Sunday, January 26, 2014

Feast at Marriott Hotel Manila for the Chinese New Year

Welcome the Year of the Wooden Horse with the best of fortune as Marriott Hotel Manila offers Chinese New Year promos to add to your celebrations!
It is considered good luck to eat Nian Gao (locally known as “Tikoy”) at this time of the year, as “nian gao” is a homonym for “higher year,” symbolizing longevity, progress, and better life. Marriott’s Nian Gao are carefully molded into two koi fish at 270 grams each, and are packaged beautifully in a red oriental gift box, perfect as a present for the Chinese New Year at P988 nett and available at Java+ until January 31, 2014.
Enjoy the luxury of an overnight stay in a Deluxe Room with their Special Room Package at P11,888++, complete with a calming view of VIllamor Golf Course, and inclusive of buffet breakfast for two at Marriott Café as well as afternoon tea and snacks for you and your special someone at the Greatroom. You will not go home from this stay with fond memories alone; take home a special Nian Gao Gift Box and continue with the Chinese festivities! This package is valid from January 26 to February 10, 2014.
Marriot Manila truly knows how to usher in the Chinese New Year in high spirits! Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

8th Spring Film Festival: Free Chinese Movie Screenings at the Shangri-La Mall Cineplex

Set to open this year's film festival season at the Shangri-La Plaza is the 8th Spring Film Festival happening from January 24 to February 2, 2014. An annual activity organized by the Ateneo de Manila University Ricardo Leong Center for Chinese Studies in cooperation with the Confucius Institute, the Embassy of the People's Republic of China, Film Development Council of the Philippines, Credit Suisse and the Ateneo Celadon--they aim to promote Chinese culture to the Philippine society through these quality films. 

Now on its eight year, the Spring Festival features eight noteworthy Chinese films on different genres such as drama, romantic comedy, suspense etc. There will surely be something that will catch your fancy. Take a look at this year's line up of films for the Spring Film Festival:

Snowfall in Taipei
May, a singer from mainland China, suddenly lost her voice and had conflicts with Ah Lei, her producer and secret lover. In anger, she came to Old Town of Jingtong where she met Xiao Mo, a warmhearted man. Xiao Mo helped May find a dwelling place, and introduced her to work at a local restaurant. Thanks to their constant contacts, they made a good impression with each other. May found happiness and consolation from the old streets of the small town, and her voice was getting better and better. However, May had left her heart at another place. Gradually, Xiao Mo understood that when one deliberately disappears, one wants to be looked for by others. Along with a sudden appearance of Jack, a muckraking journalist, the situation began to develop towards the uncontrolled direction.  

City Monkey
He Zhipeng is a senior student in high school who lives in a big old Beijing hutong yard with his mother and grandmother. He loves parkour, an extremely dangerous sport in most people’s eyes. With his good psychology and physique, he becomes the star player of “City Monkey” parkour club. But his mother strongly disapproves it and hopes he could focus only on his entrance exams to university. Clashes of different concepts, rebellion of the youth, and persistence to the ideal are unavoidable problems for them. What would the two generations do?

Aftershock Tangshan, 1976. 
Two seven-year-old twin children are buried under the rubble of the devastating earthquake. The rescue team explains to their mother, Li Yuanni that freeing either child will almost certainly result in the death of the other. She is forced to make the most difficult decision of her life and must choose between her children. Li Yuanni has no idea that her decision is overheard by her daughter Fang Deng, the female twin. Although she has been left behind as dead, the little girl miraculously survives for several more days before being pulled clear by another rescue team who believe that she is simply a corpse. She wakes up in the pouring rain next to the dead body of her father. Suffering from the emotional shocks of the disaster and the painful memory of her mother's choice, Fang Deng refuses to reveal her identity. She is adopted by a middle-aged Chinese couple and years later moves to Canada to marry. Shadowed by the traumatic experiences of the earthquake and devastated by her mother's decision to abandon her, she continues to be emotionally withdrawn throughout her adult years.

Where is My Home
Mrs. Geng is a simple village mother who raised two children on her own. Her son made his way to the city and offers to have her come live with him and his family. Despite the improved material conditions of the city, Mrs. Geng cannot help feeling isolated and lonely. It takes some time for her children to understand how she feels, and they rebuild their family’s affection.

The Go-King and his Son
Liu Yishou, an amateur Go player, is called by his friends “the king of Go”. Liu Yishou has been laid off quite a long time ago and now, with no other skills to make a living, teaches Go in a humble training course for children. Life has been hard, and his wife has decided to divorce him. His young son, Xiaochuan, has chosen to stay with him through his difficulties. On an unexpected occasion, Xiaochuan displayed an amazing talent for Go, and his father vowed to support him to further develop his gift for the game. They confronted challenges, but with courage, persistence and profound love between father and son, they eventually arrived at the destination towards which they were heading.

1911 Revolution
As the country enters the new century, China is facing a crisis. Two warring factions have emerged, starvation amongst the citizens is rampant and political reforms have made matters worse. The seven year old Emperor and his mother, Empress Dowager Longyu (Joan Chen), are out of sync with people’s needs after 250 years of total power.  As Huang Xing (Jackie Chan) arrives from his studies on modern warfare in Japan, he finds himself picking up his sword to lead a rebellion against the powerful Qing Dynasty and the New Army.

