Saturday, November 29, 2008

M & M part 2

Aside from watching Kylie Minogue, these two Ms also made my short trip to HKG worthwhile.

Marc Jacobs.

And Michael Kors.

Hurrah for Warehouses!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Finally, Kylie!

The first time I attempted to see a Kylie Minogue concert was in the Netherlands in 2002. Unfortunately, tickets were already sold out when I found out that she was actually having a show there. Luckily, I saw her - in person - in a mall in Rotterdam. Instinct kicked in and I shouted while waving at her - "Hi Kylie!" (to the chagrin and embarrassment of my companion.)

Second attempt was in 2005. Kylie was bringing her "Showgirl" Tour to Asia, and I was planning to go to Singapore to watch it. But after the successful launch of the tour in the UK, she was diagnosed with cancer and had to cancel the tour. So my only consolation was that it was on DVD and I ended up watching that.

Two weeks ago, while on a trip to HKG with my Dad and Sis, I saw the poster for Kylie X. This was it! The chance to watch Kylie is finally here! Luckily, Alex also wanted to watch the show, so she bought our tickets last week. Thinking the concert was on Wednesday, I flew in on Monday. On Tuesday, Alex told me that my dates are mixed up and the concert was on Thursday. How's that for confusion.

But last night, after 2 missed chances and 1 missed flight, I've finally watched Kylie Minogue on tour.

View from the top. We actually wanted front row seats, but they were sold out immediately. Turns out there are a lot of Kyliephiles in Hong Kong. Among them were my former officemates Kath and Liza. Seeing them was such a pleasant surprise. Judging by the attendance, fans came in all ages and nationalities. The kid behind me was an 8-year old Briton.

The backdrop was the highlight of the production. Unlike the "Showgirl" tour which featured moving lights, a video backdrop, elevating stage and other 3-D gimmickry, this concert was more modest. According to some folks I talked to after the concert, the reason for this was the very small size of the stage in HKG.

The good thing about our seats was the fact that it was right beside the screen. So we were still able to see Kylie in a larger than life way.

Gold confetti heralded her song. She sang most of my favorites like Wow, Spinning Around, On a night like this, Can't get you out of my head, and Better the Devil you know. Conspicuously absent were Chocolate, In your eyes and Especially for you.

She had 2 encores and people just wouldn't stop shouting "MORE!" That's when Kylie brought out the big guns and sang "I should be so Lucky." The audience went wild and everyone just started jumping and dancing.

After that iconic song, the crowd went home happy. And I went home with a Tour t-shirt and the satisfaction of having finally seen Kylie perform in person.

Next on the list: Britney Spears!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

You tell me...

I'm watching the Kylie concert later, but right now, while watching the news about India on CNN, Cyndi Lauper came to mind.

What's going on? So many innocent people getting hurt. I hope this ends soon, and our prayers go to the families and people of India.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Sour Kreme

Just another example of how fast things can get bad in HKG.

Two years ago, HKG was all agog and heralding the arrival of America's favorite donuts. Now, more than 2 years after the first store opened in Causeway Bay, Krispy Kreme has finally bid HKG goodbye.

I found out 2 weeks ago when we went to Mongkok. The shop near CTMA where I usually buy my Krispy Kreme was closed. When I went to Causeway Bay, I found out that the one there was closed as well. And my friends told me that the airport branches will cease to exist this month.

This is one example of how "things happening so fast" can be a bad thing. Now, aside from the usual chocolate cake, my HKG friends will be asking me to bring home some Krispy Kreme from Manila as well.

Monday, November 24, 2008

No Obstacle Kors

On a routine visit to Pedder outlet, I found these casually cool Michael Kors sandals.

I flipped it over to look at the price, and it was cheap beyond belief! And with a reaction like that, what happened next is quite obvious.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Country Boy

This was a very exciting quiz. Tried to do it alphabetically but I realized it's more panic inducing. But it's good to have a system when doing it.

Created by OnePlusYou - Free Dating Site

I think I could've done better.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Wow factor!

I've gotten permission.
I've booked my tickets on-line.
Alex has booked our concert tickets.

Kylie Minogue, here we come!

Can't wait to watch this live.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Kohl's mine

After doing the rounds of surplus outlets around the metro area, I found out that there's a new brand on the block. Ann Taylor, Gap, Old Navy and Club Monaco items are mainstays in the local surplus scene, and it's become so common that people tend to overlook them - especially since there's one in almost every corner.

This afternoon, I chanced upon this stall that Rona told me about. Honestly, I wasn't expecting to be surprised. Luckily, I was.

Vera Wang's line for Kohl's was there.

It was a raspberry colored cropped jacket with a huge, shirred collar. It was interesting since the jacket was a bit structured but a bit deconstructed. The fabric was heavy enough to protect the body from the elements, but light enough to wear in Manila weather.

