Monday, February 29, 2016

Repertory Philippines : Almost, Maine

Oh yes, love is on the air! Almost, Maine can make you laugh and love again...

By Joy Virata

“Mythical... sometimes fantastical” are the words that director Bart Guingona uses to describe Repertory Philippines’ new production “Almost, Maine” which opens at the Onstage Theater in Greenbelt 1 on February 19. Set in an imaginary town of Almost in the state of Maine, USA, nine unusual love stories unfold.  Four actors play the different characters of each story.  “The stories are mythical, yet real— simple, yet profound” Mr. Guingona continues.  “John Cariani, the playwright, takes a cliche and turns it over on its head by making it literal”.  Almost, Maine is a gentle, funny, play involving real people dealing with affairs of the heart. “Cute will kill it” warns the author (himself an actor) and the actors play their parts with complete truth letting the strangeness of the characters, the dialogue, and the absurd situations create the comedy. 

“I had a hard time choosing the cast”, said Mr. Guingona.  “Almost, Maine” is an acting bonanza and many actors read for it.  Many were good but I had to mix and match ages, physical appearances, and types.”  This is understandable since the actors play different characters and interact with one another in different ways in the different stories that seamlessly blend into each other.

Finally four REP veterans were chosen.  Jamie Wilson (recent ALIW Awardee for his work in Run For Your Wife and part of REP’s retinue of actors since he was eight); Reb Atadero, (The Graduate, Altar Boys, Sweeney Todd);  Caisa Borromeo (The Secret Garden, Little Women);  and Natalie Everett (The Secret Garden, The Game's Afoot).

“They have good chemistry” said Mr. Guingona who, according to his actors, gave them the freedom to create, to take chances, to be courageous, to “mess up”, and finally to “eliminate all of the wrong and discover the right.”  Their task was to create different people, living in the same small town, on the same day, taking different spiritual journeys. “It was daunting” they agree and they approached their roles with a certain element of fear. Yet they found it exciting as well. They enjoyed the humour, the surprises, and the many magic moments — often irresistably laughing themselves as they watched or rehearsed each story.

February is Valentine’s month.  Almost, Maine offers lovers of all ages and stages the chance to celebrate it with a feel-good play that is funny, heart warming, and that focuses on the best of human nature.

Almost, Maine plays Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:00 and Saturday and Sunday matinees as 3:30 until March 13 at the Onstage Theater in Greenbelt 1, Paseo de Roxas cor. Legazpi St., Makati City. For tickets and reservations call Repertory Philippines at 8433570 or Ticket World at 8919999.  For information about the play log on to or visit REP’s Facebook page. Ticket prices range from P400 to P800. It is in English.

DreamWorks: KUNG FU PANDA 3 in Cinemas on March 9!

I am a fan of cartoons and one of my favorite is none other than KUNG FU PANDA. I have watched the 1st and the second ones at least multiple times together with my 7 year old daughter and yet it can still make us laugh and enjoy every moments. This is a feel-good movie to bring your family together for a movie bonding.

In 2016, one of the most successful animated franchises in the world returns with its biggest comedy adventure yet,  KUNG FU PANDA 3.  When Po's long-lost panda father suddenly reappears, the reunited duo travels to a secret panda paradise to meet scores of hilarious new panda characters.  But when the supernatural villain Kai begins to sweep across China defeating all the kung fu masters, Po must do the impossible, learn to train a village full of his fun-loving, clumsy brethren to become the ultimate band of Kung Fu Pandas.

You'll never go wrong with this 3rd one. Still awesome and hilarious! I'm so glad to have watched it at the press screening last Saturday at the IMAX SM Megamall. I enjoyed the big screen and the 3d effects! This movie should be seen in IMAX! My daughter had a blast wearing her 3d eye glasses with her new-found friends!

