Friday, October 31, 2014

Robinson’s Place opens in Las Pinas City

I was among those who braved the heavy traffic along Alabang-Zapote Road last October 25, 2014 for the opening of Robinson’s Place in Las Pinas City. As expected, the place was jampacked.

When I arrived at the mall’s Grand Atrium (at Level 1) by 11.30am, actor Paulo Avelino was singing onstage followed by Robinson’s ambassadress, Maja Salvador. I also spotted current Bb. Pilipinas-Universe MJ Lastimosa at David’s Salon’s ribbon cutting.

Other opening gimmicks include stilt walkers and mascots, dancers, candy giveaways and of course discounts and freebies for shoppers!

While waiting for my friends to arrive, I explored the area. On the ground floor, they have Mercury Drug, Toys R Us, Aji Sen, Van Heusen, Izod and Robinson’s Supermarket. Set to open are Jollibee, Chowking, Payless and Bench Group. Robinson’s Department Store occupies two floors.

At the second level, I saw Robinson’s Movieworld (with 3 digital cinemas & one 3D), Robinson’s Appliances, Food Court, The Pink Salon, Skin Perfect, Daiso Japan and Fone Bytes. Still to open are Cerealicious Cafe and Lenovo, among others.

The Robinson’s Department Store occupies two floors. 

Aside from these tenants, they also have kiosks like Lighters Galore and Unisilver, among others. Also food stalls like Kettle Korn and this cane ice cream that made quite a beeline:
Php 35 per “cane”

Robinson’s Place Las Pinas also has a nature-themed al fresco area. The ground floor houses mainly restaurants such as The Urban Farm, Kat’s, and Jet Ham. I’m not well-acquainted with these restaurants, but they seem interesting. The only restaurant I was familiar with was Classic Savory. There is also a South Star Drug branch and a soon to open Robinson’s Bank.

Upstairs, there’s Quantum, Dermcare and David’s Salon.

The mall has a Lingkod Pinoy Center for Philhealth, Pag-Ibig, NBI, LTO and passport applications, among others. Robinson’s Place Las PInas also has basement and open parking slots.

The welcoming facade and interiors are unlike the usual box-type malls and it utilizes huge stretches of glass. Since it is just their opening day, a lot of establishments are still closed. Here’s a complete list of the tenants at Robinson’s Place Las Pinas:

Here’s the location via Google maps:,120.998174,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0xeef5c7aedd274f9d

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Italianni’s at Robinson’s Place Manila

About three weeks ago, I had a lunch meeting at Italianni’s Robinson’s Place branch. Although Italianni’s has been in operation for how many years already, this is only the second time I was able to dine here (and the first time for this branch). 

Italianni’s is located just outside the mall area (Midtown wing, Ground level). Its interior is nicely decorated with photos and paintings; wooden tables and furnishings were simple but elegant. But even if it was peak time, only about four tables were occupied.

A complimentary basket of freshly baked Tuscan and Foccacia bread paired with olive oil and balsamic vinegar was served first.

For starters, we ordered Sicilian chicken salad. It is chicken breast, romaine lettuce, ripe mangoes, red grapes and walnuts in anchovy dressing. It is creamy and filling (generous amounts of chicken!).
Sicilian Chicken Salad, PhP 650 regular size

And of course, we had the highly recommended Spinach and artichoke formaggio (Php 695 abbondanza). This one is spinach, artichoke and mushroom in a creamy blend of cheeses served with toasted garlic bread. It tastes so good that when I remembered to take a photo of it, it was all gone!

For the main dish, we tried the Farmer’s Bundle consisting of choice of Aglio spaghetti or Spaghetti pomodoro (we chose Pomodoro), Herb roasted spring chicken and Baby back ribs. The Pomodoro has a light, spicy olive oil-garlic taste. The tender Ribs has a really tasty barbeque sauce while the Roasted chicken just tasted okay. Though, I must say that I find the serving size for this Bundle too small.
Farmer’s Bundle, PhP 1,345
(forgot to take a photo of the roasted chicken, so placed text instead!)

For the drinks, we tried their Berry dalandan and Lymonada. Lymonada is just like the usual lemonades in other fine dining restaurants but the sweetness of strawberry and sourness of dalandan makes Berry Dalandan unique and refreshing.
Berry dalandan, PhP 120
Lymonada, PhP 140

Food is of good quality and has that authentic Italian taste. Plus, they have a variety of dishes and drinks to choose from. Service is good also, but prices are quite expensive. For more information, visit their website:

Monday, October 27, 2014

Metro Blogger First Night Out!

