Friday, December 30, 2016

Bella Swan Party Venue: Valle Verde 4 Clubhouse

I know this post is long overdue, my daughter's 7th birthday party was last June but the busy bee has too much on her plate right now, and it all just got stuck in the head and would not turn into words. Plus social media is a bad influence on me - ok hold on to that thought - I want to write something about that topic too, maybe, I could make that my New Year's resolution - less Facebook. Anyway, late as my post maybe, I would not want to missed sharing the party details as Bella's mini debut is a milestone for her and the best part of it is, we get to celebrate it with Uno - the latest addition to our family.

I know how hard it is to get information on the internet when you are planning an event as not all details are available online and so it gets so frustrating especially on my part since I am out of the country. Its such a hassle to coordinate everything from afar when you want all things to be done your way. Its like deja vu when I had to plan our wedding 6,904 km away last 2008. I think coming up with ideas is easy when you are planning an event but putting these ideas into action is the most difficult part. So sharing my personal experience in planning a party, dealing with suppliers and how they perform during your event is somewhat a duty for me to share to those who are like me when it comes to party planning.

First of, my mind was set already on her birthday theme since my mini-MEs first birthday party.  I knew then what would be the next big thing for her. By the way, I am not fond of Disney character, princesses and the like. And I always wanted a unique party. theme Just like Bella's First Birthday celebration.

So on her 7th Birthday, the theme of the party is entitled: Bella Swan Party with motif of White and Pink with a touch of gold.

So without further ado, let me start my reviews with the venue.

Venue: Valle Verde 4 Clubhouse
Peso power 2016: Php 18,000
Sponsorship required
Downpayment: 9,000 + 4,000 Security bond
Note: Need to settle the balance 3 weeks before the event

Valle Verde was not my first choice, however, during the initial stage of my preps, I was led to believe that I would be able to reserve my dream venue. But things just didn't work out the way I wanted it to be. This is the reason why I am hands on when it comes to planning a party as I do not want to you rely too much on people. Imagine the hassle I went through after I found out that our date was still not lock in after several months of waiting and even if I already handover the full amount of money to pay the reservation fee. Good thing we were still able to get the money back.

Moving forward, right after this incident, I seek the help of someone, to find me an alternative place to hold the party and I need it like, as soon as possible and luckily, as beggars can't be choosers we we were able to secure the venue in more or less a week.

Pros: In terms of appearance and interiors, the venue is perfect for theme of the party, simple yet elegant. We had to decorate the place a little to spruce it up. The size is also just right for our party of 70 adults and 30 kids capacity. Spaces on the side of the road can be use for vehicle so parking is not a problem. There is also a decent park and playground that we used for photo ops.

Cons: Just like all other clubhouses, the venue also has a lot of do's and don'ts and extra fees.  The a/c was not working properly as well during the party. Maybe because, our party was held in the afternoon and the place was all glass wall, so we tend to get lot of exposure from the sun

I wasn't able to talk to the admin of the said place as I already have someone who is coordinating with the venue. Turns out, it was a one man show. My coordinator had a hard time getting in touch with Joel, in fairness to him, if I remember it correctly, his wife was in the hospital during this time so  he was not fond of answering his calls. Although, I also read from somewhere that he was really not very accommodating. It doesn't really matter to me as I have only one business to attend to and that this to make sure the party will be smooth on the day.

To give you an idea on the venue, below are some of the photos

The corner where you see a brown dome door was used as our stage (behind the door is an altar)  There is also small platform stage on the floor, so it was hard to attach the backdrop on the wall, my stylist needed to free stand it.

The venue has a high ceiling as well, which made it a little difficult to decorate, but I still chose to minimize the ceiling decors.

Here is the entrance to the clubhouse

If you can see from afar the place is all dome shape glass wall.

Sorry - I couldn't find a decent photo of the park and playground. It wasn't fancy though but a great place for some photo ops with a good photographer.

If you are looking for an affordable venue, I think it is fair to say that this is a good choice to hold a small party.

Next on my review: Bella Swan Party Caterer: Passion Cooks

Hope this helps! All the Best!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Umi Sushi

This post will be a quick one, I promised.

Our awesome Customer Service team  (and then some) had recently arranged a lunch out of office and we decided to go Japanese.

Executive Towers is just a walking distance from our office

and in G54, Ground level Towers G, you will find Umm Sushi that offers Japanese cuisine

The highlight of this meal is the  100 pieces Party platter (AED 249.00)

6 Sundried Classic Maki, 6 Salmon Classic Maki, 6 Tuna Classic Maki, 6 Ebi Classic Maki, 6 Cucumber Classic Maki, 6 Avocado Classic Maki, 8 Crispy Spicy Tuna Roll, 8 Tempura Roll, 8 California Roll, 8 Crab and Avocado Roll, 8 Philadelphia Roll, 8 Fujiyama Maki Roll, 8 Crazy Crunchy Roll, 8 Chicken Teriyaki Roll

By the way, this is only offered during lunch time.

