Cebu’s New: MACTAN International Airport Terminal 2!

Cebu’s New Int’l Airport

The New Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA) Terminal 2 which was recently inaugurated last June 7, 2018 has began its commercial operations on July 1, 2018. I am pleasured to be one of its departing passengers on its second day, July 2, 2018.

From my almost 1 week holiday in Manila, I had a quick unexpected trip in Cebu to visit my family. Yes, I am a true-bloom Cebuana by the way.

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Upon my departure from Cebu back to Singapore, my mom and Michael sent me to Mactan Airport Terminal 1, as usual. It was to our surprise when one of the staff told us that if we are off for an international flight, there is a shuttle bus to terminal 2. She then gave us directions. Instead of looking exhausted and sleepy from our holiday, we were wide awake hoping that the shuttle bus will take us to the new terminal. And yes, it did!

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Merry-walking at MCIA  – Terminal 2’s Entrance

Home to a number of natural, historic, and cultural tourist draws, Cebu City is a top destination for both local and foreign visitors. The resort-themed Terminal 2 is for international flights, while the older Terminal 1 is for domestic flights. The new terminal 2 has a floor area of 65,000 square meters. Below is one of Michael’s stunning photos which he shared in his Instagram while we were waiting for my flight.

 

It was said that they have chosen a wood theme because wood is something synonymous to Cebu. Wooden Furniture is a big business in the province. The roof  has timber arches that look like an inverted boat hull, and a wave-like roof that evokes a tropical and resort-like feel.

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Cebu Pacific’s Check-In Counters

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MCIA’s  Boarding Gates

So far, the experience was really great! There were lots of surprises. But I must say that the entire process is yet not perfect, though. Here are some few points that you need to take note if you are taking off from the new terminal 2:

  1. No Food Shops Outside The Terminal 2
    While we were on our way to Terminal 2, I realized that I was so hungry and was hoping to have some great food with my loved ones before I fly off. Unfortunately, you can only find food shops inside the terminal 2. And only those who are with flight tickets can go inside. It was 4: 00 PM and my flight was still at 7:55 PM. I still have almost 2 hours to spent with my loved ones and I just cant let it pass. So, we went to catch the shuttle bus again back to terminal 1 just to hunt for food.
  2. No Weighing Machine Outside Terminal
    You can only weight your luggage/s at the check-in counter. In the event that you have excess luggage weight, you need to fix your stuff right there at the counter. Quite a hassle not just for yourself  but also for everyone else in the queue. It’s always better to have a weighting scale outside (just like Singapore’s Changi Airport).

Regardless of the above mentioned hiccups, I am very impressed and very proud  of the preparations at the departure area. It’s really of international standards! I am sure the arrival is just as fantastic too! Here are some impressive points from our new terminal 2:

  1. Free Shuttle Bus
    It is very convenient moving from one airport to another. I’m not sure how many seaters or how is the capacity but it is quite big. I also hope the cleanliness will be maintained in the long run.
  2.  High-Tech X-ray Machine
    The terminal is highly innovative featuring modern aesthetics. One of it is the technology called Automated Tray Retrieval System. Something new in the Philippines. There is an automatic conveyor that brings the tray below. Some areas need further improvement especially the unfamiliarity of passengers. Some were not able to properly use it. It’s a learning experience, though.
  3. Great & Wide Selection of Shops!
    I may have been pulling my hair when I learned that there is no food shop outside the Terminal 2. But when I checked in and as I searching for my Gate No., I was in awe with all the mouth-watering cuisines inside. They got Ritazza, Bonchon, Asian Kitchen, Ramen, and Burger King. There’s even Coffee bean too!

    I also enjoyed walking through all the fancy shops like Victoria’s Secret, Plug + PLay, WHSmith, Momento and of course this cant be missing, Duty Freeee!

     

     

     

     

     

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  4. Warm and Friendly Staffs

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    With its unique design of undulating wooden roofs, Terminal 2 was envisioned to demonstrate the “warmth and friendliness” of local culture, place and people. Having these lovely ladies all dressed-up with Cebu’s Iconic Sinulog Festival costume is just so smart and captivating! All the staffs were very polite; from the cleaners, securities, counter staffs and all. They will really take time to greet you with their sweetest smiles even when they are doing something. Something I did not experience from other terminals. They were also very helpful in giving directions. I hope they are doing this for both international and domestic flights.

4. Gifts
I am always fascinated with gifts (that’s why I have started a gift shop). Upon departure at the New Terminal 2, the ladies dressed-up with a Sinulog Costume gave each passengers a gift as they bid farewell when boarding on the plane. Not sure how long they will be doing this but here’s what I got. Cebu’s famous delicacy, Dried Magoes!
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The entire terminal is not yet 100 percent finished. Some areas have yet to be furnished. Passengers should expect more improvements, especially aesthetically, in the coming weeks and months. According to my research, it was designed by Hong-Kong based architectural firm Integrated Design Associates Ltd. with Filipino designers.

