon was one of the towns greatly hit by the earthquake
(Photo grabbed from infobohol.com)

Bohol has never seen this much destruction. The earthquake that struck in the eastern part of the island sometime in February 1990 did not brought this much calamity. The major road networks all over the island were also severely damaged. Bohol, being considered a major tourist destination in the Philippines, has just completed the concreting of most road networks around the island. Considered new, the quake toss them off. Mountains, bridges, buildings, houses and the lives of all Boholanos were never the same again.

Bohol's icon, the Chocolate Hills, looked like a kid was having tantrums here
(Photo grabbed from ABS-CBN)

But the Boholano spirit could never be put down. 

When the earthquake struck, already the social media was unusually abuzz with lots of activities. Boholanos from all over the world started updating friends, soliciting aid, assisting in the deployment of manpower and equipment to the area most affected, helping relatives find their loved ones. Today, social media is forming another platform among Boholanos as they find ways to boost tourism in the island.

Tourism, a major industry in the province slowed down a bit after the quake. But a few months after, the creative Boholanos took pride in what remained of the devastation. The ruins has become another tourist destination. Piece by piece, the coral stones that became the symbol of Boholano religiosity were gathered and cataloged, in the hope of making these historical stones a future showcase of ingenuity.

Loon's Catholic church crumpled to the ground killing a parishioner or two
(Photo grabbed from Cebu Daily News)

To date, majority of the tourism zones have recovered. Panglao Island, although shaken and stirred, remains a favorite escape for the sun-lovers of the world. Like a good martini. People now flock to its beaches and drink their blues away.

Some new adventure sites have also opened their gates to locals and other tourists visiting the island of Bohol. New restaurants and cafes have opened and the old ones are reinventing their menu for new gustatory adventures. Some even are branching out in nearby Cebu.

Photo grabbed from Rappler.com

And as we commemorate this painful event in our lives, we put aside our politics, our religion, differences, even our work, to pay tribute to those who lost their lives in the quake. We give honor to those who dedicate their time, give financial support and extend efforts so we can recover. Boholanos are sending out our grateful hearts, forever indebted in their kindness, to all the generous donors all over the world.

And mostly to the Boholano pride that has kept us all as one big family, we salute you.

MABUHI KITANG TANAN MGA ‘SANO, MGA ‘SANA!

Updates on the earthquake, according to the government, can be accessed here.

What you can do

Infographics provided by Sun*Star online

Recovery efforts are still undergoing in Bohol. Some are still living under tents or temporary houses. Many students are still doing their classes in makeshift tents. The Batuan Light Bringers (BLB), a group of young people from Batuan, Bohol are still accepting donations, cash or in-kind, for the reconstruction of the houses of those affected in Batuan. Part of your donations are also given yearly to the poor elementary pupils especially in the villages of that town. BLB gives out school supplies during openings of school year and sponsor feeding programs for the malnourished children of Batuan. You can contact the author, or visit Batuan Light Bringers’ FB page and send them a message if you want to donate.

05 January 2014

Mӧvenpick Resort Cebu Tops Hot New Destinations List in 2013, According to Google, CNN

AMAZING HUH! This resort is literally right in my backyard and I haven't been there until I read the following news. Might as well explore this exceptional hotel or be left behind by other travel bloggers, who I am pretty sure, have been going there in and out.

Well- until I can afford it, of course. LOL

CEBU, Philippines (December 26, 2013) – Filipino-owned Mӧvenpick Resort Cebu is the second most Googled destination in the Philippines, according to Google’s 2013 year-in-review search list. As first reported on CNN, the Zeitgeist is Google’s year-ender report and lists the hottest travel destinations by country.

The annual Google report captures the trends and interests of people all over the world, including new favorites among Filipinos.

Sky Ranch in Tagaytay and Tubbataha Reef in Puerto Princesa were ranked the first and the third respectively. Pico de Loro, Tugawe Cove Resort, Potipot Island, Amana Waterpark, Misibis Bay, Nuvali and Laiya resorts rounded up the ten spots that Filipinos were most interested in learning more about.

Manny H. Osmena, owner of the two-year old Mӧvenpick was thrilled to hear about the results. “When my General Manager told me about the great news, I was so happy. It Is a gift from God to be recognized for the complete transformation of the property, as well as the transformation of the food and beverage service. We welcome visitors who are curious about the resort and aim to give them a great experience with the unique ambience of Mӧvenpick Hotel Mactan Island Cebu.”

The three most googled destinations in the Philippines
Interesting amenities and offers at the resort include the Ibiza Beach Club reminiscence of the club atmosphere in the Spanish island. Guests could watch gorgeous views of the sunset as they enjoy the Balearic-stye churrasco capped by the world-famous Mӧvenpick Swiss Ice cream. Guests could also order the same premium coffee served in Mӧvenpick Hotels in Paris,Zurich and Berlin. The outdoor performance venue shoes exciting Latin dance numbers, fire exhibition dancers and Las Vegas style performances four to five nights a week produced by our in-house artists under the direction of the entertainment director hailing from Majorca, Spain Paco Beltran. Meanwhile special occasions culminate in a special fireworks display over the beach from the rooms, views of the aqua colored waters and the seamlessly constructed boardwalk made from ironwood look pristine and serene. Guests pamper themselves with the finest bath sets imported from the luxury brand Chopard. To begin and end the journey is a luxury hotel car service: a Porsche Cayenne, which provides visitors a full-circle experience of excellence and elegance they won’t forget. 

The above qualities of Mӧvenpick Resort Cebu make it a place for a great and luxurious stay. The traits of this place have fueled the Filipino traveler’s interest in making Mӧvenpick Resort Cebu his destination of choice in 2013 and beyond.

LOCATION

Mövenpick Hotel Mactan Island Cebu is ideally located 10 minutes away from Mactan-Cebu International Airport. Blessed with year-round sunshine, this diver’s paradise offers every imaginable water sport.

While the city of Cebu is only 30 minutes away with shopping, entertainment, casinos and spectacular golf courses, guests will find it difficult to leave their private oasis of indulgence and hospitality.

HOW TO GET THERE 

The Mövenpick Resort & Spa Cebu is a mere 10-minute drive away from Mactan-Cebu International Airport. Located on a private beach with access to the beautiful corals of Mactan, this resort is a haven for relaxation. It takes 30 minutes to reach the city of Cebu, offering an international congress centre, many shops, casinos, and a bustling nightlife.

(All text, except the blue ones, were grabbed from a press release and from the official site of  Mövenpick Resort)