Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Ayala Land's Vermosa Estate grows rapidly, exciting investors, businesses and communities

Vermosa, Ayala Land’s fourth largest estate said to be the new business and lifestyle district of the South, is in intense growth mode in 2023. 

The next financial and commercial center down South is expanding retail outlets and services, also adding features and amenities like parks, a government center, a church and malls that support community and commercial needs. 

Residents, investors and businesses are excited about the rapid rise of commerce and a thriving community inside the 725-hectare central business and residential district that straddles the cities of Imus and Dasmarinas in Cavite. Boasting a complete package of residences, malls, offices, institutions, schools, entertainment venues, government centers, BPOs and a world-class training and lifestyle destination for athletes and fitness enthusiasts, Vermosa continues to spur growth in the Daang Hari corridor. 

Meralco is putting up a dedicated substation within Vermosa to ensure continuous power to homes, commercial establishments, institutional facilities and the growing features and amenities of the Ayala Vermosa Sports Hub (AVSH). A Landers store, the Ayala Malls Vermosa, Army Navy and Panda Express drive thru stores will soon rise in the area, joining food brands like Starbucks, McDonalds, Jollibee, Burger King, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf and Peri Peri Chicken in servicing the area that has become a busy east-west connector. A government center will soon provide vital services with the Philippine Red Cross also putting up a headquarters in place.

Capital values for commercial lot investments have thus almost doubled at 82% since the Estate was launched in 2014. Home investors have expressed satisfaction with the high turnover rates of the different residential areas. 

Now, the different residential communities composed of the 125-hectare private enclave called The Courtyards by Ayala Land Premier, the stand-alone 36-hectare upscale modern community of Alveo’s Ardia, and the 10-hectare Avida Verra Settings located in the residential district, are preparing to welcome their projected initial 2,000 residents.

Meanwhile, Vermosa Campus Town, the estate’s commercial business district -- a modern, contemporary urban center with ultra-wide landscaped pedestrian walkways, bicycle lanes, jogging paths, an active street life and pocket parks -- will complement the varied lifestyles of residents and outside guests.

More key developments are in the works ensuring that Vermosa lives up to its promise of being the leading growth center in the South, attracting investors and businesses wanting to expand in this part of the metro.

Vermosa is strategically located near key urban centers and made accessible by a network of roads like Daang Hari, SLEX, MCX and CALAX. Greater accessibility to the estate’s residents, visitors and enterprises is provided by access points in Daang Hari and Molino Highway.

Monday, March 27, 2023

Women Bartenders on Creating Cocktails With Tanduay, Defying Stereotypes, and Thriving in a Male-Dominated Field

As renewed interest in cocktails continue to grow, bartenders are also taking the spotlight, and in El Nido and Siargao, two bartenders are paving the way for women to shine in a male-dominated industry. Sharleen Antonio works with her husband and fellow bartending professional, Larry Guevara, in one of Palawan’s top beach destinations. Riza Delguime, meanwhile, is a bartender for a leading resort in the country’s surfing haven.   Creating Tanduay-Infused Cocktails
Both women have been bartending for years and share a preference for Tanduay in creating cocktails.
“It’s very easy to mix in cocktails because of its unique and bold character. I usually go for the classic Tanduay Dark Rum in my root beer and rum with a squeeze of fresh lemon. While I may have experienced some catcalling and received some indecent proposals from male guests in some instances, I have to say that I have been lucky to have always worked with my husband behind the bar. In 2016, we joined Pilipinas Got Talent Season 5 to show that there is more to bartending than meets the eye. Gone are the days when women were simply considered as bar backs or force multipliers during busy bar shifts. Or worse, simply as ornaments behind the bar It is my wish that female bartenders will continue to flourish and leave their own mark in the field we all so love and are passionate about.~Sharleen Antonio, works with her husband and fellow bartending professional
She shared that they used Tanduay rums in her bar management class back in college, so she is very familiar with the brand. Collaborating with the brand, she came up with three Tanduay-infused cocktails that are perfect for any time of the year -- the Mango Basil Mojito, Tanduay Espresso Martini, and Tanduay Old Fashioned. Delguime likes Tanduay’s sweet and strong flavor. Foreign customers would usually ask what rum brand she uses in her cocktails and would then request drinks infused with Tanduay rums.
“I have my own signature cocktail, which is perfect when I mix it with Tanduay. We have female guests here in the resort who would request for cocktails that are not too strong, and I would make one for them also using Tanduay. There are different varieties of bars here like sports bars and pool bars, and they are all super busy because of the many tourists who visit our island. That would be the key to your success. Bartending is fun, and you get to entertain guests..~Riza Delguime, A bartender for a leading resort in the country’s surfing haven
Delguime further shared that the bartending scene in Siargao has always been “good and clean.”   Breaking the Glass Ceiling
Antonio shared working in a male-dominated industry wasn’t easy in the beginning. Women bartenders used to be seen as just “cotton candies” behind the bar to attract male clients and rake in tips.   Advice for Aspiring Bartenders
Delguime advised aspiring bartenders to just be themselves. Antonio, meanwhile, has made it her advocacy to educate people about bartending as hospitality and F&B professionals. Antonio wants to motivate, inspire, and empower women bartenders and those who would like to start a career in the bartending industry. She and her husband have been conducting workshops and seminars around the country to help aspiring bartenders better their craft.

