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The Weekender

With a constant need for mobility, Paco Rodriguez takes a weekend off from the urban jungle that is Manila and gives us a tour of his home.

With a constant need for mobility, Paco Rodriguez takes a weekend off from the urban jungle that is Manila and gives us a tour of his home.

I was introduced Rodriguez a while back at one of the hotspots of the Cebuano nightlife, and like most introductions, there’s not much that comes after you learn someone’s name. Presumptions and youth stereotypes usually fill in the gaps–privileged kid that dresses casually to draw little attention to himself, living in one of the gated communities of the community, attended high school at a Chinese Catholic institution, and takes a business course in one of the country’s better universities. And yes, Paco does like cars and sports, and hangs out with the same circle of friends he grew up with, but a brief chat over brunch revealed there’s so much more to him.

Paco admits that he can’t stay put. “I always need to find something to do. I’m not the type of person who can just sit down and do nothing.” An attitude most likely developed from an early start at go-karting when he was just three. “I asked my dad to get me a motorbike for my birthday. When I turned four, I joined my first motorcross competition. After a couple of years, my dad decided to let me race go-karts instead of motorbikes because they’re safer. I joined my first go-kart race when I was six years old.”

In turn, Paco spent this time in the company of an older crowd of enthusiasts, including local TV star and Cebu native Matteo Guidicelli, and one of Zee Lifestyle’s go-to photographers Jan Gonzales. Acquaintances are one thing, but Paco grew close enough to be a test subject for Jan at his studio. The photo, done in Jan’s signature style, rests on his nightstand in his Cebu bedroom, next to catalogs of luxury watches that Paco hopes to build a collection of when he gets older. With hardwood floors and white walls, the bedroom is minimal but cozy and, unlike most guys his age, clean. “I get a little obsessive about it, so things are always kept in order.” On the opposite side of the room, the TV console displays various items with the underlying motif of motion: boats, planes and cars collected throughout his childhood. The fluorescent helmet is what he used when he was racing. “Since I was little, me and my dad always went to the beach to go sailing, jet skiing and island hopping,” hence the large sailboat, a present from his  father that takes up most of the surface.

“I need to be out of my house  at least once during the day to really function, even just to drive around. Sometimes I drive for leisure. I find that it relaxes me.” Considering the size of his house, he really could just drive around it. You would think  the sheer massiveness of a place this big might cause anyone to get a little lonely, but that isn’t the case at all. Paco’s bedroom is in the same wing as those of his cousins, who are constantly popping in and out of the different rooms.

When he is being a homebody, Paco spends his time inside the coral room, watching movies and playing video games, or by the pool with his friends. At times, he indulges in his hidden passion, cooking and baking. How could he not, with a kitchen like this? Marble countertops, state-of- the-art equipment and a collection of enough cutlery, fine china and other dining accessories to fit any theme. Of course, a great kitchen belongs in a house built for entertaining. This one definitely is, with two dining rooms,  a formal one used for large family dinners during the holidays and one for everyday use, and a balcony with a large iron table where brunch was served. From there, you can appreciate the scenic view of the city set against a clear blue sky and framed by tall coconut  trees in front of the lush garden.

With a life and home as  luxurious as this, it poses the question of how Paco stays so humble. “I  never thought that material things  are something to be proud of. Ever since I was a kid, my parents brought me up to always remember to keep myself grounded no matter what.” As Paco returns to Manila to continue  his studies, rest assured the Cebuano youth is well represented by him.

  • by David Jones Cua
  • photography by Homer Medici

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LADY CYCLISTS HIT THE ROADS AND SLOPES OF CEBU.

Cycling has been a growing sport and hobby for many years but it’s popularity has erupted since the Covid pandemic.  People biking to work and for recreation is an everyday sight in Cebu.  More and more are joining the ride.  Many are quite serious about cycling.  I know three ladies who are among those who’ve gone long distances across Cebu.

How did you get into serious cycling?  What was your motivation?

Blinky de Leon.  Event Host, Product Endorser & Influencer

“ I’ve been into cycling since I was a kid. A little backstory, I was around 10 years old when my dad surprised me with my first custom-made mountain bike. I still keep it until now, in fact I had it refurbished. It’s the most sentimental thing I ever received since it was his way/gesture to catch up with me after not seeing each other for almost 6 yrs. My dad is based in Germany and he also loves cycling and makes his own bamboo bike.”

 

“Just a year ago though, my friend Gazini randomly, out of nowhere, picked me up from home to bike with her to the South of Cebu. I felt really excited and motivated to get back on track because it’s very nostalgic and brings back so many great memories. And since then, the rest was history. We’ve been joining different groups, tried different routes and conquered different heights. I’ve met so many cyclists with very inspiring stories in the bike community who kept me feeling motivated too. I also look forward to the sights and the adventure that comes along with it.”

 

Yumz Mariot. Branding & Marketing Consultant

“I used to bike along with rock and wall climbing. I am lousy with ballgames which is why. Our usual route were Talamban and Mactan but one time, managed to ship gears all the way to Dumaguete for a quick ride to Valencia, the next town located at a higher elevation. Those were days when I did it for fun and what bike I was using did not matter.”

“Fast forward to 2021, a year after the pandemic lockdown began, I realized I have been lazy to do any fitness routine. Too caught up on juggling between house chores and Work from Home deliverables (I work as a Branding and Marketing Consultant), I started to feel my body needs to move as much as my brain does. A hysical fitness routine is as important as what I eat, or what I read or watch. So I decided to invest on a decent MTB, just very recently and got myself a much necessary restart. What motivates me even more is the area where I currently reside at. It is vast, fresh, green and safe for solo bikers like me.”

 

Prime Sarino. Digital Media Creative

“I started biking as a young teenager and I got the idea to start it as an adult hobby 3 years ago. I was already into running and I thought it would be great to venture into another outdoor activity to keep me occupied after work hours and weekends. I was set to travel for a year so I had to put aside the idea first but came pandemic. We were all forced to stay put and everything was put on hold. Cycling became my diversion. My cyclists friends invited me to quick and short rides. I enjoyed my first 50km ride and the sceneries and routes most of all. It also helped channel a positive mindset during the hard hit season of the pandemic. Not to mention it’s also another way to stay fit when we were forced into inactivity during the quarantine.”

Next in Part 2, we ask the ladies about their cycling experiences and memorable moments…

by: Zen

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Netflix Original Releases We’re Excited for This August 2021. Part 3

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The Witcher: Nightmare of the Wolf

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He’s All That

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Netflix Original Releases We’re Excited for This August 2021. Part 2

Exciting Netflix Original Releases for this August 2021
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Sweet Girl

Coming to Netflix: August 20

This is another Netflix action thriller film we’re excited for. This film stars Jason Momoa as a devastated husband determined to avenge his wife’s death while protecting his daughter and is sure to put us on the edges of our seats the whole way through.

 

The Chair

Coming to Netflix: August 20

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The Loud House Movie

Coming to Netflix: August 20

The popular Nickelodeon animated series gets a film which features the characters of the series on a holiday trip to Scotland. This film is perfect if you’re a fan of the series or you’ve got kids who are.

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