16 March 2013

Summer at The Sofitel Hotel Manila - Club Room with a View

When you don't have the luxury to go outside Metro Manila but want to experience a five-star summer time, your best bet is The Sofitel.

It was my first time to stay in this luxury hotel so here I blog on how to make the most of it. Upon check-in, I was presented an offer to upgrade to a club room. The temptation was hard to resist after reading what's in store.

From my original booking of an Aqua View room, a standard room with a balcony and ocean view - I upgraded to a Sofitel Club Room at the 11th floor.

The club room gave us the privilege to check-in early at 12NN and a late check-out the next day at 4PM. From that alone, the upgrade as worth it. But there's more.

A club room comes with buffet breakfast for two at Spiral or Club Millesime (your choice), free refreshments whenever you please and how much you please at the club lounge including a magnificent spread of horderves for high tea and wine tasting from 5-7PM.

Waiting for his Apple Juice

Macs you can use at the Club Lounge (Millesime)

Club Millisime was always our fancy pitstop between meals and activities. You will love the feel of exclusivity and comfort here. Not to mention, the club staff were very welcoming and  attends to all of your needs.

Next attraction for us was the famous Sofitel lagoon. This was active with tourists, kids, and people toasting under the sun. My son loved the kiddie pool which was very shallow and not intimidating for kids his age. We enjoyed splashing and playing with other kids here.

The pool felt never-ending and has enough spots for families, kids, couples, etc. Trees afford visitors to swim anytime with a friendly shade. Plus, the natural sea breeze was just wonderful and lent a natural feel even when swimming in an artificial body of water.

Our stay also coincided with the Pyro Olympics and we had the best view from our balcony for the night. It was truly magical and I love the al fresco spot that I just keep the sliding doors open most of the time.

We celebrated and capped the night at Club Millesime, which turns into a very cozy place in the evening. Great spot to go for parents who want couple time sans the kids.

Next day was breakfast at Spiral. Make sure you get up early as the place gets pretty crowded. The choices were plenty but I expected more. One thing I like is how they had Korean choices like Kimchi early in the morning. Just my kind of treat to go with the traditional Tapa and Tocino.

Here, every spot has WiFi including our room which has complimentary internet access. Very easy to entertain yourself while digesting food or waiting for the next activity. Since we were given a lte checkout, we were unhurried on our 2nd day and afforded a relaxing morning along the bay. Just before we jumped into the pool again.

Manila bay never looked so exclusive. It was nice to have my son see it minus the crowd at Mall of Asia. It felt like the bay view belonged to us while we sat, walk, ran, and play around healthy patches of green grass.

There's also a mini playground in case your kids get bored of the view which I doubt. Ashton loved the driving fixture and dancing the Harlem Shake around the garden.

Exclusive check-out was a breeze from the 10th floor. I can get used to this "exclusive" treatment easily!

Overall, Sofitel is one expensive five-star hotel (at least for me and compared to others I've stayed in) but the memories created during our stay was worth every penny.

Highly recommended for: mini families. The absence of a nearby mall forces you to bond and enjoy nature which is a rarity these days :)

02 March 2013

SM Southmall 3 Day Sale's 3 Way Save

Fashion Walk at The SM Store

SM South Mall turned into a frugalista shoppers' playground today. Check out my previous post about their 3 Day Sale, 3 Way Save to find out why. As expected, the mall was packed with smart shoppers and I joined the club early today, armed with my mini calculator and inside my head, fashion inspirations for summer.

The SM Store - Soiree

Almost everyone's goal at The SM Store was to purcahse Php 2,000 worth of items. Not a surprise when you can get Php 100 worth of savings coupon for reaching the threshold. SO, with my 2,000 budget - my focus was super sharp on my favorite SM Store Brands - Soiree, Betty, Red Head, and Chill. 

The SM Store - Betty

Sweet dresses are the top trend this summer. Actually, if you choose classic styles then you can wear them all year round. I have a soft spot for dresses as they are super versatile and create a flattering, soft look.

Printed pieces from some of these brands were up to 50% off! I couldn't believe my eyes as they are not even off-season. It must be every shopper's lucky 3 days!

To break the monotony of classic styles in my wardrobe, I purchased a Red Head printed short dress. Originally, it was around P799. Now it's just about P400 after the 50% discount. Mission accomplished!

At Chill, I purchased a classic golden mustard textured dress that look so simple and stunning. I've been looking around for this. The price was P1,199 and it came with a slim belt. But wait! There was a class discount of 10% so I only paid P1,000 :)

Now, all eyes on Betty please. I just love this brand so much even if I just discovered it a couple of months ago. If you peak into my closet I have at least 3 Betty dresses now. The style is classic, sweet, and simple. Don't be fooled with 'simple' though because I just love dazzling it up with statement necklaces from SM Accessories. (I'll blog about this more later. Hint: their summer collection just launched!)

I seldom have a pink dress so I took the 3 day sale opportunity to grab one. Betty's prices are always affordable so I didn't mind that they were not slashed at all. P599.75 for my little pink dress, sweet!

Grand total of my dress shopping spree was P2,709 and this earned me my P100 savings coupon! It was very easy to claim near cashier 15 where I also claimed my raffle stubs. This was a first for me, I never experienced cash backs in my entire shopping life. I used the P100 savings coupon right away to buy discounted diapers for my son. Good mommy!

Of course, you have to be prepared when you come to the 3 day sale. So heads up to all of you going to the last day tomorrow - choose items you want to fit first, grab possible sizes, and fall in line at the fitting room.

There are several fitting rooms but with discounts this big, expect to fall in line. Wear flats and clothes that you can easily remove for effective fitting. If you have a Prestige or silver/platinum BDO rewards card - you get the privilege of not lining up.

All the wait was worth it for me with all the savings I made, not to mention my fantastic fashion picks :) So off I joined my partner and son to dine at The Black Canyon Coffee, located at SM South Mall's food street.

SM South Mall Food Street - Black Canyon Coffee's winning Pad Thai
See, we saved a lot so we could happily splurge and eat our favorite Asian fare.

Black Canyon Coffee's deliciously Japanese Katsu

Toy Kingdom was also on sale so we got Ashton a flashy Hotwheels ATV, complete with Disney Cars safety gear.

This day was such a winner, thanks for the extraordinary experience SM and I heard this won't be the last certainly. Now I'm on the lookout for the next SM Supermall to hold their 3 day sale, 3 wave save!

01 March 2013

SM Southmall 3 Day Sale on March 1-3

Is this the most exciting and generous 3-day sale ever? Look below for their 3 way save promo:

Lucky people who get to shop for the first 2 hours today! I will however, unleash my shopping monster tomorrow (weekend). Spend P2,000 and get P100 back from SM Southmall. Sounds like a plan!

Best thing to do before heading to a big sale really, is to learn the fine print and memorize all the good deals to be had. Talk about stretching your peso to the max. As you can see below, you can join this competition on Instagram and Twitter while you shop.

It won't hurt to join and win/save more right? Not sure what the prizes are but I can imagine SM Southmall giving away more shopping GCs or GCs from their partner establishments.

If you're in a hurry and social media is not your thing (which I doubt), then also join their onsite raffle to win 1 of their 3  Devant 50" Smart 3D TV. This is actually a very fun activity that you can share with other shoppers, find out where the draw will be held and join others in anticipation :)

Personally, it's time for me to grab some summer fashion essentials and there's no better time to do this than this weekend! See you all at SM Southmall and good luck in grabbing the best bargains plus many prizes!