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Lady Cyclists Hit the Road and Slopes of Cebu. P.4

We complete our conversation with some of Cebu’s lady cyclists and ask them for useful tips for us beginners.

Kindly share your tips or suggestions for someone who wants to get into cycling?

Blinky de Leon.  Event Host, Product Endorser & Influencer

“If you are a beginner, you have to first get the right bike that suits you. Once you have the right bike fit, take time to learn and get to know your bike. Observe how others do it and couple that with the right experience by practicing in a safer environment before heading out on the streets. Do learn that outdoor cycling may not be for everybody and it can get dangerous, so you have to assess beforehand. I highly recommend you do it with a companion or a coach.

Once you’ve reached the right amount of courage and confidence, try to level up your game. There is definitely no rush in cycling, you just have to simply enjoy the process of self-discovery and pedal your way through each and every obstacle. Be fierce with your fears. It’s all about the balance. 😉 “


Yumz Mariot. Branding and Marketing Consultant

“Getting into cycling starts from ones interest. Probably stems from what we remember when we were kids on BMX. Or the sheer need to create a fitness routine if not into running or jogging. The rest is listening to what one’s body can handle. As I always tell myself when I begin to catch breaths while pedaling, “This is my ride, hence my pace”. I do this for fitness and of course for leisure. For now, what matters to me is not the number of kilometers per hour I hit. It is the process of cycling what my body allows, shedding off calories while enjoying the scenery along the way.  Taking photos on necessary stops and chatting with people along the way about farms and life in general. “


Prime Sarino. Digital Media Creative

“The first thing is to know the right kind of bike you would want to ride on. Find the right size according to your build. A bike fitting might be necessary but you can ask the help of your cyclists friends or consult with the bike experts to know which is suitable for you. Invest in a quality helmet and dress in comfort and conditions. Cherish camaraderie. Most cyclists in Cebu are friendly people. Also, always keep in mind to ride defensively and mindfully rather than aggressively to avoid encounters and incidents. Be responsible and follow the rules on the road. Most of all, always keep hydrated, and don’t forget to enjoy the view.”

A big thank you to Blinky, Yumz and Prime for sharing with us your experiences, insights and wonderful photos of your cycling lives… zen  



Lady Cyclists’ Gear and Outfit

In this third part, we continue our conversation with some of Cebu’s lady cyclists…

Tell us about your gear and outfit? How do these help with your performance or look?


Blinky de Leon.  Event Host, Product Endorser & Influencer

“It’s a must to wear protective gear like a helmet, outdoor sunglasses to protect your eyes from the dust. Your direction relies on your vision, so make sure nothing distracts it. A face mask from pollution, especially if you’re into road biking. Also install bike lights for dark or night rides. And my favorite gear/accessory is a headset for some good music to accompany you all the way. Never leave without a good sunscreen to protect your skin.”


“For the outfit, cycling shorts (the one with foam) which really gives a lot of comfort throughout the ride. bike jersey that should have some pockets at the back to keep your valuables. You’re supposed to travel light by the way. I also prefer wearing gloves to grip more when you need to break. And for better performance, I wear cleats (footwear) which are attached to the pedal of the bike.”



Yumz Mariot. Branding and Marketing Consultant

“As a “Restarter”, I am not too keen on what brands I wear as long as I am comfortable with it. My first priority is my MTB, an Agentx full alloy with a little additional redefinition and necessary accessories such as water bottle & holder and helmet. The next thing I will probably buy is an Adidas Belt/ Waist Bag, which can seriously secure my mobile devices. That is probably the only accessory that is “branded” about this cycling business I am into.”


Prime Sarino. Digital Media Creative

“I own a Merida Big 7 XC Mountain bike size XS – which is suitable for my build. I chose to get MTB among the other type of bikes since most the routes we do were long and definitely versatile and comfortable to use. Primarily, it has the basic gears but I had it upgraded into 1×12-speed SRAM NX groupset, which really helped me more on navigating on long rides and climbs. I also use MTB cleats shoes which help me in pedaling. It made difference from just using rubber shoes. A durable well fitted helmet. It’s non-negotiable and the most important life-saving protection on the road.

