Nobu Hotel City of Dreams Manila - the staycation that felt like a dream

Stayed two nights at Nobu during Holy Week and I might say, it's so far the best hotel staycation we've had! Nobu is one of the three hotels that is part of the integrated casino resort that is City of Dreams Manila. The other hotels are Nuwa and Hyatt Regency. We chose to stay at Nobu because mainly Jeckie wants to try something out at the casino, ako naman I liked Nobu's interior. ♥

I uploaded a Room Tour vlog on YouTube, check it out here: [Room tour] Nobu Hotel City of Dreams Manila - Deluxe room, breakfast, amenities

We booked through Agoda and checked in early at around 2:30pm. Room wasn't ready yet and we were made to wait around 30mins for it. It's a peak date (holiday) so it's expected that rooms can take longer to get assigned.

When we got to our room I was pleasantly surprised. I super love how it's designed. Normally I would prefer elegant, modern, or minimalist styles but I think I've graduated from that cos I really appreciate the Japanese inspired theme. It's very characteristic.

The big brush paint accent on the wall, the roman shades, the roll-up blackout curtains, the lamps, I love the room so much! ♥ FYI I used to hate that big wall accent whenever it comes up in my feed but now I love it so much I specifically requested for it lol. 

We didn't get a room with a bath tub but it's more than fine. Maybe next time!

The large TV is an Android TV which is something I really admire because most hotels still only have cable which nobody uses anymore, so we always have to bring our Mi TV Stick just to watch Netflix or YouTube or Disney+. Glad we didn't have to set it up this time. ♥

I learned about this late, but apparently all the food at the minibar is complimentary. There's soda, juice, m&ms, and cup noodles.

Besides check-in taking too long, another thing I didn't like was that they're not responsive through email. Which I don't really mind but that's minus points in terms of hospitality for me. 5-star hotels usually are very responsive through email. Okada, being another busy hotel, never missed my emails. Anyway. Just to compare... cos I normally email hotels after booking to confirm, reiterate my requests, and subtly hint if we're celebrating anything cos most of the time they take cues and prepare something hehe.

Oh wait, Smart signal is bad in the room. We're on the 8th floor facing the pool. Little to no reception at all. But the free internet is fast and doesn't require a username and password so yey.

They don't allow outside food. Understandably so cos they have their own retail area where you can eat, so yeah take note. There aren't a lot of food choices though. And most of the shops are high-end so we didn't indulge. We focused on the restaurants. Personally the only familiar names are Mary Grace, Mango Tree, and Starbucks, and they're the cheapest in the lot haha. There were a bunch of unfamiliar restaurants but owing to the fact that they're in a casino resort, we have above average expectations. And they did not disappoint! We ate at Red Ginger (Southeast Asian) and Season 88 (Chinese, Filipino) and I highly recommend both when you're in COD! 

They gave us three breakfast options. Option 1 is buffet breakfast at Hyatt. Option 2 is ala carte dining at Wave restaurant (by the pool). And Option 3 is ala carte in-room dining by Nobu. We stayed two nights so on day 1 we tried the buffet, and on our last day we ordered in-room.

Hyatt buffet was just okay, there weren't a lot of choices to be honest. But it's all good. I don't tend to eat a lot during breakfast anyway so my plate was mostly continental, you know... bits of everything... pancake, bacon, eggs, potatoes, sausage, coffee.

Personally I prefer in-room dining because Nobu is serving and they have a good breakfast menu. Day 2 we got Nobu Style eggs benedict which was perfect.

We also got side salad, fresh fruits, bread, and juices. I love it!

Wave is the one option we didn't try cos it's too hot to dine out here.

We didn't think of eating at Wave because of the heat wave haha. Sobrang init sa labas grabe I don't think we would enjoy breakfast by the pool, but their menu looks good din!

They have a cute sized gym hehe. There are enough cardio equipment, a rack of weights, medicine balls, and other machines, but it's pretty tight.

No enough space to lay down a mat and maybe do some yoga. To be fair I don't think people would even use the gym when they're here.

