Dubai Shopping Festival - A Journey to Remember Forever

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Bye January hello February!!!

Tomorrow is the beginning of a new month and I am so excited to face it even I am uncertain of what it can bring which I hope would be good luck and more blessings for all of us. February please be good to me. Well actually, my January wasn't so bad either even if I didn't win anything from so many raffle coupons I filled up this DSF, still I had a blast. DSF is one of my favorite months in Dubai because it is the time when one can actually buy stuff with bargain prices and enjoy the festivities with the family. Yesterday my kids had their first kite flying experience during the Dubai International Kite Fest 2015 and we really had a good time.

DSF has become a part of every expat life living in Dubai and all the tourist who comes here every year to join the festivities. My friend Ian have something to say about it and I would like to share it wit you. This is the core, the heart of DSF.

Dubai Shopping Festival - A Journey to Remember Forever
From A World Class Shopping Experience to a Global Masterpiece 
By: Ian Borromeo

Who would have thought that one festival can produce hundreds of exhilarating events, thousands of lingering smiles, and millions of lives changed? Dubai Shopping Festival is the quintessential celebration that vindicates the saying that in Dubai - nothing is impossible.

Amidst the glittering fireworks in the sky, from the birth of a new year, is the inauguration of Dubai Shopping Festival, a wide array of festivities that sparks and touches every human heart, not only for its world class shopping experience, but for instance, a loving father who was able to bought his son’s dream toy at a discounted price and made him feel like the happiest boy alive. It is not just about the glamorous musicals, but for instance, an old single lady, who found a new friend upon watching Mamma Mia! and said to herself, the next time she watches a musical or a play, she doesn't have to be alone again. It is not just about the fantastic list of events, but for instance, a family who found time to bond together, and watched The Smurfs comes to life on stage, that brought priceless smiles to their faces. It is not just the different products sold over The Ripe Market in Zabeel Park, but for instance, it is the saleslady who got promoted by her employer from selling a large number of chocolate pancakes and is now looking at a better future. It is not just the huge discounts from Market OTB, but for instance, it is the drive to support the campaign of sustainability, nurturing our nature and promoting a ‘greener’ world. It is not just belting the remarkable high notes of a Whitney Houston song, but for instance, at Rigga’s Got Talent, a chance to showcase the world, a nanny’s secret passion and talent for singing. It is not just the class and colours of art, but for instance, at Latin Art Festival, it is the artist who built more self-confidence when hundreds of people appreciated his eccentric piece of art. It is not just the enormous pavilions covered with bright lights at Global Village, but for instance, it is the 202 nationalities coming together in peace and harmony, sharing a good life in Dubai. It is not just the millions worth of prizes won at the raffles, but for instance, it is the taxi driver who won a diamond ring, and can finally ask the hand of the woman that she eternally loves for marriage or the 5 year old kid who won a car that granted her father’s ultimate dream or the grocer who won a kilo of gold that will better his future. 

Dubai Shopping Festival, aside from the wondrous festivities and offerings , is also a beacon of hope for everyone who believes that dreams do come true and is a pillar of strength for everybody that has faith that tomorrow will be a brighter day. Dubai Shopping Festival is an event to remember and a global masterpiece that unifies everyone, from all nationalities, from all walks of life in one city that we all love - Dubai. On February 1, 2015 - Dubai Shopping Festival will come to its conclusion and will come back next year, but is not about how the festival ended, it is never how it reached its destination - it is always this beautiful journey that victor hundreds of events, captured thousands of smiles and changes millions of lives - forever.

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A Romantic Escape this Valentines Day

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Celebrate LOVE and create unforgettable experience with your better half this Valentine’s Day. (cue romantic music)

Oops! No plans yet?

That’s easy, you still have two weeks and I think I can help you with that

BurJuman Arjaan by Rotana has a pump up their Romantic Package with all the perks you need to make this Valentine’s Day a lasting memory for you and your partner. Get ready to be blown away with this package because...