They had so much fun watching with their 3d eye glasses on. Is it so redundant? Really, even I myself enjoyed this IMAX 3D! I am telling you, this movie is best seen in IMAX! Totally awesome animation! My daughter told me that her favorite part was when the stones and rocks went through her face and her friends. Kung Gu Panda may be a simple story for kids and adults but it surely rocks the kids in us. The bunch of pandas made the story more interesting and stunning! Po's pure heart never fails to mesmerize me...

I don't want to give so much of the hints...better watch it yourself. All I can say is that, Be the best you!

Here's the trailer!

Just for you to have an idea...Here are the characters voice over.

Jack Black as Po (voice)

Angelina Jolie as Tigress (voice)
Dustin Hoffman as Shifu (voice)
Jackie Chan as Monkey (voice)
Seth Rogen as Mantis (voice)
Lucy Liu as Viper (voice)
David Cross as Crane (voice)
James Hong as Mr. Ping (voice)
Bryan Cranston as Li (voice)
Kate Hudson as Mei Mei (voice)
J.K. Simmons as Kai (voice)

Catch KUNG FU PANDA in theaters nationwide on March 9, 2016. 

Monday, February 22, 2016


Aquabest, the country's premier water station franchise is reaching out to its local community by opening a soup kitchen for indigent people.

Witness every Friday afternoon, the company operates a soup kitchen dispensing hot meals to the poor at its head office along Quezon Avenue. Since it started operating this February, the soup kitchen regularly serves dozens of underprivileged people.  

The soup kitchen is part of the company's efforts to give back to society and is a reflection of the Christian values that underpin the company's operations. "As a company we have to strive to make a positive influence in our community. And our efforts here however small can help our underprivileged brethren that other people still care about them" says Carson Tan the company's President and CEO.

 What a noble gesture.  Giving and sharing will never go outdated.  

Friday, February 19, 2016

Lazada PH on Mobile Commerce: We shop like we Facebook

Why spend your valuable time travelling and getting stuck in the traffic just to get what you want from the mall? Lazada Ph is just a click or touch away for your convenient effortless shopping. You'll never go wrong shopping online using your handy mobile phone. You can simply download The Lazada Mobile App and you are good to go!

According to Facebook, social media apps (FB / Instagram) are intuitively formed for bite sized discovery and snacking of content. With Filipino smartphone user habits primarily shaped by social media consumption, it is no surprise, that Filipinos' mobile shopping habits have similar patterns.

Massive small buys, on small screens
The average cost of an item purchased on the Lazada mobile app is 15​% less than items purchased via desktop. But this lower average spend is easily offset by the massive growth of the app portal, up 400% from 2014. This massive growth of m commerce mirrors the Philippine digital landscape where mobile devices are the first and primary source of digital access.

Low cost categories give more reason to browse
According to internal Lazada data, the most popular product categories for app purchases are: Beauty Tools, Food Supplements, Portable Audio, Kitchen & Dining, Small Kitchen Appliances, Diaper & Potty, and Fragrances. The nature of these low cost categories is that they do not have intimidating price points and therefore give more opportunity for product discoveries. In fact consumers spend 67% more time in browsing Lazada through the app versus desktop.

This low cost behavior has similarities to short form content consumption on popular platforms like Youtube, and Facebook. Short videos, gifs, and images, all have relatively low demand on time and bandwidth thus encouraging discovery and consumption of multiple pieces of bite sized content. We snack on content in the same way we browse for good deals: one scroll at a time.

Dead Time is Deal Time
Just as checking social media through your mobile has become a habit during breaks, so too has mobile or app commerce and total traffic peaks during break times. 9am, 12 noon and 8pm, all show peaks in browsing and purchase quite similar to mobile social media consumption peaks.  This habitual browsing makes Lazada mobile app users 10% more loyal in terms of repurchase vs. non-mobile purchases.

