places & travels

All posts tagged places & travels

Photoshoots, Fashion show and Flying in Between

Published June 21, 2012 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

DPSC Models

The past months have been really good for my career, business and modeling.  I actually have six magazine feature shoots recently, four had been released and two are to follow.  One was last May and the other one is indefinite. I still can’t believed I’m part of it. This year has been good since I am also included in the recent major fashion show in Doha, Qatar and Shoot for a cause (a fund raising event to help baby LJ who is suffering from leukemia) I will try to write separate entries for all the photoshoots I have been doing (if time permits). It’s just a hobby for me though. I love the outcome of the pictures! I love collecting the pictures from the professional photographers!  Photos are archives of our lives so we should never get tired on collecting it. The more the merrier!

Models Photo op

Makeup artists and hairstylists retouching the models faces over and over again (I think I’m one of the few models that time who prefer not to have a makeup artist… I prefer to do it on my own.

Summer outfit

Before as a part of audience I don’t know half of what happens in a shoot or in a runway show.  They only see a successful runway show.  They don’t see models dressing and undressing backstage like the speed of light just so they can enter the runway at the right time!

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I have been very very very  very busy (is there other word besides from BUSY?) but thank God for showering me with all these blessings after all these years.  I’ll try to write and update more (well, I keep on saying this but it never happened, hahaha I think I should hire secretary soon! lolz).  Nonetheless, thank you to all my supporters/fans/friends that have been messaging me in twitter, instagram and facebook.  Thank you that I still remain as an inspiration by many but source of pictures to be stolen in the Internet! I just hope those pathetic people will stop using my pictures to their profiles, etc! I also hope that Internet users will be smart enough to know that lots of people are just stealing my pictures and pretending to be me. (Haaaayz enough of negative vibes!)

I recently flew to Copenhagen, Denmark. It was a very short layover, we landed there around 3 in the afternoon, and departing the next day morning. We headed to the city right away. One of the crew that I’m with has been there many times so we didn’t have a problem with the directions going to the city and the train station is just few blocks away from our hotel.

denmark

Nyhvan ‘the New Haven’, was originally a busy commercial port where ships from all over the world would dock. The area teemed with sailors, ladies of pleasure, pubs and alehouses. The beautiful old slanted houses were renovated and classy restaurants started popping up.

Copenhagen, Denmark

Many of the houses lining the quays of Nyhavn have been the homes of prominent artists. I had fun walking in the city although I’m not that geared up for the weather! I didn’t bring any jackets with me! The weather forecast from my iphone apps told me it will be sunny 17-20 degrees Celsius! To my surprise it’s 10-12 degrees and very windy! I’m glad one of the crew lend me a jacket otherwise I have to buy just for that day…

Hollywood – Entertainment Capital of Los Angeles

Published June 5, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

 
Hollywood is known for a lot of things, like the set tours of different movies, thrill rides themed with timeless movies like Jurassic Park and Saw, and of course, the overall experience that you get an insider look at how movies are made, Universal Studios Style. I’ve been lucky enough to get to visit the Universal Studio Theme park in California several times in my life. Each time I’ve gone had been an amazing, fun experience that always leaves me looking forward to my next visit.

 

The new ride on my last visit was The Simpsons Ride, . The Ride was converted from the old Back To The Future ride; it’s a simulator ride that’s intense. It’s theme is adorable. Even though you’re technically not going anywhere, you are moving around in your ride car, and there’s even a part that simulates a rollercoaster ride, When you get to universal this is one of the first thing you should go because for sure you’ll want to ride it twice before the lines goes long!


 

Enjoy the ride then get straight back on and take a look around, you get a birds eye view of Springfield and its really detailed and impressive. Springfield is the fictional city in which the American animated television series The Simpsons is set.

It’s a simulator you sit it this car and watch this huge screen it has lots of effects so that it really doesn’t feel like a simulator with lots of thrills and the unexpected but everyone gets back to earth safely with a few laughs along the way. Water gets sprayed at you too and does it quite well. Very fun! It feels like a rollercoaster with out going upside down of course but still camera is not allowed inside the car. The surprise at the end is funny too. Dont forget to smile.

 

House of Horror – Universal Studios Hollywood turns into one big real-life horror flick. Using inspiration from popular Horror films. It’s better not to show your fear. Even if you are scared, don’t show it. If you run away screaming, Either Zombies, Freddy, Jason, Chuckie, Dracula or Frankenstein may follow you especially in the scare zone, because they have a lot of room and there are blinking lights in all the mazes which makes it harder to walk or run!


 

 

Lastly, hit a water ride! You will absolutely get wet on the Jurassic Park River Adventure water ride. Riders take a boat through waters where man-eating dinosaurs roam and be prepared for the long drop at the end.

A multi-level outdoor escalator, which give you some breathtaking views of the city. If you’re afraid of heights, If you’re afraid of heights or escalators, there are stairs (also outdoors) which run parallel to the escalator (good luck) — there are plenty of people who use them, God bless them! It will be a major journey!

Aside from the main Universal Studio Hollywood theme, there’s also the CityWalk entertainment strip, which does not have any entrance fee. At hopping City Walk there’s plenty of places to eat, including the Hard Rock Cafe. There’s also night clubs, bars, and a movie theater to see the latest movies. It’s really a more grown up experience in comparison with Disneyland

  

 

 

***See The Rest of The Pictures***             

 

 

 
 

 

 

 

Hollywood Truly Comes Alive with it’s STUDIO TOUR!

Published June 4, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

Universal Studios Hollywood is the only movie and television-based theme park to offer guests the authenticity of a working movie studio. It will really make you feel like you’re part of the movies.

We Were actually in Desperate Housewives’ Wisteria Lane…

           * A scene from Desperate Housewives…

The tour of the park was really interesting. Trams go down to the Universal back lot, where they’ve filmed thousands of movies. You have to stay on the tram. But at night, you get off the tram and at literally five feet away from Bates Motel (from the movie Psycho) and the War of the Worlds set and JAWS (yup, the shark actually comes out to attack!).

 

Passing through one of the film’s most highly recognizable scene from a set left completely intact from Steven Spielberg’s blockbuster, “War of the Worlds,” guests aboard the Studio Tour will observe a small town devastated by an elaborately 747 jetliner crash. Maintaining scenic authenticity, a series of special effects dramatically enhance the surrounding ruins with still-smoking wreckage and shattered debris.

          *747 Aircraft from the scene “War of The Worlds

    * The Fast & The Furious

         *The Fast & The Furious – Tokyo Drift Cars

Courthouse Square – A large town square named after the imposing Courthouse building most famously seen in the Back To the Future trilogy. The square has been seen in hundreds of Universal films (and those of other studios).It’s currently appearing in the CBS TV drama Ghost Whisperer.

 

For More Detailed Description Visit: http://media.universalstudioshollywood.com/attractions/about_the_attractions
 

See The Rest of The Studio Tour Picture: http://starvillanueva.multiply.com/photos/album/130/Hollywoods_Universal_Studio_Walk_of_Fame

Some Fond Memories in Disneyland California

Published April 5, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

“Where happily Ever After happens everyday!”

It’s been years since I’ve been to Disneyland, and I am perhaps more excited than kids are! Oh, the nostalgia! How I wish my archive photos are already digital way back early 90’s for me to post the pictures easily without scanning it! Disneyland Park in Anaheim consists of 2 theme parks namely, Disneyland Park and Disneyland California Adventure Park. Approximately 5 times bigger than Hong Kong Disneyland. Each ride or attraction will take 40-120mins wait sobrang haba ng pila but worth it naman! but still tiring kasi galing pa ako Manila Flight then went there straight away!

After the long & tiring walk, we took the Disneyland railroad to tour the entire park. It has 4 stations. The Main Street, New Orleans Square, Mickey’s Toontown & Tomorrowland. You can get down at any station but we intentionally planned to reach New Orleans because square because that’s where you can find the rides/attractions such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion and Indiana Jones.

  

 Above Photos are taken in Haunted Mansion, it’s really silly, it wasn’t scary but the special effects are awesome! For me it’s the one attraction that can’t be missed. Then the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad roller coaster takes you through mine shafts, caves, and waterfalls! Exciting!

