New store openings: What’s coming in 2015

“All these new store openings are slowly removing the thrill of traveling,” my friend Ginggay noted.
“Wala pang Ikea,” I said.
“Ikea would be the game changer,” Ginggay said.
“We would no longer be third world,” I said.
While waiting for Ikea to come here, here are eight stores you can look forward to in 2015:

1) Ladurée
What: French luxury bakery and sweets maker known world-famous double-decker macarons
Where and when: May 15 at Lopez Tower, Rockwell
Owner: H&F Retail Concepts, Inc.

Laduree, Paris - new favourite munchies

2) PB Teen
What: Teen version of Pottery Barn offering an entire collection of furniture and decor just for teens. Expect an exclusive range of furniture, bedding, lighting, accessories and gifts for every teen’s bedroom, study area, lounge space and more.
Where and when: Mid 2015 at Estancia Mall, Capitol Commons, Pasig
Owner: Stores Specialists Inc.

PB Teen

3) West Elm
What: Launched in Brooklyn NY in 2002, West Elm offers a complete assortment of products for the home including furniture, bedding, bathroom accessories, rugs, curtains, lighting, decorative accessories, dinnerware, kitchen essentials, and gifts.
Where and when: Between second and third quarter of 2015 at Estancia Mall, Capitol Commons, Pasig
Owner: Stores Specialists Inc.

West Elm

4) Maisen
What: Old school tonkatsu restaurant close to my heart because it is in the heart of Aoyama (walking distance from my friend Sayoko Hokazono’s store. Known for its deep-fried pork cutlets and sandwiches, the Aoyama restaurant has a variety of rooms including Japanese rooms, bars, and high-ceilinged western-style rooms.
Where and when: Opening third quarter of 2015 at SM Megamall, followed by SM North Edsa and Bonifacio High Street
Owner: Suyen Corporation/Bench group


5) Pablo
What: Originally from Osaka, people line up for its Baked Cheese Tart, which has a gooey creamy center. Choose your preferred firmness—medium or rare.
Where and when: Opening third quarter of 2015 at SM Megamall, followed by Robinsons Ermita and Greenbelt
Owner: Suyen Corporation/Bench group

Pablo cheesecake

6) Danish Bar
What: Founded in Japan in 2010, it is known for its baked goods—either cigar-shaped dough or balls that come in different variants—with apples, sugar, maple, hotdog, macadamia, chocolate, cinammon, and more.
Where: Opened this January at SM North Edsa’s Main Mall, near National Bookstore
Owners: Andrew and Beryl Ong

Danish Bar

7) Dean & Deluca
What: First opened in 1977 in SoHo, New York, the specialty food store has evolved into a café setting with additional locations in the US, as well as Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, South Korea and The Middle East.
Where: Opening this February in Rockwell
Owner: Caroline Tanchay

Dean & Deluca at Rockwell

8) Linda Farrow
What: Luxury eyewear brand established in 1970, known for its cutting-edge designs and collaborations with some of the world’s most acclaimed designers (Dries Van Noten, Oscar de la Renta, The Row, Matthew Williamson, Kris van Assche, Jeremy Scott among them).
Where: February 2015 at Power Plant Mall, Rockwell, and soon at City of Dreams Manila
Owners: Simon Jablon and Tracy Sedino

Linda Farrow

Wednesday Movie Nights at the Goethe-Institut

I’ve always wanted to go inside the Goethe-Institut in Salcedo Village because it looks so pretty from the outside and I’ve always wanted a library like this.

Photo: Grace Velasco

And now I have a reason to, as they screen German movies for free every Wednesday night.
Their current film series is called A Visual Tour Through German Literature, featuring film adaptations of various German literary works by authors such Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Erich Kaestner, and Daniel Kehlmann.
Just like their novels, many of these adaptations are highly acclaimed in the German cultural scene.
Wednesday Movie Nights are a permanent feature of the Goethe-Institut Philippinen.
The following 6 PM screenings are free and open to public:

January 28, 2015 — Der Blaue Engel (The Blue Angel)

The Blue Angel

February 4, 2015 — Das Fliegende Klassenzimmer (The Flying Classroom)

The Flying Classroom

February 11, 2015 — Nikolaikirche (Nikolai Church)

Nikolai Church

February 18, 2015 — Die Vermessung der Welt (Measuring the World)


February 25, 2015 — Der Turm (Part 1), (The Tower)
March 4, 2015 — Der Turm (Part 2), (The Tower)

Der Turm

Goethe-Institut Philippinen
121 LP Leviste Street, Salcedo Village, Makati
Tel. +63 2 840-5723 • 840-5724 • 817-0978 • 817-0979

