Our Rich Filipino Cuisine and Culture at Islas Pinas

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Delicious regional Filipino cuisine and our rich culture and heritage was the main course during the launch of Islas Pinas, an indoor Filipino Food and Heritage Village and a new, distinct destination for both local and international guests, at the DoubleDragon Plaza, DD Meridian Park, Macapagal Avenue corner EDSA Extension, Bay Area, Pasay City, Metro Manila.

Conceptualized to showcase the abundance and vibrancy of the Filipino culture, this new establishment lets guests discover, explore and experience the Philippines’s heritage sites, natural resources, hospitality and most importantly, its cuisine—all under one roof.

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The launch was made more special by the impressive cultural dance performances by the Sindaw Philippines Performing Arts Guild who showcased the tinikling, Ifugao Banga dance, and La Jota Manila, against the beautiful backdrop of mini-replica of the Ifugao Rice Terraces.

It’s through the collaboration of DoubleDragon Group and Chef Margarita Forés that Islas Pinas came to life, with the aim to inspire love for the Philippines and to cultivate patriotism by showcasing the country’s beautiful sites and diverse regional cuisines. With a seating capacity of over 700 seats in an expansive 2,500 square meter space, Islas Pinas is the perfect place to give visitors a taste of the best that the Philippines has to offer through the following sections:

SINAG, the Tagalog word for ‘ray of light’ offers all-day Filipino breakfast favourites; ALAMAT or legend, tells the story of the different regions of the Philippines through its signature dishes; BILAO is coined after the woven winnowing basket where comfort snacks are usually served; PANADERYA offers neighborhood bakery favorites; TUSOK-TUSOK, on the other hand, offers urban street food; PANULAK or beverage is where the samalamig (cold drinks with different flavors) will be available. Lastly, PAMPANG or shore will allow guests to enjoy chosen fresh catch cooked to their preference.

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“DoubleDragon has always believed in embarking on projects with relevance. We believe Islas Pinas will be a landmark in the country, and will showcase the diversity not only of our cuisine and handicrafts but also our landscape and architecture brought about by the rich heritage and culture of the country,” says

DoubleDragon’s chief investment officer Hannah Yulo.

At the helm of this project is none other than Asia’s Best Female Chef of 2016, Margarita A. Forés whose mission is to bring Filipino cuisine to global prominence. Thus, Islas Pinas is a vision coming to life for her, where Filipino food is not just on the sidelines but at the centerstage.

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“This is an absolute dream project for me that has come at such a perfect time,” said Forés. “I give my thanks to then Undersecretary of Agriculture, now Secretary of Tourism Berna R. Puyat, for putting me together with the DoubleDragon group, who was looking for someone to operate this amazing Islas Pinas project about half a year ago. This fast-tracked such a blessed opportunity to continue pushing my biggest advocacy – that of helping to promote the best our country – our cuisine, ingredients, farers, artisan producers and home cooks from Batanes to Jolo – in the best way I can!”

It is her aim for guests to experience the Philippines with their five senses and beyond. Thus, aside from the culinary delights and a picturesque interior design by Lara Fernandez Barrios of architecture, interior, and design firm, Larawan Ink, the venue will also feature modern and traditional cultural performances and games to ensure a fun and truly Pinoy ambiance.

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NU Pep Squad leads SM Dance at #AweSM “Sweet 60” weekend party

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The night could not have been any sweeter as SM celebrated its 60th anniversary with an exciting dance routine, the SM Dance, which was led by the National University (NU) pep squad, at the #AweSM “Sweet 60” weekend party at SM Mega Fashion Hall.

Shoppers were in for more sweet surprises as top singers, Radha, Bituin Escalante and Frenchie Dy belted out a series of entertaining songs. The singers were later joined by Ramonne Rodriguez of The Voice and Annastacia Penny of SM Little Stars for an #AweSM performance of SM’s “We’ve Got It All” jingle.

SM Supermalls COO Steven Tan, SVP for marketing Jonjon San Agustin and SM Megamall AVP for operations Christian Mathay welcomed everyone to the event. Mathay said, “Our #AweSM 60th anniversary celebration officially begins with an #AweSM ‘Sweet 60’ weekend party in all 70 SM malls nationwide. Expect a lot of fun and exciting surprises coming your way during our weekend activities happening from May to October, and watch out for #AweSM deals from food to fashion and other finds.”

As one of the highlights of the event, SM also held a giant logo projection mapping show at SM Megamall’s facade along EDSA.