I had to share my other colleague's chosen meal. Chicken Katsu Danbury - it a delicious breaded chicken tossed with teriyaki sauce served over steamed rice and half cooked egg.

I decided to try their Prawn Tempura Ramen - 3 pieces of prawn tempura immersed in seafood broth and topped with shiitake mushroom and noodles

Isn't this a great idea to learn to use the chopsticks?

As promised, just a quick one as I need to sleep now.

All the best,

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Clinton St. Baking Company

I guess this will be my last post for the New Year and to end the first month of the Year 2016, I will still talk about food. My friend and I decided to make our breakfast date a regular  basis. Something to look forward to every first Friday of every  month.

And to start of, we choose Clinton St Baking Company. We dine at Downtown Dubai location on the first day of January 2016.The place is open from 8:00 AM till 11:00 PM, serving breakfast day and night, seven days a week.  Isn't that amazing? Imagine waking up early for breakfast after sleeping late the night before to welcome the New Year. It was a great morning  actually. A fresh start. New beginning.

I had a hard time choosing from their menu and finally settled to Farmer's Plate. With their soft scrambled eggs, chicken apple sauce sausage, farmhouse cheese, herb roasted tomatoes, watercress, and sourdough toast.

It took me sometime to follow-up this mail, I got busy. Moving forward, we ordered New York magazine's best blueberry pancake, although instead of the blueberry, we chose the chocolate chunks.

Definitely, the pancake is a must try.

What I also love about the place is their refillable brewed coffee

Coming back soon, I hope.

All the best,

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Denny's Al Rigga Dubai

I am becoming a morning person and loving breakfast than any other meal of the day. The aroma of coffee in the morning is invigorating and apart from breakfast being affordable, not all people wake up early in the morning to dine out. Restaurant are not full during this time of the day so you get to relax a bit. 

One of the place we love visiting for a morning cup of joe is Denny's in Al Rigga.Denny's does all around full breakfasts

My all time favorite is their Lamberjack Slam. They serve it with two buttermilk pancakes, a grilled turkey ham slice, two bacon strips, two sausage links and two eggs, plus hash browns and choice of bread. 

I really love their crisp-on-the-outside hash browns, sausages, and lots of buttered toast.

Far-ouT ordered All-American slam. Three scrambled eggs with cheddar cheese, two bacon strips, two sausage links, plus hash browns and choice of bread. 

Paired with a cuppa coffee, and the great outdoor weather, this was a great way to start the day

(albeit quite late - but hey they serve breakfast all day)

All the best.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Farm, Al Barari

I must admit I am one of the many social media user who  go out for a meal and post a picture of my food but not all the time. I am also aware that nobody cares what I had to eat, but my intention though is not to brag about the food, of course, a picture perfect photo for instagram is also an added bonus, but the main purpose is blog about it and help those who seek good food and discover places that are not so popular but serve the best foodgasmic meal. 

I want to share with you my recent find. Well, its not very recent actually. I was planning to go to the restaurant when I was still pregnant but since I was watching my weight back then, I resist the urge to visit the place. And the long wait is all worth it. With the cold weather and monthsary celebration, we finally experience their cuisine and in their own words, where outdoor and indoor space is fused together to create an incomparable ambiance of peace and calm.

The Farm. Located in Al Barari opposite Falcon City is owned by Zaal family whose vision is to develop unique natural residential communities and facilities. The restaurant was visioned in their desire to offer a completely different type of dining experience to their residents and visitors to the estate.

We've been in The Farm twice for breakfast and we still can't get enough of it.

My cafe latte was serve with a heart.

My mini-ME ordered chocolate waffle. They served the waffle with an ice cream but because of the cold morning breeze, we requested them to separate it.

I ordered one of their morning favorites, Farm Select - 2 eggs (any style), choice of sausage, grilled tomato, baked beans and 2 slices of toast.

Far-ouT is the far more adventurer than me when if comes to food. I am always on the safe side, making sure I am familiar with the food I eat. I don't really want to experiment and spoil my breakfast. But boy, their Egg Florentine was delish. He ordered Ciabatta bread as well

My friend Ella decided to hold her birthday celebration in The Farm with us, and so this time, I made sure to order something different from my usual.

I so love my order. Poached egg on Tapioca and Potato Hash. Yes, I know what you are thinking. Small servings, right? I thought so too. So I was surprised how it was able to satisfy my appetite and mind you, I have a big one.

By the way, this is how the Chocolate Waffle was presented with the ice-cream,

This time, Far-ouT ordered their Pastrami Frittata

and additional Bagel bread

My friend had the Egg Florentine. She thought it wasn't enough as well. But after eating the first one, she could hardly finish the next

On both occasion, we couldn't help but get awed by its beautiful settings.

Their indoor area was beautiful

But brace yourself, the outdoor area was even more spectacular

They even have an area with different plants were they get, I think, some of the vegetables they use for ingredients.

We still haven't tried their lunch and dinner menu. Definitely, saving it for another special occasion.

All the best,