Toiletries that smell amazing, The office set up in the room, and a healthy salad fix at 1 in the morning
2015 has been an absolute blur – new jobs, new roles, projects and more have made time go by rather too swiftly. While I am in no way complaining, it has been a little hectic. I’ve been working for a travel magazine, Explore Philippines, as Managing Editor and also handling the website, Livetoexplore.ph. The job is a blessing in itself- traveling for work has always been a dream and writing and creating content another. I’m lucky I get to do both (or, in true millennial fashion, #blessed.) This does mean making time to plan itineraries, shoot locations, places, stories and covers and be out constantly exploring that sometimes, it feels like such a treat to just do a staycation.
The concept of a staycation has been catching on too. More and more people are opting to carve out some me-time from their busy schedules and just stay in the city at a hotel. Long weekends are too few and planning out of town trips can be more stressful than relaxing. And why wouldn’t they opt for a hotel? Breakfast buffets, room service, housekeeping and the friendliest of staff all make any guest feel pampered – a feeling we lose enslaved to our phones, emails and bosses.
I was lucky enough to have been invited for an overnight staycation in Makati recently to experience a special holiday promo that MasterCard is holding: a 50% discount on rooms at some of Makati’s top hotels- InterContinental Manila, Holiday Inn and Suites, Raffles and Fairmont plus tickets and vouchers to Circuit Makati’s special offers.
The trip started with an interesting plot twist where our assigned hotels had to be selected, draw lots style, from a box. I was last to choose (blame it on the traffic and the embarrassing time it takes for me to park) and luckily got Fairmont, a 5-star hotel that exceeded my expectations. The bed was amazing, my room had an office much better than the one I just arranged for myself (I recently bought an office chair) and the bathroom was perfect. I’m especially particular with bathrooms but this one had a tub and the best smelling toiletries – both wins in my book.
Staycations are meant for you to stay in bed- all day everyday- minus the guilt of doing nothing. But the great thing about this particular #MakatiStaycation is that there are so many things to do should you get sick of just the bed. Although, let’s be honest, why would you? Fairmont, in particular, was right beside Landmark and across the Greenbelt area which allows any city vacationer meals wherever they prefer, movies, and a whole lot of shopping. If you want to opt to head out of the Makati Central Business District which can get pretty busy (trust me, I used to work along Ayala Ave.), guests can opt to go to Ayala’s newest development, Circuit Makati, less than an hour away. The former Santa Ana race track has been turned into a community worth visiting with a mall that houses some of the up and coming local restaurants, fashion and lifestyle brands, and a Power Mac Center that house plays and musicals for theater junkies. There’s also an events area for concerts and music festivals, a skate park and a go-kart race track. Of course, we tried most of the activities out. City Kart Racing costs about 600 a run, but don’t wear heels like I did. We also watched No Filter, a play by Sandbox Co, for millenials. It was a little long, about 3 hours, but most of the skits really did resonate with me and my friends (despite the caricature & stereotypical portrayal of fashion bloggers. Kidding though, the stereotype was spot on.) Circuit buses are available for free from 4-8PM with pick ups at the four aforementioned hotels, so transportation isn’t a problem if you want to head to this newest 20 billion peso project. The MasterCard promo includes a Circuit Makati bundle anyway so might as well make use of the perks.
Taking the free shuttle to Circuit Makati where we geared up for Go Kart at City Kart Racing and had dinner at Backyard
Favorite picks from Fairmont’s breakfast buffet
My staycation ended on a beautiful note with a hearty breakfast buffet and hours wasted lying in bed. It was especially difficult getting up in the morning so my late checkout option was thoroughly abused. I wasn’t able to try the massage from the spa nor get to swim in the pool but my tip is to book the service early (they get booked pretty quick) and just enjoy the sun and water while you can.
No matter how tempting the bed may be. Farewell, Fairmont. ‘Til we meet again.
The Mastercard Staycation promo is from November 1 to December 31 2015 and is exclusively available to MasterCard credit, debit and prepaid cardholders. Avail of the Makati Staycation packages by logging on to www.makeitmakati.com, by contacting the Reservation Desks of participating hotels or via walk-in.