The #AweSM “Sweet 60” weekend party featured interactive play experience, where shoppers immersed themselves in a fantastic wonderland of colors and desserts. In partnership with Boysen, Fruits In Ice Cream, The Dessert Museum, and The Lost Bread, SM Megamall’s #AweSM Weekend Party was an Instagram wonderland where everyone splurged on dessert treats and freebies, and snapped photos at the different activity stations.


For more information about #AweSM 60 years, visit SM Supermalls Facebook page or check out www.smsupermalls.com.




For exclusive news about SM Supermalls, visit http://www.smsupermalls.com or follow SM’s official social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram; and get an insider access to all the fun happenings at SM Supermalls nationwide through SM’s Viber Public Chat. Tweet your thoughts, upload and share your AweSM moments at SM, then use the 60th anniversary’s official hashtag #AweSMoment

My Miss Earth 2017 encounter


Last October 21, 2017, I had a three day chance to photograph some of the Miss Earth 2017’s delegate for I was hired as one of the official photographers for their “Project Kanlungan” event in Bauan, Batangas. It’s a three day event where they have some projects in saving the waters.

I was very thrilled for I got to see girls from different nations. The event was held at Drive and Trek island resort at Bauan, Batangas which is a very nice place, a haven for divers and a nice place to relax and chill.

Among the girls who caught my attention was Miss Colombia – Juliana Franco which is very nice and friendly and even very gorgeous, she has a very angelic face and photographs like a doll when i took a shot of her.

another stunner is Miss Costa Rica – Fernanda Rodriguez, she’s very sweet and very girlfriend material. She has a very charming personality which I love and she also is very angelic.

One hot girl I must say is Miss Spain – Amparo Munoz, she is very very sexy. and as i mean sexy, she’s flaming hot. I can’t help myself but to stare at her gorgeous body and she also got the fierce face and I must say she is one hot Latina.

My favorite among the girls is Miss Hungary – Viktoria Viczian, there is no photograph i took of her that looks ugly instead she always slay the shot. She kinda reminded me of Selena Gomez, very angelic and she is also very nice. She’s always smiling which makes her much more pretty.

All in all the experience was great. and I miss those times. Coz imagine you are always in front of hot girls all over the world.

I believe I wrote this during their finals night so good luck to these gorgeous ladies and it was nice knowing you all.


Miss Costa Rica – Earth 2017


Miss Hungary – Earth 2017


Miss Colombia – Earth 2017


Miss-Spain Earth 2017

Signs to know if a person is a native from Laguna, Philippines


Laguna is an awesome province in the Philippines. It was home to beautiful resorts, hot and cold springs and water falls. Especially, we the locals are so amazing. Here is how you can distinguish if a person you know came from this beautiful province.

1. The constant use of “ah” “eh” “ih” “oh”.

In almost every sentence you’ll here those vowels when we speak. For example, instead of saying “wala naman” we say “wala naman ah” or “wala naman eh” or, “wala naman ih” or “wala naman oh” and it varies depending upon our emotion. Taga laguna ih!

2. The famous buko pie.

Well, you’ll know a person is from Laguna if he/she brought buko pie as pasalubong. That is because that is one famous delicacy from the province and its very delicious tho.

3. The hard sounding of ‘r’.

When a native lagunense speak we have a very hard sounding ‘r’. I guess because our ancestors speaks that way and we inherited it.

4. The na- wordings.

Well, I dont know this until I went to Manila. That the na- is a wrong use in the tagalog language such as nakain, instead of saying “kumain ka na ba?” We say “nakain ka na ba?” And I think that’s awesome.

5. The modeling world.

When you are in Manila and you told them your from Laguna, instantly they will knew that you came there for modeling. That’s a sure thing cos hey we inherited some nice genes. But basically, thats true base on my experience I came to Manila when I was 15 to pursue a career in modeling.

6. The accent.

This one is hard to distinguish cos in every part of Laguna there are different but sometimes slightly similar accents. Like in the southern part of Laguna, there’s Lumban where their accent is putting -ng to every word that ends in letter ‘n’. Like instead of saying ‘ngayon na’ they will say ‘ngayong na!’. Or in Cavinti they have this angry-like sound “Ya-ih”. Or in Paete where they sound so malambing.

7. The “pabalot” style.

When you eat with a Lagunense and you have a lot of left over food. He/she will instantly make “pabalot”. Well, that is because we are well taught of not wasting food.

8. The beki language.

If someone regardless of gender even when a lagunense is a male or a female he/she will understand and can speak the beki language. I dont know why may be because a lot of beki words came from tagalog words?

Well, that is all of I can think now. So if you have any more signs then do write it in the comment section down below so I can re-edit this article and add your taughts.