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Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Shangri-La at the Fort

The tour continues to Shangri-La at the Fort, the newest of the Shangri-La Hotels in the Philippines. This post is going to be pretty thorough, so I highly recommend getting a snack while you read on through. If visuals and text aren't your thing, don't worry, you'll see a lot of this on my Philippines vlog as well! But for now, let me show you the beautiful property that made its way to one of the top spots on my favorite hotels list.

Shangri-La at the Fort is located in Bonifacio Global City and opened in March of 2016. The property boasts hundreds of rooms, multiple pools, and an incredible array of amenities that include a massive gym with a full size basketball court, Marco was very happy about this, a kids zone, spa, and a ton of incredible restaurants to choose from.
Of course, upon arrival, I had to take in the stunning lobby that made my jaw drop to the floor. These photos don't do it justice and it's probably one of the most stunning lobbies I've ever been in. This property was the perfect balance between old and new, sticking with the traditional Asian inspired design of Shangri-La Hotels, the perfect amount of that Filipino touch, and a sleek and updated modern design. I fell in love and I honestly can't wait for my return to the Philippines because I already miss it so much.

The fact that I'm writing this months after my stay and I can still remember these moments just goes to show what an impression this property and the staff truly had on me. Having graduated with a degree in design, being a native Filipino, there were so many aspects of this trip that I wanted to absorb fully and appreciate entirely. And I love that as I write this, I'm taking myself back through memory lane.

As soon as Marco and I arrived at the hotel we were greeted by a representative of the hotel. We were shown around the property while our bags were taken up to our suite. I loved every minute of this tour, everything still so fresh and new, so beautiful and luxurious, classic and everything with a purpose. Over the course of all the properties I have stayed at, I love taking notice of the meticulous design that goes into these grand spaces. For example, the stunning chandeliers included thousands of pieces that were mounted by hand.

The tour concluded with being shown our suite to settle in and freshen up and it was nothing short of wonderful. Shangri-La at the Fort truly outdid themselves. From the colors to the textures, the lighting and the arrangements, everything was perfect.
Our suite gave us a panoramic view of the city, perched on the top floor with a seating area and desk in addition to the bedroom, spacious closets, and beautiful bathroom. The light spilled into the room and just made that golden tone just that much more beautiful. They provided us with snacks that included dried mangos and other fruits, perfect for someone like me that just loves to snack on vacation.

You know you're staying at a great hotel when you don't ever really want to leave your room. Marco and I probably could have spent the whole time here but there was so much more to see! We settled into our room, unpacked, and got ready for the rest of the day. We had dinner by the pool at their Peruvian restaurant called Samba, you'll see on our vlog how incredible this food was. After dinner, we went back to our rooms to rest before our scheduled massages courtesy of the hotel.

The treatment was absolutely spectacular and I will always recommend trying to arrange a treatment when you stay at any of the Shangri-La Hotels. The therapists really pay attention to your needs and this was probably one of the best massages I've ever had too. I even caught Marco dozing off so I think it's safe to say he was definitely well relaxed after our dinner. After our "jet-lag" fighting couples massage treatment, we settled in for the night and I just dream of getting that massage again because I had one of the best sleeps of my life that night. 
I miss this buffet every single day. It was stocked with all my favorites, both American and Filipino. But of course, I was all in for the Filipino choices. Egg and rice, spam, corned beef, taho, champorado, arrozcaldo. and fresh mango shakes were all there. If you followed my Instagram stories during this trip, you know I had a mango shake and taho every chance I got. It's just something that I can't ever find when I'm home in the states!

Each morning, I was ready for that buffet and trust me when I tell you that I always went back for more. On the last day, we opted for room service that was absolutely delicious as well. Can I go back yet? I'm drooling as I write this.
The last morning before check out is always a bummer. The hotel had been so kind and generous to us and it just really felt like a home away from home. We packed up for the next stop on the Shang Tour, but before that, we were able to get a tour of their Presidential Suite. This is just a little peek at it, we'll share a full tour of it on the vlog!
It was absolutely insane. It included a large living room, dining room, luxurious bedroom, walk-in closet, as well as a bathroom that came with its very own sauna. Definitely wouldn't mind retreating into this after a long day.
We couldn't stay here and not make use of their beautiful rooftop pools. Soaking up the sun in the Philippines is a must, especially if you get to cool off in a space as beautiful as this. We lounged in the cabanas, enjoyed our fresh mango shakes, and just had the most relaxing time here.

Bonifacio Global City is one of the liveliest parts of Manila! It has truly developed so much in the past few years and is so different from what I remember the last time that I was in the Philippines. If you're looking to be in an area surrounded by trendy shopping, parks, restaurants, definitely check out Shangri-La at the Fort, not only for what it offers within the hotel, but the incredible city that surrounds it as well. 

A special thank you to Shangri-La at the Fort for the most incredible stay. For additional information on the hotel, be sure to check out the website and book your stay at this wonderful property. If you have any additional questions about my time here, just leave a message in the comments below!

In collaboration with Shangri-La Hotels
30th Street corner 5th Avenue Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, Philippines

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Shangri-La Makati

I have fond memories at the Shangri-La Hotels in Manila. Growing up, I remember playing in the lobby while my dad had business meetings at their lounge. I remember dancing with my cousins in the hallways because my family would almost always pick Shangri-La to host family parties and birthdays, all those big celebrations. (They still do.) 

This trip back to the Philippines was quite special because I was bringing Marco home for the first time. Although he is full Filipino, he had never been before and I was thrilled to be there for his very first experience in Manila. A special thank you to the Shangri-La hotels in Manila and Boracay for hosting us and making sure we had an unforgettable time in the Philippines.
Our first few nights started at Shangri-La Makati. Not too far from the Airport, it still boasts one of my favorite hotel lobbies to date. There’s just something so elegant and grand about it and it’s just as magnificent as I remember. Makati is perfect for anyone looking to be close to a lot of shopping. With Greenbelt just a few blocks away, it’s the perfect place for anyone who’s idea of a work out is a little retail therapy.