Friday, March 24, 2023

SM scholar-alumna takes the road less travelled

Rosalie Macaspac (left) interprets the contents of the program for her students.

Teaching surpasses the realms of jobs or professions–it encompasses service, vocation, and life mission. 

Proving this day and night are millions of Filipino teachers who stand as second mothers to students. One of them is Rosalie Macaspac, an SM scholar alumna who chose to pursue a career in Special Education (SPED).

Life’s work
Choosing to teach, especially pursue SPED, is a path less travelled. Out of over 800,000 public school teachers, only about 4,000 are in SPED, and Rosalie is one of the few who took the path. For 21 years now, the SM scholar alumna has dedicated her life to teaching SPED students. She wanted to empower and give special children a voice by advocating the welfare of deaf learners.

With much dedication and determination to have the right skills for her students, she pursued graduate studies in special education and Filipino sign language at the Philippine National University and De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde, respectively. 

She currently teaches at the Philippine School for the Deaf in Pasay, the only government-owned institution for the deaf in the country. Here, she spearheaded the numeracy skills training program for deaf learners.

Embedding grit, greatness
Her journey to becoming an educator was not easy. Her parents separated when she was three years old, and her mother became the breadwinner. 

“In the early years of my life as a three year old, awareness of how hard life is became a part of my growing up. I grew up with a mindset that whatever happens, I will not abandon my studies. Sensing my determination, my mother earned a living by washing and ironing clothes of our neighbors. I came to realize my mom had to wash and press thousands and thousands of clothes so I could finish my studies. But I did not pity myself. Instead, I kept a strong determination to battle on and promised my mother that she will not grow old and die as a laundry woman. Giving up or surrendering wasn’t in my vocabulary. The strong heart of my mother was passed on to me as she was my inspiration to strive to get us out of the predicament we were in. When I was in fourth year high school, I was deep in thought of what to do to support my college education.  Then, God in all His goodness, stepped in again. The Guidance Office in our school announced that the SM Foundation was offering scholarships for qualified students. I knew at that very moment that He was with me. All I had to do is to apply for the scholarship. Looking back, the retreats, monthly meetings and being able to work in SM as an employee, followed up by our project director boosted my self-esteem and opened my world to service. Since day one of my college days, I aimed to be a public-school teacher. I am happy with my work now as a High School Teacher for Deaf learners. I am so privileged that I am in this community and my heart is entwined with my students. I am not ashamed to tell my colleagues that I had a humble beginning and I thank SM Foundation for putting me where I am now. I owe these blessings to SM, Henry “Tatang” Sy, SM Foundation, Ma’am Nilda Bernaldez, and my fellow SM-Scholars, most especially, my mother. They are all the instruments to why I chose to give back to a special community and dedicate my life to being an effective SPED teacher.~Rosalie Macaspac, SM Researcher Alumna

The weight on their shoulder became heavier when her mother became bedridden for half a year. Instead of slowing her down, it did the opposite. She continued her studies with much determination. With the help of her uncle, the Missionaries of Charity, and the puto bigas she sold, they could get by. 

She finished primary school with good grades, and was a consistent honor student in high school, despite having one centavo allowance and rice and coffee as meals. With good standing, she had her mind set on her next goal: going to college.

Rosalie (fifth from left) and her fellow scholar alumni take a photo with SMIC Executive Director Harley Sy (third from left)

She vividly remembers sending her SM College Scholarship program application at the Customer Service of the SM in Quiapo and how she learned on May 9, 1995 that she would be interviewed for the scholarship in room 214 of the MSE Bldg. The three-digit number has since become unforgettable for her. By June 1995, Macaspac was among the SM scholars who had started their college education under the scholarship program.

According to her, the scholarship helped her become a well-rounded individual. It was the key to the realization of her dreams and paved the way to success. The activities provided by SM Foundation, such as the scholars’ assembly, the orientation, leadership training, sports fest and annual retreat, were very memorable for her.

Rosalie at the Philippine School for the Deaf

Before teaching, she first worked as a Merchandise and Planning Control-Clerk at the SM Head Office, which was then located in Calle Echague, Manila. She was hired immediately after college.

Working in DepEd has always been her dream, and she is proud of where she is today.

Daughter of former flower farmers lives a vibrant life through the SM Scholarship grant

Stability is the foundation of a well-lived life. With basic needs fulfilled, people have the opportunity to develop themselves, explore various facets of life, and contribute to the welfare of the community.

When aspiring youth, especially those from low-income households, are given the chance to stand on solid ground, they readily take the chance. They utilize it as a seedbed where they can cultivate their dreams and aspirations.

