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Weddings in Time of Corona

Intimate Venues for Intimate Weddings (Part 1)


Almost every city is on lockdown and the people are being quarantined; plus, gatherings are discouraged or may be limited to family members only, can we still exchange “I Do’s” and make beautiful and memorable weddings to cherish for a lifetime?

The new normal has made us appreciate intimate gatherings and cherish even the smallest of gatherings.  If there is any good that this pandemic has brought us, it is to be grateful for what we have, and to make every moment with our family matters.  Thus, any good news during this most challenging time is worth celebrating.  And what can be better of a news if not for two people deciding to tie the knot?

Here are my suggestions to your unique and intimate wedding venues.



Situated in the highlands of Busay and Balamban, this private home built on a cliff is just perfect for an afternoon wedding.  The lanai welcomes guests to a spectacular view of the hills; and the rustic theme of the house sets the romantic mood.  Plus, who cannot fall in love to the landscape of various flora and fauna that surrounds this abode?  Sermon on the Mount is just lovely.

Picture grabbed from Sermon on the Mount Retreat Resort: A Relaxing Escape to Balamban (

Check out Sermon on the Mount Facebook page.  To rate this venue:

Accommodation           ★★★★

Privacy                            ★★★★

Security                          ★★★

Safety Protocols            ★★★★

Romantic Ambiance    ★★★★★

View                                ★★★★★

Value for Money           ★★★★


Altar set-up for a wedding ceremony at Sermon on the Mount.  Photo by:  Camille Fonte-Pojoyo

Dining Table set-up for a wedding at Sermon on the Mount.  Photo by Camille Fonte-Pajoyo

2. Halla Cat Yacht Cruises


Halla Cat yacht cruises operate from the Mactan Wharf in Lapu Lapu City, Cebu.  The company has two catamaran yachts:  a medium size to accommodate 30-35 guests, and a larger catamaran that can accommodate 50-60 guests.  They also serve two packages:  a 7-hour island hopping package with lunch, or a 4-hour sunset cruise as the Mactan Channel.  The yacht has an airconditioned dining hall, an upper deck al fresco dining space, and a bedroom where brides can retouch their make-up and change from their wedding gowns to their sleek reception dresses.

The Bridge of the Halla Cat Yacht. (Photo grabbed from Halla Cat’s Facebook page)

Check out Halla Cat Yacht Cruises at this page:  HALLA CAT | Facebook.  To rate this venue:

Accommodation           ★★

Privacy                            ★★★★

Security                          ★★★

Safety Protocols            ★★★

Romantic Ambiance    ★★★★★

View                                ★★★★★

Value for Money           ★★★


Wedding photo of Darrell John Fonte and Jonah Abella-Fonte on Halla Cat cruise with a view of the CCLEX and SM Seaside in SRP.

Wedding photo of Darrell John Fonte and Jonah Abella-Fonte on Halla Cat cruise with a sunset view of Cebu City’s Skyscrapers.

Plantation Bay’s Bakeshop by the Beach Flavored Croissants and Brownies are served as desserts on a wedding sunset cruise in Halla Cat.

3. Purita Farms Vacation House


Situated in the heart of San Remigio, Cebu, what started as an exclusive family farm of the late Judge Romulo Senining and his wife Madam Purita Senining, is now a go-to-venue for intimate family gatherings and events.  The farm is a Mango orchard that stretches to about 4 hectares of land, with adjoined two large hexagonal cottages in the middle overseeing the mystical views of the mango trees.  The Vacation house has 5 bedrooms, a large kitchen, open space living area, a medium sized pool and vast view of nature.    To locate the Purita Farms Vacation House, ask the locals for “manggahan”.  The farm is known to the locals of San Remigio by that name.

Bird’s eyeview of the Villas and Pool of Purita Farms Vacation House (Photo grabbed from Purita Farms Vacation House facebook page).

Check out Purita Farms Vacation House in facebook. To rate this venue:

Accommodation           ★★

Privacy                            ★★★★

Security                          ★★★★

Safety Protocols            ★★

Romantic Ambiance    ★★★★★

View                                ★★★★★

Value for Money           ★★★


Rey and Carrie Senining’s 25th wedding anniversary and renewal of vows at the Purita Farm Vacation House.

Elegant dining set-up styled by Brian Aloquin and Tito Zamora for a wedding in Purita Farms Vacation House.


Trade in Your Old Watch and Save Big on a New Timepiece at The Watch Store

Watches are an essential part of any outfit, providing you with both style and functionality. But despite their timeless appeal, many people leave their old watches unused at home. If you have an old watch lying around or are considering an upgrade, The Watch Store has a special limited offer: bring in your old watch, and in return, you’ll get a new one at a discounted price!

As the official retailer of renowned international watch brands such as Tissot, Frederique Constant, Alpina, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Coach, and Bering, The Watch Store offers a collection of watches that embodies refined quality, high performance, durability, and unparalleled precision. With a diverse range of designs, from classic sophistication to modern innovation, there’s always a watch tailored to capture your style for any occasion. This makes our watches an exceptional upgrade from your old watch and a valuable addition to your collection.

