International performer to help raise funds for Pinoy performing arts community

Acclaimed international theater performer and recording artist, Hayden Tee is lending his talents to help raise funds for displaced workers of the performing arts community in the Philippines. He will be spotlighted in PalabasTayo’s “After Party” an online series featuring conversations with artists on Friday, 24 April 2020.

Tee was recently in the Philippines playing Ms. Trunchbull in the Manila run of Matilda the Musical tour. Sadly, due to the enhanced community quarantine, the show that was supposed to run until March 22 at The Theater at Solaire was canceled a week after it opened.

The touring cast members from the Royal Shakespeare Company had to fly back to their respective homes before the Manila lockdown took place. Tee had to fly to New York before flying back to his home in New Zealand, and like most people who traveled to COVID-19 affective areas, he had to do self-quarantine for several days.

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Starbucks re-opens select Drive-Thru Stores in PH

Update: 4/9/2020

Due to the overwhelming reception, Starbucks PH has decided to pause operations of its drive-thru stores to support the government’s enhanced community quarantine protocols.

4/8/2020 It has been almost a month since the Community Quarantine started in Luzon. At this point, we are all looking for some semblance of normalcy and what is more normal than having that daily coffee fix from Starbucks!

Well, good news! Starting April 8, select Starbucks stores will open to serve you via Drive-Thru.

Starbucks Philippines temporarily closed all of its stores on March 23 following the start of the community lockdown. Amid the pandemic, the company has donated food and beverages to frontliners such as medical personnel, law enforcement personnel, NGO volunteers and organizations.

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Essential Apps for those living in the Metro in the time of Covid-19

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Update: 3/25/2020

A community quarantine was implemented in Manila on March 12, shortly after this article was posted. This was upgraded to an enhanced community quarantine for the entire Luzon on March 16. With that in place, only businesses that offer food/medicine remain open. Apps that offer essential services like AIDE, Metromart, Foodpanda and Grab remain active at this time. There are also Facebook pages offering delivery services and riders/shoppers for hire.

3/10/2020 – As the number of Filipinos that are infected or under investigation for COVID-19 increases, the WHO has asked people worldwide to stay home and limit going out. This makes sense especially in densely populated areas like Metro Manila where catching the virus can happen literally anywhere.

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MMFF 2020 Summer Edition Complete List of Entries

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Here are all the entries for the first Summer Edition of the Metro Manila Film Festival that will run from April 11 to 21. Foreign films are prohibited from being shown in PH cinemas during this time.

Update: 03/15/2020 The Summer 2020 MMFF has been postponed until further notice due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

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It is Cherry Blossom Season at Starbucks

Given any other global circumstance, people would be flocking by this time of the year to Japan in anticipation of spring. But since air travel may not be the best idea, at least not for the next few months, let’s go with the next best thing.

This February, Starbucks embraces the changing of the season with new favorites inspired by the sweet-smelling peach blossom – the Pink Peach Blossom Cream Frappuccino. This has a peach jelly infusion in the cream base and pink flower meringue topping that tastes as delightful as it looks. There’s also the Chocolate Black Tea Peach Blossom Cream Frappuccino that blends the aromatic black tea, creamy chocolate, and tart pink peach sauce to make an indulgent spring in a cup!

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Mararison Island, Antique

When someone asks a Filipino to recommend a local destination, Antique might be the last place that they would think of. But hear me out –  there is an island less than three hours from the capital town that I think stands out to be one of the best-looking beach destinations in the country.

The developing 55-hectare island is surrounded by white sandy beaches and rolling hills that could rival that of Batanes. The trek requires a guide that is available at about P200 as of 2019. Meanwhile, the locals that live in the beach area offer homestays for tourists that also immerses you on the locals’ ways of life. Alternatively, there is a private resort that offers humble cottages fronting a cove that is perfect for photoshoots and/or R&R.

Check out my Instagram (@dalebacar) for more photos and videos from this trip.

How to go to Mararison: From San Jose in Antique, Kalibo, or Caticlan, take a bus to Culasi, Antique. At the Culasi Port, take a boat to Mararison. If you are booking the private resort, they have their own private boat that takes you to the island from their beach-front restaurant in Culasi. Instructions will be provided upon booking.

Check out the Starbucks PH 2020 Lunar New Year Collection

 

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The Lunar Festival of 2020 ushers in the Year of the Rat. Believers of the Chinese Zodiac believe that it means a year of vitality and intelligence. I am not too sure about that, but what I am sure of is that the Lunar New Year goodies from Starbucks PH are super adorable and a must-have especially if you started collecting last year.

Maintaining the same style as 2019’s Year of the Pig merchandise, this year’s LNY collection features the cute and playful rat, amongst blossoming cherry and orange trees in bold red, gold, and Starbucks green pantones.

A LNY Card design is also available at an initial activation load of P300. All LNY items are available starting January 7, 2020.