One testament to this is SM scholar alumna Jonnah Jane Sacamay, who grew up in a family where stability seemed like an uncharted territory. Years back, Jonnah’s family’s main source of living was flower farming. This made them walk on a thin line as the demand for flowers was seasonal, and they were also often affected by unpredictable weather disturbances. 

But while they had journeyed through life with uncertainty, they had always planted in her mind the power of education.

“Given that the nature of farming is very seasonal, our income is not stable. Aside from augmenting our daily needs, we also had to ensure that my education is secured. I was informed that I got accepted as an SM Scholar. From then on, a huge weight was lifted off my parents' shoulders. I could pursue my chosen degree in my chosen university. The SM Scholarship helped me reach my dream of becoming a CPA, and this opened doors for me, enabling me to land a job that empowered me to help my family. My experience in retail has given me wide knowledge in different areas. With this, I always make sure that my family makes informed decisions in all aspects of life. One thing that has become a tradition among SM Cebu scholars during my time was to have an outreach program. In our own way, we were able to pay forward the help that we received from SM. It was a fulfilling experience that we could share our blessings in our own little way. Having a degree enabled me and my family to experience more in life. It paved the way for me to secure a stable job, which allowed me to travel, treat my family to a nice meal, take them shopping on special occasions, and most importantly, support my parents and their medical expenses. Aside from providing me with a scholarship grant, working in SM has provided a sense of security for me and my family.” ~Jonnah Jane Sacamay, SM Scholar Alumna

Holding on to the power of education
And so, to help her family, she studied hard in grade school as soon as she learned about others who had the opportunity to pursue college through the SM College Scholarship Program. With her whole heart dedicated to learning and her eyes set on the SM scholarship, she finished high school as the class valedictorian. Once the forms were available, she immediately processed her application at the SM Store in Cebu.

Through the scholarship offered by the SM group through SM Foundation, she was able to focus on the development of her skills and knowledge not only in accountancy but especially in life. She became a Magna Cum Laude graduate of BS Accountancy at the University of San Carlos.

Jonnah currently serves as a Senior Accounting Manager at the SM Store, Cebu. Aside from financial security, she currently takes care of her parents’ medical expenses and lets them enjoy vibrant life experiences after retiring as flower farmers.

Opening doors to more
SM Foundation made it its goal to help create an environment where low-income families can thrive and achieve stability, just like how the SM College Scholarship Program paved ways for Jonnah and her family.

For the school year 2023-2024, the application period is open from February 1-March 31, 2023. The selected scholars may specialize in accounting, information technology, engineering, and education with full tuition and monthly allowance, including enrichment programs and activities. 

For more information about the SM College Scholarship program, visit

SM Supermalls, SM Cares to join Earth Hour 2023

SM Supermalls, together with its corporate social responsibility arm SM Cares, is joining the rest of the world in observing Earth Hour this coming March 25 as the company renews its commitment to environmental stewardship.
This year's Earth Hour is all about "creating the Biggest Hour for Earth," and those who want to participate in the global activity are encouraged to spend 60 minutes doing something positive for the planet, in addition to switching off their lights.
SM Supermalls has been supporting Earth Hour and the WWF since the initiative was first held in the Philippines in 2008. This year, customers, tenants and employees at SM malls nationwide are once again encouraged to “Give an Hour for Earth” as SM Supermalls joins the annual Global Lights Switch Off from 8:30 PM to 9:30PM on March 25. 
This day also marks the start of the World Wildlife Fund’s Virtual Earth Hour Run, a self-paced run supported by SM Cares, to be held from March 25 to April 30, 2023. The run aligns with SM Supermalls’ bid to make “Earth Hour, Any Hour” as participants are encouraged to adopt an eco-friendly lifestyle by running and win prizes along the way. Joiners may register here and tag SM Cares and WWF as they post their stopovers at SM malls with hashtag #BiggestHourForEarth and #EarthHourVirtualRun.

Aside from these, SM Supermalls has been pushing to minimize its carbon footprint in support of the global green movement through various programs ranging from responsible energy consumption to investing in renewable energy.

For instance, more than 50 percent of the energy consumed by SM malls all over the country now come from renewable sources. In terms of solar energy usage, SM now has 12 malls equipped with energized solar panels, with SM Mall of Asia as the latest mall to receive a solar panel installation, which has a capacity of 2.003 MWp.

SM has also been recognized for exceeding compliance with RA7920 or the New Electrical Engineering Law, which regulates the practice, licensing, and registration of electrical engineers and electricians. This is proof that SM is operated and maintained only by highly qualified engineers.

SM Cares' sustainability initiatives include the Trash-To-Cash Market and the Plastic Waste Collection program, which encourage responsible solid waste disposal among Filipinos; the annual Green Film Festival which promotes environmental awareness among students and the youth; and the International Coastal Cleanup which encourages stakeholders to do their part in keeping our seas and oceans clean.

SM Cares is the corporate social responsibility arm of SM Supermalls, the country’s biggest chain of malls built by one of Southeast Asia’s leading real estate developer, SM Prime Holdings. It is responsible for initiatives that promote sustainability and the development of the community, including programs on Women and Breastfeeding Mothers, Persons with Disabilities, Senior Citizens, and Children and Youth, as well as the Bike-Friendly SM initiative, in addition to its Programs on Environment.