The great thing about this find is that everything was intact. Even the extra button was there, which is great since finding spare buttons for American jackets are usually quite difficult.

Aside from Simply Vera, that store also carried other Kohl's house brands like Apt. 9, AB Studio and Sonoma. At Surplus Shop, they also have Daisy Fuentes items - also exclusive to Kohl's. Seems like a new brand has invaded our stores while we weren't paying attention.

Great. Now there's a new brand to hunt down.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Golden McKey

McKey is America's Next Top Model!

She's gorgeous, in an unconventional and androgynous kind of way. It's great that they finally got a winner who looks like a real model.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Also a Wynn-er

Although it wasn't as grandiose or opulent as The Venetian, the rooms at Wynn Macau were luxurious in its own, modern way. Comparing the standard suites between these 2 hotels, The Venetian is clearly larger, but Wynn feels spacious yet homey.

Our room.

The hallway looks like any usual hotel. Clean lines, white wood, fuzzy carpet - with the exception of the closet. It was huge!

Very comfy beds with heavenly linen. The ones at The Venetian felt too over-the-top while this one was just right.

The high-tech mini bar. If you remove an item and hold on to it for more than 1 minute, it's considered sold and automatically added to your bill.

There's an LCD in the bathroom!

Cool amenity kits.

Me in the bathroom.

Huge windows that give you a unadulterated view of the bay.

MGM Grand's tri-color building as seen from our room.

Now that I've crossed out The Venetian and Wynn from my "hotels in Macau to try" list, time to figure out where to stay next. MGM Grand or Grand Lisboa?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Phillip pines

Watching TMZ is one of my current guilty pleasures. I'm both amazed and infuriated at how press people can be so intrusive, and it's that combination that makes it good viewing.

While waiting for TMZ to come on, I caught the replay of Project Runway Philippines' grand finale. What struck me most about the program and the episode wasn't the final runway show (which is what I look forward to in the American version) or the announcement of the winner.

The thing that struck me most was what Phillip Tampus said. Phillip was the 1st runner up and he used to work as a designer in the Middle East. After finding out that he wasn't the grand prize winner, he said something that I thought was amazing:

"Hindi ako pinanganak na Filipino para maging isang alipin ng ibang lahi. Pinanganak akong Filipino dahil Filipino ako and I will be a Filipino designer."

Such patriotism and such pining for home and making a difference here at home. It's this quality that a lot of people need and I'm glad that there are people out there like Phillip who has that passion and dedication to make a difference at home.

In my opinion, with people like him, it's the country that really wins in the end.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Surprised to See

It was one of those "typical" stores in Macau that sold clothes that were "typically" Mainland China. The window display carried printed knit blouses with silk screened prints that were accented with beads and sequins. More specifically, they were bad knit blouses with bad silk screened prints that were accented with bad beads and bad sequins.

Normally, I wouldn't venture into a shop like this. But since Dad and Ate Bullet were still busy in the neighboring store and there was nothing else to do, I thought "what the heck" and went inside.

As expected, most of the clothes inside were bad. Black crepe pants with garterized waistbands (horrors!), chunky knits with faux fur trim, "Auntie Baby blouses" -- name it, they had it. Despite that, I went around the entire store in the hopes of finding a redeeming factor.

Near the back end of the store, there was a glimmer of redemption. There were a few racks of printed shifts and long, evening dresses. They looked like clothes for Spring, which explained why they're relegated to the back. The first rack was filled with Marks and Sparks, then there were a couple of Jones New York evening dresses. Further down, I found a funky Betsey Johnson dress with crocheted details. And at the end of that rack, I found this.

A retro-ish shift from See by Chloe. I noticed the printed pattern was similar to their beaded dress some seasons back. The shape was easy and the fabric was breezy. An added detail was the Peter Pan collar that gives it a "Twiggy meets Mary Quant" vibe. Redemption has arrived. And its name was See.

This great find was followed by a khaki and black shift dress by Catherine Malandrino, which was also being sold at bargain basement prices. And just when I thought that was the end of the surprise, I found a pair of black jeans that were tucked in between the bad, black crepe monstrosities.

It was a pair of skinny jeans from Gwen Stefani's LAMB line. Just looking at the shape, you know it's Gwen Stefani. I've seen her wear these types of jeans more than once.

What made it even more interesting was the detail at the back. Instead of the usual pockets, it had zippers that arched down to the mid thigh area. Methinks this detail is supposed to flatter the body.

Who would've thought that this place would carry these cool brands. Then again, this is Macau. And it's a place that's just full of surprises.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Comme to me...

As expected, Hong Kong went crazy over the Comme de Garcons collection at H&M. By lunchtime, every garment that carried the iconic polka dot design of Rei Kawakubo were gone. All that was left were shirts, coats and pants that could pass off as any other H&M item if not for the label.

