Week 1 MNL Grow Kits

It has been a week almost since my last post. I have a lot of backlog to catch up to and I will get to it one post at a time (promise)!

I am sure a lot of you guys are wondering whatever happened to my MNL Grow Kits. If you’re not quite sure on what I am talking about you can read up on my last post here.

I have 3 kits and I have planted all 3 two Sundays ago (I even experimented on tissue germination for the basil seeds).

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According to the guide of each kit the germination process takes almost a week. This is why the kits needed to be sealed, yep with the plastic bag using a rubber band.

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I wasn’t able to take pictures day by day but I’ll share below the photos of what I have.

The sprouts started coming out for Basil after 4 days, hot pepper after 5 days, and sunflower after 7 days.

Basil

June 24

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June 25

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June 26

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If you are not patient you might consider throwing the kits and giving up on them. Don’t. Just talk to the plants and encourage them to power through. Why? Because not all of the seeds produce sprouts.
20160626_083444Not kidding you there. For my sunflower kit I planted 2 seeds and only one powered through germination. Now this is not the fault of the grow kits but merely part of plant life. Think of it as the strongest one surviving.

Now that I am done with step 1 aka germination I will move on to step 2. Step 2 is about removing the weaker sprouts which I’ll be able to determine when the 4th leaf comes.

What I observed though, due to tissue germination and planting using the kits, the soil included seems to be made of good stuff. I had taller sprouts and stronger looking ones from the ones I planted in the coco husks versus those I germinated through the tissue.

Will update you again when I am done with Step 2 and move on to Step 3.

Again you can buy your own MNL Grow Kits by visiting their site or their fb page. Happy growing and planting!

This entry was posted in review.

Now You See Me 2 Movie Review

I was a big fan of the first Now You See Me movie, although the twist in the end was not really at par with the good build up of the movie in totality it was still worth watching.

CTTO

CTTO

When I heard that there would be a sequel I immediately tagged E and said that we should watch it when it hits the cinema. So as promised we did watch it in celebration as well of our 8th year anniversary.

I booked our tickets at SM Director’s Club and picked the back end seats. You can check my review here. The seats were great plus the bowl of popcorn and we were both set to watch Now You See Me 2.

Photo from the Official FB Page of Now You See Me 2 (https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie)

Photo from the Official FB Page of Now You See Me 2 (https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie)

The Trailers

As a sneak peek for the movie trailers were released and it really did help in building up the excitement for the movie. I think some, like me, were intrigued with Daniel Radcliffe’s inclusion in the movie and how he can pull off a brat character vs. his Harry Potter portrayal.

Here were the trailers released:

The Story

It picked up were they left off, the disappearance of the Four Horsemen with the help of The Eye. The start of the movie showed the story behind the death of Dylan’s father and set up the whole premise of the movie. It was still about avenging the death of his father and finding out who was behind The Eye.

Photo from the Official Facebook Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

The three men were still part of the Horsemen but the then female lead Henley (played by Isla Fisher) was replaced by a new character named Lulu (played by Liz Caplan). In the movie it was shared that she left because she could not stand Atlas anymore but in reality the lead star got pregnant and could not perform the stunts. (More spoilers up so skip to the verdict if you want to avoid it.)

They were still in hiding and this set up the tension between the group, Dylan, and The Eye. They were tasked though to re-appear during an event of Octa that would lead them to Harry Potter, oops what I meant to say was lead them to Walter (played by Daniel Radcliffe).

This is were things get interesting as they were “magically” transported to Macau you will have to find out how in the movie.Bulk of the movie is spent in Macau and then Europe.

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Now going back to Walter, he “disappeared” by faking his death but would want to get something he created with the help of the FourHorsemen. This is where things get tricky and where you can see the illusion take place, through their attempt to retrieve something for Walter. But an underlying motive was not known to the Four Horsemen and that was that Walter, like Dylan wanted to avenge the fall of his father, Arthur Tressler from the first movie, and did so by luring Dylan using the Four Horsemen. What he did not expect is how they turned things around to favor them using illusions and magic (ah he is not Harry Potter anymore).

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

The ending for me was unpredictable as they met who is behind The Eye. The illusions and magic they demonstrated and how they lured Arthur and Walter to their big illusion though was expected already (especially if you watched the first film the narrative of the last illusion is somehow the same). I will not reveal however who was behind The Eye as I see it fit for you to discover on your own.