Free time is so pivotal to increase shopping behavior that Lazada actually targets key holidays for its major sales like the recently concluded Chinese New Year and the upcoming Mobile Power Sale from February 25-28, featuring app-exclusive deals. Lazada will also celebrate its 4th anniversary from March 15-18, with birthday blowout specials on the mobile app.
Ubiquity makes it utility
With 3G smartphones projected to have 100% penetration by 2020, and the constant stream of free content from service providers like Globe, we can expect more and more Filipinos immerse themselves in social media and m-commerce through mobile apps. Content partnerships with Disney and NBA can potentially open up more premium purchasing behavior.

Just as Facebook has become the default utility for friends to keep tabs, how Youtube has emerged as the third big “TV network,” how Video On Demand services like HOOQ and Netflix have become the new cable, so too will m-commerce emerge as the other big player in Philippine retail.
It makes more and more sense for companies, especially those who thrive on the 'tingi' or “sachet” mentality, to consider​ app-​commerce, as a priority distribution channel. The consumer predisposition to small, frequent purchases and the active pursuit for best value via the app makes it very likely that Pinoys will check out the latest sale just as quickly as they check out their latest social media status updates.

Here's a Sneak Peek during the Lazada's M-Commerce Media Launch & Office Tour 
Client partner from Facebook Ross Wakeham

Globe VP for Consumer Group Mobile Data Services Jenny Echevarria
G-Cash CEO Albert Tinio

Fashion Entrepreneur Rajo Laurel
It Boy LA Aguinaldo
It Boy LA Aguinaldo and It Girl Kelsey Merritt 
with Lazada PH Chief Marketing Officer Tristan de Belloy

Team Lazada: PR & Branding Analyst Jio Zorrilla, 
Senior Markerting Manager Mila Jimenez
Chief Marketing Officer Tristan de Belloy
PR & Media Manager Arvi Lopez

Lazada PH CEO Inanc Balci

The intimacy of the personal smart device, and prevalent social media snacking behavior, has generated a new form of shopping​: Mobile Snack Shopping.

About Lazada
Lazada ( is Philippines’ largest online shopping mall and is pioneering e-commerce by providing a fast, convenient and secure online shopping experience combined with an extensive product offering in categories ranging from mobiles & tablets and consumer electronics to household goods, toys, fashion and sports equipment. Lazada is continuously striving to offer its customers the best possible shopping experience with multiple payment methods including cash on delivery, extensive warranty commitments and free returns. Lazada mobile applications for Android, iPhone and iPad provide additional convenience to its consumers’ allowing them to shop anywhere, anytime.

For more information, please visit For updates on Lazada’s latest innovations, as well as activities, contests and promotions, connect with us via Facebook (

Friday, February 12, 2016


Here's another major SALE to go gaga with! The Made for You Marketing Group is inviting everyone to our grandest marked down event entitled The BIG BRAND Clearance Sale happening on February 15-21, 2016 (Monday to Sunday) at the Binondo State Center Building, J. Luna St., Binondo, Manila.
Be thrilled to grab your favorite international and local brands are pushing their clearance items out with discounts of up to 80% off. Also, catch the awesome collaboration of your favorite shoe brands under one roof! Everyone will try to start this Year of the Red Monkey by getting those awesome bargain prices! 
Here are the featured brands: 
Nike Air Max 
Under Armour
Daniel Wellington
PX Box
Digital Walker
Adidas Body Care
Playboy Fragrance
Juicy Couture
Nina Ricci
CAROLINA HERRERA and more premium brands!
So, let us all plan your days ahead, bring your family and friends and have a grand shopping spree without burning your budget! 

The sale is open daily from 10:00am to 7:00pm. See you all in Binondo!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Safety Measures in owning an iRover

Displaying irover edited photo 1.jpg

"With great power comes with great responsibility"– Ben Parker

Here's the new craze in town! 

Who will not fall in love with the stylish and frolicsome appeal of iRover that maybe mistaken as a toy. It is apparent to many that your futuristic iRover/hoverboard is fun to play with, but it is far from being a toy.