What really made this staycation special, and like I said, the best haha, was that we were able to win everything we spent here by playing at the casino. And before you say we're lulong, let me be clear that I'M NOT PROMOTING GAMBLING because we all know it could lead to a serious addiction... 

yeeeeaah, that's about the extent a disclaimer I can make...

but I still wanna share my excitement cos it's quite an elated experience for both of us. Something I want to relish but also control cos there's no knowing the depths of this rabbit hole we just peeked through haha. 

Thankfully, we came in with a strategy (ah! like many others before us haha). My husband taught me the martingale betting system which effectively works with roulette. But it's not foolproof okay, it's a slow process depending on your risk appetite. Like any wise man would say, bet only with what you can afford to lose. Have an exit point and a reward ceiling. I'm not gonna elaborate the system but so far in the few times we played we never lost. Sometimes we gained only a little bit, but overall our 14k yielded over 50k. We were ecstatic cos that's more than enough to pay for our whole stay plus everything we ate there haha. 

When we wanted to eat at a restaurant we'd just play for 2k and call it a day. That's basically how we enjoyed our stay hehe. It feels so freaking good. We're on a high. But it's so dangerous, this feeling, this brewing addiction, if you may. And we only ever hear regret stories about gambling so I have to be very very clear about my motivations every time we enter the playing field. 

What's really off-putting thing about the casino though, besides losing and the growing possibility of being addicted, is the lingering smell of smoke, which is common naman with Casinos I think but I didn't realize I'd hate it so much I'd gag. I wore a face mask the whole time but I still couldn't stand it specially when someone in the same table is actively smoking. To be fair, COD smells better than Okada. Slightly or maybe because it's larger. The cigarette smell in Okada is too thick and the place feels cramped. Over time you get used to it but again it sucks when someone nearby keeps puffing hehe.

Yeah I should stop raving about our measly winnings. It feels immoral to be proud of this. I shouldn't be proud of it.

But yeah we would love to go back to City of Dreams haha. Char.

The week that was

Late upload for my Weekly Monotony (click here!), probably the latest ever. I got really sick for a while, but for the most part I just got lazy hehe. So here's a recount!

Slowly transforming the house, yet again, according to my aesthetic preference haha. I bought a new office chair, a new shelf (which I already had before but gave away), a new kitchen rack, and a cute pour-over. I also bought a slow juicer for my uhm, health needs? Hahaha

In terms of decluttering I sold a lot of things. I have this huge bag of old clothes... gowns, dresses, blouses that I never got to use a lot because they're special occasion type of clothes I really have no closet space for. That and business casual blouses I have no use for ever since I left my previous company. So yeah, listed them all for cheap at our community marketplace, sold around half of them, gave away some, and kept those I think has potential or as Marie Kondo says before she gave up on her own method (why: kids), "sparks joy". A week of decluttering, selling, delivering, picking up parcels, and assembling stuff has gotten me really really exhausted last week. Couple that with my STILL painful knee and everything became 1.5x harder to do haha. Would've used 2 as a multiplier but I got my husband so yeyy 💕

But hey, it's all coming together. 💖

My knee is still painful. It clicks a lot these days, painful clicks that last a second that somehow make it easier for me to bend my knee. For some reason, yeah. After it clicks, ouch, then when I try to fold it it folds better. Beats me. Only an MRI can tell. Which I already have scheduled so hopefully I get some clarity on this. Haaaay. 

Mama turned 69 😏 this year and we decided to celebrate simply. I booked an airbnb in our condo, pressured them to arrive on time so we can still go malling and have dinner together hahaha. In the end they still arrived late (as usual) and I only got Terai to drag with me to the mall while my parents rest at home. I'm not really surprised haha. I know my parents well enough, they're past the age of malling, and everything they do have to be nestled between rests. I don't wanna push them. I should've known better though hahaha. We would've gone to Tagaytay but my mom hates long drives especially in a wonky car haha. I hope to be able to go to more out-of-towns with them but I really need a good car for that! 

We were able to go malling the next day, had lunch at Kaya Korean Restaurant, bought my dad new shoes, and spent the rest of the day at the airbnb. Watched The Glory with my sister (who claims to have watched only clips of the drama and yet knows everything about it lol), ordered GrabFood, showed off my juicer which my mom loves haha. Made them bring a bunch of vegetables so I can demo haha. She's proud that all her nagging and force feeding us fruit and vegetable juices when we were young has finally paid off. I call it trauma hahaha. It was really fun, all we really needed is some quality time together in the same house. 