The Actors

The original cast’s performance was great although I had to say that Daniel Radcliffe surprised me. I was used to seeing him in glasses acting awkward and all. In this movie though he tried to break out from his wizarding world by playing a spoiled brat. It wasn’t easy for me to disconnect him from his old role but it did help that he played his part well. As for Liz Caplan although her performance was good I still prefer Isla Fisher as my original woman lead of the Four Horseman. Isla has a more demanding presence and she was a perfect fit for me for the role.

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

Photo from the Official Facebook Fan Page of Now You See Me 2 https://www.facebook.com/NowYouSeeMeMovie

The Verdict

With the fast hand movements and focus on how each trick was executed I give this movie a 4 out of 5. I know that most movie critics say that the first one was better, but for me both movies had it’s ups and downs. I didn’t overanalyze things and I ended up enjoying the movie the way it should be watched. So if you want to relax and enjoy almost 2 hrs of fast hand movements and illusions, this is a must watch for you.

Bunny @ Gymboree

I have been thinking of enrolling Bunny in Playschool for quite some time now. She has playmates here ¬†at home but they don’t see each other that often. Her Ate Hannah attends school and her Ate Hazel can only go out when Ate Hannah is with her.

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What pushed me to explore trial classes is the fact that Bunny really needs a place to socialize with other kids but at the same time learn through play. This is why I considered Gymboree.

I’ve read plenty of reviews and two playschools stand out, Gymboree and The Little Gym. I already signed up Alex for a trial at The Little Gym this coming week and Gymboree was last Saturday.

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Originally we planned to attend the Play and Learn Class at Sofitel but we ended up doing our trial at Greenbelt. It is more accessible through public transpo and there are a lot of establishments where we can eat first before her class. The PLC class for 16 to 22 month babies was scheduled at 1PM so we first had lunch at Jollibee.

Jollibee really wasn’t our first choice but Bunny started pointing at the Jollibee statue and started blowing kisses his way that we succumbed to her cry for Jollibee.

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We finished our lunch early and we just rested for a bit before leaving for her first class. I have to admit that I was super excited and nervous for her first trial class. I wasn’t sure how she would react to a big playground that she has to share with other babies. I wasn’t sure as well if she will listen to her teacher or if she will just run around!

We got there around 12.45 PM which gave us time to sign up and preview the PLC for younger babies. The trial class was worth Php600 and if we sign up within the week it will be deducted to whatever package we will avail of.

Bunny started playing with the ball outside the play area and the staff blew bubbles her way as well to entertain her while we were waiting.

After the PLC 3 class we were allowed to enter the play area. Note here please bring socks for the guardian or parent who will be in the class with the baby or toddler. We were told that we can do our warm ups by playing around the play area and that we will be called when the class starts.

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Ah, Bunny started running around and exploring the place. She climbed and then tried the slide over and over again. I had to call her out when she didn’t like to share things and she listened.

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After 15 minutes or so Teacher Gem called us and we started our class.

This was our first time so I didn’t really have any expectations only that it might be similar to what Jane (in Jane The Virgin) does with Matteo with the singing and dancing). Tama naman ako, true enough there was a lot of singing and dancing, but there were also obstacles or relays. It really was fun for the moms and the babies.

 

First bit was the singing and dancing warm up, and then the play part but with solving skills and what I like about it is that they also teach the toddlers to pack up after playing (Bunny listened and helped teacher pack up the toys partly I think it is because I tell her to do so at home).

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The last bit was another round of song and dance with tapping, bubbles and lastly with Gymbo the clown.

Bunny liked the tapping and dancing part. She listened closely to teacher when she said tap and freeze and when they were told to clap and stomp.

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Bunny wasn’t such a fan of big Gymbo but liked little Gymbo. She even started talking to me and teacher when little Gymbo disappeared! The other babies were cute too because they all had different ways of dealing with the missing little Gymbo.

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After the class Bunny wasn’t ready yet to leave so I had to tell her that we will just come back. Teacher Gem gave her a parting gift before we left, a little Gymbo stamp on her arm and told us that goodbye.

Overall I really like the way that the class was structured. Play and Learn is great for little ones and toddlers because they aren’t pushed to do things if they are not comfortable. The tasks are not that hard and they get to partly socialize with other toddlers.

Another plus for me is the attention that the teacher gave to each toddler. She would adjust when she feels like Bunny isn’t comfortable to do a task but play peek-a-boo with her during the singing part.