We had to wait more than 50 minutes in Pirates of the Caribbean – The ride is built underground and it is filled with water. We travel in small boats and see the exploits of the treacherous Captain Jack Sparrow who is going after the buried treasure. There’s also Indiana Jones, this ride made us wait 2hrs and really made us decide to call it a day! The ride puts you into an adventure, with illusions, sound effects, and Indiana Jones himself.

Although having said all that fun but tiring stuff, I totally gave myself over to the experience and really enjoyed the adventure because it reminds me of my childhood. So you think Disneyland is only for kids? Think again. With high-end roller coasters, fine dining, and a chance to reconnect with your inner child, Disneyland has a lot to offer the “older children.”

**View All Disney Pictures

Some Fond Memories in Disneyland California

Published April 5, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

“Where happily Ever After happens everyday!”

 

It’s been years since I’ve been to Disneyland, and I am perhaps more excited than kids are! Oh, the nostalgia! How I wish my archive photos are already digital way back early 90’s for me to post the pictures easily without scanning it! Disneyland Park in Anaheim consists of 2 theme parks namely, Disneyland Park and Disneyland California Adventure Park. About 5 times bigger than Hong Kong Disneyland. Each ride or attraction will take 40-120mins wait sobrang haba ng pila but worth it naman! but still tiring kasi galing pa ako Manila Flight then went there straight away!

 

After the long & tiring walk, we took the Disneyland railroad to tour the entire park. It has 4 stations. The Main Street, New Orleans Square, Mickey’s Toontown & Tomorrowland. You can get down at any station but we intentionally planned to reach New Orleans because square because that’s where you can find the rides/attractions such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion and Indiana Jones.

 

 

 Above Photos are taken in Haunted Mansion, it’s really silly, it wasn’t scary but the special effects are awesome! For me it’s the one attraction that can’t be missed. Then the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad roller coaster takes you through mine shafts, caves, and waterfalls! Exciting!

We had to wait more than 50 minutes in Pirates of the Caribbean – The ride is built underground and it is filled with water. We travel in small boats and see the exploits of the treacherous Captain Jack Sparrow who is going after the buried treasure. There’s also Indiana Jones, this ride made us wait 2hrs and really made us decide to call it a day! The ride puts you into an adventure, with illusions, sound effects, and Indiana Jones himself.

 

Although having said all that fun but tiring stuff, I totally gave myself over to the experience and really enjoyed the adventure because it reminds me of my childhood. So you think Disneyland is only for kids? Think again. With high-end roller coasters, fine dining, and a chance to reconnect with your inner child, Disneyland has a lot to offer the “older children.”

**View All Disney Pictures

Delta Airlines Experience MNL-NRT to LAX!

Published April 3, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes”

 

Early Morning of March 26, My family and I drove off to NAIA to catch Delta Airlines Flight from Manila to Los Angeles with a stop over in Narita-Tokyo, Although they were using B747 that can accommodate 400+ passengers it was still full load! As a standby/chance passenger -I didn’t make it. Only my family went through because they paid full fare thus prioritized.

 

I was left alone in the airport with so much hope that I can still make it through the flight then I’ve just decided to “bother” a friend of mine who live just near the airport  then tried to search other possible transit connections in the internet. Irene’s family welcomes me so much that made me somehow forget the disappointments I’ve had that morning. They cooked for me and entertains me until I get well! =)

 

Next day, March 27, Delta Airlines is Full flight again! My vacation is really short kaya dapat sulitin! But then, I have no choice but to buy a full fare ticket! Shocks! My eyes are literally close while signing my credit card receipt! I can’t believe it cost $466 USD for a one-way-ticket to Narita! (Less than 4hrs away!)  Grrr!  

In Narita, there are 2 airlines that accept Zed Tickets (Airline staff discounted/reduced fare ticket), which is Korean Air & Delta. Korean Airlines is full and Delta is 2hrs-delayed departure but the passenger load is quite ok. It was 9 ½ hrs more before I reached LAX Airport, the Flight Attendants were friendly even managed to have pictures with them.

 

In Los Angeles, I immediately received a text message! That I should just take a shuttle bus to the hotel from where they are staying! I’ve been to L.A a lot of times but it’s my 1st time to land in that airport without anyone to pick me up!

 

Though once again alone and independent, I just think on the positive side that my family trusted me so much to let me search for them! Hahaha! But anyway, they are staying in Katella Ave. in Anaheim which can easily be found coz it’s just 5mins. walk from Disneyland.

 

After more than 14hrs of travel time, there I was asking around… and find a good deal in primetime shuttle, it was a door-to-door shuttle from the airport that cost $18 USD.

 

Guess what!? After the long waits, tiring delays, no sleep long haul flights, I still managed to walk around and enjoyed the rides in Disneyland! Like what I’ve said: My vacation is really short kaya dapat sulitin!

Quiet Mountain Retreat

Published March 2, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

“Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead. The consciousness of loving and being loved brings a warmth and richness to life that nothing else can bring.”
 
   

A short 45-minute drive from the City’s major commercial areas will bring you to the property. We keep coming back to this resort not because of their casino but because of their ambiance, it’s a nice place to relax and unwind. It was located on top of the hill with an open pool overlooking a golf course, Laguna de Bay during daytime and the Metro Manila skyline at nighttime.
    

Around the facility can be enjoyed various recreation and leisure amenities, such as a charming infinity pool and outdoor Jacuzzi that overlooks serene Laguna de Bay and surrounding mountain ranges, meditation nooks, jogging paths, and kiddie playground for the young ones.  
 
  
                     * Photo Taken Last Nov 2009 & May 2007                        

For the adult crowd, the resort offers the world-class Fiesta Casino, open for leisure and gaming needs 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Hotel guests can feel right at home in the comfort of the gaming facilities, which are inspired by a fusion of classical Spanish and modern Filipino architecture reminiscent of a remote tropical island paradise. 
  
 

 
For a relaxing weekend escape – Thunderbird & Goldland Spring Resort – is the perfect destination. As the name implies, these hotel chains is raring to soar high!
 
* Related Post:
 
May 2007 – Photo Album
Nov 2009 – Photo Album

Christmas & New Year Scenes

Published January 7, 2010 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

When I was a kid I used to dream of a white Christmas and as flight attendant, I guess I’ve experienced it all. Be it, green, blue or white christmas but no matter how far the distance I have travelled. I will still returned to a place called Home…  

      

I flew to Manila on the 24th of December through a Boeing 777 aircraft as expected we landed earlier than scheduled arrival around 2:30pm but due to the traffic because of the Filmfest Parade that afternoon we’ve reach Diamond Hotel in Roxas Blvd. very late, passed 5pm already.  

 * These pictures are not yet uploaded in my website because it’s not yet high quality pictures (I just grabbed it from my Mom’s friendster account)  I left my memory card back home, but will soon upload it…  

 I really enjoyed every moment, spent the whole time eating delicious home-cooked meals and sinful desserts! Then we gather around the tree to open our presents, Alma was the one hosting the gift giving while we were simply waiting for our names to be called. Our house is filled with  laughter. Then later on made myself busy singing over the course of the evening  while my cousins are enjoying their wine in the pool area.  

 

The following day, I flew back to Doha with such a nice crew and supervisor. While my family and cousins flew to Hongkong via Philippine Airline to spent my mom’s birthday and New Year there. I guess that’s the main thing my family and I have in common, we all love to travel!

  

   

  

   

   

   

 

 

 The capacity of the aircraft that we’ve used has 42 seats in Business Class and 293 seats in Economy but we only have less that a hundred passengers in economy + 5 person in Business class. Very light load! Who wants to travel during Christmas day anyway? Except for business travelers maybe like Ms. Pinky Aquino (Kris Aquino’s sister) is one of our passenger that time, she even gave a greeting card to all the crew and were very nice. After 9hrs travel time I’ve landed in Doha around 12:05 am of December 26, slept then same day pick to Manila again!   

  

   

   

   

 

 

 

Even if my whole family is in Hongkong (Dec27) my friends didn’t make me feel alone. They pick me up in the hotel as soon as I arrived then went to Mall of Asia, ate in Don Henricos, had an ice cream dessert in White Hat, watch a movie then Starbucks afterwards. Really had a great time! Indeed a Happy day prelude to a New Year!   