I hate my face I'm too pimply and they're all cystic and I keep on popping them cos it's satisfying so now half my face is all dark and wounded. Argh

That's it, happy weekend! 🎉



What's up lately... 

✱ Joined Anytime Fitness

Since Fitness First Megamall closed down, we've moved to Anytime Fitness Pioneer which is nearer, a bit cheaper, and has free parking, so not bad. I miss FF though cos it has better amenities. AF doesn't even have a lounge where I can wait for my husband when I'm done working out. Also no coffee haha. And their bathrooms and lockers stink. Really not much to do except work out. I even got "scammed" with their group exercises cos they posted they have something everyday at 12nn, which excited me cos that's when we usually go to the gym, turns out if no one registers in their app (which doesn't work), then the class will be cancelled. So guess what, ever since we started there I've never seen a group class in action. 

✱ Surrendered our 10yr+ old VUL policy with Philam

We've been paying for a life insurance with VUL policy with Philam for over 10yrs so you'd think we can stop paying already and just let it grow no? Nope. Because the economy has been on a downward trend for so long, the VUL aspect of our policy is losing, and because every month they charge an admin fee, when we stop topping up it will get the fees from our investment returns instead. And so we're losing even more. Based on my records we've paid over 200k++ on one policy and when we surrendered it we only got ~145k. Huge loss but at least we've cut it. 

So now we just bought a new product, that is...

✱ ACP100 (AIA Critical Protect 100)

... one without investment features, purely protection (life and critical illness) which is more practical for us cos we're already saving and investing in stocks elsewhere. I've never really looked into insurance policies before, I usually just let my mom buy stuff for me and reap off of it. But now that we've actually incurred losses from our policies, I gathered I didn't want to just get insurance for the sake of it. I need to freaking look at the product I'm buying. Good thing my sister seconded getting ACP100 cos she got one for herself and knowing her she studies everything she buys so I'm in! 😊

Also a good thing my parents are our own insurance agents so processing claims is so easy we just need to supply everything they required. ♥

✱ Celebrated my husband's birthday at Angeles

Two weeks ago we drove to Pampanga for Jeckie's birthday, and also to celebrate our regularizationss hahaha. Super adventure cos it's our first time driving up north for vacation and sakto naman we ran a flat tire along NLEX haha stresss! Good thing my husband knows how to change a tire and I uhm just helped with the flashlight and hauling things from the trunk haha. I couldn't even carry a tire for my own sake so that's probably my new fitness goal right now hahaha I wanna be strong enough to be able to handle changing a flat tire alone. You may watch my vlog here!

I loved our staycation cos our airbnb is super pretty and it's been on my wishlist for sooo long. We ate a lot and really enjoyed our beautiful bungalow. They're on airbnb but I booked them on facebook para cheaper.

Tip: if you can find the facebook page of the airbnb you can book direct cos it's usually cheaper. BUT you have to legit-check. I do that by chatting them up on airbnb and messaging them on facebook asking to screenshot our convo on airbnb. That's usually enough proof they actually handle the airbnb account. Don't ever mention booking directly with them on airbnb cos they can be penalized for that. 

✱ I'm regular now!

The feeling is overwhelming. It's only been 6 months and I already received my performance appraisal, and my corresponding performance bonus and annual increase, plus an additional bonus! This company is pretty generous. For a Meets Expectations rating I didn't expect to get a significant raise. My bonus is even prorated but I'm already so grateful. I'm so eager to continuing meeting expectations next year HAHA. I mean, this is it. Who would've thought just meeting expectations could be this rewarding. I love it. I worked hard to really up my base pay because I know every increase, every bonus, even my next job... will base on that. And it's finally paying off. I'm not even working that hard. I haven't even deployed a single project. Which reminds me lol. I really have to work now hahaha.