As per DTI’s consumer’s safety requirement, it should be clear to hoverboard enthusiasts that the gadget is intended for age 14 and above. We need to realize that we should exercise proper care when using anything that has 2-wheels. Protective gear such as helmet and wrist guards, elbow and knee pads should be worn whenever onboard a hoverboard.

Safety precaution for first-time users includes:

1.The user should be in front of a sturdy handle to achieve balance in riding the iRover. 
2.Test your balance by slowly leaning back to move backwards. 
3.Gently lean forward to thrust in a slow mode forward. 
4.For novice users, always start working on a slow and steady pace until conquering the iRover.
Displaying helmet iRover.jpg
Don't forget to wear your helmet!

5.In maneuvering towards left, slightly put weight on the right portion of iRover, while in turning right the left portion should bear more weight.
Displaying iRover elbow and knee pad.jpg
Elbow and knee pads
Battery Recharging is 6 hours and should be done with extreme caution. Presence of an adult should be sternly considered while youthful exuberance are being displayed by the youngsters. It is also advisable that iRover should ideally be for indoor use only.

Your one-stop media provider secure its consumers the necessities in owning an iRover like the do’s and don’ts, offshore manufacturer and store. Thus, should be clearly seen and stipulated on the box.

Achieve balance everyday, own an iROver ! Visit any CD-R King branch or website to find out more.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

STI holds youth convention for innovators

Known driven to motivate young minds and future innovators, STI Education Services Group, Inc. (STI) gathered over 28,000 STIers from Metro Manila and nearby regions during the 21st STI National Youth Convention (STI NYC) from February 1 to 5, 2016 at the Aliw and Star Theaters, Star City Complex in Pasay City. 

With the theme #iWillLeadInnovation, STI NYC set the stage to spark creativity and inspire innovation as industry movers and shakers shared their valuable insights and practical lessons about productivity, competitiveness, and knowledge on the current trends. Designed to foster youth developments, this year’s STI NYC focused on the latest creativity and innovations in various fields that are relevant to the job market today.

Our students live in this age where applicable knowledge of innovation is an edge. The qualifications industries look for are always taken a notch higher and students need to have a gift for creativity and originality. We fuel our students with the capability to innovate by expanding beyond the classroom and inviting mentors who are mavericks in their respective fields. These mentors, by giving their imaginations full rein, have discovered several ways to make innovation possible and pass their knowledge on to future creators. That is why the NYC is a valuable experience — it extends our students’ horizons of the real world,” shares STI President and CEO Monico V. Jacob

Mr. Monico V. Jabob, President/COO, STI Education Services Group, Inc., delivering his welcome remarks last February 03, 2016 (3rd day).
The event was graced with the presence of some of the speakers who delivered their talk in the youth convention were David Tapang of Microsoft Philippines; Joey Ayala, award-winning singer-songwriter and artist; Michael Angelo Lobrin, best-selling author, and TV and radio personality; Spanky Enriquez, social media celebrity; Weena Cortes, Managing Director of ConsultAsia; Pocholo Gonzales, radio broadcaster and CEO of Creativoices; Arun Gogna, Founder and President of Creative House, Inc.; Goldy Yancha, Associate Director of IdeaSpace Foundation, Inc.; and Dr. Ricky Bunag, an IT mentor from STI College – Bacoor to name a few. These individuals leveraged creativity and innovation to transform and make an impact in their respective industries. Their stories offered important lessons on technology­-driven innovation, adaptability, and productivity, among others.

Joey Ayala, award-winning singer-songwriter and artist
The convention opened with the topic #iWill Lead: The Innovator’s Character which looked into the DNA of an innovator, his qualities, and attributes. It was followed by a talk that focused on the variety of tools an innovator can use to become creative and productive with the topic #iWIll Innovate: The Innovator’s Creativity. Lastly, #iWill Rise: The Innovator’s Spirit stimulated the students’ flexibility to the ever-changing world, especially with the challenges brought by the ASEAN integration.

