From NAIA to Narita
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I used to fly Northwest Airlines a lot during the ’90s, between Manila and New York, and I had forgotten how nice it was.
These days Northwest is known as Delta Airlines, and last January I received an email from Delta offering ticket sales that seemed too good to be true. Business class to Narita started at US$589, plus taxes of US$240, came to about US$829.
Last year Jeroen and I cancelled our anniversary trip to Japan because of Yolanda, so I thought this was a good time to go and see if I can get a three-year visa (I did!). Never mind that the weather is a bit too cold for me.
Last Thursday, we left the house at 5 AM and arrived a bit early at NAIA for our 7:45 AM flight.
Good news: the airport looks like it’s finally getting renovated.
Never mind the chairs and the carpet—these should be gone soon. We hope.


Those horrible souvenir shops and food stalls are now boarded up.


Hopefully to make way to better brands, edible food, and more international-friendly concepts (read: not native). Eek.

NAIA Terminal 1

The Delta flight was so pleasant! I am not a morning person. I did not sleep a wink because I had to wake up at 4:30 AM, so the flat bed seat with a view of my husband was really comforting to me.


I slept for most of the flight. Or I prayed even thought it was only slightly bumpy. I am still afraid of flying. But the flight attendants were so nice, like Badette who reads my blog and Stephen who is an old friend of ours.


Also met a reader named Gem or Jem who said hi to me before boarding 🙂
Travel tip: if you have a cold/cough, Drixine will be your best friend 30 minutes before landing.
Spray this into your nostrils to avoid painful eardrums and temporary deafness on the plane.


We landed safely at Narita, which was amazingly deserted. I have never seen this before.

Narita airport

This was after 12 noon. Why oh why??

Narita airport
Narita airport

I don’t understand

Narita airport

We got our luggage quickly and was out of there in minutes.

Narita airport

Is that why the tickets were on sale? Is everyone landing at Haneda instead?
Somebody please explain.

Pretty Diaz girls on HOLA! cover
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“We all have an innate sense of style. It’s something we’ve been exposed to and it’s influenced how we dress,” shares Martine Cajucom about her and her four cousins.
“It’s absolute madness every day, but I wouldn’t have it any other way,” adds 28-year-old model and host Georgina Wilson.
In a first for the Diaz family, the five stylish young women of the famous showbiz clan share a slice of their coveted lives in HOLA! Philippines’ Fashion Issue, now out on newsstands.

02 Diaz Girls

Also in this issue, HOLA! Philippines dresses up model and PR professional Apples Aberin in the latest sports inspired looks, chats with actress Lovi Poe and model, actor, and entrepreneur Fabio Ide; catches up with celebrated Filipino designers Mich Dulce, Boom Sason, and Francis Libiran; discovers a different side to Tweetie De Leon-Gonzales; and talks shop with the families of Mila Dayrit and Jul B. Dizon on their jewelry empires.

06 Mich Dulce
Mich Dulce

Also inside HOLA! Philippnes’ pre-summer offering are coverage of the season’s most exciting events—from Paris Fashion Week to the 56th Grammys, Tim Yap and Raymond Gutierrez’s birthday parties to Das Reyes and Bea Tantoco’s wedding, and, finally, The annual Zobel Cup.

Diaz girls

HOLA! Philippines is available in print (Php 160) and digitally via the Zinio app for only $34.99/year.
For more information email or go to

The new Louis Vuitton: a preview of things to come
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It was around 1997 when I purchased my first Louis Vuitton bag—an Amazone! It was the only thing I could afford at that time. It wasn’t until 2001 when Marc Jacobs created the Stephen Sprouse bags that I became officially obsessed. Takashi Murakami followed in 2002 and the love affair continued for a few more years until it became, well, tired.
I can’t tell you how many Louis Vuittons I’ve acquired. Many of them I have sold or given away, but I still keep some special ones.
Truthfully I haven’t found the brand that exciting, until they announced that Nicolas GhesquiĂšre (formerly of Balenciaga) was taking over Marc Jacobs’ position as creative director of the house of Louis Vuitton.

Nicolas GhesquiĂšre

Meanwhile my friends and I have been wondering what kind of change he can bring to the fashion house which had tuned American, pop, and J-Lo, under the direction of Marc Jacobs.
To answer our question, my friends, here’s a preview of things to come in Fall/Winter 2014-15.
A series of photographs, titled A Dozen Girls was recently photographed by Juergen Teller at the Louis Vuitton Headquarters in Paris.

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15
A patchwork zipped leather coat is worn with a Silver Épi Petite-Malle in its removable cover

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15
A leather knitted top is paired with and a printed moleskin skirt

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15
A crocodile zipped coat is worn with a Monogram Petite-Malle

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15
The beauty is in the details

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15
Black patent leather boots

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15
A brushed shetland coat with leather details and black patent leather belt is worn with an Alma bag in lambskin with diamonds drawing; a gold metal earring; signet ring and crystal rings; with black calf leather boots

Collection PrĂȘt-Ă -porter Femme Automne Hiver 2014-15

To see more of the new Louis Vuitton collection, click HERE.

How to revive an old chair
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I found this chair at Megamall and placed it in the boys’ room a few years ago. It wasn’t expensive but it is oh so comfy. The boys use it mostly while playing their video games on weekends.


It has seen better days obviously. I didn’t realize how ratty it was until recently.


Luckily I remembered to buy some fabric at Ikea Singapore last January. I chose a Dutch-looking print that would brighten up any kid’s room. I was about to dump it in the cart when the Dutch in-laws insisted on rolling it the proper way


Back in Manila I tried to search online for anyone who could reupholster a chair—and then I remembered my friend Kristine Dee who makes furniture apart from her own jewelry line.
Kristine is my go-to person when I need to resurrect some furniture pieces. She is so helpful!
The chair was picked up from our house and delivered a few weeks later. They did an amazing job!!


Not bad service for less than Php 2500—including pull-out and delivery.
If you’re looking for a great, reliable reupholstery service in Metro Manila, email
Thanks Kristine!!

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