Lastly the location is great also because it is accessible altough I do hope they have a branch here in Cavite so that it is closer to us.

My final verdict is that it is a good investment for babies and toddlers. Best of course if it will be the parents who will accompany the babies or toddlers and not the help if possible (I really don’t have anything against this but in our class one or two were with their yayas and the attention was split. I noticed that they were checking their phones and I think babies will enjoy it best with mum or dad or a sibling. Simply put it’s a good bonding experience kasi).

If you have spare time do check out their site here and schedule a trial class at the nearest Gymboree school in your area! We might sign up for a month na package first and we will see from there if Bunny likes it a lot.

SM Director’s Club Review

It has been more than a year since E and I watched a movie in the Cinema House. Let’s just say our plans get cancelled due to last minute errands or the weather is just not as cooperative. So for our 8th year anniversary we planned to watch a movie in MOA’s Director’s Club.

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Why the Director’s Club? Just so that it is special and not the usual cinema house. I heard that it is worth the buck and E loves Lazboy Seats.

I went online and booked our tickets in advance. I just want to avoid the lines and ensure that we have good seats. I asked around which seats were best and Camille and Anj, from my team, said that the best were the back seats. So I booked two tickets for E and I for the 5PM screening time of Now You See Me 2 (review to follow soon!) and the total cost was Php 840 (Php400 for seats and additional Php 20 for service fee).

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At first I thought that it’s not really that costly to think that you will have butler service, free bowl of butter popcorn, you have super LazBoy seats, and only a handful of people will be with you inside (around 30 if I remember correctly).

When I compare it to normal screening tickets which cost Php 250 you only add Php 150 for great seats and great service and it is really worth the extra charge.

When we got there we were welcomed to comfy seats where we can wait while they were setting up the movie and cleaning the theater. We also had access to our own washroom which is a big plus for me too (no long lines just to pee!).

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We were allowed to enter around 30 minutes before the start of the movie. Bowls of popcorn were already served in our tables and it was one bowl per person so E and I had 2 bowls of popcorn. Butlers also approached each guest and asked if we wanted to order anything (menu was same as that of the cinema treats outside – from popcorns to sandwiches and nachos also drinks pala). Since I was still full from our meal before we just order nachos and beef with cheese and drinks. We just had to wait for it to be served while we were watching the movie.

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While we were watching the trailers I already found my comfy spot at the LazBoy seat, with my feet up and the back of my seat just at a right angle (back seats or the last seats really are best).

Our snacks and drinks were served during the first part of the movie and our snack mid movie.

Audio and visual quality was great as well but it really was the seats and service which made the Director’s Club a must try.

My overall rating? A 4.5 out of 5. I hope they have couple seats available but we will definitely continue watching movies there.

SkinTouch Clinic Review

This is a bit of a delayed post, as I mentioned I’ve been in and out due to the flu and I’ve been working on something as well. May has been a busy month buuut, a big buuut, it was a fun month for me! Especially because I met Dra.Medina from SkinTouch. A common friend introduced her to me, and we’ve been working together for ever since April.

Dra.Medina Malit is an Ob Gyne but she has expanded her reach to cover cosmetic services both invasive and non-invasive. An added plus for her is that she combined her ob specialty with her cosmetic services thus having the capacity to offer as well gynecological aesthetic enhancement (seriously, isn’t that cool?!). When I came in to meet her at her new clinic at Centuria Medical Makati I was warmly welcomed by her attendant Sally and by Dra.Medina.

She checked my face and offered a trial of Cryotheraphy. I wasn’t really aware of what Cryotheraphy was so she discussed with me what it was and shared that it is a bit similar to Radio Frequency (the service that helps slim down your face or other areas you want to slim down) but this one has great effects that you can see right away and the treatment uses cold temperature vs. RF that uses hot temperature.

At first, to be honest, I was a bit hesitant to try it. Just because I didn’t know if it will hurt and if it will really have an immediate effect on my face. But I did proceed with the service and was even game enough to take a before and after photo.

The results?

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You be the judge, here’s my before and after photo just 10 minutes after my first cryotheraphy service. Immediate effects indeed and it didn’t hurt at all, I even felt a bit sleepy because I felt like Sally was just massaging my face the entire time the service was done.

I will definitely come back for another service, which is perfect as well since I will soon walk down the aisle! I highly recommend Dra.Medina and her clinic at Centuria Medical Makati or in Festival. Drop her a visit and let me know how your consultation goes!

