Saturday, April 25, 2015

A real wedding in Cebu (Church ceremony and banquet)

weddings
I recently attended a wedding in Cebu -a church wedding followed by a wedding banquet. I was curious to find that the wedding has plenty of similarities to our Singapore style Chinese wedding in particular the banquet and its sequence. However, my evaluation is probably biased as i understand the bride is of Chinese descent.
weddings

The Cebu wedding surpasses my expectations on several counts, an impressive travel themed decor. It was even more luxurious than our local Singapore hotel's set up. Good range of food served like crabs, fishes ( yes, you read it correct fishes, not one fish), noodles, pork knuckle and the best mantou i ever eaten. The photo booth set up is also much more professional like a corporate set up with a fixed camera station. Live music and singer also entertained us throughout the dinner.

travel theme, wedding
live music that adds the oomph factor

Some of the differences observed are drinks (different types of soft drinks, drink water) are placed on the table for the guests to help themselves. There is however no dinner menu which i can refer. At the end of the banquet, the guests happily took away the wedding decorations either the entire floral table set up or selected flowers types they prefer.
weddings

I enjoyed the dinner much more than anticipated and with this positive experience, i am much more open to attending another overseas wedding.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Ellie Goulding - Your Song

I just can't get this song out of my mind. Fell in love with it during Moulin Rouge movie ions ago. Ellie's voice is the perfect to peform this song.




Monday, April 13, 2015

Ellie Goulding - How long will i love you?

I'm recently very into songs sung by Ellie Goulding, mainly because of her voice way before her song "Love me like you do" keep playing on radio. If you're wondering what is "love me like you do", its one of the theme songs in 50 shades of Grey movie.

Her voice is hauntingly melodious but SO thinks her voice is gruff. Nevertheless, i like the texture and feel. This is especially true for the way she sings this song (How long will i love you) making this song the perfect candidate to sing or to play during weddings.


There is a short video on this song titled "Tom and Issy". If you're interested, you can see more of the story below.
 
Buy this album from AMAZON Halcyon Days [2 CD]

Friday, April 10, 2015

Australia - Tasmania / Melbourne - Day 10 (Part 2 - To do/see, to stay, to eat)

To do:
Random City Tour

Today is free and easy city tour taking the Free City Circle Tram Route 35 serviced by heritage W class trams decorated in special maroon and green with yellow and gold trimmings.. An audio commentary provides details of city landmarks and major attractions such as the City Museum, Parliament House, Docklands, Federation Square, Melbourne Aquarium and the Princess Theatre.

Our first stop for the day is the Queen Victoria Market, highly recommended by his friend who used to study in Melbourne. I don't know why. Since we have no inkling what else to do we decided to give this place a try. I love the seafood sold there i.e the abalone, scallops etc so cheap and fresh. They even sell beef tongue here! and boy its was huge!
City tour
Due to time constraints we can only visit one more place of interest and we decided to look around the library and its packed with students studying. Apparently seat hogging is pretty common here as well (i.e students leaving their belongings on the seat but no person can be seen). But besides the library, there are art works which reminds me of the Louvre in Paris. There are so many reading rooms and intermingled among them are works of art. I am quite blown away by all this because by perception i always thought the library should only house books and seating areas. It just shows how young Singapore is as a country. I will definitely recommend Singaporeans to take a look at this library.
 
To Eat:

The Grain Store
 - 4.5 stars, mid-range

Ground floor, 517 Flinders Lane, Melbourne, Victoria 3000 Australia
The Grain Store
And we eat and drink and eat and drink and eat. This is a yummylicious cafe that makes me go ga-ga. All the dishes served are so well presented and furthermore the food is delicious. The coffee taste so good as well. Awesome!!!

Sadly we don't see alot of very good food with very good coffee pairings in Singapore. I will gladly move this food place locally.

All Must trys(all the food we eat).
Black forest Gateau
Portobello Mushroom and Gruyere potato rosti
Bacon steak with fried onion rings
Ricotta and passion fruit pancakes (i might have remembered wrongly for this dish)

Just writing this is already making me drool. So you can bet this is real good deal.

Manchester Press - Unrated
8 Rankins Lane, Melbourne, Victoria 3000 Australia

The Hardware Societe - Unrated
118-120 Hardware St, Melbourne, Victoria 3000 Australia

To move around:

Tasmania:
Recommend to drive around yourself. For us, we rented a car from Hertz with GPS. The GPS works quite well for us though there are times its unable to identify the place of interest. That's when you have to depend on the signages and interpret.

Alternatively, get a travel agent to help plan your itinerary with driver.

Melbourne: 
Take the airport SKYBUS 2-way to save on transport cost form airport to Melbourne CBD.
Take the free city tram service 35 to move about the city


Saturday, April 4, 2015

Australia - Tasmania / Melbourne - Day 9 (Part 2 - To do/see, to stay, to eat)

To do:
Great Ocean Road


Great Ocean Road

We arrived right on dot at the pick up point at Federation Square East and within minutes a long line started to form behind us. I nearly forgotten we haven't yet paid and immediately went to the empty cashier counter while SO queued in line for the seats. Soon after, the cashier queue is also jammed up.
Great Ocean Road

Phew! We are lucky to get a window seat on the left at upper deck. Remember to take the window seat on the left as this is where you can see the ocean views.

Great Ocean Road

The ocean road coastal views is as good as i remembered. Some of the places we stopped are the Twelve Apostles,Gibson Steps, Loch Ard Gorge, Island Arch and Razorback. The timing stops at Gibson, Loch Ard Gorge, Island Arch and Razorback is tight and requires very brisk walking but i love the excercise after a long bus ride.
Great Ocean Road

Great Ocean Road
I don't remember the Gibson steps and Razorback stops from my previous trip but then again i took this tour like at least 10 years ago. Its good to write this blog so i can read and reminisce years down the road and say wah i did this!

To Eat:

Y&J cafe
- 2.5 stars, mid-range

Swanston Street, Melbourne, Victoria, 3000
Y&J cafe
Food is not too bad but the wait for the food is long. Don't order if you have a musical or something as we saw a table where some of the food is not completely served after an hour and they have to cancel their order or miss their show. I not sure if this is standard wait time but every where is packed on Friday night. This is one of the cafes that have a table without at least an hour wait time.

Movida Bar de Tapas - unrated
1 Hosier Lane, Melbourne, Victoria, 3000

Tip: On friday nights reservation must be made in advance to avoid disappointment in the CBD. The popular places are packed to the brim.