Manila Ocean Park
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Author’s Note: This article uses Apple’s QuickTime and Adobe Flash in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality technology. QuickTime and/or Flash 9.0 are required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 2.3Mb each. When news first broke out that Manila will soon have an oceanarium at par with those in other Asian countries, I just can’t contain my anticipation! So after a long construction wait, and a few suppose openings that got postponed, the Manila Ocean Park finally opened its “waters” last February 28. The park’s journey starts with “Agos”, one of the seven water environments. This exhibit simulates the flow of fresh water from the land out to the seas. Others comprising of “Bahura”, the reef with its myriad of colorful corals and fishes; “Laot”, the fishing ground features mostly bigger fishes, including some that you’ll find in your tables; “Buhay na Karagatan”, the living ocean is the main attraction of the ocean park, with its 220-degree tunnel, here you will witness the interaction of many marine animals in their natural habitat; “Ang Kalaliman”, the deep ocean displays the pelagic barracudas; “Pagi”, stingrays view from an overhead tank; “Pating”, young sharks that seem to […] Read more!
Hot Air Balloon Festival 2008
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Author’s Note: This article uses Apple’s QuickTime and Adobe Flash in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality technology. QuickTime and/or Flash 9.0 are required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 2.3Mb each. “A lot of hot air!” That was what I told my friends when they ask me after I got back from attending the festival. They were suppose to go with us that morning, but the thought of waking up and be on the road at three o’clock in the morning was surely a tough act to follow. The pleasant drive towards Clark Freeport Zone, where the festival is always being held, took about an hour from Manila. Officially, this was my third time to attend the balloon festival. For the uninitiated, the balloon flight always takes place early in the morning or late in the afternoon. This is because in order for a balloon to generate lift, there should be a significant difference in temperature between the ambient air and the air inside the balloon. With hot air being lighter than cold air, lower temperature in early mornings and late afternoons serve to make the balloons more buoyant. A total of 21 […] Read more!
China: Shanghai and Beijing
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Author’s Note: This article uses Adobe Flash in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality technology. Flash 10.0 is required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 2.5Mb each. It was just prior to the Christmas season last year that I took a trip to Shanghai and Beijing with my friends. Although this is my second time to China, it was my first time to visit these cities. We took advantage of Cebu Pacific’s “One Peso” promo fare from Manila to Shanghai. The smooth flight took about 3 hours, touching down at Pudong International Airport in Shanghai just a few minutes before midnight. The outside temperature was in the range of 7 to 10 degrees Celsius, thank God for the cheap winter jacket I bought at our local “ukay-ukay.” Being a modern cosmopolitan city with a rich history, Shanghai has become a fusion of Oriental and Western influences. The city is dotted with marvelous skyscrapers, towering infrastructures, and contemporary architectures. Likewise, its old streets boast of neo-colonial buildings, ancient temples, and old traditional houses. The highlight of our Shanghai tour included: The Bund, the heart of international settlement along the western banks of the Huangpu River; […] Read more!
Aboard the M/V Doulos
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Author’s Note: This article uses Adobe Flash in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality technology. Flash 9.0 or higher required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 2.0Mb each. Doulos, a Greek word meaning servant; the “floating library” visited the Philippines for 2 months; initially for the annual dry dock maintenance in the port of Batangas, then in Manila and Subic Bay for the onboard book fair and other community activities. Built in 1914, just 2 years after the sinking of the RMS Titanic, the M/V Doulos is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s oldest active ocean-going passenger ship. I caught up with the Doulos on a fine Saturday as she was docked at the port of Subic Bay; having missed her in Manila last December, this could very well be my very last chance to tour the ship. The first thing you noticed when you step aboard is her friendly crew; a smile in every turn, a greeting in every corner. With a crew composed of various nationalities, each with their unique social and cultural diversity, it is indeed a heart warming sight to see them working towards a […] Read more!
Talon Vision 2007
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Author’s Note: This article uses Apple’s QuickTime and Adobe Flash in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality technology. QuickTime and/or Flash are required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 2.0Mb each. Yooo Joe! Some of you might still relate to that phrase on TV during the 80’s. It was a battle-cry for action from the animated series G.I. Joe in their seemingly never ending fight against Cobra. A classic tale of good versus evil, heroes versus terrorists, and justice eventually triumphs over oppression kind of plot. This was one of the many shows that I grew up with and loved. Ah…those were the halcyon days. I’m always fascinated with military hardware; from vehicles to rockets, from the navy, to the army, and the air force; and I just love WWII movies. So when I found out that the US Marines will be having an exhibit of its aircrafts in Clark for the first time since they pull-out their bases after the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo, I didn’t even think twice. The exhibit showcases attack and support aircraft from the US Marines belonging to the “Dragon Squadron” who are based in Okinawa, Japan. They were […] Read more!