They accept all old watches, regardless of their brand, type, and condition. When you bring a Swiss watch brand, you’ll enjoy 35% off on a single watch purchase, 25% off for a Japanese brand, and 18% off for other brand or non-brand watches. These discounts apply only to selected watches.

So hurry, time is ticking! Don’t miss this chance to trade in your old watch exclusively at The Watch Store Cebu from June 13-17 and at Tempus Ayala Center Cebu from June 27-July 1, and take home a new timepiece for less than its original price!

Follow their social media accounts for real-time updates and the latest promotions:




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A Moving Feast: Cebu Food and Wine Festival 2024 Opens in NUSTAR Resort

by Kara Mae M. Noveda

Taste Cebu! That is how the invitation goes for the two-day opening salvo of this year’s Cebu Food and Wine Festival (CFWF) held at the NUSTAR Resort Cebu. When the doors opened in the plush ballrooms last June 1, more than a thousand guests were treated to a moving feast for all the senses. Setting this year’s festival apart, the CFWF board of organizers put on a multi-sensory approach. Bringing their vision board to life, the opening gala brought large-scale visuals to complement an array of innovative culinary creations. After all, we also taste with our eyes.

Meticulously prepared local-inspired dishes with overflowing wine and alcoholic drinks filled the three tasting zones: Wave, Peak, and Warmth–with each themed zone serving a taste of a distinct aspect of Cebuano food culture.

Beginning with the Wave Tasting Zone that capitalizes on the coastal freshness of the island of Cebu. The emblematic dishes in this zone are bakasi (saltwater eel) stuffed cornmeal topped with bakasi bones and local sea urchin & tarurot (this is sea urchin blended with deep-fried baby squid floss plated in a sea urchin shell). Chef David Thien and his team also served refreshing cold noodles.

Next, the Peak Tasting Zone highlights the mountainous area west and east of Cebu. From these farm-rich areas, you get good produce transformed into incredible base ingredients for memorable local dishes: manok Bisaya (local chicken) and everyone’s favorite, Cebu Lechon. Crowds flocked into the lechon station manned by Chef Sau del Rosario, known in the culinary world as “The Godfather of Philippine Cuisine.”

Finally, the Warmth Tasting Zone celebrates the exciting city life that Cebu also has to offer. Big cities are a melting pot of different cultures, so you’re right to expect fusion dishes in this zone. Samples of exciting hybrid dishes include the coconut wine-marinated conch shell sisig served in corn tortillas and Chef Lisa Revilla-Thien’s Hamachi salad.

The festival’s honored guest, Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Garcia-Frasco, who walked with the media members for a preview, emphasizes the importance of gastronomy tourism. The DOT is keen on supporting programs that elevate the country’s culinary portfolio.

The Cebu Food and Wine Festival is a month-long June festival featuring over 60 pocket events spread in over 40 participating restaurants and 20 hotels.

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May 10 – Cebu City  |  Step inside a world of opulence where gold shimmers and diamonds sparkle. BVLGARI, the renowned Italian luxury brand, is celebrated for its exquisite gemstone jewelry, thin watches, perfumes, and leather goods. With a legacy dating back to 1884, BVLGARI has become synonymous with elegance and craftsmanship. The newest BVLGARI boutique opened last week at the sparkling The Mall at Nustar Resort and Casino, fast becoming the shopping destination for discerning consumers.

Eva Gullas, Jeffrey Hang, Jaja Chiongbian-Rama and Butch Carungay

Jeffrey Hang, BVLGARI’s Regional Marketing Director for South East Asia, flew in from Singapore to welcome guests. “We are happy to unveil BVLGARI to the Cebu market. This is the company’s 140th year, and BVLGARI celebrates this landmark with the Aeterna High Jewelry Collection in Rome this coming May 20, attended by all our global ambassadors like Zendaya and Black Pink” Jeffrey shares with us. The collection will be available in SE Asia later in the year and in the Philippines at the end of the year.

Leading the ribbon cutting was Joseph Muñoz (commercial director of Bulgari Philippines, Jeffry Hang (regional marketing director of Bulgari South East Asian operations, Pia Wurtzbach-Jauncey (Bulgari Ambasadress and Ms. Universe 2015), Allan Teo (chief operating officer of NUSTAR Resort and Casino and May Adolfo (mall director of NUSTAR Cebu).

Pia Wurtzbach-Jauncey, BVLGARI’s local Ambasadress and Ms. Universe 2015

Sheila Osmeña-Go and Jaja Chiongbian-Rama

Spotted at the event was Joseph Muñoz, Commercial Director of Bulgari Philippines escorting Pia Wurtzbach-Jauncey, BVLGARI’s local Ambasadress and Ms. Universe 2015, Allan Teo, Chief Operating Officer of NUSTAR Resort and Casino, Howard Go, Summit Media’s CEO and his wife, Cebuana Sheila Osmeña-Go as well as some of Cebu’s young fashionable set like Claudia Bezza Yeung, Marjay Ramirez, and Danessa Onglatco.

May Adolfo, Danessa Onglatco, Marjay Ramirez and Claudia Bezza-Yeung

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