* view the rest of the picture…

Emirates Aviation Training @ Dubai

Published November 27, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

The long day started at around 6:30 am pick up from our accommodation then went straight to the airport. Who would have thought that we would reach the triennial training knowing how homesick we are when we left NAIA 3 years back!?! But anyway, I had a great time to be with my batchmates again and Camille was also there – My closest friend here in Doha.

 

 
 

After a very quick flight, we arrived in Dubai where we were taken by bus to the Emirates Aviation College. The facilities inside were impressive. The ditching and evacuation training area also had a Boeing 777, Airbus A330 and Airbus A380 full size section mock ups to practice all the evacuation procedures.

 

 

Then we were given many scenarios and act as if we were really on the real situations like Thick Smoke in the Cabin, Emergency Landing on Water, Fire on the overhead bins, Fire inside the lavatory. (All drills can also be monitored in the LCD Screens.)

 

Next stage was to jump down the evacuation slides. All of us just evacuated quickly from one door, go down barefoot or with socks. The slides give off a lot of friction to slow you down at the end.

The final part was to crawl onto the large slide raft with our inflated life jackets on and practice assembling the canopy. Once we had done that, we had to drop into the (very cold) water and form into groups of six people so that we can stay together and stay warm. Although it was very cold in the pool, it would be fair to say that the mid-Atlantic would be a lot colder, so it was a valuable lesson to learn that forming a group in water were the most effective ways to keep warm.

We left the training center learning a lot about how to handle ourselves and the passengers in all of the various emergency situations, Fully qualified to be released into the real world of flying again!

Related Post:

* View the rest of the pictures…

* Training at Emirates Aviation College 2006

* Fire Fighting II

 

Another Eternal Tour in Rome!

Published October 20, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

“Stepping into the St. Peter Square in Vatican is indescribable. I’ve only seen this place in televisions, movies and read about it in books…”
 
 
 My 2nd time in Rome for the month of October! (The last time was Oct 11-13 See the pics here) Only few days gap but the weather changes extremely shocks me! The last time I was wearing sleeveless on a 14-16 degrees Celsius but it was so sunny so it’s still tolerable, but this time I was wearing long-sleeved but I don’t have my jacket with me. I thought it will still be sunny but to my surprise the climate became 9-12 degrees! It was freezing!

 
 

 Ms. Bulgaria, Ms. Philippines, Ms. Nepal, Ms. Algeria and Ms. India (It’s official, I miss speaking in Tagalog! 
 
The last time I’ve flown with fellow Filipina was last September! In my 3 years flying experience, it’s very rare if there’s no pinay mafia on board! hehehe!)The Vatican is the world’s smallest country, independent state, it is an autonomous region despite its close proximity to Rome. It has its own communication network, postal office (stamps), guards and transport system.
 

I usually preffered to join  2-3 crew, but this time we were 5 in the group but I didn’t regret joining them, we’ve had so much fun & laughter! Our tour begins waiting each other in the lobby of the hotel around lunchtime then took a cab, (I love the idea of riding the public transportation and walking on the neighborhood of the hotel. It gives you the real atmosphere of the place) went to

 
 Piazza San Pietro or St. Peter’s Square, Every tourist in Rome comes to St. Peter’s Square and to the Vatican. The church is one of the world’s largest, covering 5.7 acres and able to hold 60,000 people.
 
 

 

 
Aside from being the heart of the Catholicism, it is also equally attractive to other tourists since Vatican is home to one of the world’s most spectacular art collections. St. Peter’s Square is the one of the main destination in Vatican City. Situated right in front of St. Peter’s Basilica, it is the central nerve of the Vatican. Every day, hundreds of Christians, Catholic pilgrims and tourists of all stripes came here to visit this popular tourist attraction. I felt holy being here!

 
 
The exterior of the Roman Colosseum is made entirely of travertine, stretching 527 m around and four stories high. The arches of the second and third stories were originally filled with statues. There were 80 entrances, with the two principal ones reserved for the emperor and his entourage.
 We’re craving for authentic Italian food, fortunately the 2 restaurants that we’ve been for lunch and dinner fulfilled our expectation. The pasta was cooked to perfection and the sauce is compliments the pasta delightfully then had a gellato and cappuccino afterwards.
  

 

 

Walking in ROME… ITALY….

Published October 15, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

The Eternal City of Rome is famous for its mind-blowing monuments, remarkable churches and magnificent museums but the squares in Rome are the best places to enjoy the vibrant city life and the perfect spot to laze away your day surrounded by people and history.

 

After 3 years of being a Flight Attendant who would believe that it’s my first time to be in Rome! As mentioned on my previous blog post, I was given 3 days Rome flight before but I swapped it for 24hours Manila because it’s Christmas Season. It was actually my fifth month of bidding this flight, at last they gave it to me! 2 Rome Flight in a row – back to back!
 Arrived in our hotel (Sheraton Roma) past 8 in the evening. While in the lobby we all agreed to get ready in 15mins. To have a late dinner in the mall, at first I was hesitant to agree because I don’t have jacket and it’s freezing 9 degrees that night. Then while waiting for the Taxi the concierge told us that the mall is just open till 9pm only, so we’ve just decided to have a snack in the hotel. We ordered for Margherita Pizza, they ordered for their wines and since I don’t drink any alcohol beverage I just tried the Italian Cappuccino but it seems like Machiatto because it has more espresso shot and less froth milk. We all had a great chat that night about funny rants & gossip among our flights…hehe! Just Kidding!
 Next day, it’s 14-16 degrees Celcius but it’s very sunny. We left the hotel around 11am, walk around, walk, and then walk again! Rome is best to explore by walking. Tour Rome walking your way through art and tradition. All other tourists are geared up with their boots, jacket or on a double clothing so they were all looking at me wondering why I’m the only one there without sleeves! Eh anong magagawa ko hindi naman ako nilalamig, so why be bothered to blend with them? But finally had the feeling that I’m cold after few hours and after eating lots of gelatto plus as a defense against the sun so nag long-sleeves na ’ko…
 
I can still recall the imitations of the Roman Colosseum I saw before in my previous travels such as Macau (See the pic here it looks the same but definitely smaller) The Colosseum is a tremendous amphitheater, the embodiment of both the grandeur and cruelty of the great Roman Empire. Construction of the Colosseum began about 72 AD and ended in 80 AD and has a capable of seating 50,000 spectators.
 

 

The Trevi Fountain is perhaps the most loved landmark in Rome after St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City and due to its enduring appeal this baroque fountain is probably the most photographed monument in Rome.   
There’s a saying that when one visits the Fontana di Trevi in Rome, one should throw a coin in the fountain to ensure that one will get to visit again. Luckily, I have other countries coin or else I’ll throw away another 2 Euros! But what’s 2 Euro if you will experience your wishes can come true!



Roman Forum from the Capitoline Hill In this post we started by walking though the Capitonline Hill. Many of the current structures on the Hill are from the Medieval period or designed by Michelangelo during the Renaissance. Along the way, you’ll see people in costumes that will let you have a souvenir photo for an amount of 2 Euro…

After several pictures, we get to enjoy dinner at a very nice restaurant near the Fountain di Trevi. It was along the side of the street, with umbrellas and they were preparing candlelight dinner for evenings. When in Rome, we surely did as the Romans do. We had gelato, as there are shops in every other corner of every piazza. I could not get over the number of delicious flavors of this creamy Italian ice cream.

We Reach through taxi the lively Piazza di Spagna from where you will immerse yourself into beauty, history and mystery where the combination of a monumental staircase, the world renowned Spanish Steps. They said a trip to Rome would also not be complete without a visit to the – Spanish Steps, the most famous square in the city then Climb its 138 steps!

 


 
 

Ways To Enjoy Singapore

Published October 5, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

Singapore is simply amazing! Our 2 ½ stay in Singapore is not enough. There is much more to see and do. From the famed Chili Crab and Hainanese Chicken Rice to Sentosa Island and the Singapore Zoological Gardens. Experience for yourself the towering skyscrapers in the business district, the hustle and bustle of the Orchard Road shopping belt or the friendly chatter of Singaporeans going about their daily tasks in the heartlands. The number of activities that can be packed into this pulsating island, day and night will astound you. And the best part is that you can visit Singapore at all times of the year as its tropical climate means sunshine all year round.

After 8hrs 20mins travel time from Doha to Singapore, Finally arrived at the Hotel (Holiday Inn Atrium) around 3pm of Sept 28. Jero was then waiting for me in the lobby since 12 noon, he arrived on the same day, from Manila via Philippine Airlines and he just booked his ticket online on the last minute because he just knew that I have a flight to Singapore.