Subic Meat Plus Review

In our first day at Subic, lunch wasn’t part yet of the Ad Summit event so E and I decided to head over to Meat Plus for lunch. I just heard of Meat Plus from a team mate and decided to try it for lunch just because he made it sound interesting and a must try!

Our Order

There are combo meals available at meat plus and orders wherein you choose your own steak which they will cook for you. Being a mummy I guess I went ahead for the value for money and ordered a combo meal for burger steak which included side dish and soup for just Php 220+ and E decided to choose his own steak and get the tenderloin steak meal at Php 260+. We just ordered side mashed potatoes for Bunny and my soup as well for her.

The Taste Test

For my order, the steak was cooked well (forgot to mention you can ask them to cook it rare, medium rare, medium well done, or well done) which is my preference. It was just the right amount of juicy minus the bloody part which would have been the case if I ordered it rare or medium rare. The soup was creamy which Bunny liked at a lot and she ate almost half! The mashed potato was left to me because she like the soup more. E’s order was tastier and juicier perhaps due to the choice of meat. If only I knew I would have ordered for the same cut instead!

 

Well Done Burger Steak

Well Done Burger Steak

 

E's Order

E’s Order

The Service

The service was just like the same as with other restaurants, although they made a mistake with the order of the group next to us. I personally think it was due to the volume of the people who came in which reflected how the staff is not that prepared to serve a big crowd. On the other hand though they were very nice and accommodating to us and even assisted us right away when we got in the place.

The Verdict

Combining good food, good price and okay service I will give Meat Plus a 3.5 out of 5. Big area of improvement for the service.

Subic Residencias Review

As I’ve shared in my previous post, for our 4D/3N stay in Olongapo we stayed at Subic Residencias. The initial plan was to stay within the SBMA area but that would be costlier and will be a bit far from the malls. It was E who found Subic Residencias through Trip Advisor and he shared with me that it has a good price within my set budget. I trusted his judgement and we booked a room for 4d/3n.

When we arrived in the Olongapo terminal of Victory, we just rode a tryke and after 5 minutes we arrived there at Subic Residencias.

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From Subic Residencias FB page

My first impression is that it has a convenient location, very much near the fast food restos and walking distance to SM as well as the bridge that leads to SBMA proper. This is very good because in our set-up they need to buy food per meal while I was out. Open entering the place, we were warmly welcomed and were assisted to our room. The room at the price of Php 2,100 per night was good! It was very spacious and even had a mini-ref (a must for us because I need it to store Bunny’s breastmilk). Aside from that, they also have a clean bathroom which is a must for me – but the shower sometimes the hot & cold shower was faulty (not hot showers at times).

From Subic Residencias FB Page

From Subic Residencias FB Page

The staff were very accommodating especially their guard! He would give Bunny one of the displayed ball like ornaments so she can play at the lobby while we were waiting for her dad or while they were waiting for me to come back from the summit. Getting a taxi is also easy, you can either walk near the exit to SBMA or you can ask the staff to call one for you – just be ready though because per ride to SBMA can cost you P150 to Php 200.

The hotel however can further develop their services – I highly suggest that they also offer breakfast. Even if we were near fast food restos, it is more convenient to have free breakfast tucked in the fee. I hope they can also offer guests additional services like transfers or they can offer as well tours within Subic.

Overall though, I give them a 4 out of 5 for service, location, and staff!

 

8Cuts Review

After our meeting at BGC, we decided to have lunch there instead of going back to the office first before having lunch. I think the winning combination of hunger – stress – payday resulted to our decision to try 8cuts at Serendra. I’ve been hearing a lot about this burger shop, but I haven’t had time to try it yet so I was super excited to finally bite a piece of their burger.

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My Order

Ordering was easy – but can be a bit difficult if you didn’t know what you want. I was contemplating between their specialty burgers, making my own, or trying their classic ones. Being the safe person that I am in trying new places I ordered their classic cheeseburger #3. Aside from the safe side thing – I also wanted to try first their classic offerings just to gauge if they can deliver great and quality tasting burgers. I upgraded to their go lunch box sets – rated PG. This included skinny fries and drinks.

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As for the skinny fries – in their terms – I pimped my fries to add bacon and cheese (because cheese + bacon make the world a bit better and is well deserved especially after a long week).

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The Taste Test

After five minutes this piece of beauty was served.

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The skinny fries was just what I needed to help remind me of the beauty that is cheese and bacon. It was the right amount of serving, not too much and not too few, just enough for my soul craving for something salty.