To learn more, visit

SM Foundation aids quake-hit Türkiye, Syria

SMFI’s Connie Angeles (second from left) hands the donation to PRC chairperson Dick Gordon (third from left). Joining the turnover are  PRC Governor Ernesto Isla and PRC Secretary General Dr. Gwen Pang (first and fourth from left, respectively). Photo from PRC.

In solidarity with earthquake-hit countries Türkiye and Syria, SM Foundation Inc. (SMFI) sent aid through the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) last Feb. 27, 2023. Represented by SM Foundation Health and Medical Programs Executive Director Connie Angeles, SMFI handed 200 units of gasoline generators to PRC to provide power to the quake-stricken Türkiye and Syria. Additionally, the social good arm of SM also donated Php5 million to help address the needs of earthquake victims.

PRC volunteers prepare to ship 200 units of gasoline generators donated by SM Foundation for quake-hit Türkiye and Syria. Photo from PRC.

The aid comes after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit southeast Türkiye and northwest Syria. The disaster was followed by a magnitude 6.3 earthquake, hitting southern Turkiye, which led to additional casualties and damages. To learn more about SM Foundation’s social good programs, visit or follow its social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

MrBeast Burgers Now a Possibility for Filipino Foodies only through GrabFood

MrBeast Burger

GrabFood makes the impossible possible for Filipino foodies with the introduction of the world-renowned American fast-food concept of YouTube celebrity MrBeast in the Philippines as the newest member of GrabFood Signatures. 

MrBeast, whose real name is Jimmy Donaldson, started MrBeast Burgers on YouTube. MrBeast Burgers successfully established itself in the international food scene thanks to the raving reviews of its products from millions of the YouTuber's worldwide followers. Presently, MrBeast Burgers is set to leave a permanent imprint in the neighborhood food scene through GrabFood Marks.

“GrabFood has become the go-to platform for discerning Filipino foodies looking for unique culinary experiences. With GrabFood Signatures, we go beyond just bringing delicious food to your doorstep – you don't have to leave your house or stress about traffic. We provide access to a variety of unique food experiences that make it easy and enjoyable for foodies to explore world cuisines without the hassle. Amid the pandemic, GrabFood Signatures plays an important role in not just bringing great food to everyone’s doorstep but also helping different businesses create their own unique digital presence. And now, thanks to GrabFood, special dishes like MrBeast Burgers are bringing us a taste of the world - delivered right at our doorsteps. Our goal is to revolutionize not just the food delivery service in the Philippines but also the entire dining experience of Filipinos. We are proud to be at the forefront of this and to bring in more unique food concepts such as MrBeast Burgers through GrabFood Signatures. We are confident that with the help of GrabFood Signatures, even more extraordinary culinary experiences await foodies in the Philippines.~Greg Camacho, Grab Philippines Director for Deliveries

77% of the 220,000 Filipino customers surveyed by GrabFood Signatures agreed that their GrabFood experience helped them experience a variety of dishes from various restaurants without having to leave their home. This number clearly demonstrates that GrabFood Signatures is assisting local foodies in obtaining the exceptional dishes they require and desire. The majority of Filipinos now have access to even more extraordinary dishes thanks to GrabFood's partnership with MrBeast Burgers.

Food merchants can launch new brands and exciting offerings on GrabFood Signatures, which gives them the reach and dependability of the GrabFood platform and the flexibility to customize their digital presence. GrabFood is also uniquely positioned to assist food businesses in expanding their presence and creating unique experiences for Filipino foodies thanks to its partnerships with businesses like MrBeast Burgers.

Among those that neighborhood foodies can now at long last attempt is the arrangement of burgers quirkily named after the organizer and his substance maker companions: the Chandler Style Burger, which consists of two crispy beef patties smashed with house seasoning and placed on a toasted bun with no American cheese; the Chris Style Burger, made with two smashed crispy beef patties, American cheese, bacon, and house seasoning, served on a toasted bun with crispy fries on top; the Karl's Deluxe, a patty melt served Karl's Style with a toasted inverted bun, seasoned beef patty, caramelized onions, and cheese; and the well-known Beast Style Burger, which is served on a toasted bun with smashed crispy beef patties, American cheese, pickles, diced white onion, mayonnaise, ketchup, and brown mustard.

About Grab
Grab is a leading superapp in Southeast Asia, operating across the deliveries, mobility and digital financial services sectors. Serving over 500 cities in eight Southeast Asian countries -- Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam -- Grab enables millions of people every day to order food or groceries, send packages, hail a ride or taxi, pay for online purchases or access services such as lending and insurance, all through a single app. Grab was founded in 2012 with the mission to drive Southeast Asia forward by creating economic empowerment for everyone, and strives to serve a triple bottom line: to simultaneously deliver financial performance for its shareholders and have a positive social and environmental impact in Southeast Asia. 

