Friday, October 23, 2015

Nippon Paint Young Designer Award 2015 winners lauded

Jose Augustine Ricarte, an Architecture student from the University of Santo Tomas (UST) who submitted the entry “Marikina Link”, and Martha Joyce Tomas, an Interior Design student also from the UST with her entry “Biojet”,  are this year's NPYDA winners. They bagged the Gold awards for the Architecture and Interior Design categories in the Nippon Paint Young Designer Award (NYPDA) 2015.  As such, they will represent the Philippines in a regional competition across 12 Asia Pacific countries organized by Asia’s no. 1 coatings manufacturer Nippon Paint.

The winning entries were evaluated based on their Green and Sustainable Design Concept, Colour Concept, Design Innovation, and Design Concept Statement.

The “Design with Heart” theme challenged the participants to further push the boundaries for future living by creating spaces that can connect people from all walks of life—including the physically challenged community, the elderly, the young, and nursing mothers—as well as enhance experience and transform lives.

Nippon Paint (Coatings) Philippines rewarded each Gold Awardee with P50,000 cash prize, a 6-month internship at Lor Calma and Partners (for Interior Design)/ Casas Architects (for Architecture), plus an all-expense paid overseas trip for a once-in-a lifetime learning programme, an exclusive workshop crafted especially for winners featuring internationally renowned speakers in the fields of architecture and interior design.

The winner’s adviser also took home P10,000 in cash, while his academic institution received P10,000 cash prize and P10,000-worth of Nippon Paint paint voucher.

Other awardees were: Marko Alab Adviento, UST, Silver Award - Architecture; Courtney Gatus, University of the Philippines (UP), Silver Award – Interior Design; Ruben Felizarte, Far Eastern University, Best Colour Choice Award, Architecture; Courtney Gatus, UP, Best Colour Choice Award, Interior Design; Kae Ann Aguila, UST, Best Green Innovation Award, Architecture; and Martha Joyce Thomas, UST, Best Green Innovation Award, Interior Design.

NPYDA has collaborated with the Philippine Institute of Interior Designers (PIID), Council of Interior Design Educator (CIDE), United Architects of the Philippines (UAP), and Council of Deans and Heads in Architecture Schools in the Philippines (CODHASP), Lor Calma and Partners, CASAS + Architects and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) for a more fruitful competition this year.

The Nippon Paint Young Designer Award was launched in 2008 to inspire and motivate students, and nurture the creative minds of the interior design and architectural students.

Visit for more information on Nippon Paint Young Designer Award 2015.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Go to General's Lechon for a fail-proof Roasted Feast

Lechon has always been part of Philippine grand feasts. This tradition grew out of the country’s Spanish influences and undeniably, the presence of roasted pig at any Filipino gathering instantly turns an ordinary gatherings to a grand fiesta.   A lechon completes any get-togethers.

Now, I discovered one that deserves to be on our tables this yuletide season. General's Lechon take on the traditional roasted pig is one of the best ever! General's Lechons are flavored. This Negros-style lechon comes in original, garlic, spicy-garlic and curry flavors. Each is roasted brown evenly and has a delicious, thin crunchy skin that cracks easily as you peel it off. The well-seasoned meat is moist and is wonderfully devoid of oil.

My favorite was Curry Lechon. I didn't know that curry rice can make an equally delicious stuffing for roasted suckling pig. I took part of the delicious-smelling grub the moment it was brought in. The lechon tasted divine with curry rice!

What started out as Lynette's fascination with the lechon flavor from San Carlos City in Negros Occidental (where Bryan Ong had his wife tried the best tasting lechon ever) and her feat to bring it to Manila has captured the Filipino’s distinctive taste.

General's Lechon makes it own sarsa (smooth, sweet liver sauce), atchara (pickle made from grated unripe papaya) and vinegar sauce that is perfect for dipping.  Mind you, their roast pigs do pretty well even without a dipping sauce. I suggest that you eat it without the sauce to see why their patrons keep coming back for more. The mark of the best lechon is how well you can do away without the sauce, they say.

Over the years, the home-based lechon business by couple Brian and Lynette Ong has grown to include other products like Lechon Paksiw in jars and longganisa.  

For times when you just want your lechon fix, you can dine in and have chopped lechon at their Arnaiz Avenue branch without having to order a whole pig. They also sell their flavored lechon in 1-kilo packs for you to take home.