Considered the central gateway to the Visayas and Mindanao, the MCIA is the second largest airport facility in the country. No doubt. It is indeed the best airport in the country, by far!

Enjoy more photos below! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Café Talk Library: Cebu’s Bookworm Paradise

Bookworm Paradise

When I came home in Cebu for a short holiday last February 2018, Mike brought me to this cozy Cafe Talk Library at the heart of Cebu City, Philippines. It is located at the bustling Escario St. (near Capitol). If your are visiting somewhere around this area, this is a must place to visit where you can dine as you unwind or get work done. Or even when you are feeling anti-social at some point, this is my number one recommended place to get some lone time! It’s fine not to bring any of your gadgets because there are hundreds of books to enjoy with! It’s totally a bookworm paradise at the heart of  Cebu City!

When we went inside, I was grinning from ear-to-ear because it is my first time to visit such kind of Cafe (not sure if Singapore has). It did not disappoint me! Wish I had longer time to chill though. Mike has been sharing how much her dear sister loves the place. When we reached and ’til we were seated, only then I figured that for some reasons, it was Mike’s first time to go in one of those cubicles too! What a great memory together! Yay! And what do I mean by ‘cubicles’? Read on! 🙂

THE CONCEPT

I was amazed of the exceptional concept of this cafe that it was able to meet the ideal learning and studying avenue of this generation’s learners. The so-called ‘Millenials’! Café Talk foregoes the usual chairs-and-tables set up for quaint sections with small tables, pillows, and even stuffed toys, making it conducive for either relaxation or work. Im not sure when did this opened but I wish we had this when I was still studying. Cebu Doctors University’s old campus is just around this area. But I also thank God that I did not know about this. It will terribly tear down my pocket every time! I’ll share with you about their pricing later in this article.

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Anyways, it has booth or cubicles which creates atmosphere that is conducive for studying or learning. They have a really cute interior with two stories and the cubicles were numbered. Some have televisions and outlet if you are planning to bring your laptop and other devices. Some have balconies and a lot of pillows for a more chill vibe. It is good for couples and friends or just for a person who wants to be alone with a book.

THE FOOD

The meal was good though it’s a bit pricey for me. I think the food and drinks are priced the same as international coffee chains, and very limited choices for meals. You may take your pick from pastries, rice meals, hot or iced coffee, frappes, smoothies, and milkshakes. There were only two staffs when we went so we had to wait for a while for our food to be served. For me, although I am thin, I am a big eater. This is not a secret! I always run out of cash because of food. So if you are someone like me, just grab dinner outside where it’s cheaper and head to Cafe Talk for a chill with frappes or whichever you like. 😉

As the Café is open from mid-morning until late at night, you can drop by for a nightcap when you’re done touring the city, or stay for a few hours to finish your work (or TV series!).

Sooo, visiting Café Talk soon? Here’s their address:

Café Talk
N Escario St., Cebu City
Operating hours: 9 AM – 3 AM!

Enjoy more photos below 🙂

 

 

Mid-Autumn Festival at the Gardens

Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the much-anticipated events in the Gardens’ calendar.

Last weekend, my Aunt and cousin visited me here in Singapore. Like the rest of my guests, I showed them around especially to my favorite places like Gardens by the bay. We were just trying to catch-up for the Gardens’ Rhapsody show. We did not know that there is a celebration for Mid-Autumn Festival for this year, 2017. So lucky!

Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the much-anticipated events in the Gardens’ calendar. When we went there, there were many visitors (as expected especially during weekends). We enjoyed its large-scale lantern displays and myriad festivities amidst a lush garden setting. The famous Supertrees are also groomed up for the season. See the Avatar-like structures get dressed-up with more than 100 dragonfly lanterns.  In many cultures, it is believed that the dragonfly is seen as a guardian and associated with luck and prosperity.

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This year, the Gardens celebrates autumn abundance with lantern sets symbolic of bountiful harvests and good fortune.

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Ant lanterns carrying harvest along a pathway at Gardens by the Bay.

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Lantern display of Water Prosperity with glowing portrait of a fishing village teeming with carp fish.

There were also some nightly cultural performances, a food street which features yummy Asian delights, and craft booths offering activities like lantern decorating, umbrella painting and Chinese knotting.

If you are planning to catch-up with the sprawling lantern displays across the gardens and all the exciting festival programs, here some of the details:

Venue Name: Gardens by The Bay

Dates: Fri, 22 Sep 2017 – Sun, 8 Oct 2017

Time: 6:00PM – 11:00PM

Admission: Free access to the Gardens’ grand sets.