Payoneer Celebrates International Women's Month with First-Ever WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup in Manila

“Payoneer has long been an advocate of helping women business owners go beyond and experience boundless growth. We recognize the significant role that women play in the global economy and we are dedicated to helping them achieve their full potential. This is why we had the Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup as we’re creating spaces where entrepreneurs and leaders can learn and thrive.” ~Jen San Antonio, Marketing Lead for Emerging Markets, APAC

Payoneer, the world’s leading cross-border payments platform hosted their very first Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup: Connect with women leading the Philippines outsourcing sector event at WeWork Menarco Tower in Bonifacio Global City as part of the International Women’s Month celebration.

The Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup kicked-off through an announcement of the company’s new Country Manager for the Philippines, Monique Avila.

"I am honored to take on this new role and lead Payoneer's growth in the Philippines. This is a milestone for the team here in the country; a testament to the contributions of Filipino women in the workplace and how our local BPO industry continues to thrive, especially with women at the helm.” ~Monique Avila, Country Manager for the Philippines

Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup

Female BPO leaders who shared their experiences and provided helpful guidance on how women can continue to thrive in the outsourcing sector made the event full of in-depth learning opportunities. It also became a great way for women entrepreneurs to network, learn from one another, and get valuable advice on how to get past obstacles and succeed in the business world.

Payoneer Celebrates International Women's Month with First-Ever WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup in ManilaPayoneer, the world’s leading cross-border payments platform hosted their very first entrepreneurs' meetup. Themed "Connect with women leading the Philippines outsourcing sector" the event was filled with in-depth learnings from female BPO leaders who shared their experiences and offered valuable advice on how women can continue to thrive in the outsourcing sector. In photo, from left: Patricia Francisco, Senior Manager for Customer Success, Payoneer; Vanessa Janssen, President, Guerilla Staffing Solutions; Tonichi Achurra-Parekh, Vice President of Delivery, Concentrix; Pam Baluyo, CEO, ScaleExperts; Marge Aviso, CEO, TeleWork; Monique Avila, Country Manager for the Philippines, Payoneer; and Britzee Capili, SMB Sales Lead for SEA, Payoneer. 

Gina Romero, Founder of Connected Women, stared off as she shared insights on how technology and social responsibility can create opportunities for women.

"Connected Women is committed to providing equal access and opportunities for Filipino women freelancers in the dynamic AI industry. Through our community-as-a-service model and commitment to inclusive innovation, we're making this vision a reality." ~Gina Romero, Founder of Connected Women

Tech-driven solutions are helping bridge women's employment gap. At the first Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup, Gina Romero, Founder of Connected Women, shared insights on how technology and social responsibility can enable women to be gainfully employed. In the Philippines, approximately 5 million Filipino women are unable to work due to household responsibilities. Romero also noted that cross-border payment platforms like Payoneer are essential to continued growth of opportunities for women. Log on to to learn how Payoneer can help your business grow. 

Romero wanted to highlight that the people from the BPO sector also benefited from these new technologies as it provided employment through a flexible environment.

“To be able to build trust within our companies, we need to create a culture where we give utmost importance to honesty and sincerity in the feedback that we deliver. In addition, as employers we need to learn how to acknowledge the hard work that they exert through timely recognition - this is the kind of environment that our workplace should exhibit as trust coincides with relationships.” ~Tonichi Achurra-Parekh, Vice President of Delivery of Concentrix

Building trust in the workplace. Tonichi Achurra-Parekh, Vice President of Delivery of Concentrix shared insights and practical tips on how leaders can build a culture of trust at the first Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup. Themed "Connect with women leading the Philippines outsourcing sector" the event was filled with in-depth learnings from female BPO leaders who shared their experiences and offered valuable advice on how women can continue to thrive in the outsourcing sector. Log on to to learn how Payoneer can help your business grow. 

Tonichi Achurra-Parekh answered when she was asked on how to build trust within the work-environment by one of the audience after her talk. .

“Payoneer has long been an advocate of helping women business owners go beyond and experience boundless growth. We recognize the significant role that women play in the global economy and we are dedicated to helping them achieve their full potential. This is why we had the Payoneer WOMENtrepreneurs Meetup as we’re creating spaces where entrepreneurs and leaders can learn and thrive.” ~Jen San Antonio, Marketing Lead for Emerging Markets, APAC

The panel discussion was led by Marge Aviso, CEO of Telework Philippines, Vanessa Janssen who is the President of Guerilla Staffing Solutions, and the founder and CEO of ScaleExperts, Pam Baluyo. All of them were able to address how they became the female leaders they are today and they discussed the importance of taking space and thriving as a woman in the business industry. 

About Payoneer
Payoneer is the world’s go-to partner for digital commerce, everywhere. From borderless payments to boundless growth, Payoneer promises any business, in any market, the technology, connections and confidence to participate and flourish in the new global economy. Powering growth for customers ranging from aspiring entrepreneurs in emerging markets to the world’s leading digital brands.

From over 5M customers, Payoneer is trusted by the World’s leading digital brands serving over 2,000 top marketplaces & digital platforms, sending tens of billions of dollars a year to SMBs worldwide. For 15 years, Payoneer has pioneered this new reality that pushes frontiers, making connections, unifying and creating global ecosystems.