October 22, 2014 proved to be a night of fun and friendship as select bloggers—lifestyle, food, fashion, travel--gather at the classy Gramercy Skypark for the first ever Metro Blogger Night Out.

Metro Blogger is a newly-formed social circle of online writers around the Metro who shares the same views on personal and professional know-how. The group aims to be a venue to share valuable information, event invites, new products/services and campaigns that would be of great interest to everyone.

the lady bloggers with Ms. Fion Lee of Emerge Systems (2nd from right)

Over cocktails, the bloggers mingled with Mr. Jess C and Ms. Ana Regala, organizers of Metro Blogger and the sponsors who made the First Bloggers Night Out possible--Rapid Cloud Singapore (with Mr. Ong Pang Seng, CEO), Emerge Systems Sdn. Bhd. (with Ms. Fion Lee, Head of Sales and Ms. Agnes Degamo, Branch Manager for Emerge Philippines) and iTWORKS Global Solution (with Mr. Simon Miller, Managing Partner). Other partners are Slimmer’s World International, Hawk Bags and Kingdom Magazine.
top photo: (from left) Ms. Ana Regala of Metro Blogger, Mr. Ong Pang Seng of Rapid Cloud Singapore & Ms. Fion Lee
bottom photo: representatives fom iTWORKS Global Solution & Mr. Simon Miller (extreme right)
left photo: Ms. Agnes Degamo of Emerge Philippines & Mr. Jess C of Metro Blogger
right photo: representatives from Kingdom Magazine

Rapid Cloud Singapore is a top Singapore web hosting and e-business consulting company while Emerge Systems Sdn. Bhd. is Southeast Asia’s premier enterprise website and e-commerce solutions provider. Both are subsidiaries of RapidCloud International Plc, which is listed on London Stock Exchange AIM.

Slimmer’s World International is the Philippines’ foremost name in slimming, fitness and beauty with over 35 years of providing great bodies & great skin. On the other hand, Hawk Bags is a recognized brand for its craftsmanship with a wide range of quality bags suited to match every lifestyle.

Bloggers were also treated with Slimmer’s World International gift certificate, Metro Blogger notebook, pen and pin.

With these developments, expect the online community to be more exciting. Looking forward to Metro Blogger's coming projects and events!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Niu by Vikings: A “niu” upscale buffet

As one of the Blogapalooza bloggers, I had a chance to be treated to a food tour by Niu by Vikings last October 11, 2014. Niu, located at the 6th level Skypark, SM Aura Premiere is the latest offering by popular buffet chain, Vikings.

Just like Vikings, it has a vast assortment of dishes. The only difference is, it is much more luxurious as evidenced by its posh interiors, sophisticated lighting and lush chairs. To add to its hotel-like ambiance, Niu also has a pianist who performs at the center of the dining area.

For a more private dining experience, they also have three function rooms to accommodate varied number of guests.

Their one long stretch buffet area is situated at the left side of the restaurant.

And it starts with the Dessert section. There’s fondue and mini cakes (blueberry cheesecake, chilled mango cheesecake with fruit pastille). They also have native Filipino kakanin like biko and cassava.

Since it was around 5:00pm when the food tour was held, most of the dishes were not available. I guess they are still preparing for the dinner buffet schedule. Anyways, here’s what’s available:

Japanese cuisine- sushi, sashimi, different maki rolls, tempura and various sauces

Drink station- Exciting fruit juices (tamarind juice, mint lemon lime, lemongrass honey, blueberry lemonade, etc), imported wines, draft beer, sake, cocktails (mojitos, etc), sodas, teas, coffee—all included in the buffet price!

Pan-Asian section- Asian and Filipino dishes like mechado, sayote and carrot soup, chicken pot pie chowder, etc

Chinese cuisine-dumplings, siopao, siomai and lechon macau, among others

Grill station-various meat and seafood like gindara and lapu-lapu. Also, a wide variety of sauces to choose from.

Continental Cuisine- various flavors of Europe—from pizza, stromboli, bruschetta, pasta and unlimited foie gras!