General's Lechon
2/F Petron Gas Station Edsa corner Arnaiz Avenue
Makati City

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Alviera Christmas Jamboree is a Holiday Getaway Like No Other

As the country celebrates its longest festive season, the magic of Christmas is now upon us. As early as September, Filipinos gather together to enjoy food, make lists of fun and exciting things to do for the holidays. Christmastime is a time for giving and for spending time with our loved ones, and this is what Christmas adventure in Alviera is all about.

Alviera offers a one-of-a-kind Christmas adventure for the whole family with the Christmas Jamboree on November 28 and 29 at Porac, Pampanga. This unique holiday camping adventure for families is a great way to celebrate Yuletide. You get to camp out under the stars and enjoy day-long arts and crafts workshops, live performances and holiday games.

During this weekend, SandBox transforms into a Christmas wonderland with festive workshop tents, life-sized Christmas displays and numerous parols or Pinoy Christmas lanterns lighting up the campsite. Alviera’s majestic 360-degree view of scenic hills and mountains enhances the fantasy setting.

Packages to the Alviera Christmas Jamboree come in Day Dasher and Christmas Camper variants. The Day Dasher package, at P1,900 per person, includes roundtrip transportation from Manila to Alviera, free use of SandBox attractions, access to all Christmas Jamboree Day Workshops, passes to the evening entertainment, stage shows and Starlight Cinema outdoor movie theater.

The Christmas Camper package at P2,850 per person entitles participants to all Day Dasher inclusions plus overnight campsite stay, access to campsite-exclusive activities, free use of Coleman tents, exclusive use of SandBox in the morning of the second day, a bonfire treat complete with a set grilled dinner and buffet breakfast on Sunday morning.

As a family event, the Christmas Jamboree offers special rates for kids at P1,050 for Day Dasher and P1,750 for Christmas Camper for all children 4 feet below. Both packages come with travel insurance, Alviera Camp Bag, and a Christmas Passport that serves as your event journal that contains raffle stubs for exciting prizes.

Day Dashers will experience a full day’s worth of activities including arts and crafts activities such as Christmas cookie- making and designing angel souvenirs and parols. Guests can test one’s knowledge on Christmas trivia with Quiz Kringle. Each time they sign up for an activity, they get an entry to the hourly Jamboree raffle. There will also be all-day fun bubble activities with bubble artists.

Live entertainment begins at night with the “poi” or fire dancing and a Christmas carol serenade by some of the country’s top chorale groups. Guests can perform onstage during the Merry-oke open mic session, complete with a live brass band. After the Yuletide dinner, astronomy experts will lead constellation-tracking sessions. The “Starlight Cinema” opens from 9:00 p.m. until midnight to feature Christmas movie favorites.

Christmas Campers will enjoy the entire Day Dasher offering combined with premium camping activities such as a welcome bonfire with s’mores at the campsite and ukulele jam session while enjoying hot tsokolate served with biscochio. Campers can also learn to play the ukulele during the workshop. A Christmas breakfast buffet awaits them the next morning, as well as Christmas stockings filled with surprise holiday goodies.

Inspire lasting memories with families and friends with the Alviera Christmas Jamboree! Visit the Travel Factor website at for reservations and booking.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Liza Soberano is Mega Tuna's brand ambassador

Mega Global Corporation launched Mega Tuna earlier today as their newest addition to their line of premium products. Mega Tuna Brand Manager, John Paolo Calona, proudly explained how he sees Mega Tuna and how it is different from any other tuna brands. “We want Mega Tuna to be the top choice of tuna enthusiasts who want to savor the true taste of pure tuna. With no extenders, no preservatives, and no MSG, Mega Tuna gives only 100% pure tuna in every can. Mega Tuna comes in four variants, namely, Mega Tuna Flakes in Oil, Hot and Spicy, Sweet and Spicy and Spanish-Style.

Teen superstar Liza Soberano was also introduced as their latest endorser during the event. Liza personifies Mega Tuna: naturally 100% beautiful inside and out. Liza shared that her favorite variant among the four is Hot and Spicy.

Enjoy a can of pure tuna goodness with every variant of Mega Tuna anytime, anywhere. It comes in ready to eat in an easy-to-open can for only P 33.10 (180 grams).

Mega Tuna is 100% tuna meat so you get pure tuna goodness with Mega Tuna whichever variant you choose.

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