Friday, March 10, 2023

Filinvest Alabang Inc Bags Gold Awards for Sustainable Real Estate Developments

Filinvest Alabang Inc Bags Gold Awards for Sustainable Real Estate Developments

Two Filinvest Alabang Inc (FAI) projects were awarded gold recognitions at the recently held Property and Real Estate Excellence Awards organized by the Philippine chapter of the Paris-based International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI). Filinvest City, FAI’s flagship township in Alabang took home the Gold award under Sustainable Development category while Filigree’s Botanika Nature Residences, its ultraluxury condominium, bagged Gold under Residential Mid-Rise category.

The awards recognize FAI’s dedication in creating resilient, future-ready, and people-focused communities that can be enjoyed by many generations. 

“As we mark our 30th anniversary this year, we continue to be committed to our mission of building communities that are sustainable and people-centric. Our ultimate goal is to make all of our developments really experiential and engaging, supporting healthier and more fulfilled lifestyles, with Filinvest City and Botanika serving as our flagship projects.” ~Catherine Ilagan, FAI President and COO

Filinvest Alabang Inc Bags Gold Awards for Sustainable Real Estate Developments

Filinvest Alabang Inc Bags Gold Awards for Sustainable Real Estate Developments

With global and local recognition certifying its efforts in building a green central business district in Alabang, Muntinlupa, Filinvest City’s FIABCI gold award further affirms Filinvest City’s commitment to sustainability. Other green recognitions include its Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design LEEDv4 Gold for Neighborhood Development (LEEDv4 ND) certification by the US Green Building Council in 2020 and, more recently, its 3-star Building for Ecologically Responsive Design Excellence (BERDE) Districts Certification by the Philippine Green Building Council–making Filinvest City the first & only Philippine CBD to be accorded with these two certifications.

“We have taken the big leap years ago when Filinvest Development Corporation Founder Mr. Andrew L.  Gotianun, Sr. envisioned a sustainable and future-ready CBD and established FAI to transform the Alabang stockfarm to what Filinvest City is today. All these awards and certifications prove that we have been doing this right from the start, and that there are alternatives to the accustomed way of building cities in the metro.” ~Don Ubaldo, FAI First Vice President for Townships

Filinvest Alabang Inc Bags Gold Awards for Sustainable Real Estate Developments

The way that Botanika Nature Residences combines aesthetics and functionality while embedding energy efficiency into its design sets it different from other upscale residential buildings. A flagship project of Filigree, FAI’s brand of high-end residential developments, Botanika’s promise to authentic green living is seen beyond its interior as it harmoniously co-exists with its environs. Approximately 70% of its total land area is dedicated to garden and open breathing spaces, while the building itself, covering 30% of the land, was designed to respect and complement its natural surroundings being located at the most exclusive portion of Filinvest City. On top of the FIABCI gold award, Botanika is also a 4-star BERDE certified development, and just last year, was recognized as the first H+W (Health and Well-being – Pilot Version) 3-stars Certified residential building by the Philippine Green Building Council. 

“As the post-pandemic world takes shape, there is a growing need for space that keeps people close to the center of activities while also allowing them to retreat to a sanctuary of greenery and clean air at any time to safeguard and promote their health and well-being. Botanika Nature Residences guarantee a stress-free, healthier suburban lifestyle.” ~Daphne Sanchez, Filigree deputy head and FAI First Vice President

The company's thrust to fostering a culture of innovation and development has also been recognized through the awards received by Filinvest Development Corporation President and CEO, and Filinvest Land Inc. CEO Josephine Gotianun-Yap. She is named FIABCI's first Property Woman of the Year and is the first woman to receive the Real Estate Personality of the Year award in the Philippines Property Awards by PropertyGuru last year.

To know more about Filinvest City and Botanika Nature Residences, visit and

Celebrate "summer sarap" with Mang Inasal Extra Creamy Halo-Halo

Celebrate Summer Sarap with Mang Inasal Extra Creamy Halo-Halo

Mang Inasal, the country's Grill Expert, ushers in the summer season with its best-selling Extra Creamy Halo-Halo. 
Jumpstarting the "Summer Sarap" campaign is a TV commercial that features Mang Inasal brand ambassador Dimples Romana enjoying the Mang Inasal Extra Creamy Halo-Halo while dancing to the tune of “Mas Macrema” -- a fun twist to the 90s hit song Macarena. The song emphasizes the extra creamy milk that makes the Mang Inasal dessert’s blend of ingredients even more delicious. 
“Halo-Halo is truly every Filipino's favorite especially during summer. This is why we’re excited to celebrate summer offering our customers the Solid sa Sangkap, Extra Creamy Sarap Halo-Halo. This forms part of our 20th anniversary celebration which highlights the commitment of Mang Inasal to continuously provide food superiority and the best value for money to our customers.” ~Mike V. Castro, Mang Inasal Business Unit Head
Customers can enjoy Extra Creamy Halo-Halo and Crema de Leche Halo-Halo starting at P39 with the new 8 oz. add-on to complete their Ihaw-Sarap meals. Classic favorites Small and Regular Halo-Halo are also available for dessert and as snack treats. All Halo-Halo sizes can be ordered for dine-in, takeout, and delivery. 
Want more Mang Inasal exclusives NOW? Visit for the latest updates, for delivery deals, and follow Mang Inasal on social media! 

