Aristocrat: 75 years of serving the best
Filipinos’ love affair with Aristocrat, the “home of the best chicken barbecue in town,” has been going on for the last 75 years. The close ties have in fact grown stronger and with good reason. Founded by Doña Engracia Cruz-Reyes, the restaurant is known for its well-loved chicken barbecue derived from a time-honored recipe. Families over the years have developed a habit of sampling Aristocrat’s classic three-piece chicken barbecue paired with the restaurant’s signature Java rice (an Aristocrat original) and Java sauce, with achara (pickled green papaya) on the side. With only the freshest ingredients going into Aristocrat’s dishes, including kare-kare and pancit canton, to name a few, old and new patrons in search of the best-tasting Filipino fare will certainly continue to troop to Aristocrat’s many outlets, as well as to its original store along Roxas Boulevard. Main branch: 432 San Andres St. corner Roxas Blvd., Malate, Manila; +632 5247671 to 80; www.aristocrat.com.ph
Italian leather satchel (Php5,500). Wotcher mobile +63917 794 6272
Balay da Blas Pensionne House
It’s the thought that went into Balay da Blas that gives it its appeal: the attentive staff, home-cooked meals, and spacious rooms with plenty of privacy. Touches of Ilocano culture and old-world charm hint at a time when life was simple and unhurried. 10 Giron Street, Barangay 7-B, Laoag City, Ilocos Norte; +6377 770 4389; +63917 5702110; www.balaydablas.com
Don’t expect to find cable TV in your room at the Kapuluan Vista Resort in Pagudpud. But who’ll miss it, with the ocean just a few meters away. The resort was built to make the outdoors accessible to surfers or anyone who loves the water. Its minimalist design has hardly any walls and makes for lots of sunshine and plenty of wide open spaces. It’s all part of the resort’s commitment toward a wholesome lifestyle. You’ll see it in the menu, too, which features healthy, grilled dishes and even vegetarian options using organically grown vegetables from their garden. Sitio Baniaran, Barangay Balaoi, Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte; +63920 952 2528 or +63920 928 5273; www.kapuluanvista.com.