Prior to checking in to Shangri-La Makati, I just got off a flight from Bali for my friend's wedding. Shangri-La had arranged for my pick-up at the airport that took me straight to the hotel for check in, equipped with water and a cold towel to quickly freshen up as one must do right after a long flight. Upon arriving to the beautiful lobby, I was greeted by staff and taken to my suite for in-room check in.
I always feel right at home with Shangri-La hotels, so we unpacked our luggages and settled in before deciding to take advantage of the beautiful day. Shangri-La Makati has a rooftop pool that Marco and I made sure to take advantage of. That Manila heat can really get to you and my ideal pool situation would be hanging out under an umbrella (occasionally getting some sun and laying out) with a nice cool mango shake. Mmm. A favorite and a MUST in the Philippines. We have the best mangoes.

After some time at the pool, a little bit more tan, we headed back to our suite to get dressed to wander the area. But before going back to our room, we made a stop at the spa to schedule for some massages the following day.

Since it was Marco's first time in the Philippines so we fought through our jet lag as best as we could to make the most of our time there. Shangri-La hotels are all equipped with the best amenities and restaurants so for dinner, we checked out Inagiku for some delicious Wagyu beef and retreated back to our room for a good night's sleep.

But I have to say, one of my favorite parts of spending nights with Shangri-La, is waking up to beautiful views and delicious food, a pattern prominent with all my stays at the Shangri-La Properties. You'll never be disappointed by the food at Shangri-La, and it's probably one of the biggest reasons why I love staying with them so much. I'm always so well-rested and feel right at home. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner feel like home cooked meals and trust me when I tell you that I'm pretty picky when it comes to Filipino food. It always gets compared to my mom's home cooking and Shangri-La definitely never lets me down.

Thank you so much to Shangri-La Makati for helping me feel right at home and for kicking off my Shang Tour 2018 on such a high note. Stay tuned for the next stop: Shangri-La at the Fort.

In Collaboration with Shangri-La Hotels
Makati Avenue corner, Ayala Avenue, Makati, 1200 Metro Manila, Philippines

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Made In Manila

This has been long overdue, four months to be exact. I arrived back from the Philippines in March and have definitely postponed this content long enough. After that trip, things were so busy at home, more trips lined up, but now I can sit down and really share with you guys my posts and videos from two weeks in the Philippines.

I never wanted this to be rushed, after all, it is my home and I wanted to share this without cheating it out of all the attention it deserved. I'm really excited to share my time with the Shangri-La Hotels with you guys and then just talking more about the trip in general! I'm also working on the video for this trip and hoping the footage turns out well! Hope you're excited to read about this and see it so be sure to stay updated with my Instagram and subscribe to my YouTube channel so you don't miss out! Love you guys and thanks so much for your patience!

Coming Soon
Shangri-La Makati | Shangri-La at the Fort | Edsa Shangri-La | Shangri-La Boracay
Philippines Vlog | Manila Favorites

Saturday, July 21, 2018

40 Years with Dawn

Got to celebrate 40 years of helping save wildlife with Dawn Dishwash yesterday at Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Station! Since 1978, Dawn has been able to help save more than 75,000 birds and marine animals who have fallen victim to oil spill disasters and environmental catastrophes. Thanks to Dawn and the wonderful people at the International Bird Rescue and The Marine Mammal Center, so many of these beautiful creatures can be cleaned and brought back to health. 

I loved being a part of this event because as easy as it is to get caught up with our daily lives, it's important to always be cautious and dowhat we can to help those that can't really help themselves! For so many years, Dawn has been the only brand that wildlife experts trust to use to help these birds and marine mammals get cleaned up while still being gentle on them. 

This month, we celebrate 40 years of helping save wildlife and the people who have been a part of it. Lucky for me, I got to hold one of these little guys and I think it's pretty safe to say I was overwhelmed with joy. Thanks so much to Dawn Dishwash for including me in this special #DawnWildlife40 celebration. 

In Collaboration with Dawn.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Summer in The Garment District

GARMENT DISTRICT Summer in the city is one of a kind, from trendy rooftops to spectacular views, I love being able to call this place home. There are so many incredible spots all over the city, but one of my favorites is always the Garment District, especially when it comes to good food and drinks. 

One rooftop I always suggest is Spyglass Rooftop Bar on 47 W 38th Street. It’s located in the Archer Hotel New York and it boasts one of my favorite views of the Empire State Building. There’s nothing like unwinding after a long day with a glass of champagne and watching one of those summer sunsets behind the city skyline. 

They’ve also got a food menu if you’re interested in something more than drinks. If you’re in the city and looking for a spot with a view, be sure to add this onto your list. You won’t be disappointed. 

And if you’re indecisive, like I sometimes can be, the Garment District’s Urban Garden is perfect because there are so many different choices all in one. It’s a great pit stop for long days in the city, and when in midtown, things can get a little hectic. What I loved about this little oasis, is how peaceful and chill it was to just hang out and enjoy a drink in the middle of a busy day. 

There are so many different options, perfect for a group of friends that all want to try different things. I love the variety of spots they’ve curated for Urban Garden because honestly, with the amount of good food in New York City, it would be a shame to not try as many as you can in one place! 
The Garment District isn’t just one of my favorite parts of the city because it’s where I went to school and spent a lot of time over the past few years, but I love how colorful and energetic it always is. There’s such a great mix of people, food, cafes, and rooftops around here so if you’re coming to New York, be sure this is on your list!