The 21st STI NYC kicked off in Baguio City on December 8, 2015 and already travelled to different key cities nationwide including Mo2 Hotel Grand Ballroom in Iloilo on January 5, Garden Royale Bacolod on January 7, and CAP Auditorium in Cebu City on January 12. After its Manila leg, the convention will go to Green Leaf Hotel in General Santos City on February 24 and CAP Development and Convention Center in Davao on February 26. It will culminate on March 3, 2016 at the SM City Cagayan De Oro.

The STI NYC is an annual congress that spans for more than 20 years where thousands of STI students from all over the country expand their knowledge in their chosen fields of study as part of their training to become job-ready and life-ready in the constantly growing professional world.


STI Education Services Group, Inc. is owned by the publicly listed company STI Education Systems Holdings, Inc. (PSE SYMBOL: “STI”). STI remains committed to providing education for real life for over thirty years now with highly-relevant academic programs in the fields of Information & Communications Technology, Business & Management, Tourism & Hospitality Management, Engineering, and Arts & Sciences. More information on STI is available at

CCF to Host Night to Shine Prom for People with Special Needs

Pasig, Philippines – Christ’s Commission Fellowship (CCF) announced that they will serve as one of the more than 100 churches around the world that will host Night to Shine sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation simultaneously on Saturday, February 13, 2016. Night to Shine is an unforgettable prom night experience, centered on God’s love, for people with special needs, ages 14 and older. This worldwide movement is already set to take place next year in 41 states across the nation and 7 countries around the world…and the numbers continue to grow!

Every guest of Night to Shine will enter their prom on a red carpet complete with welcoming friendly paparazzi. Once inside,  guests will receive VIP treatment including hair and makeup stations, corsages and boutonnieres, a DJ plus live music and of course, dancing!  The highlight of the night will come when every one of the Night to Shine guests is crowned as a king or queen of the prom.

“We are honored to be able to work with so many churches across the county and around the world to impact the lives of people with special needs,” said Erik Dellenback, executive director of the Tim Tebow Foundation. “After such an amazing response to the inaugural event held in 44 locations earlier this year, our prayer is that this event will one day change the face of Valentine’s Day weekend from simply a celebration of love, to a celebration of God’s love for people with special needs.”

As sponsor of Night to Shine, the Tim Tebow Foundation will provide each host church with a detailed instruction manual, a Prom Kit complete with decorations and gifts for the guests, financial support and individualized staff guidance.

During Night to Shine 2015, 44 hosts churches and 15,000 volunteers worked together to honor the more than 7,000 kings and queens of the prom. This year, the host churches are expected to see more than 20,000 people with special needs at prom all at one time around the world.

 For more information on this worldwide movement and to support the continued growth of Night to Shine with a donation, visit: TimTebow Foundation - Night to Shine

 For additional information on the Night to Shine hosted by {CCF}, visit UNIQUE, the CCF Special Needs Ministry CCF Unique Ministry and on Facebook CCF Unique.

The Tim Tebow Foundation exists to bring Faith, Hope and Love to those needing a brighter day in their darkest hour of need. That mission is being fulfilled every day through the foundation’s seven areas of outreach, including W15H, Timmy’s Playrooms, Orphan Care, Adoption Aid, the Tebow CURE Hospital, Team Tebow and Night to Shine. For more information on the ...

Tim Tebow Foundation, please visit

Christ’s Commission Fellowship – MISSION - Our mission is to make committed followers of the Lord Jesus Christ.  “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations…”  Matthew 28:19

Unique, CCF Special Needs Ministry – MISSION - Through God’s love we seek to disciple families affected by disabilities by inspiring, informing, including and involving them in the Body of Christ

Essential Internet Safety Tips for a Secure Online Experience for Students

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