When you book a Romantic Escape, you and the love of your life can enjoy 

- a One night stay in a Classic Suite
- Special amenities upon arrival
- a Buffet breakfast for two at The Gallery Restaurant
- a Candle-light dinner in the privacy of your suite
- Special mocktails
- Rose petals and romantic setup in the suite
- Complimentary WiFi
- Cuddle until late because you can do a Late check-out

Lovely isn't it? Then what are you waiting for? Book now

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Per Te is For You

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There is a little bit of Italy in Jumeirah and it is called Per Te with which we had a privilege to see the grand opening two weeks ago.

It is just behind Jumeirah Plaza but getting there is a little tricky so follow the instructions carefully.

Take first right after Jumeirah Plaza, take right again and immediate take a left turn on the next street (12 C) and head straight until the road bends and there it is.

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Crab Craze at Benjarong Royal Thai Cuisine, Dusit Thani Hotel Dubai

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I love crabs. Actually I am crazy about it.

Back in the Philippines, I can eat two big fat steamed mud crabs alone but since it is rarely available here in Dubai I go for fresh water crabs and I can finish four or five in one sitting, depending on the size of it.

I don't know how to cook any other crab dish except for the easiest steamed crabs. I eat it with bare hands, dip the crab meat in a Filipino style vinaigrette which is just a simple mixture of palm fruit vinegar, crushed garlic, salt and pepper. Eat it with rice and I am a happy kid.

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The People of My Year 2014

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The year that was reminded me vividly of the importance of friends and family. It showed me the importance of living harmoniously, in living life the simplest possible way. It made me realize that freedom is something we earn and it is up to us how we allow ourselves to be in it. It reminded me that we must never forget our purpose why we are breaking our backs and slaving ourselves to work in a foreign land like this, day in and day out. It taught to be grateful and more gracious at the same time.

It's been thirteen days after we ushered the new year and we are down to three hundred fifty two days before the next countdown. Downright quick when you hear it but that is actually a year from now. 2014 was a bitter sweet year, there were extreme highs and extreme lows that prove to be life changing for us. Not everyone in my circle knows about it but this year was really rough and at the same time a great one too. Ultimately I thank God for giving me everything I need and everything I ask in his name and I still have tons of things to be thankful for.

This is the first time I am doing this on the blog. A simple  way of saying thank you to the people who helped me make 2014 a wonderful year whether they know it or not.

#1 Dinoh Dela Cruz

Dinoh Dela Cruz, eldest among us and my only brother
Very easy going, he always say "bahala na" but it doesn't mean he doesn't have a plan. A bit of a procrastinator sometimes but get things done. He did not finish his studies due to our financial difficulty back then but he did not allow it to be a hindrance to reach his goals and dreams. He is now managing a number of people and loved by his staff. A good provider and father to his only son. I couldn't thank him enough for the support he showed me during the stormy days of my 2014. He was there by my side to give his advice, to lend a shoulder to cry on,  he was there even just to listen. I look up to him not just a brother but also as a father, since dad past away he is our only father figure in the family.

#2 Jhoce and Jonathan Pena

Jhoce and Jonathan Pena
I don't know how she does it but she is able to juggle her work and family and still be good in both of it. With a bigger responsibility at work after getting her most recent promotion and with a bigger family now, you would thought she's got super powers. I am so proud that she is my sister, very loving, caring, thoughtful gracious and generous. Kuya Jo is her ever supportive husband who is always there for her. They say behind a man success is a woman and I say it's also vice versa, because behind a woman's success is a supportive husband and that's him. Thank you for loving my sister and taking care of her and your four beautiful kids.

#3 Ate Bhabes Roque

Ate Bhabes Roque
If there is someone I owe Prince's fun loving nature, it's my sister in law. Ate Bhabes is hubby's big sister. She was the one who took care of Prince from the day I needed to go back to work after my maternity leave until now. She also took care of Mica, my daughter, when she was small. She knows her way with kids, my son and daughter loves her and are happy to spend their time with her. The kids are never bored when with her. She actually took care of us all, without her it would have never been possible for us to live and work here in UAE in the last six years.