The Makati Peninsula Stand-Off
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November 29, 2007, after a commercial shoot in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig, we were on our way back to our office in Makati City. Noticed several truckloads of marines in battle gear speeding somewhere. This turned out to be a siege on the Peninsula Hotel by now Senator Antonio Trillanes IV and a group of rebel soldiers plus some civilian sympathizers after walking out of a court hearing to demand President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to step down. After almost 6 hours, the Philippine National Police, firing tear gas and backed up by an elite Special Action Force, crashed an armor personnel carrier into the hotel lobby and finally ended the standoff. What follows are VRs of the scene before Senator Trillanes was escorted away: View 360 VR 1 View 360 VR 2 View 360 VR 3 Read more!
F3: Forty, Filipino and Fabulous
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Author’s Note: This article uses Apple’s QuickTime technology in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality panoramas. QuickTime is required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 2.0Mb each. The Philippine School of Interior Design (PSID) in cooperation with The Chamber of Furniture Industries of the Philippines (CFIP) celebrates 40 years of excellence in interior design education through its graduation exhibit entitled Forty, Filipino, & Fabulous; also dubbed as F3. The exhibit showcases masterfully designed and executed interior spaces that center on Philippine furniture as its focus. The exhibit aims to promote the ingenuity and creativity of Filipino designed furniture pieces in fabulous interior settings. F3 guarantees the fusion of furniture and interior design as a formidable tandem in creating livable, functional, and aesthetic spaces. The exhibit center on 19 fabulous interior design settings executed by the graduates of PSID’s advance class of 2007. Each group was paired off with a manufacturer from the CFIP, working together to bring to life these wonderful interior settings. It took each group around 3 months for design conceptualization and 3 weeks of simultaneous construction at the exhibit venue to finally realized this milestone. Dalisay View 360VRs Meaning pure, clean, […] Read more!
UNESCO Heritage Churches
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Author’s Note: This article uses Apple’s QuickTime technology in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality panoramas. QuickTime is required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 1.8Mb each. I love churches, especially centuries-old ones. Apart from their religious significance, I like the tranquility of its ambiance, the intricate architectural designs of its interiors, and the historical and cultural attachment to its community. Being the only Christian nation in Asia and with over 400 years of rich Spanish heritage, our country is dotted with an abundance of these elegant structures. Built in God’s name, and for His glory, these bastions of Christianity are a testament of man’s faith, devotion, and artistic talents. The National Commission for Culture and Arts (NCCA) listed the following four churches on November 6, 1992 for inclusion under the UNESCO World Heritage List: Church of the Immaculate Conception of San Agustin, Intramuros Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción of Santa Maria, Ilocos Sur Church of San Agustin in Paoay, Ilocos Norte Church of Santo Thomas de Villanueva in Miag-ao, Iloilo These were subsequently inscribed on December 1993 under World Heritage List No. 677 with the heading “Four Baroque Churches of the […] Read more!
A Virtual Guimaras Day
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Author’s Note: This article uses Apple’s QuickTime technology in providing an immersive experience by means of virtual reality panoramas. QuickTime is required to view the 360-degree VRs. Average VR size is 1.7Mb each. Located at the southern tip of Iloilo City is the island province of Guimaras. Known for its sweetest mangoes the world over; the pristine island also boast of numerous fine sand beach resorts, tranquil churches and monastery, friendly people, and tragically, the site affected by one of the worse oil spills in the country. My trip to Guimaras started on a fine summer day from Iloilo City. We took a 20-minute banca ride from one of the several ports in the city. The fare, a mere 12 pesos per person for a 1-way trip, the cheapest by far in all my travels! Upon arrival at Jordan, the capital of Guimaras, we proceeded to the local tourism office and had our names registered. Here, friendly staffs will assist you in your visit. If you already have a list of sites to see, they will help you to maximize your travel routes, if not, readily suggested attractions will be provided. The staffs will also aid you in negotiating a […] Read more!
For Turtle’s Sake
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Waking up at 3 in the morning on a Saturday was hardly my way of starting a weekend. But this day was different; I would join a group of young professionals from various fields on a trip to Bataan to visit a turtle conservation project. We left Manila around 5AM and arrived at Subic Bay a little past 8. The first stop was a visit to the Wildlife Center. Here we were guided by the head veterinarian, Dr. Richard Encomienda. on a tour of its facilities as well as some of the animals they rescued. Next we visited Haribon’s Gubat Learning Center for a short film feature on the Philippine Eagle. After lunch along the famous Subic Boardwalk area, we headed towards the turtle conservation site. Barangay Nagbalayong is a small fishing village located in Morong, Bataan. Being one of the nesting sites of marine turtles in the Philippines, the location is now a community- based livelihood and a sea turtle conservation project. Started in 1999, after concerned environmental group composed of people from the Department of Natural Resources (DENR), Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM), and Bantay Kalikasan discovered that fisher folk and farmers supplement their earnings by gathering turtle […] Read more!
The Wrath of Typhoon ‘Milenyo’
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October 2, 2006 – One of the strongest typhoon to ever hit the country, ‘Milenyo’ tore through the metropolis uprooting trees, tumbling billboards, damaging properties and caused a wide range of miseries. These VRs were probably the very firsts to be use in Philippine journalism. Taken a day after, along Paseo de Roxas in Makati City. View 360VR 1 View 360VR 2 Read more!