Cibo’s welcomes the new year with 1997 prices

To celebrate the start of 2015, Cibo once again offers its best sellers at 1997 prices:

January 21 & 28 – Uva Nera at P50
January 22 & 29 – Crema di Zucca at P95
January 23 & 30 – Penne al Telefono at P175
January 26 – Tagliata di Manzo, Aglio Rosmarino at P195
January 27 – Spinaci Zola at P85


Available at all Cibo branches:
• Alabang Town Center (842-7285)
• Gateway Mall, Araneta Center (913-2426)
• Glorietta 4 (729-2426)
• Greenbelt 5 (758-2426)
• Eastwood Mall (470-2426) 
• Power Plant Mall (898-2426) and Cibo Bimbi (895-6426)
• Promenade Greenhills (727-2426)
• Robinsons Magnolia (642-2426)
• Shangri-La Plaza (633-2426)

The waiting game: an exercise in regret

Sorry to lay this on you, but I’ve been feeling bad ever since the Pope left the country.
Not because I miss him but because I had a horrible time waiting for him outside Villamor Airbase.
Obviously it is not the Pope’s fault. I have only myself to blame because I went there on my own free will.

When I heard the Pope was coming to Manila, I wished and prayed with all my heart that I would get to see him, that by some miracle a ticket would land on my lap or I would get an invitation somewhere.
Since none of that happened, I knew on the last day I couldn’t let him leave without saying goodbye.
So the night before he left, my friends Patrice, Grace and I decided to take a chance.
Grace slept over and I didn’t. I spent the night thinking and praying in the dark.
At 3:30 AM we got up, showered, dressed and picked up Patrice.
We had a nice breakfast at a 24-hour McDonald’s before proceeding to Villamor Airbase.
At some point the road was closed, so we got dropped off in front of Resorts World and walked on mud to find a good vantage point.

Waiting for the Pope

Our poor shoes, covered in mud.

Waiting for the Pope

We were there at 5 AM and I didn’t know how a restless person like me could stand staying put for the next 4.5 hours. We brought stools, so luckily we could sit down. It was fairly spacious at 5 AM.

Waiting for the Pope

But as time passed, more people came and tried squeeze in front of us and we didn’t like that.
They pushed and made us feel bad by saying hurtful words, when we were just protecting our right to our space, having been there hours before them.
The whole exercise made me feel scared and bad. I felt unsafe among my countrymen. But I couldn’t walk away because my driver wasn’t there and I had friends. I closed my eyes and prayed for strength and patience.
Some people dared to cross the water, not us.

Waiting for the Pope

Despite all our efforts to protect our space, look at all the people that managed to squeeze in front of us.

Waiting for the Pope

Around 9:30 AM—four and a half hours later—Pope Francis passed by in the Pope mobile. He was a sight to behold in white. He really looked like an angel. I tried to capture it on camera but didn’t want to stop looking at him.
So the footage I got was really shaky—a total of three seconds.

Pope Francis

Was it worth it? No. Because I was so scared the whole time trying to protect our spot from people who do not respect private space and who was there first.

Waiting for the Pope

If there were a crisis, like a war, a riot or a looting, I would not survive because I don’t have the strength or will to fight or steal.
After the Pope was out of sight, my friends and I walked to the Marriott Hotel. We were starving. Luckily there was a table for us at the buffet. Maybe I was just hungry or the food was really good!

Waiting for the Pope

Would I do it again? No. I would just watch it on TV. I was never good with large crowds. I don’t like crowded events. I don’t like queueing for hours. I’m just not built to last.
As my friend Miguel said, “Just go to the Vatican.”
Maybe I will. Or so I heard he is going to New York next year. But for now I am done chasing the Pope. I’m happy he was here, but I’m also glad it’s over. I’m so tired, exhausted and disappointed. I need to get my energy back and go to work.

P.S. I’m just thankful it didn’t rain on us. What the people in Tacloban, UST and Luneta went through—I can’t.
I do hope when the Pope blessed the crowd, it reached me, cause I sure need it. Thank you, Pope Francis.

Thanks for the visits!

Hello and thank you for the all page views during the last two days!
I hit 120,000 and 135,000, thanks to the hot men post I did recently.

Chuvaness stats

I’m still thinking about writing about my experience yesterday while waiting for the Pope to arrive at Villamor Airbase. But right now I’m too exhausted, disappointed, and traumatized and just want to move on.
I need time to reassess my feelings about the recent events, which started out good and ended badly.
So today will be spent buying odds and ends, going to my office, and taking care of work for my clients.
Wishing all of you a great week ahead. I would love to stay in bed and do nothing, but I need to move my ass.
Thank you for visiting my blog,

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