#4 Jeah and Ronnel Trinidad

Jeah and Ronnel Trinidad
I cannot ask for more, they are the best mare and pare I have. Jeah and I are colleagues for almost seven years now. I can still remember her telling me back in 2008 when we were still both new at our work that she will just save up and go back to the Philippines for good. I guess she fell in love with Dubai because instead of going back home after a year she even took the boyfriend in, now her husband Ronnel, whom we are very honored to have as Prince Godfather is very down to earth. Jeah and I are a tag team at work, we both cover each other's responsibilities in the absence of the other. She is like my sister from another mother, love her just like a little sister that I never had. Very trustworthy and a very good listener.

#5 Maher Safadi

Maher Safadi
I never met a person as complicated as Maher but I respect him a lot and I learned a lot of things from him especially about decision making which is his strongest point. I do enjoy working with him and it's actually a bit boring in the office when he is not around, yes a bit of a joker he is. He's one of my mentors, also someone I consider a true friend. Whenever I feel lost or I feel down, I would come to him and a simple word of wisdom would make things a lot better. He was always ready to listen and I feel comfortable sharing with him my personal life. At work, particularly at the office, he will give you his all out support and will be there to guide you all the way.

#6 Roselle Pinkihan and Grace Fujimaki
Roselle Pinkihan and Grace Fujimaki
I met them almost at the same time about a couple of years ago. I was already following their blogs even before we met. Their blogs are just as awesome as them in person. They both invited me to a number of events and introduce me to some of their existing pr friends in Dubai. That was the beginning of my active blogging life which saw me attending quite a number of events last year. Most importantly, we all became friends.

#7 Qing Juan Saloon

I got loads of compliments with my new hair style and Sky of Qing Juan Saloon was the one responsible for it. He was really good in what he does. I just showed him the photo of the hair style that I like and he exactly know what to do with my hair. It turned out really good and I swear that if I want really good curls, I will only come back to him. Recently, I learned that he is one of the founding members of one of the popular Chinese saloon in the UAE and one of the best hairstylist from their group.Unfortunately I don't have a photo of him but if you would like to see the work that he did for me please click here. Sky of Qing Juan Saloon

#8 Katinas

He is the feline friend we took in when his person went for a vacation. His stay with us was unforgettable because it was the first time the kids had a chance to take care of a pet. Although it was just a couple of weeks, I am sure it is an experience that my children will never forget.

#9 My Mom Concepcion Dela Cruz

my mom
She has always been my constant source of strength. Even I don't see her and even if I haven't seen her for quite a while, I still draw strength from her. Her life in itself is a motivation for me. Whenever I am feeling so low, I just think of her and how she dealt with all life difficulties when we were small and I would say to myself that I can do anything because the life that we have now is abundant and so far from where we used to be before, it is a lot better now. I owe her my life and I will forever be indebted to her. I have only one mother and I will forever love her.

#10 my family (Ferald, Mica and Prince)

There is just one thing I wanted to say about this lot, they are the wind beneath my wings. They complete me and I would never trade them for anything until my last breath.

So there you go, the 10 people that top my list for 2014. What about you who are the people of your 2014?
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A FREE 3-month ICFLIX Premium Subscription awaits you this DSF

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Hello everyone, a very Happy New Year to all of you.

However way you did ring the New Year, I am sure it is a spectacular one. Here in Dubai, we have once again saw the tallest building in the world lit up the sky with an addition of another record entering the Guinness World Records with the largest illuminated fa├žade. Yes it was grand!!!

While I still feel some Dubai fireworks hangover and as I sort out my new year’s resolutions, the much awaited Dubai Shopping Festival kicks off on the very first day of 2015. I love DSF because there are tons of promotions and big discounts and we will see a month long shopping extravaganza.

Did I say promotion? Oh yeah! Please allow me bring you some good news to start your new year in a positive note.
Did you know that ICFLIX (pronounced as I-see-flix) is partnering with Microsoft to bring consumers a special treat from the very first day of 2015?

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