From the hotel we made arrangements for our tour in the Night Safari. Minutes later, a shuttle service came at the hotel to fetch us and all the other tourists from other hotels in downtown, it was $58 Singapore Dollars per person. But next time I rather go to Sentosa, it’s more enjoyable and picture friendly unlike Night Safari where it’s not allowed to take pictures to the animals because they said camera flash may cause blindness to the Nocturnal animals, etc.


The Night Safari (they call it Singapore Zoo during the day), where it has been much acclaimed for its open landscape and spaciousness wherein the animals live in enclosures simulating that of their natural habitat. The zoo is filled with exotic animals like white tigers, polar bears, and Asian elephants etc. It is the world’s first such attraction. We experienced wildlife on a 45-minute tram ride, we refused the Walking Trails to get a feel of the park in eight geographical zones covering forty hectares of forested park. The sight of watching over one hundred different species of nocturnal animals (including leopards, lions and tigers) is simply amazing and something you will always remember.
  

At Underwater World in Sentosa Island, the hidden life of the sea unfolded before our captivated eyes as we plumbed the depths of the underground living museum that houses some 2,500 marine and freshwater animals of 250 species from various parts of the world.

 

Inside the oceanarium, a travelator moved us along a submerged glass-encased tunnel from which we watched at close range a plethora of underwater creatures including stringrays, eels, turtles, jellyfish, sharks, sea cow (also known as dugong) and other fishes.

 

 

Also tried Singapore’s tallest observatory tower, still located in Sentosa offering guests panoramic views high above sea level across Singapore even up to neighboring Malaysia and the Indonesian islands. The Tiger Sky Tower has a capacity of 72 in its enclosed, air-conditioned cabin.

 

No trip in Singapore is complete without Shopping. Singapore is a Shopping haven for fashionistas around the world. It has the best brands, the best shopping malls, at fantastic bargains and if Saks Avenue or Beverly Hills needs a little competition, Orchard Road it is! There is just way too many great shopping malls not to be missed and our friend can spend hours shop, window shop or just walk around the Orchard Road area to soak in the city’s atmosphere.

* View All The Picture of Singapore Tour

The Truth About Flight Attendant Travel Benefits

Published August 23, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

First of all, free or reduced rate travel is always based on space available. Whether you are the crew or employee’s family traveling at a discount, you will only be issued a seat after all of the revenue passengers, including standby paying passengers. They are always the priority so if there’s no seat available they will ask you to just try your luck on the next flight which has always been a problem for me because all Qatar Airways employee must be back in Doha 10 hours before the next duty time but still I usually try my luck to go to Manila on my 3-4 days off. (What to do in Doha on 4days off!?! I’ll be crazy!)

What this means is that you must be very aware of the available seats on any given flight. This requires some legwork by using the company computerized reservation system to determine which flights are best for you. In my case, it’s always hard to get a seat because Manila Flight is always full or overbooked! Even if it’s not vacation period or holiday! There’s no off peak seasons in Manila flight because there are lots of Filipinos all over the world! And even if there’s a vacant seat, those seats are for senior ones! It’s better to have a full fare ticket as a back up, or else you’ll end up buying a business class full fare ticket!

* The Picture shows there’s no more passenger on cue but me, sitting near the subload check in counter, the other picture is while waiting for the delayed aircraft. There’s no more seat available on the waiting area so the rest are just standing. I’m sitting on my trolley! This inconvenience were just making me decide to resign sooner!

Last April, I flew to manila on my 4days off, August 17-19, I went to MNL again on my 3 days off and same dilemma happens! Fully booked! There’s one jump seat available but there’s one crew who’s more senior than me got the seat.

 

 

What makes it worst is that the departure should be 17:30 but the aircraft arrived at 19:40 from Doha! Super delayed! I waited in the check in counter for more than 2 hours sitting there like a beggar and 2 hours again in gate 10. I finished eating 4 BreadTalk’s Cheese Floss and Chef Tony’s popcorn because of boredom! There’s no sign of chance whatsoever but still I stayed there. Just a minute before I call someone to pick me up at the airport, I heard 3 people arguing, they sounded dismay about something. I never knew what is it all about until the ground staff told me that they have been offloaded from MNL Flight! Because they have visa problem. I feel sorry for them but at the same time thankful because their situation gives me a vacant seat! Yehey! Then I arrived in Doha around 12:40 am of August 20 – Just in time for my next duty at 10:50 am (Pick up time).

* After all the inconvenience, this view from the aircraft window simply draw a smile in my face for a minute! I’m glad to see my condo unit nonstop construction and The Venetian Mall as my View from the Top! 

 * Related Post: My Condo Unit

* April 4 Days OFF

 

So the Story Goes… (July Vacation Summary)

Published July 31, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

Living in my mom’s mansion is like living in a holiday resort. It’s a real comfort zone, every corner of the house are elegantly furnished and well decorated. It made me realized what I’m missing. I’m missing the life that I used to have. Few more flights & Travels and I might resign next year! I will resign NOT because I’m getting married, I will resign because I miss my life and I want to focus on managing my business, list goes on…

In Balcony

My leave started dining out in Pepper Lunch at Rockwell, shop 2 Carts of Groceries in Duty Free, Ate in Aristocrat Roxas Blvd. Then Went home in our previous house to get some stuff & check my mails then slept in our new home for the 1st time.

1st Floor Dining

My family & visitors can have an option to have breakfast by the poolside in our backyard, have lunch casually by the Zen type dining table in the kitchen or dine in the contemporary dining table at the other corner of the house with the view of the pool area or in one of the spacious balcony around the house, in façade or better yet eat while standing on the nook located in bar area. If your choice is none of the above then you can be humble to dine with the maid or driver in the mini-kitchen like my mom!

Maruja Wenn Deramas House

One gloomy day, my little sister Kristine and I decided to swim but it was very cold. Since it’s not sunny, I invited Christian to jog with me around the subdivision but to my surprise in the middle of our jog it became sunny! Thank God I have my umbrella with me! The 2 of us just ended up walking around. The neighborhood is very peaceful, the only public transport inside the village is 1 shuttle bus available 24hrs, security guards are patrolling from time to time, other homeowners are just busy gardening during that morning while some are cleaning their cars and polite enough to say Good Morning with a smile!

Few blocks away from our place was Maruja’s house (featured in my previous blog), I really like that house, it was so big and nicely landscaped, their swimming pool even have a bridge and no need to mention it was PINK! Loveeet!

Also saw Director Wenn Deramas’ corner house, they said Gabby Concepcion & Lorna Tolentino started filming new teleserye entitled “Dahil May Isang Ikaw” in that house. Ok enough of those Teleserye stories back to my vacation leave topic! Haha! The following evening was our house blessing & Christian’s sweet 16th birthday celebration but it’s like a debut celebration! He has 16 gifts, 16 wish, etc. It was raining the whole day so the LCD projector was installed late but the party went well, and the menu from the caterer is nice.

Blue Water Day Spa Family  Hall

Next day, went to Baguio with Jero, walk around Burnham Park and SM, stayed in Veniz Hotel in front of Burnham Park then Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto the following day. I want to see lots of places such as mines view, etc but still have business to do for the day so we went back to their Goldland Resort, pick up some documents in pawnshops and visit their Drive-in-Hotel (Also owned by them) to pick up some stuff and to try our Guns in the mini-firing range!

July 21 – Is a long day, I was invited as a guest speaker at NCBA (National College of Business and Arts) for their 3rd-4th year HRM student with Tourism subject. The discussion firmly focuses on my travels to different countries, International Tourism, customer related information and life as a flight attendant. My speech only last 40-50 minutes but the question and answer portion made my stay longer. At first they were hesitant to ask, Later on they started calling Ma’am Star! Ma’am Star!  Ma’am Star from each corner of mini theater room even some professors asked few questions too. It turns out to be a conference! After the speech went to HRM room to have lunch courtesy of the School’s Dean. Then went to Gateway Mall simply because of craving Dairy Queen Ice Cream! Then went Blue Water day spa to have a soothing massage. Later that evening, we’re all in family hall having fun with videoke! (Will upload the pictures later)

July 22 – Jero’s family went over because they want to buy the 750sq. meters Mansion beside our house. It was initially offered to us by then P16Million! But months after my mom bought our house, the P16Million mansion decrease it’s price for only P10Million! Sayang sana yun nalang nabili ni Mama! Same price but much bigger! 6 Cars will fit in the garage! The owner said the reason why the value decreases was because nobody affords it and naremata na lang sa bank! (Foreclosed property) Sayang talaga! But anyway, Jero’s mom are interested to buy it but to my dismay it’s already SOLD the day before Jero’s mom went there to inquire!!! Sayang! Sayang talaga! Kung sila nakabili edi sana neighbor ko lang ang family ko in the future when I got married!