It was just a quick food tour so I was only able to taste the following:

The bite-size lechon macau with cucumber and mustard merits a second round. The bruschetta with ground pork topping and sliced stromboli with creamy dip were okay. But what I liked most is foie gras, of course! The blueberry cheesecake with strawberry topping was good also (but then again, I can appreciate cheesecakes from any restaurant!). The fresh mint lemon lime juice was a little bit weird for my taste.

The short food tour was not really enough so I’m planning to go here again so I could taste the dishes that were not available during the food tour.

Niu By Vikings is open every day 11:00am-2:30pm (lunch) and 5:30pm-10:00pm (dinner). Here are the rates:

For more information, follow their accounts:

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dinner in the Dark + Black Magic Show at Residence Inn Tagaytay

Dinner in the dark? The first thing that came to my mind was perhaps it was a dim-lit dinner of some sorts. But when representatives of the Zoomanity Group and Eye Bank Foundation of the Philippines started discussing that this will be dining in total darkness with visually-impaired/blind persons serving us, I knew I was in for a unique experience.

I was from among a group of bloggers that was invited to experience this unforgettable dinner last October 18 at Residence Inn Tagaytay. Zoomanity Group owns Residence Inn Tagaytay and is a part of the Yupangco Group of Companies. Residence Inn has been a landmark in Tagaytay for years, known for its mini zoo overlooking Taal Lake.

After a few introductions and some briefing, we were instructed to have our jewelleries and watches removed. Mobile phones and cameras were also not allowed inside the dining area (so, sorry no photos for this!). We were blindfolded and ushered in to the room and seated by the blind staff. Even if the blindfolds were removed, it was still total darkness! The staffs were introduced and the one-hour dinner started. It was really a struggle to hold the utensils and get food into my mouth as I cannot see anything. An added factor is I don’t know what is on my plate! But hey, the food tastes great! Based from the taste and texture, I surmised that there was rice, vegetables, fish fillet, breaded meat, and buco pandan for desert. To enhance this “blind” dining experience, a singer (I’m assuming he is blind also) serenaded us all throughout. I was amazed at the blind staff for serving us well despite their condition.

This experience made me understand blind people more and appreciate that gift of sight that God has blessed me with. I encourage everyone to try this one-of-a-kind dining experience on November 1 at Zoocobia Fun Zoo in Clark Pampanga and November 8, 2014 at Zoobic Safari in Subic. Part of the proceeds will be for the benefit of the Eye Bank Foundation of the Philippines.

And our fun night at Residence Inn Tagaytay didn’t stop there. After the “Dinner in the Dark,” we were treated to a “Black Magic Show.” It was a 30-minute performance featuring magic tricks, Halloween characters (Dracula, White Lady, Frankenstein, etc) dancing, and manananggals ziplining!

The Black Magic Show will run every Saturday, 6:00pm from October 25 to November 29, 2014 at Residence Inn Tagaytay. For rates and schedules, please visit:

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Blogapalooza 2014

Stoked!--my first time to attend Blogapalooza last October 11 at SMX Aura. So what is Blogapalooza? It is where businesses can network and showcase their products or services to the online community.

Hundreds of bloggers and social media influencers trooped to the whole day event. Plenty of booths were set-up for the sponsors and they were also given time to present their products and services.
registration area
some of the booths
sponsors' presentation time

I didn’t go to all of the booths, so what I’m going to run down here are the ones I visited. Most of the gimmicks were about taking photos, just like in the booths of View Park Hotel Tagaytay, Ace Hotels & Suites and Caronia.

For My Shopping Box, Chooks To Go and Flawless, you have to participate in games in order to win a prize.
I won 2 gift packs! And I thought I was such a loser in darts :)

There were also booths for registering for Sample Room (, EatOutManila ( and Zap (, which are offering interesting services—I highly encourage everyone to check out their websites.

Some, like Max’s, Crocs, Bioessence, Ysa Skin & Body Experts, Chips Ahoy) gave away promo materials or product samples.
Some of the freebies from the various booths

Going hungry while booth-hopping was not a problem since Yellow Cab and House of Lasagna gave away food samples-yum! But what I really enjoyed most is the make-your- own-doughnut gimmick of Krispy Kreme.
My finished product!

Niu by Vikings also had a food tour, which I shall write about in a separate post.

Thank you and congratulations to the event organizers, and Looking forward to Blogapalooza 2015!

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