While we were surveying the "damage," Dad and Ate Bullet were witness to how rabid Hong Kong shoppers are. There was a fresh batch of polka dotted sweaters, and a split second after it was put down, everyone pounced on it and just grabbed all they could. It was madness! Insanity! And all other synonyms for "crazy." Not surprising, really, since this country is just as obsessed with Comme De Garcons as they are in Japan.

Part of me wanted to hang around and wait until they bring out the next batch of goods. But thinking about the rabid crowd made me decide to just walk away.

Well, walk away with a Comme De Garcons pull over and sweater.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Family Finds

This trip was destined to be a shopping expedition. The past 2 days, Ate Bullet, Dad and I have been hopping from mall to market in search of everything from striped hoodies to ballpens that light up, cargo pants to A&F overruns. As of press time, our search has been successful.

Ate Bullet has found most of what she's looking for. Dad saw a pair of cargo pants that he liked a lot. And in a small shop near Causeway Bay, I got my fabulous find.

Another Herve Leger bandage dress. This time in gray.

It's simpler than the black one I found, but I like the detail that travels from the strap to the bodice to the back of the dress. Nobody does body-con like Herve Leger. (And Max Azria.)

I wonder what we'll find tomorrow.

Sunday, November 09, 2008


What do I find out a few minutes after landing at HK International Airport?

Kylie's X Tour is going to be here in 2 weeks!!! Gosh! Kylie Minogue in Asia! And just an hour and a half away from the Philippines! OK, I've got too many exclamation points in one paragraph!!!

Well, the excitement has a reason. A few years ago, Kylie was bringing her "Showgirl" Tour to Singapore and HKG and I was psyched - TOTALLY PSYCHED - to watch it. Then she was diagnosed with Cancer, and she scrapped the entire tour. That left a lot of Kyliephiles down and lonely.

Now, the tour is back! She's also playing in SG, but after looking at the website, the tickets are around 10x more expensive than HKG. So if ever I do decide to watch it, I'll probably go to HKG instead of SG and BKK.

The question now is... do I watch it?

Thursday, November 06, 2008

The best way to describe today...

I could either describe it using 1000 words or a song that's spot on. And since it's been a long day, I'll go with the song in the meantime.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The boys are back!

Back in school, that is. And it's official. I've got my ID, borrowed books at the library, the whole shebang.

And yes, for those who watched HSM 3, the title was inspired from that junkyard dance number from the flick.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Seems like yesterday...

In order to avoid the usual Nov. 1 throng of people who go to Loyola, the family decided to go there today. It was a good decision since the drive to Marikina was virtually traffic free, and while there were still a lot of people at the memorial park, it wasn't anywhere near the melee that usually happens on the 1st.

On our way there, Dad mentioned that Tito Tony reminded him that Lolo Iking's death anniversary is coming up soon. On November 11, it'll be 19 years since Lolo died. Next year, it'll be the 20th anniversary of Lolo and Lola's death. They passed on 5 months apart, and we think that it was Lolo's loneliness after Lola Dita's death that caused him to follow her so soon.

It seems just like yesterday when Lolo passed on, so I was quite surprised to realize that it's been almost 20 years. It seems just like yesterday when our parents woke us up at around 2 a.m. to tell us the bad news. It seems just like yesterday when my siblings, cousins and I sat outside the house in Tomas Morato at 5 a.m., still in disbelief.

Because it seems just like yesterday, I still get teary eyed each time we visit Lolo's grave. Lolo was the quintessential patriarch and was such a strong, influential figure in our family. He was such a huge, huge part of our lives and I think that explains why he left such a huge void.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

M & M

And they're down to five.

Last week, the model who got booted out was Sheena - the Asian girl with a New York 'tude. And with that, my hopes of a first Asian ANTM were dashed. Then again, next season might usher in a Fil-Am contestant. Wouldn't it be just smashing if the first Asian winner was Pinay?

I think this cycle of ANTM has a lot of interesting looking girls compared to the last 5 seasons. They're more diverse and less cookie cutter. Some of the girls have this awkward kind of beauty that makes them interesting to look at.

Two of my favorites are in the top 5. Both girls look naturally model-esque and not too - as Tyra would say - "commercial."

McKey has that androgynous character and a high-fashion look.

Marjorie reminds me of Agyness Deyn. Except she has dark hair and a "Bambi" attitude.

The remaining 3 ain't bad, too. Analeigh reminds me of a younger Jeri Ryan, Elina is like a cross between Julia Stiles and Susan May Pratt (who both appeared with the late Heath Ledger in "10 things I hate about you.") and Samantha reminds me of -- hmmm... -- Whitney.

At this point, it looks like it's anyone's game this cycle. Maybe with the exception of Samantha who I feel won't reach the top 3. And just like I wished for a Leanne-Korto-Kenley triumverate in Project Runway, I'm wishing for a McKey-Marjorie showdown for ANTM.