Burnham

We’re eyeing on the other house on sale but it’s not finalized yet dahil busy na ang sched ni Tita no time na to see the interior setting of the house and nagdadalawang isip pa because the garage can only fit 2 cars! Yes, it is a problem! & parang hindi ko masyado gusto ’cause the design was too simple (see here) then color beige pa parang ang dull, gusto ko bright colors! (Like this one) pero bakit ba ako nakikielam hindi naman ako ang bibili! Hehehe!

Before I left, we headed to Antipolo Church, it has always been my ritual to visit Our Lady of Peace & Good Voyage on all my vacation leave.  Later on, went to SoleMare Parksuites near Mall of Asia to see the developments. They said they will turnover the unit on December 2010, While my condo in McKinley Hill-The Fort will be on June 2012.  Maybe by that time I should still have my nightstop kit or suitcase with me so that I can sleep over wherever I preferred!

***See Related Pics:

* Everyday is a Holiday

* Baguio & Pangasinan Tour

* House Blessing & Christian’s Birthday

CENTRAL PARK (New York, USA)

Published June 28, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

Central Park is one of those places that make New York such a great place to live. The huge park is located in the center of Manhattan. Its design is an example for city parks around the world.

Literally dozens of well known movie and TV scenes have been shot here including: Ransom, One Fine Day, Bullets over Broadway, Home Alone II, Serendipity, Made of Honor, Angels in America, Cruel Intention, 27 Dresses, Superman Returns, I am Legend, Autumn in New York, The Happenings, You’ve Got Mail, Maid in Manhattan, Sex and the City, Gossip Girl and more. For more info go to IMDB Central Park Filming Location.

Bow Bridge completed in 1862, is one of the most photographed and filmed locations in Central Park and it deserves every bit of its star reputation. The bridge also provides the perfect view from to watch the slowly moving row boats as they glide across the lake, or to photograph the skyline over Fifth Ave. as it rises from the leafy skirt of trees that edge it. It is one of the most popular, and best known, spots to meet and has hosted numberless romantic moments, both on and off the big screen.

The Mall  The 40foot wide Mall, flanked by its majestic rows of American Elms, provides the perfect place for a leisurely stroll in any season. One can easily imagine the scene a century ago, women with parasols and men in top hats perambulating towards the Concert Ground that stood adjacent to its northern end. Now you are more likely to find skateboards than waistcoats, but the effect is still the same and even the visitors on wheels are apt to slow down just a bit and admire the cathedral-like ambience.

The Loeb Boathouse, one of the most famous icons of Central Park is located at the northeastern tip of the Lake and houses the Boathouse Restaurant. It is a romantic setting for dinner on a mid-summer 19s evening, watching the sun sink behind the trees and maybe catching a venetian gondola.

Bethesda Fountain rises high above Bethesda Terrace looking over the hundreds of visitors that come every day to enjoy the view of the Lake and relax at the “heart” of the Central Park. Besides being a favorite destination of park visitors in search of a cool place to spend a summer afternoon.  Bethesda Fountain is also a celebrity in its own right. It has probably appeared in more movies than any other monument in the park, exuding a timeless romantic charm that makes it a perfect backdrop for cinematographers.

North Meadow Recreation Center is, at 23 acres, one of Central Park’s largest open areas. Ball fields first appeared there in the 1870s and it has been extensively refitted with carefully managed baseball diamonds which are in use throughout the spring and summer. Located just to the north of the reservoir the gently rolling landscape around it creates a slightly more secluded ambience. It also houses a state of the art fitness center, which includes basketball courts, handball courts and two climbing walls.

Strawberry Fields, On December 8th, 1980 John Lennon was shot dead at 72nd St. and Central Park West. Mr. Lennon had taken many walks with his wife and young son through the friendly confines of Central Park. On March 26, 1981 His widow, the artist and performer, later donated $1 million to the Central Park Conservancy to re-landscape and to maintain the 2.5-acre tear-drop-shaped parcel of park landscape. Strawberry Fields opened on October 9, 1985. Every October 9th since then has seen an all day vigil of people of all ages from around the world; fans of his music and believers in his vision.

Source: http://www.centralpark.com/

Related Post: Me and Manhattan

LOUVRE MUSEUM (Paris, France)

Published June 12, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

 “Pictures are archives of our lives”

 
The Louvre Museum in Paris is the biggest and most visited art museum in the world. Its collection of approximately 35,000 pieces is exhibited over 60,000-square-meter floor area. Among the many famous collections in the museum are Venus de Milo and Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.

 

 

 

Louvre Museum, well-known museum from the movie The Vinci Code. Displays the famous Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci and many other first class paintings from across Europe. Leonardo da Vinci used his finger to eraseoutlines and create an impression of fuzziness.

 

 

 

The Louvre is bathed in natural light that reduces the use of energy while providing a dramatic view of the sky and the outline.

 

 

 

Instead of a conventional building constructed above ground that might draw attention away from the original museum, the new underground complex remains low key while providing the necessary additional space required by the project. By building underground the land is also efficiently used by maintaining the open space above.

 

Leonardo da Vinci painted there the Mona Lisa between 1503 and 1506. The subtle smile of the Mona Lisa is world famous. Leonardo da Vinci died in 1519 in Amboise, one of the favorite towns of the king.

 

 

This huge canvas once adorned the refectory of the monastery of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice. Here, Veronese, acclaimed as a colorist and for painting vast, multifigured scenes, chose to depict Christ 19s first miracle, performed during the Marriage at Cana.

 

 * Wedding Feast at Cana

 

* Louvre Museum Official Site

 *View The Rest of my Paris Tour

   

 

  

Maruja

Published June 6, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

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Few Blocks away from our house in Casa Milan, I saw the house being used for the taping of Maruja. Also saw the location shoot of another TV show from ABS-CBN “Your Song”  in the clubhouse on the same day. The caretaker of the subdivision said Casa Milan are amongst the favorite location shoot of local movies, commercials & teleseryes and even asking us if we can add our house to their list for future location tapings.

If you were a fan of Supernatural or Ghost Whisperer, you would surely love the series – Maruja. It comes with simple special effects compared to other horror stories but those are enough to give you goose bumps. Besides, having grotesque effects would only turn it into a comedy. It is the story that will grip you. And of course the way the story is being told. There is so much mystery!

* See Behind the Scenes

* Watch the Pilot Episode

Reminiscing Washington D.C

Published May 20, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

On our Flight going to Washington, I can’t believe there’s only 36 Passengers!!! Only 36 PAX for a 14hrs flight!? Great! and on the way back to Doha only 42 Pax in Economy! Still light load so galley isn’t that tiring after all. Since it’s 14hrs flight we are given 3hrs 15mins. to rest in the BCRC (Bulk Crew Rest Compartment) IIt’s my 1st time to use BCRC All I can say is It’s such a big help to sleep during a long haul flight!

The hotel is located in the middle of a town center, but we arrive passed 9pm so the shops are close already so we just ate late dinner at Bhusara Thai Restaurant Since we only have 25hrs layover I wasn’t able to walk around Reston Town Center =( Anyway, me our CS Bernie & Loubelle went out around 6am to wait for the bus on theway to the metro train station Smithsonian. I’ve been to Washington before (year 1994) but It was long time ago. I’m glad I’ll still be able to go to the U.S like the old times…There are still many places to see but here’s some of the;

Recommended places to visit:

WASHINGTON MONUMENT – The 555ft. Marble Obelisk since 1884 & it’s the world’s tallest freestanding mansonry structure built for George Washington. The

WORLD WAR II MEMORIAL – honors the 16 million who served in the armed forces of the U.S., the more than 400,000 who died, and all who supported the war effort from home, from WWII memorial we can see & clearly take pictures of the Lincoln Memorial but we prefer to walk up close with LINCOLN MEMORIAL – The 19ft Marble statue sits in the classic Greel-style temple. WHITE HOUSE – Home of every U.S President and U.S CAPITOL – Seat of Congress since 1800. THE SMITHSONIAN CASTLE – Completed in 1855, The Castle is the easiest landmark to find the National Mall.

