Prague to Vienna - Wien, Austria

Leaving Prague...  I remember that I left my cellphone at the hotel.  We were already at the train station when I realized that my cellphone was not inside my bag.  Good thing we were very early and our hotel is very close to the train station.  We went back, asked the reception,  heart pounding, and he said not to worry, it'll still be where you left it...  He accompanied me all the way back to my room and while waiting for the elevator, which for me was utterly agonizing,  he said that if the housekeeping sees it, it'll be handed to them...  We finally reached our corridor, the room's door was widely open, the way I left it carrying my heavy luggage.  And to my surprise, my cellphone was sitting there, right where I left it.  The housekeeping hasn't cleaned our room yet.  
I almost hugged him.  I told him the hotel would get great reviews at TripAdvisor as soon as I get home.  Which I already did.  We stayed at Grandior Hotel.  

Prague Train Station

The train ride from Prague to Vienna is quite long...  About 6 hours...  If you are doing this, I suggest you take the first class.  About USD $100 higher than the regular fee.   It is not too crowded, plus it is next to a car with dining tables.  That way, we were able to sit in front of each other, dine, 
and chat, chat, and chat!

When we first reached Vienna, my first impression was, quiet, serene, we noticed that each and every building on the main road maintains one color scheme - beige, brown, and cream...
After checking in at Intercontinental Hotel, we walked through the gardens of Stadtpark. 

 It was drizzling that afternoon so we went to the other side of the park, heading towards the Cathedral.  It was about 2 kms walk from our hotel, and when we finally reached it, I was in deep awe.  I never thought it would be that big!  It's like a towering giant (about 500 ft).  It is still under construction, and as a matter of fact, it was never completed.  

It is located at Stephansplatz, where you can find all the shops, restaurants, and vienna sausages in carts.  Those sausages are to die for, and I am craving for one now!  

If you plan on going to Vienna, maybe it would be better if you stay at Stephansplatz.  It would cost a bit higher, but you don't have to walk to get to the main part of the city, this is where the life is!  

 Check this out...

Cafes and Shops

Cafes and Hotels...

Gelato carts... ahhhh....

Vienna is the capital of classical music which I truly adore.  Mozart lived his life here, so did Beethoven, Brahms, and Johanne Strauss.  The father of Psychology, Sigmund Freud,  and of course, who doesn't know the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt, who created The Kiss.

But most of all...  Marie Antoinette was born and raised in Vienna, Austria...  Her life story was believed to have changed the history of the world...  Oh well...  A different blog post for that one...

I met a lot of Filipino kababayans (fellow Filipino) living in Vienna and they seemed to be very happy. 
Most of them work as professionals.  

Vienna captured my heart...  It is such a romantic city... And as Billy Joel used to sing, when will you realize...?  Vienna waits for you...  

I'll be back Vienna...


Eastern Europe Trip Diaries - Manila-Dubai-Prague

You are welcome to read my Eastern Europe Trip Diaries...

On April 16, 2014, we, F4 as we call ourselves (Forever Four) headed to NAIA, the old Manila International Airport.  We expected heavy traffic, so we left around 6pm for our 12am flight.  It was one hectic evening since it is the beginning of a long vacation here in the Philippines.  A big crowd welcomed us as we enter the departure area by 8pm.

Inside, long queues for different airlines were all over the place.  People are getting mad, getting hurt, getting hungry, getting soaked in sweat...  It was real agony...  I feel so bad for the tourists...

Anyway, since we were flying Emirates, (via coach), we were able to check-in online the day before the flight, so our queue was not so bad...  I suggest you do the same, always check if your carrier provides online check in, it minimizes your queuing and waiting time.

We had time to fool around...  Three amongst us were wearing New Balance Sneakers...  Yes, they're bouncy, I didn't feel too much heel pain...

The plane was full, but we were seated at the emergency exits.  Emirates does not charge extra for those seats.

The flight was a little bit delayed, losing 1 hour of our journey...  Arrived Dubai around 6am, layover for about 4 hours.  We were given free food vouchers for the long wait...

Dubai airport is huge, we had to take trains and buses to get to our gates.  It's really busy and crowded, but nevertheless, it is still one of the best airports I've been to.

We finally reached Prague at around 3pm, Manila time around 7pm...  Imagine, we've been on our traveling clothes for 24 hours already...  Another sacrifice...

But then, our lack of sleep and restlessness didn't stop us from exploring Prague!

PG, Marnie, Me, and their goddaughter, Maria (F4)
Because there had been good and bad times for us...  Too many people tried to break our special friendship.  But they didn't succeed...  Because we are Forever Four...  Cheers!!!

Their famous beer in Prague, Pilsner Urquell

St. Vitus Cathedral

This is one of the oldest baroque church in Central Europe.  It's sad that there are many beautiful churches in Europe, especially here in Prague, but 75% of the people here are Atheist.  The remaning 25% are of mixed religion.

When you are in Prague, do visit The Church of the Infant Jesus, or known to us as the Sto. Nino.  He is dressed in lace but made of original porcelain in different colors, and possesses a very beautiful face of a child.

I love Prague.  It is one of the most beautiful cities I've been to...  I'll be back and bring some more love to you...

'Til my next post...  Vienna!!!


73 Questions answered by SJP

I find this interesting...  Honestly, I am more interested in her apartment more than her answers to the 73 questions.

And i'm pretty sure someone here from our local showbiz will do the same thing, i bet you know who she is! The queen of ???



Let's Get One Não!

Não is a portuguese word for No, Not, but can be used in different ways, and may also be used as "of course" or "sure"...  It is neither negative nor positive...  I just became curious of how did the owner name his colorful creation.  And the legend says it all...  Truly inspiring...