As for bike wear, the key is to wear something comfortable which also provides the function in certain conditions during your travel. Invest in a good fitted cycling shorts or cycling bib that has good gel pads. I usually pair mine with a dri-fit shirts or quick dry and lightweight jerseys. On casual days or errands, I wear button down shirts and running shorts.”

Next time we ask the ladies about some valuable cycling tips…

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Lady Cyclists Hit the Road and Slopes of Cebu. P.2

We continue our conversation with some of Cebu’s lady cyclists…

Please describe one of your memorable bike rides? Who joined you? Where did you reach?


Blinky de Leon.  Event Host, Product Endorser & Influencer

“One of the most memorable bike rides I ever had was when my friend Jessicah and I joined the Active woman virtual challenge. We both decided to do it together and take the 100km ride from Ayala to Moalboal in just one day. It was a really fun and thrilling journey. The fulfillment we had as soon as we finished it prevailed over the physical exhaustion. Our training prior to the race really came in handy. It’s one thing to finish the race, but really proving to yourself that you can do it is very empowering, especially for us women. “



Yumz Mariot. Branding and Marketing Consultant

“My most memorable ride to date was my second which I decided to take after realizing there is more scenery than what the main highway brings. I took an off road route at the nearest Barangay and just kept pedaling. There I saw a farm which I thought was planted with corn. I took a stop to look closely and found my first encounter with Batad [Sorghum]. The farm owner was just in the vicinity and was friendly enough to tell me what it is. I immediately checked on Google and found this information: “Some of these species are grown as cereals for human consumption and some in pastures for animals.” I shared photos of that ride on Facebook and asked for more information about the plant and learned it is called “Dawa” in the dialect and is used to cook “Budbud Kabog”, a local delicacy. “



Prime Sarino. Digital Media Creative

“There were plenty of memorable bike rides I did last year. Most of it were long group rides. The most remarkable would be the Pangamihan climb in Toledo and my Round north ride. The Pangamihan route consists of uphills (around 2k elevation) off road trails, river crossings and heat. The view at the top was definitely the treat. It was one for the books. They say it’s one of top bike routes to try for mountain bikers  here in Cebu.  And then, I definitely enjoyed the Round north backpacking ride with a few of my friends. We covered around 302 km, and navigated the coastal route. Trip to the beach was refreshing.”

More to come with these ladies in part 3…. Zen

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Editors' Picks

Bask in Tranquility & Relaxation in this New Hotel within the City

“A” for ASMARA

by Allain Dumon Fonte

In this very fast-paced world that we live in, we find ourselves in a never-ending race of deadlines, submissions, and to-do-lists.  However, when things become too much to take, we need to pull out the plug and reboot ourselves.  It’s fine to pat your own shoulder and tell yourself that you have done enough; and so, you should stop, take a deep breath, and drop everything.  I usually take myself to a quiet and remote place, and with a whole new scenery.  I want to be lost somewhere where nothing can remind me of work. Yet, the challenge for many of us is time. Some of us only have one off-day from work in a week; while others are lucky to have two days.  Hence, travelling to the Bahamas or to the Caribbean is no longer viable. Even travelling to the world-class resorts in Mactan, to the mystic islands up north, and to the serene beaches down south of Cebu takes so much time because of the traffic situation.  Time is of essence and spending it wisely will be our best investment.