We also visited some museums like MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY – The museum’s collections total over 125 million specimens of plants, animals, fossils, minerals, rocks, meteorites, and human cultural artifacts. NATIONAL GEM and MINERAL COLLECTION – The collection includes some of the most famous pieces of gems and minerals such as the famous Hope Diamond and the Star of Asia Sapphire. There are over 375,000 individual mineral samples, and a research collection used by scientists around the world.

NATIONAL AIR & SPACE MUSEUM -the most popular of the Smithsonian museums. It maintains the largest collection of aircraft and spacecraft in the world. It is also a vital center for research into the history, science, and technology of aviation and spaceflight, as well as planetary science and terrestrial geology and geophysics.

MUNICH, GERMANY (Travel Review)

Published May 4, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

The Flight from Doha to Munich was only 6hrs, the flight departs around 02:00am by the time we arrived in our hotel – Hilton Munich, it’s only 09:00am local time.

 

I told my colleagues that it’s my 1st time to do the flight because I keep on swapping it for Manila! But since I already swapped my 2 days Milan for a 24hrs Manila, I guess it’s time for me to explore Munich!

 

The signage was pretty good and I had no trouble finding my way around even though German names (double ss’s and double ff’s) were a bitof a challenge! Because I was with Sandy & Jennifer (my tour guides) they always have Germany Flights (Berlin, Munich & Frankfurt). Through a €9.00 tram. We went to Marienplatz Central Square. The ride was about 20 mins.

 

Marienplatz was full of nice boutiques, shoe shops and eating places.  The Rathaus-Glockenspiel is also there it plays to visitors from all over the world. There are figures mechanically danced around the clock tower. (usually around 5 past the designated hour).

 

Also had a very huge snack of grilled veal sausages in Old Town then went to Galeria Supermarket to buy some food while on the hotel and my favorite comfort snack CHOCOLATES!!! As I munched my way around the supermarket I realized it’s no wonder the German’s call Munich Munchin’… I mean "Munchen" Then later on had gluttonous pork dinner on Weisses Brauhaus Restaurant  in front of Old City hall.

***More Pictures in my Photoblog-Click Here***

HOUSTON, TEXAS (Travel Review)

Published April 15, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva


It was 16hrs direct flight from Doha, but they gave us 5hrs 45mins rest. We arrived in Renaissance Hotel around 17:30 similar to arrival time whenever I have Washington & New York flight, but Houston layover is longer stay! 2nights/3days! Sarap mag inter-state! Knowing Vegas is just around 2hrs away & Miami is just an hour away! (Via plane.)

 

Since Houston is the newest destination of Qatar Airways, I might as well share these infos…   

 

·       There’s no public transpo available around the area. Puro lang for hire Limo & shuttle bus. (The best parin maging commuter sa Washington/Virginia)  

·       There’s a food court located in the ground floor inside the hotel pero exagge ang closing time ha! 2:30pm Close na! Pati Starbucks close narin! Pag weekend Close din! 

·       Since mahilig ako mag grocery because my pantry should always be fully stocked coz I don’t cook,  isa nnman itong magastos na layover, dahil kung ang Virginia ay may 24hrs walking distance na Harris Teeter or Target Supermarket while New York has 24hrs din na Duane Reade or CVS Pharmacy/Supermarket or K-mart. Houston naman has Kroger Supermarket located just in front of the hotel! 

·       There’s ATM Machine located in the Ground floor. 

·       Free wired Internet connection – Same as in New York wherein you’re being asked to sign in with your name & room number but they will remove the charge when you checked out. Wifi is only available in the lobby. 

·        Meron dun Much talk about NASA Space Station it will cost you $60 to go there by tour 9-1pm, but I suggest If you already went to National Air & Space Museum in DC. No need to go there kasi pareho lang ang makikita. (View it here) 

·       Free USA Today Newspaper! Gusto ko lang I-mention.. Hehe! sa IAD & JFK kc wala… 

·       The best parin ang sales tax ng Virginia 4.something lang… Eh dito 8.something parang N.Y but in Fairness, meron silang Tax Refund parang sa Europe! Pero Hello!? As if naman may time ka pa mag refund sa airport… If delayed departure cgro… 

·       As I was watching CNN, I noticed there’s QR short Commercial every 5-10mins! 

·       Qatar Airways’ huge Promotional Tarpaulins are scattered all over Galleria Mall, pati sa elevator, Ice Skating rink at food court.   

  • TX’s Galleria Mall is bigger than Tyson’s Corner in VA. It reminds me of Lakewood Center Mall in LA because of the similar interior and Ala Moana Mall in Hawaii because of the high-end shops.
  • *** Hope this helps.., Add nlng ako ulit ng info next week coz April 15-18, I’ll be in Houston, Texas again.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    *** Pictures can be found here

     

     

     

    4 Days OFF in MANILA

    Published April 10, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

    Once again I experienced the usual dilemma in every Manila flight – It’s either fully booked or no seats available, but I have my back up ticket with me so I went to Bahrain and catch Gulf Air flight to Manila.

    Arrived Manila the next day around 11am, I went home to surprise my family but instead of surprising them I was the one who was surprised because nobody’s home. I called my mom then she told me they are all in Tagaytay. From Fairview to Tagaytay (North to South) Jero & I were able to go there in less than 3hrs because there’s no traffic.

    Finally, I was able to meet "Lucky" our new 2 ½ months Shith zu that they just bought in Tiendesitas recently. Cute and Cuddly puppy. Then we visited our lot in La Excelsa Subdivision. It seems like my mom is planning to construct another house there because she always wants to have a rest house. This is the exact phrase I told her. "Huh!? Mama one at a time! You just bought a house & haven’t completed the furnishings yet! Hay nko mag pa parlor na lang tayo at kumain ng Buko Pie, mas masaya yun kesa magpatayo ng bahay!"

    Sleep Deprived March Roster

    Published March 29, 2009 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

    Finally the month will soon be over… I don’t like my roster this month… Too much turnarounds all minimum rest – departing evening – arriving morning – departing evening again & again… and for the 1st time after more than a year I don’t have any U.S flight! When I was in Economy minimum of 3-4 Washington or New York flight each month, but as Premium class crew no more!? Waaaah! I earned more at the Aft Cabin! hehehe! Joke.

    Then, I supposed to go on a 7days Beijing Flight. I was ready. All set. My transport pick up arrived but when I was signing in for the flight in Qatar Airways technical bldg. I was like “Hmmm, how come it’s different flight number?” OMG! They just change my flight without any notice at all… That evening I flew to Manchester, UK. I don’t mind doing the flight since I haven’t been there because I keep swapping that flight for MNL but how can I go shopping?!  My suitcase is filled with gym attire, Jackets & boots. The Hotel in Manchester is Midland. The location is perfect for shopping there’s H&M, Zara, Mark & Spencer,Topshop and “Primark” is just 5mins walking distance yehey!

    I really wanted to buy lots of stuff but my suitcase is packed for 7 days stay in Beijing. (No much space) But still I managed to bought lots of stuff like 2 Jackets, Lingeries, Tops, lots of warming tights, (good for winter) & some pasalubong. Spent about 70 pounds.

    Back in Doha, I have Roster changes again!!! They gave me Delhi – Bahrain – Delhi back to back turn around flights!!! Waaah!!! Best word to described it – Damn Tiring!!!

    I also had Tripoli – Cassablanca (morocco), I don’t have picture there because I didn’t go out, I just went to Spa for a relaxing massage & tried the much talk about “Hammam” service. (Their term for body scrub). Unfortunately, it wasn’t relaxing at all. My skin has a lot of nail scratch afterwards & the way they massage is not gentle. Ouch! Nothing beats Thai Massage or Swedish Massage in The Spa, Fitness First or City Lifestyle QC.