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As for the cheeseburger, at first munch it was like sinking your teeth into a juicy piece of well loved meat. You know that it has been prepared just for you, just for your burger craving body. The sauce complemented the juicy burger just fine but the cheese really finished it off. Dripping down the juicy meat making you crave more.

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The only downside though is that if you don’t finish it and plan to take it home you will be faced with soggy – sad bread. The oil is dripping plus the juice of the burger – but I think this is to be expected. Comparing this with the other burger shop I tried, Zarks, I like their burgers better. I was able to finish my burger without being faced with soggy sad bread like what happened when I tried Zarks.

The Service

Aside from the taste test, I will introduce the service part in my food reviews. For 8cuts? I will give them a 5 out of 5! Service was superb and the one assigned to our table was very accommodating!

The Verdict

4.5 out of 5

If you are craving for burgers and are looking for something more than the usual ones (especially from the fast food ones) go for 8cuts! My personal favorite will be the cheeseburger plus the skinny fries. I will probably come back for another serving soon!

Bohol Bee Farm Review

This is not really about our stay there, since we stayed in Lost Horizon while we were in Panglao. This is a review however for the food served at the Bohol Bee Farm Restaurant. In a nutshell our lunch at Bohol Bee Farm is nothing short of ordinary.

First, take a look at this view that you will be welcomed to when you sit down and wait for the service crew. Breathtaking right? This alone is enough for me – in filipino terms – ulam na kanin na lang kulang (I just need rice because the view is more than enough).

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Now imagine sitting there and then trying to remind yourself of the main reason why you went there, for the food! Now, I didn’t really research on what food to try there but since I love pasta I got the spicy pasta. E on the other hand ordered the seafood lasagna, and we got a kiddie spag meal for Bunny.

We were thinking that this might not be enough for us, oh but really it was too much already, we ordered pizza as well. Meat lovers pizza, for my pizza loving soul. Drinks were easy, I got the mango shake and he ordered iced tea.

While we were waiting the crew brought this old school high chair for Bunny, doesn’t she look like a tiny princess? They were so kind to even put comfy pillows so that she is just at the right height for the chair.

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Service was fast. They first gave us the yummy pumpkin bread with the pesto and mango jams and the organic chips with salsa dip. Bunny liked the chips so much ( I think she ate 4 pieces on her own) and E and I both loved the jams. (Which is why we bought it for our pasalubong! Read more about it here).

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After five minutes, our food was served. We were honestly surprised that each serving is good for 2 people! Even the kiddie spag meal! Should have ordered one pasta dish lang and the pizza!

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E’s seafood lasagna was served with their famous salad. According to him it was delicious, just the right combination of sweet and salty but you can really taste the seafood side of it. As for the spicy pasta, it was like eating pasta with chili con carne but with a bit more tomato sauce. It was yummy and just the right amount of spice for me. The kiddie spag is sweet, just right for kiddos. Pizza was fantastic as well! Overall the yummy food plus the view made this one of my favorite stops in our Bohol vacation!

Bunny loved the mango shake also!

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I give this a 10/10 and a must visit when you are in Bohol!

 

Darunday Manor Review

For the rest of our stay in Bohol, we were checked in at Darunday Manor. I discovered it through Trip Advisor and saw the good reviews it received from travelers. Aside from the good reviews, they also offer free breakfast and location is very convenient. It is situated in the main city, near a bank, near fast food chains, near a park, and the airport. That is what I liked the most about Darunday Manor. It is very convenient and you get what you pay for. At Php 1,400 you get a good room, free breakfast, good and homey service.

Darunday Manor Room 10 - From Tripadvisor

Darunday Manor Room 10 – From Tripadvisor

Our room was located at the 3rd floor, and on our way up we were treated to magnificent paintings from Boholano Artists. This was such a welcome treat from the usual clean walls of hotels. The paintings gave the place such a good ambiance that will make you feel at home.

From the Darunday Manor FB Page

From the Darunday Manor FB Page

The service was good and you can really feel the warmth from their team. Although most are older compared to the usual staff of hotels, you can tell that they really like what they are doing.

Darunday Manor from their FB Page

Darunday Manor from their FB Page

Overall though they still have a lot to improve. The best way they can compete with other hotels in Tagbilaran is to have more upgraded facilities. The rest is already good. I will probably try other hotels if we go back to Bohol, but Darunday Manor is a good budget hotel option.