Then, I discovered a new haven just a few minutes’ drive from Cebu’s central business district. The ASMARA Urban Resort and Lifestyle Village is a hidden gem.  Even driving up to the main doors of the resort, you can already feel the exclusivity of this place. Stepping out from the car and walking to the main lobby with a view of the pool to the left, I feel being transported to a whole new world.  The architecture, the interior, the furniture, and the total design concept of this hideaway has created an ambiance comparable to that of the Leadwood Lodge Safari Resort in South Africa or to the Escondido Villas in Acapulco.  I sat in the lobby as I waited to be served.  I listened and listened very well; surprisingly, I can only hear the birds chirping, the wind gushing down the valley, and a few guests having fun at the pool.  Imagine having this tranquil experience in the heart of the metropolis is extremely amazing with a capital A.


Because I got intrigued with the interior, I asked the hotel staff who the architect and the interior designer are; and she gladly introduced me to the owner, the architect, the interior designer, the design concept master, and even the furniture artist of this fine establishment, Mr. Carlo Cordaro.  This is how casual and relaxed the environment is; you will get to meet the owner and converse with him.  I am struck to meet someone with multi-talents but with such humility.  Mr.  Cordaro indulged my inquisitive mind by showing me how he conceptualized and then started building this former racetrack into a perfect haven.

Mr. Cordaro explained that as an artist he keeps four important things in mind.  First, the location and the environment.  ASMARA sits in the valley with the hills of Maria Luisa Estate to its east. Thus, the location is gifted with the cool breeze from the hills, and Mr. Cordaro took advantage of this by creating an open-space restaurant and recreation area.  The restaurant is also part of the village’s recreation space where guests enjoy yoga sessions, or a dip in the pool, or even a tennis match.

Second, Mr.  Cordaro wants to make use of the local raw materials and create a venue that is distinctively Cebuano; and this is what makes Asmara remarkable and unique.  The quirky hotel doors are diagonal and lined with banana skin fibers, the modern-designed furniture are all made from high-quality wood, the walls are lined with abaca fibers, and the tall coconut trees entwine with the rooms’ viewing decks.  Guests have an exquisite panorama of the sunset and the recreation space in the village.  I told Mr.  Cordaro that the rooms have already soothed my stressed thoughts.  This brought us to the third concept that Mr.  Cordaro considers in designing, “the emotion”.  He wants his design pieces, from furniture to spaces, to convey emotions to the guests.  He said that before finishing a masterpiece, he always puts himself in the shoes of other people and asks himself if the art pieces exude emotions or connect with him.  He believes that any work of art must connect with the people to be appreciated.  ASMARA Urban Resort and Lifestyle Village is very well thought of because every space and every corner can deliver emotions of relaxation and ease.  

When I asked him for the fourth element, Mr. Cordaro smiled and answered, “sustainability”.  He wants ASMARA to be as green as it could be.  The open-space restaurant uses less electricity because it maximizes the natural light and the cool breez. The glass pyramid in the middle of the dining area does not only manipulate the natural light but it is also a gigantic rainwater collecting facility. The use of indigenous local materials for the interior of the hotel and the pillars of wood that support the three-story hotel building make ASMARA one of the most sustainable establishments in Southeast Asia.  Mr.  Cordaro has not only made ASMARA an asset to the economy and tourism, but also an asset to the environment.

Since we were already in the dining area, Mr. Cordaro offered that I should try their authentic Italian dishes.  I took the liberty of ordering the pizza rolls, and it refreshed my memories of Palermo at Frida Pizzeria.  I shall not disclose how many pieces I ate that afternoon because it was just divine.  The chicken skewers became special with the restaurant’s secret sauce.  They were heaven to my taste buds.  Please do not let me start with the healthy options for their beverages.  Every fruit juice is freshly squeezed and very well-concocted.  

After the very delightful conversation with Mr. Cordaro, I finally settled in my room and enjoyed my four seasons drink on my room’s balcony with the scene of the orange sky, the breeze brushing my face and the sounds of water from the pool. With Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s book “One Hundred Years of Solitude” in my hand, I felt great that very moment.  Asmara Urban Resort and Lifestyle Village is a gift to mankind.  

A for amazed…A for astonished…A for awed…A for ASMARA.

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