    * View the rest of the pictures in my Photo Blog

    Wishful Thinking: Nice Roster of flights for the month of April!!! =)

    Reston Virginia

    Published August 16, 2008 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

     

    Aug 14-16′ 2008 – I just came back from Washington (as usual) but this time we used Airbus 340 to Washington & Boeing 777 going back to Doha… I missed Airbus! The last time I flew with this aircraft is 7 months ago (Hongkong Flight) A340’s capacity is 266, While B777 is 305! And it’s equipped with “AIP” an indication panel where you can see the passengers’ seat number who pressed the call bell, so no need to look around like a hunter where the call bell is is! Hehe! And there’s jumpseat in mid galley! Unlike in B777 there’s no seat at all except for drawers!?  But in B777 the bunk beds are more spacious!

    Unbelievably, I was able to managed being in-charged of the mid-galley with lots of special meals, nakapag load ako ng 4carts on time eh nasa cabin din ako at the same time because of Bar Service! I can’t blame anyone why nobody helped me load the carts co’z anyone has their own task din & the one’s I’m flying with as in 4-5 times ko na nakasama mga flying buddies ko na. Nice naman sila.
    Anyway yun nga back to the story. Nagulat sila How I’m able to finish loading the carts so Quick! Eh nasa cabin din ako…hehe! About the passengers naman same old stories, kakatapos lang nila kumain ask na agad what time next service or hingi na agad ng anytime snacks… Haaaay No comment na!

    We arrived the hotel in Hyatt Reston Virginia around 5:30pm (it seems like the rain has just finished) then went straight to Target Supermarket, I invited Ji Hyun (Korean) if she wants to buy some groceries. I told her 18-20mins away lang! medyo rocky & puro grass yung lalakaran and both of us were wearinghigh-heeled shoes! It turns out to be 45mins walk! Sabi nya sakin, “Star, you told me it’s less than 20 mins walk!” sabi ko nalang “this is a good form of exercise!”  She keeps on complaining about how far it is kasi pagod nga sa flight. Kaya nagpapatawa nalang ako the whole time para hindi ako antukin!

    Napapasigaw ako sa may parking area kasi umulubog sa grass yung heels namin, Sabi ko nga kay Ji Hyun “Hey let’s go back!!!” then she still continue to walk, sabi nya she was on half way of getting out of the grass mas longer pa pabalik

    .

    We finished shopping around 9:30pm ate dinner then walk far again but that time its dark already, iba naman yung way namin, we crossed some bridge then followed a long fence but we end up climbing a hill with our high heeled shoes & groceries!  Sabi ko nga “Wow this is unforgettable we should take a picture” sabi nya “Star! I will kill you  sabi ko, “I’m just kidding!” hahahaha! Kasi naman hirap na umakyat ng hill picture pa nasa isip! Pero in-fairness funny din sya kasama naging close na kami coz we always fly
    together on a 14hrs flight! =)

    We supposed to go to Tysons Mall together but when I called her she was still sleeping so as usual I just went to mall by myself again… didn’t have much time to sleep in our entire 27hrs stay but during our crew rest for 3hrs during the flight I was completely deep sleep!  I can’t believe I have Washington flight again
    After 2days…

     

    Qatar Airways Oryx in Blue sky… Isn’t wonderful?

    Osaka – Japan

    Published July 5, 2008 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

    July 4-5 2008

    **More Osaka Pictures in my multiply Photo Gallery

    * I love Osaka Flight!!! I don’t know this kind of flight exist! at 11 hrs flight it’s so unbelievable that no one press the call bell at all! Japanese passengers are so quiet,behave & shy – they don’t need anything! Some even have their own food with them while some of them are simply asleep!
    Osaka-Incheon Crew

    * Sobrang nakakatuwa talaga yung flight! Ako na nga nag initiate mag offer ng anytime snacks sakanila (Which I don’t normally do) hehe! ayaw parin.. sabi ko nga "Just take it,take it!" Natutuwa talaga ko sakanila kasi Kabaliktaran ng Washington flight na puro P.G ang passenger at nagiging christmas lights ang cabin sa dami ng Call Bell!!!

    * Just one thing I don’t like is that hotel is 1 1/2 hr away from the airport! but it’s in a nice & convenient location walking distance from subway, malls, restaurants and the hotel has free WiFi.. =)

    * Didn’t get lost this time because I was with Mira (From Korea) she’s good in directions! haha! I love this girl! she’s so funny & we have something in common- Our child-like gestures! I wish to have Osaka layover again to buy more Shiseido cosmetics & skin care – it’s cheaper there compare to other countries!

    **More Osaka Pictures in my multiply Photo Gallery

    My 22nd year of priveleged existence & More than a month of flying…

    Published January 17, 2007 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

    Few days from now, will be my 22nd year of existence in the world already! (January 25) I’ve been keeping a daily Journal spontaneously for 6 years now, After more than a month of flying, I’ve realized that I had so many good experiences that I would love to go back to, I’m glad I love taking pictures!!! (For remembrance), but how can I ever forget my 1st layover in Trivandrum, India – It was such a nice experience, the hotel was nice (beachfront rooms) the breakfast buffet was great… Then, (Dec.16’2006) Vienna, Austria- I wasn’t that prepared when I went there, I have no scarf & gloves with me because I wasn’t expecting the climate will be extremely cold! It’s also the day the ATM machine had taken my card because I entered wrong pin! I’ve also been to (Dec.23-24’2006) Cochin, India- Take lots of pictures, went to spa & ate in an Indian restaurant. Bahrain- night stop in Intercontinental Hotel, It was less than 4 hours stay and as usual I didn’t sleep, I take pictures instead… (Dec.30-31’2006) Kuala Lumpur- We just stayed in Pan Pacific Airport hotel no much scenery for picture taking but I enjoyed my duty free shopping there, bought lots of groceries & perfumes… (January 3-6’2007) Finally, I got Manila flight! After 3 months of being away to my family… When we landed NAIA, I’m so excited to go to our hotel (Crowne Plaza Galleria) because my family is waiting in the lobby… Though I’m so sleepy & tired due to 9hrs flight from Doha to Manila, still my Manila stay are worth it… 1st night went to mall & had a body massage at Fitness First then sleep for awhile went to Antipolo Church with my family to attend mass at 4am & also had breakfast… Then went to my dentist, Optical shop had a contact lens upgrades, beauty salon, groceries & went shopping again! After Manila, I had a 4 days off & Standby before my flight to (January 11-12’2007) Bangkok, Thailand- Went to Mall & went to spa for Jetlag massage, Sleep at around 2am woke up around 5am, since I can’t sleep anymore, I used the Hotels’ Steam bath & Sauna then Swimming all by myself! I went to the spa again for foot massage.. Since they don’t accept Qatar Riyals, I withdraw money from the ATM machine & forgot my ATM card! (Here we go again) After spa walk around again & bought some groceries & ate at Thai restaurant.. Arrived Doha at almost 1am of January 13, still have my Doha-Dubai-Doha turn around departure at 8:30pm later evening! Then arrived Doha at 12:30am of January 14 still have my double sectorflight! Doha-Abu Dhabi-Doha- Kuwait-Doha! My pick up time is 11:30am! Spent 3 hours in Abu Dhabi Duty free, bought some perfumes then, Arrived Doha at 11:50pm It’s my 1st time to spent my entire week flying without sufficient rest.. Thank God my double sector was delayed so they just cancelled my next morning flight to Riyadh or else I won’t be able to sleep again & 

    I don’t know what will happen next…   Despite of sleepless nights, turning day into night & having abnormal sleeping patterns, I honestly feel so lucky & privilege having all these things so I might as well share it with you… I’m exploring different countries & being paid to do it, and because only few jobs offer the chance to work in a different environment every day, with different scenery, surrounded by different faces, Try many cuisines all over the world, shopping in different destinations & take lots of pictures in different scenery, having discounts in some business establishments- restaurants & shops including duty free with our I.D, But the biggest benefit of all is walking through the airport in uniform, head held high, pulling wheeled flight trolley, and having people look admiringly at you… If you fly internationally as a flight attendant, the world will be your playground, you can go virtually anywhere on vacation!