Let’s Fall in Love
Tan Momo, who showed his natural gift in music in his childhood, entered the Conservatory of Music to learn to play Guqin (seven-stringed plucked instrument) smoothly. His teacher placed great hopes on him and his girlfriend Xia Fei had the greatest esteem for him. Upon their graduation, Momo, Xia Fei and other young people who cherished dreams finally walked out of the campus and began to experience the ups and downs in real life. While in front of conflicts between their ideals and family relation, love and morality, what would they choose…

Li Mi Conjecture
Due to the intervention of her parents, taxi driver girl Li Mi had to break up with her long-term boyfriend, Fang Wen, who had disappeared from her life yet seemed to remain connected. For four years, Li Mi had continued to search for his whereabouts in a constant tug-of-war between hope and despair. An eerie murder was witnessed, leading her to a man nearly identical to her missing lover. Could he be the one she has been looking for? Her life suddenly changes. Then come terrible yet pitiful drug dealers, and irascible but highly duteous police detectives…Behind the cascades of mysteries, compromises lie still between those who were once in love.

Admission to the film screenings are absolutely FREE! Just come at least an hour early to get tickets as slots are limited. Seats are on a first come, first served basis. For screening schedules, please visit

While you're at it, don't forget to catch Shang's East Atrium Chinese Painting Exhibit featuring the latest works of artists and students from the International Studies for Chinese Arts and the Confucius Institute at the Ateneo de Manila University Chinese Painting Class. Chinese Painting and Crafts Workshops will also be held on February 1 from 2PM to 4PM. 

For inquiries, contact 370-2500 local 597 or log on to 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

An Aussie Overload at Marriott Manila

Taste Australia in a celebration of the diversity of premium food and drinks at Marriott Hotel Manila! Savor the steaks from the Outback, relish the seafood from the Great Barrier, imbibe on the wines from the cellars of Adelaide, or feast on the rich meat pies from Victoria; an array of choices await you this January!
Come over at Marriott Café for an Australian Wine Buffet, where five of the most excellent wines from the vineyards of Australia are available every night for only P825, together with featured cheeses that create a perfect partnership on your palate. A new gelato flavor is added -- Vittoria Australian Coffee, exclusively for this month only, is perfect as a sweet ending to an already delicious meal.
At Cru Steakhouse, experience posh dining with Chermoula Marinated Australian Lamb Loin at P1900, prepared by Marriott’s very own Chef Rej Casanova. Couple the dish with any of the three taste selected Shiraz wines, and add from their selection of cheeses for a classic, well-loved combination. Order a cup of hot, steaming Vittoria Australian Coffee for a fulfilling finish.
Eat, drink, and be merry the way Aussies do at the Greatroom with original meat pies, juicy surf n’ turf, and savory side dishes! Couple it with a mug of XXL beer, a glass of Australian wine or one soda to complete the rustic experience in all Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays of January, 6:00 PM – 10:30 PM at P1100.
At Java+, savor the rich flavors of freshly baked meat pies in three savory flavors: Beef, Mushroom & Onion (P480 nett), Beef, Potatoes & Mushy Peas (P450 nett), and Beef & Cheese (P420 nett). Enjoy it with Vittoria Australian Coffee Frappucino and find your corner at their best-loved coffee shop for the ultimate comfort food.
For guests who want to experience Australia in the comforts of their own rooms, all in-house guests may order Wine Carafes at P350 for 270ml, with a choice of WIllowglen Chardonnay or Willowglen Cabernet/Shiraz. Couple it with an Australian Cheese Trio, a platter of Rubicon Red, Wild Wasabi, and Smoked Cheddar at P570 with a side of homemade jam, toasted crostini, and spiced pecans to perfectly tickle your palate. Meanwhile, those who wish to soak up the sun with an ice cold beer on hand can choose from the local San Miguel Draft at P210 to Australia’s all-original ales such as Foster’s Lager and Victoria Bitter at P250 each.
Join Marriott Manila as they bring you blokes and sheilas over to the Land Down Under for an utterly grand time!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Alaska Merry Crema: Eastwood Mall Open Park Transformed Into Sweet City

Christmas festive sweet treats and an incredible varieties of chocolate, candies and patisseries in delectable and too-good-to-look-at cute creations filled the booths and food atelier at the Eastwood Mall Open Park during the Alaska Merry Crema Food Fair. Surrounded by so many chocolates and candy shops, It felt like I was one of those children who made field trips to the Willy Wonka chocolate factory in the children's book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. 

I really looked forward to eating my chocolate and almonds as well as pistachios. People who know me, knows I'm into dark cocoas. I may not be a fan of sweets but I love dark chocolate! Finding myself in Alaska Merry Crema Food Fair was indeed like paradise on earth. I was lucky to have gotten my fix of my fave treats. I was also surprised to find out we can use Alaska Crema in a lot of different ways. Showcased during the said event were recipes from Pumpkin Soup ( for a richer and creamier taste), rock salted cheese brownies to cheese and chocolate fondue--there's practically a lot to do with it. I used to think all-purpose creams were only for fruit salads or white sauced fettuccine pasta dish. Now, I know better--thanks to this Alaska Merry Crema Food Fair. I learned that Alaska Crema is very versatile when it comes to cooking or whipping up delightful dishes/recipes.

I truly enjoyed the afternoon by simply roaming around the booths at the Alaska Merry Crema Fair. The event was bursting with life, passion, an equilibrium of yummy good things in life that makes one to yearn to create and inspire. I've never seen such beautiful and decadent chocolates and cakes as well as specialty dishes all in one market-style place--and I've seen and experienced them all at the said food fair. 

I'm also happy to note that entrepreneurs now help promote our own Philippine-based products such as Davao's Malagos organic cocoa and buffalo cheese. It's nice to know that we're now promoting local flavors and in the process we are also helping Filipino communities. 

Aside from the food booths at the Alaska Merry Crema Food Fair, there have been some stage programs hosted by dynamic radio FM DJs Chico and Delamar where there were games and prizes with a special number from rock pop princess Yeng Constantino.

It was indeed a memorable day for all the guests and attendees as the event was open to the public for free. Everyone happily went home with loot bags filled with Alaska products.