FOR KING + COUNTRY scores multi-format hit with “Love Me Like I Am,” featuring American R&B star Jordin Sparks

For King & Country

Multi-GRAMMY® award-winning duo FOR KING + COUNTRY is currently making waves with the crossover success of “Love Me Like I Am,”  their current single featuring American R&B superstar Jordin Sparks.

Joel and Luke Smallbone

Aside from topping Billboard’s Christian Airplay charts (dated February 25, 2023), the multi-format smash has recently entered Billboard’s Adult Top 40 charts at No. 31 and Billboard’s Adult Contemporary charts at No. 17, becoming one of the biggest hits in the US by an Australian act this year. To date, the soulful ballad has amassed more than 30 million streams on Spotify alone.

The Christian pop duo, which recently headlined Manila’s Found Music Festival in 2019 at Circuit Makati, also expressed their intent of going back to the Philippines sometime in the future. 

“You know, we hope to always come back to the places that we’ve been, because every country has its own individual culture—taking part in that was a thrill for us. By visiting different cultures around the world, you can learn something from each of them. We just enjoyed being able to spend time with our Filipino friends.” ~Luke Smallbone

Their song “Love Me Like I Am” will be serviced in Philippine radio soon, thanks to its crossover appeal and inspiring universality that resonate to fans all over the world. A soaring pop tune that recognizes the fact that we all make mistakes, “Love Me Like I Am” highlights the importance of seeking and practicing forgiveness. 

“I think, sometimes in today’s society, we feel like if we make a mistake, that puts us at odds, and we can’t be loved anymore. The truth is if we all made mistakes, that means all of us would never be able to accept this wonderful gift called love. I think ‘Love Me Like I Am’ is obviously talking about heavenly love but I think it’s also a challenge for us to love our families that way. The gift of practicing forgiveness is probably the most important attribute of the world. And, I think, for us, that is what this song is talking about. Is love for people, mistakes, and all. And, look, people will live very differently when they recognize how deeply loved they really are.” ~Luke Smallbone

“Love Me Like I Am,” featuring Jordin Sparks, is part of FOR KING + COUNTRY’s chart-topping fifth studio album, What Are We Waiting For?, released via Curb | World Entertainment last year. The album reached No. 1 on iTunes in multiple countries, and debuted at No. 2 Billboard US’s Top Albums, No. 1 on Billboard US Top Christian Albums, and No. 7 on Billboard US Albums Chart.

FOR KING + COUNTRY is one of the music industry’s most respected and decorated duos. Brothers Joel and Luke Smallbone have been awarded four GRAMMY® Awards, seven GMA Dove Awards, a Billboard Music Award, and 16 K-LOVE Fan Awards; and their 11 No. 1 songs have produced an astonishing 2 billion career streams. The RIAA Platinum-selling act’s live show has been hailed as a must-see concert event that continues to wow sold-out crowds whether in the U.S., Australia, Germany, Netherlands, or New Zealand. FOR KING + COUNTRY’s WHAT ARE WE WAITING FOR? released this year, became the duo’s second Top 10 album on the Billboard 200; following their RIAA Gold certified album, BURN THE SHIPS, which also debuted in the Top 10 of the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart. The duo has had seven consecutive No. 1 songs including “For God Is With Us,” “joy.,” “TOGETHER” (feat. Kirk Franklin & Tori Kelly),” and the 11-week Platinum smash, “God Only Knows.”  Featured on major networks including MTV, BBC2, ABC and more, the global hitmakers have collaborated with a diverse list of artists including Dolly Parton, NEEDTOBREATHE, R3HAB, Hillary Scott and Timbaland, amongst others.

Century Park Hotel concludes the first quarter with deals on full blast

Century Park Hotel

The season is heating up at Manila’s renowned establishment, Century Park Hotel (CPH), as it announces its line-up of exciting pre-summer promotions.

According to the hotel’s General Manager, Anthony Tan, CPH geared up early this year to present a delightful variety of promos and activities for all its patrons.

“For the last month of the first quarter of the year, the hotel deals are on full blast to give our guests wonderful bonding moments and celebrations. New deals for the second quarter were already rolled out as well.” ~Anthony Tan, Century Park Hotel General Manager

Century Park Hotel's Tsu Kiji

Your fondness with our Century Tsukiji’s Eat-ALL-You-Can gets more exciting as it upgrades its Japanese buffet spread.

Starting March 1, 2023, we are introducing daily add-ons of  crepes station, unlimited juices, and “Make Your Own Ramen” station in your favorite Japanese dishes from appetizers (Otsumami), sushi, sashimi, sunomono (vinegared dishes), nimono (simmered dishes), teppanyaki, tempura, yakimono to delightful desserts for only Php 1,199 net per person every Mondays to Thursdays.