In the depths of Minas Geraïs, an arid region of Brazil, lived little Adilson. Tired of walking barefoot and hearing his poor mother always answer “Não” or “no” to each of his requests to buy shoes, he decided to make his own.  
Adilson picked up colorful leather, fabric, and rubber materials in the impoverished districts of Belo Horizonte and created his first pair.
Year after year of making new shoes for himself, his design and craftsmanship were improved, perfected, and caught the attention of others.  
When asked what name he calls his shoes, he immediately recalled his mother, and replied “Não” with an enigmatic smile on his face. 
Today, it is said that Adilson is a happy man, and at the head of a small business that manufactures thousands of multi-colored shoes that delight everyone who sees them.
Upon visiting it's first store in Asia at 3F Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall Bldg. D (new building beside Megamall), I was awed by the colorful contrasts of hues.  A shoe haven!!!

But you won't get overwhelmed because all you have to do is look for the rack of your size...  Then from your rack, you can choose the design you love...

I usually have problems in buying shoes...  But it seems that the problems are solved:

Problem # 1:  I have wide feet - 

Because the fabric is so soft, your feet aren't squeezed inside.

Problem # 2 - Because I am on the heavy side, I can't stand or walk for too long - 

It may be really flat.  But the cushioning is perfect.
Problem # 3 - I hate wearing closed shoes in hot places - 

The fabric has small holes that make it breathable, hence, air passes through in and out.

What more can I ask for?  So I got myself a pair and put it to a test...  I went to Singapore, (expect heavy walking under the sun) and visited 2 theme parks...  Mine is the white one and my daughter got the black and white combo...

The verdict:  Would I still write about it if it failed???  

I finally found what I need!!!   

Now I can get the other designs and wear different colors every now and then!

 Espadrille style

Young and Vibrant designs

The CAΪPΪ shoe line ( most famous)

 Even for babies!!!

And comfy slippers too!!!

Mid-cut / High-cut Styles

Oh, and the price???  You would be surprised to find out that it's way too low for the comfort it provides.  

Visit the store and experience the vibe and energy, you won't be disappointed, I promise...

3rd Floor
Mega Fashion Hall
SM Megamall Bldg. D

or visit their Facebook page for more info:

or follow on Instagram:


World Market

Staying at my sister's house makes me feel envious at her home stuff...  I always ask her where she got these and that...  So she took me to two of her most favorite home stores.  Our first stop was World Market.

This is a place where you can find everything you need for your room, library, living room, garden, and  most especially, for your kitchen...  Basically everything necessary...  

Take a quick look...

Here's where you can get your own packaging for your personalized gifts...

These soaps were the guests soap I have in my room provided by my DS.  I use it daily and it feels so gentle on my skin and smells heavenly...  I couldn't resist getting one or two (maybe five?) 
for myself.

 Christmas Chocolates... (they're fresh)

Christmas wrappers, decors, ribbons...

Food and different stuff from all over the world...

I now realized why my DS loves World Market, it has basically, everything you need...


Let me share to you my Freddy's experience...

They got me feelin' the 60's vibe...

I ordered chili cheesedog and fries...  The bread was unbelievably soft.  It is toasted, gives a little crisp as you bite on it.  The hotdog is made of very tender beef.  Well, for me, it's a typical American Hotdog, but the one that made it special is the bread, and of course their famous seasoning, which is a mixture of salt, pepper, and different secret spices.  The fries are thinly cut, which I think is a good thing, makes me guiltless... (as if i care)

Freddy joined the army, together with his brothers.   He stayed in several islands in the Pacific, and he even went to the Philippines.  This picture below was taken when he went back to the Philippines.

Have you ever tried a frozen custard???  Freddy's became famous in Coney Island because of these!

I think I'll be dreaming of this when I get back to Manila...  I am actually drooling right now...


A Light and Hearty Lunch!

We all love to eat.  Today, after having blueberry muffins with whipped butter for breakfast, (thanks Kyle!) we went to Red Rock...  It's a pretty nice place for hiking, biking, or if you just want to find inner peace and serenity, this is a place not too far from the sin city, but worth visiting just to get out of the hustle and bustle of the real chaotic world...

Isn't it marvelous to look at???  Thank you my BIL (pedro penduko) for the beautiful picture...

Since we felt a little closer to nature, we decided to eat something healthy for lunch, so we headed to Honey Salt Restaurant.

It is such a nice, cozy restaurant, with very friendly hosts and staff.  Upon entering the restaurant, I could already feel its warmth, and it vividly shows its commitment to ecosystem...  The first thing that I thought of when we sat at our table was the scene from Sex and the City series where the girls have their brunch meetings.

Here are some of the hearty lunch we had...

 Steak Salad

Beef Tacos

Elizabeth's Caesar Salad

The salads were superb!  The presentation is beautiful.  You should see their expediter work on your food before it is being served.  The expediter, for those of you who, like me, at first I didn't have any clue what it is, well, he is the guy who follows up on your orders to the kitchen.  Making sure that all the orders on your table are delivered simultaneously.  And if anyone in your party came in late, the expediter makes it a point to rush his order so he can join you all as you dine together...  A tough job, don't you agree???

So, if you are planning on going to Vegas, please do not leave by not trying Honey Salt Restaurant out...  I promise, you'll have one of your most unforgettable meals...  Oh, and they change their menu once a week...  They recycle their printed and obsolete menu and use them as ketchup liners, etc...

Oh, you should also try their hand scrub when you check out their restrooms...  It's heavenly!!!