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Wholesale Breathable CompressionSilhouette Waist Cincher (
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Watcher duties

Currently watching: True Beauty

It's day 4 in the hospital with my sister. She had total thyroidectomy on Thursday and I've been here since Wednesday evening watching over her. I'm her designated watcher but to be honest I'm not really watching haha, more like hanging around watching KDramas and bonding with her when she has the energy to hahaha. It's my first time to watch over someone in the hospital and I damn well prepared for it. I knew my parents were gonna prepare for Terai so I focused on preparing for myself hahaha treat it like a little staycation lol. I don't like the part where I get to be away from my husband for days but I also don't like my sister left alone in the hospital. My parents are too old to be apart and there's only one companion bed and I know none of their backs would survive this tiny cot. So it's gotta be me, and I'm happy to. 😊

First thing I made sure before coming in is to check the network signal. I have to WFH so a strong signal is a must. Thankfully Smart 5G signal is super strong here at FEU Hospital so I'm able to hotspot from my phone and get things done, careful not to set any meetings cos I'm not really in a good place to engage in a call haha. My parents brought me a blanket, I brought Hedgy my flattest stuffed toy, I also bought change of clothes good for 4 days, toiletries, my V&M skin care, coffee, tea, my bigass tumbler, speakers, extension cord, my Kindle, and other gadget stuff. I'm all set hahaha.

I don't really know what to do as a watcher besides alalayan sya generally but I've come to itemize some basic things I found myself doing the past few days:

  • Wheel the IV stand whenever she needs to pee. Easy enough cos the night leading to her operation she's on a fast so she didn't pee much, and after the operation she couldn't eat properly so yeah, not much as far as her bladder is concerned. Oh wait it actually became concerning that she couldn't drink anything and kept on choking post-op but it eased up on the following days as her throat muscles start to heal (she was intubated with anesthesia). By the time she can eat and drink properly she's off the suero so she can handle herself hehehe
  • Assist in changing clothes. Easy too cos di naman sya naliligo wahahahaha
  • Bring stuff upstairs. Easy enough except that the elevator here is programmed to stop at every freaking level so that's a bummer. And my parents like to bring stuff over lol like soup and fruit juices and water, anything we request actually since they just live nearby. So convenient! They brought us comforters cos the AC here in so freaking cold. Grabe ang sarap matulog with comforter very hayahay hahaha. Anyway. I had to go downstairs a lot. I hate walking cos my left knee still isn't a-ok but it's fine hehe.
  • Be present when the doctor needs me. Which never really happened because Terai is a grown ass ahjumma and the operation didn't really damage her comprehension haha so she can take the grown up talk by herself hahaha. Howeverrrr, during her operation I was summoned to the operating room because the doctor wants to talk to the companion daw. I was so groggy and alarmed at the same time because isn't this the part where they say something went wrong and shit?! So I came down to the OR and asked for my sister. They told me they already talked to someone and I was like huhh but I'm the only companion, so they made me repeat the patient's surname, they had it checked, and as it turns out they called the wrong number and the patient in question has a similar sounding surname, and that my sister is still on the table and I should go back to sleep. What the fuck right? Way to traumatize me on my first stint? (Not that I want more)
  • Assist in discharging procedures? I'm guessing I have to do some paperwork to get us out tomorrow so yeah.
  • Pack up and carry everything. They have a trolley we can request for and our parents are picking us up so no biggie.

All of those things I kinda expected but I didn't realize that the brunt of being a watcher goes to not getting enough sleep from all the doctors and nurses coming in an out every few hours to check on the patient. It's easy enough to drag the IV stand whenever Terai needs to pee but to be awaken ever so often when her vitals need checking, it's become annoying. Thank God they told us we can request for vitals to get checked during waking hours only so that's a relief! The visits lessened. Hope they suggested it earlier though haha. But still, I think we're still being visited at least 5x throughout the day lol

Anyway. Post-op was the worst. She was wheeled out 8am and came back around 5pm? She couldn't eat nor drink. Her neck, shoulders, and throat hurt. She chokes on anything she tries to ingest, and she's been coughing incessantly, spitting out saliva and phlegm that's been building up in her swollen throat. She had trouble breathing so she was nebulized a few rounds. She also got a fever which is why we extended for a day. It's day 2 post-op and she's feeling a lot better now, she's eaten normal food and junk food hehe so hopefully we're out tomorrow!

Please pray for my sister's speedy recovery! 🙏


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