And for Fridays to Sundays and on holidays, enjoy more items like Yakitori, variety of seasonal seafood, new sashimi & sushi creations and an exclusive add-on of Japanese ice cream on top of our regular buffet spread for only Php 1,399 net per person.

Head off to the Century Tsukiji and reward yourself with an indulging meal. The outlet is open from 11:00am to 2:30pm and 5:00pm to 9:00pm for lunch and dinner, respectively. 

Century Park Hotel's SamgyuPG

March is the season for graduates! At Century Park Hotel, more people mean more fun in our grand “Salute to the Graduates”. A free buffet awaits graduates who will bring along a minimum of three paying guests at the Café in the Park. Celebrate their moment by indulging in a wide selection of food and fill your plates with your favorite items from soup, salad, cold cuts, carving, seasonal seafood, grilled meats, pasta, Filipino and Chinese stations. Be sure to make room for desserts and unlimited juices all available from 11:00am to 2:30pm and 6:00pm to 10:00pm for lunch and dinner, respectively.

Prom and Graduation Ball’s Package are also available. For reservations, you may call our Sales Department at contact numbers (02) 8528-5871 to 73. 

The Palm Grove Bar, where one of Manila’s first temperature-controlled pools is situated, extends its promo of “Buy 1, Take 1” on Heineken and Tiger beers, Frozen Fruity Margarita and Frozen Sangria every Fridays and Saturdays from 5:00pm to 8:00pm. 

When being in the thick of activity on weekends means all the hustle and hassles, take a break and visit Al Fresco by Palm Grove from 5pm to 11pm, Fridays and Saturdays and enjoy our Unlimited Samgyeopsal for only Php 799 net per person and spare yourself from cooking at home even just for weekends.

CPH will open it with Easter Candyland, a special celebration to end the Lenten season on April 9. Both adults and children will enjoy a fun-filled day full of exciting activities like interactive games, face painting, enchanting magic show, photo booth, loot bags and the traditional egg hunting at the Grand Ballroom from 9:00am to 1:00pm.



Launched in 1976, the Century Park Hotel remains as one of the finest hotels in Manila. It is owned and operated by Maranaw Hotels and Resort Corporation and enjoys a mix of local and international patrons. The renowned establishment has over 450 rooms in varied types and facilities for a complete dining and leisure experience. To know more about Century Park Hotel, visit or contact and telephone number (632) 8528-8888.

BingoPlus Night celebrates first year of BingoPlus

BingoPlus Night celebrates first year of BingoPlus

BingoPlus marked its first year anniversary with a red carpet-BingoPlus Night on March 4 at the Grand Hyatt Manila, its first-ever evening grand event since its launch in 2022. Celebrity brand endorsers, Luis Manzano, and Maine Mendoza, led other celebrities in celebrating the event. 

Billy Crawford and Colleen Garcia at the BingoPlus Night Red Carpet

BingoPlus celebrity endorser Maine Mendoza performs at the BingoPlus Night

Regine Velasquez performs at the BingoPlus Night

Vice Ganda performs at the BingoPlus Night

The glitz-and-glam party which was simultaneously live on the official Facebook page of Viva and BingoPlus started at 6:30 pm with Viva artists Bela Padilla, Sam Concepcion, and Kim Molina walking the red carpet. The main program kicked off later in the evening with a sizzling song and dance number by Josh of SB19. Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez-Alcasid serenaded the audience followed by first BingoPlus female celebrity endorser Maine Mendoza doing a dance number. Highlight of the show was a surprise number by the Unkabogable Vice Ganda who rocked the night with a song and dance number. The event was aired live on TV5 and One PH. 

First-ever BingoPlus celebrity endorser Luis Manzano at the BingoPlus Night Red Carpet

Over and above the non-stop fun and entertainment, BingoPlus gave away 1 million pesos worth of raffle prizes to its supporters. Two lucky winners of the Mega Jackpot round exclusively for the BingoPlus Night received 25 million pesos while 20 million pesos was donated to the BingoPlus Foundation, the brand’s arm that takes care of giving back to special groups and communities.

“We are grateful for the public’s overwhelming love and support for the brand during its first year of existence.” ~Jasper Vicencio, AB Leisure Exponent Inc. President

Present during the wine toasting ceremony were Leisure & Resorts World Corporation (LRWC) Chairman Eusebio Tanco, LRWC Board of Directors Atty. Mardomeo Raymundo, Jr. and Atty. Jose Paras, LRWC President Andy Tsui, AB Leisure Exponent Inc. (ABLE) Chairman and CEO Elvis Chan and ABLE President Jasper Vicencio.

Key partners and industry allies from GCash, Maya, Greab Ads, Food Panda, Huawei,  PLDT, Globe, SM Supermalls, Limitless, Family Mart, Shopback and Enravision Media Donuts also participated in the event. 

BingoPlus is the first live-streaming bingo in the Philippines. You may visit and download BingoPlus App for more details.