For the Flower Domes, need to purchase tickets from S$8 to S$28 – to view the Autumn Harvest display.

Address: 18 Marine Gardens Dr, Singapore 018953

Enjoy more photos below! 🙂

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“MULTI-PURPOSE” Travel Placards

We will be having our company trip to Bangkok, Thailand, this end of April 2017 (this weekend! ^^). I remember from our previous trips, nobody thought about bringing a banner. LOL. Is that even necessary nowadays? Well, I think it is very important for reasons I bet you already know (Sorry. I just had a tough day at work. I’ll find time to update this if you really wish to know  whyyyy -.-)

Anyways, so for our upcoming trip in BKK (Bangkok), we thought we must have our banner. But we don’t want it to be just any usual boring banner or tarpaulin. Those are too mainstream. So,  we decided to have it interesting & fun by making creative letter boxes instead where everyone will just hold it accordingly and they can play around with it when taking photos or videos. Especially people nowadays are very fun of taking boomerang videos. This should be perfect! ^_^

I’m not sure if someone has already made such banners before but here’s how it looks like. Errrrmm….It’s no longer a banner actually since it isn’t a long cut-piece of cloth. So, I decided to call it “MULTI-PURPOSE” Company Trip Placards. Yeah! ^^,  Why multi-purpose? because you can also use it as a sunshade and as a fan! Lol! FYI: As per my research, April and May are the hottest months of the year in BKK.

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It’s not exactly how I wanted it but nah! These are the materials that are immediately available so we just maximized.

IF YOU LOVE THE IDEA AND WOULD LIKE TO KNOW HOW WE DID IT, HERE’S HOW:

Basically, we prepared all the stuffs that we needed:

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  • Colored papers
  • Cardboards
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Glue
  • Glue Sticks
  • Glue Gun
  • Chopsticks
  • Scotch tape

Alright, let’s get started!

  1. DECIDE ON THE WORDS YOU WANT TO HAVE
    We decided what are the words we want to have and counted how many characters we need to make. We made sure that we have enough colored papers and card boards. No need to make the words too long. Just come up with something that is short, specific and just nice for the number of people who are joining the trip. Not everyone has to hold though. For ours, we have about 35 people. So we decided to have “YONG FAH (our company name) BKK (place to visit) 2017 (year)“. Total of 14 characters. Oh! I added an Airplane and a Thailand flag to make it more cute. LOL (additional 2 shouldn’t hurt).
  2. DRAW/PRINT OUT THE CHARACTERS ON THE COLORED PAPERS THEN CUT OUT.
    At first, I wanted to just draw the letters by myself. But I realized that I am not really good at it plus I don’t have much time to explore. So I just used my PC and printed the letters according to the size I wanted (and my cardboard’s of course). I made the fonts look like in “3D” with all the shadows so it will look more interesting. Btw, I printed on different colored papers so it’s more eye-catching. Then, my colleagues helped to cut out each letters slowly & nicely.
  3. ADD OUTLINES
    I pasted another colored paper behind each characters (using glue stick & glue gun because it can hold stronger to the type of paper that I am using) and cut it making and outline  so the characters will be more visible.
  4. COVER THE CARDBOARD WITH COLORED PAPERS
    Set aside those characters, we will work with that later. Let’s proceed with the card boards now. For me, I am using recycled card boards which I got from our invoicing department. So I need to cover the surface with nice colors to make my placards look neat. I covered all the way to the back and used scotched tape to hold it into place.
  5. USE THE CHOPSTICKS TO MAKE A HANDLE
    Not necessary but I want people to have something to properly grab on when they’re using it. I placed 2 chopsticks for each as I felt 1 is way too thin. I covered them with colored papers first and the taped it (so some people with very sweaty hands can also enjoy it). Then, I glued it behind the card board using glue gun so it will strongly hold into place.
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  6. ADD ANOTHER CARDBOARD FROM BEHIND
    The behind part looked kinda messy with all the scotch tapes making it necessary to get covered. Plus, I also wanted to make it harder so I added another cardboard.
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  7. PASTE THE LETTERS ON THE CARDBOARD
    I pasted my cut out letters or characters slowly onto the card boards and made sure that the letters are pasted on the center.
  8. ADD DETAILS/DESIGNS
    I added some details by cutting and forming designs from my extra colored papers. I made sure the color combinations will somehow  look nicely matched (according to what’s available…whew! its really hard mix-matching very limited resources -.-)
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So, there you go. It’s done! ^_^  I hope you like it! We can’t wait to use it for our trip. If you are making one, please let me know. I’d love to see your awesome designs too! 😀