    Unforgettable Blessed day…

    Published July 25, 2006 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

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    July 22’2006 – The day I won’t forget! It’s the day I signed my 3 years renewable contract to Qatar Airways!!! Out of more than a thousand of people who submitted resume online, only 300 were call on for the initial screening & interview, only 200 hundred applicants has been call on for an International Airline assessment, became 54 who made it during the assessment, screening, English Proficiency & exams, down to 24 all in all including other batch. I was so thankful to Almighty God for all the blessings! Prayer can move mountain…

    Now my next steps are full medical exams/dental exams and full of vaccinations! As well as the authentication of NBI clearance approved by Malacanang, Qatar Embassy, POEA, etc.. During the pre-employment orientation, they were discussing the benefits while we were signing contract. We are also given an offer letter from Qatar Airways stating all the benefits & advantages, I almost cried, I really love to travel to different countries which I already start doing since I was younger… I was so overwhelm of happiness especially when I’ve read the congratulatory letter, stating:

    Dear Ms. Villanueva

    CONGRATULATIONS! We are very pleased to inform you that you have been successful at your final interview, you are selected to join our Cabin Crew team on the condition that the Qatar airways pre-employment complete medicals has been passed….and so on… I enjoyed every single minute of it, I even read the advantages of being a Flight attendant over and over again.

    Summary of The Offer letter in my contract:

    Very high salary + hourly flying pay + meal allowances depending on the country and lots of bonuses! For the uniform it’s from the luxury
    European brand by ‘Jaeger’ and an impact resistant made from aircraft aluminum ‘Delsey’ 3piece luggage bag.
    Monthly fair rostering system that ensures a fair allocation of trips
    30 calendar days leave, ticket is provided.
    Shared by 2-3 free accommodation in fully furnished, air-conditioned brand new apartments including utility. Each person has their own bedroom
    Free transport between Airport & apartment
    Free 5 star hotel accommodation overseas and free transport between airport and hotel.
    Will undergo to an intensive 7 weeks training programme on all aircraft types.
    Concessionary travel are available to you and your family members: Including 1 free ticket from home based to Qatar, 50%-90% reduced price of tickets including to other airlines.

    July 23’2006- My family and I started the week attending mass at Our Lady of Fatima, then go to photo studio because I need additional 24 passport pictures in white background and 36 passport pictures in Navy blue background for Qatar, because it will be used in our I.D, bank applications, (they will publish us in an International Magazines), and other documents such as other embassy purposes, residence clearance and dual-citizenship…

    July 24, 2006 – we have to leave early for my medical check up because of SONA, the major roads are closed, that’s why I slept over at Alma’s house, so that I can arrive at the (hospital affiliated by Qatar Airways) to lessen the time of my fasting, I don’t’ recall all the exact type of exams anymore (Quite expensive though) – it’s too many process and medical terms to remember, but it includes blood test for different purposes including, blood history, blood typing, std, HIV tests, etc… After the laboratory, Physical exams – The female doctor will require to undress to check the skin (head to toe), scalp, hair, nails, and to make sure that you haven’t done any major operations such as giving birth, next is Audio lab, Optometry, chest x-ray, psycho analysis, interview, etc… The whole procedures lasted more than 4 hours… The results will be out in 3 days, after Passing, should secure dental clearance, panoramic x-ray and Vaccines Certificates – including BCG, Polio, DPT, MMR, Tetanus, Typhoid, Meningococcal, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B… (It’s like a chemo-therapy process!!!)

    *** “The value of waiting is a value of a lifetime, if we know how to wait, Life shall be easy because God knows what to give us in the right time”

    International Career, More Blessed life: Worth waiting for…

    Published July 23, 2006 by Mrs. Universe Philippines 2020 - Star Villanueva

    It was April 25’2006- when I submitted my resume at International Placement Agency through email they replied after 2 days saying that I should proceed to Physical Screening and Initial Interview, April 27’ 2006- I went to the Agency wearing corporate attire as required, they checked my skin, teeth, height & weight, luckily I have no noticeable blemish & my weight are proportioned to my height. I passed the physical screening and scheduled me for interview. April 28’ 2006- I visited Our Lady of Manaoag in Pangasinan, May 3’2006- I went back to Agency for the interview, a foreigner personnel interviewed me, Ms. Jasmine told me that they will call within 4-6 weeks if I will be short-listed. Weeks has passed and I haven’t receive any call, but I didn’t lose hope, I also applied to other Airlines such as Etihad Airlines, they called me for assessment at Hyatt Hotel in Roxas Blvd, but I arrived late afternoon and it was closed already! but that didn’t discourage me!

    June 23’2006- After more than a month of waiting, while my family and I are on the way to St. Jude church in Manila, I received a text message from IPAMS saying that I should report at IPAMS to pick up my Qatar Airways assessment! The messages are still in my cellphone! =) After we visited the church I received another text message from Cebu Pacific, they invited me for exams on June 26 7:30am at Training and development Center, Pasay. The exam was so hard, it’s like entering a prestigious university. It’s strictly time pressure per exam, it includes English proficiency, Analogy/Abtracts, Problem reasoning with explanation, reading comprehension, Psychology & mathematics!!! I spent 4 hours there, we were 24 taking exams then only 3 Passed, including myself, but down to 2 because the other applicant has a tattoo in her arms. So we were just 2 who passed that morning. Thank God!

    I solemnly pray and offer Novena to Mother Perpetual & St. Rita (St. of Impossible.) I really want to be a Flight Attendant, My story started when I was 5 yrs old, (1990) my first trip to Singapore, California then Hawaii. Seeing and knowing the Perks & advantages of flight attendants that was enough for me! I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up, and with my almost yearly travel abroad, I have never deviated from that dream! Finally my chance came. I’m 21, old enough and just graduated a 4 years degree of B.A Communication Arts last April 1’2006.

    June 30’2006- Qatar Airways workshop & Assessment held in New Manila, QC. The Flight attendant recruiters are British, Egyptian and Indian national (No Filipino). First they orient us, some discussion, Question & Answer, etc… Then they gave us comprehensive English Proficiency exam, while taking the exam they called the applicants by number, one by one… (I still recall my badge number 42!) Then they once again measure the height, weight, teeth and they will ask you some personal questions to test communication skills, They even asked if I was wearing contact lens, I replied yes, because I’m near sighted. After the exam they will check the papers then divide us to 3 groups for group dynamics, they gave us 3 situations & problems, on where we must contribute our ideas and point of views while the recruiters are evaluating us. The time has come, they will already announce the chosen applicants, I was Chosen!!! I was the last number announced! 42! Thank God! Out of 50 applicants that morning I was one of the 8 who got chosen!!! My heart is pounding, my hand is shaking, it’s like I want to cry! While other applicants who already have experiences and currently working at Philippine Airlines & Cebu Pacific and some already applied more than 3 times already but got rejected, I can’t believe I was chosen immediately… It was one of the memorable day of my life! Then I went home and pray, it’s such a big help!

    July 2’ 2006- (Sunday) After filing out the application forms given by the international airline, We went to the International placement Agency for my Panel Interview, Then Executive Interview! It’s like a Ms. Universe pageant Q & A with more than 1 interviewer. Sensing how determined and serious I was, they closed the interview saying that the decision will be out within two weeks because the authorities when they’re back in Qatar will still approve it! The following day, an unfamiliar telephone number registered my cellphone, I missed the call and didn’t bother to call back, but then the next day July 3’ 2006,the exact time when I was reading a prayer book, the same number called me. If I’m not mistaken her name is Ms. Feyolla- an Egyptian. She said, “Hi, Estrellita!? If we will accept you, we would like you to know that colored hair is prohibited” I said “Oh, no Problem!” She said, Ok, great! Have a great day”.

    A week came, and another week. It’s really hard to wait! Most especially when you didn’t know yet what you’re waiting… I was wondering why it took almost 3 weeks already, what went wrong, A time comes that I couldn’t stand the suspense any longer – I called the Agency to know if the results are out already! Finally, July 19’ 2006 (Wednesday) out of my despair – I received a text message that I should call the Agency regarding Qatar Airways application, I was inside the car that time, so I used my cellphone to call them, This was the big moment! They informed me the schedule of orientation & requirements that I should bring because I’m already accepted as FLIGHT ATTENDANT to an International Airline! I had finally received the answer I wanted to hear – I got the job!

    *** “Prayer is a big help, keep believing, just have faith, don’t’ lose hope in achieving your goals in life, don’t let yourself be distracted because you know yourself better!!! Always remember that Everything’s happen for a reason, Time will come that it’s your time to shine so Dream big! & you’ll go far!” –Star