Like a child at 14 Four Cafe

Fourteen Four Cafe

“Every Summer, like the roses, childhood returns.” ~Marty Rubin~

I’ll always love blogging. =)

For my “I am blogger” photo. Credits to: http://www.freepik.com/

14 Four cafe logo courtesy of: https://www.facebook.com/14FourCafe/

As a child, I grew up in my parents’ house with a huge lawn where I play hide and seek with my cousins, with my dog and with my papa. I incurred scars in my knees because I wanted to run faster than our dog. I put mud in my mini cooking plate and let it dry for a day so we will have a cake the morning after.

I miss that huge lawn, we took care of dozens of love birds and I remember waking up with their chirping calling out my mom as if announcing that it’s already feeding time. My dog’s name is Tsandu. It is taken from a character’s name from my father’s story line in Filipino comics way back mid-70s. He was an illustrator. An artist.

In that lawn, different kinds of plants are grouped in corners. Some pots are even painted in varying colors. There is a huge star apple tree that gives shade to the whole area making it an ideal place to relax in our green 4-seater garden set. In some corners, you’ll see huge lava rocks which my papa brought home when we went hiking in Mt. Mayon. Along with over-sized sea shells which he also brought home from several beaches that we’ve been to. The other side of the house is with roof because it is where our garage is. You will often hear the likes of Frank Sinatra, Matt Monroe, Elvis Presley serenading you in a humid afternoon. He is fond of Tchaikovsky too. During weekends, my parents invite relatives to have barbecue with us.

I really look up to weekends. When my mom starts preparing pre-sliced pork and marinate them, I get so excited. At the main entrance, a realist painting, (a wedding gift to my parents by my uncle who happens to be an artist too, he’s a known painter during the 70s) will welcome you. If you’re a stranger , upon passing by that house, you would have guess that it is owned by some sort of an artist. And it is. My papa was popular then, I see him being mobbed by people asking their comics to be signed by him. I was just a spectator admiring him from afar.

I had to plot this specific day trip with Jen and travel for hours to reach a very similar place. Jen hadn’t sleep yet, she just came from work, and I’m thankful that she easily gave in to my whims. This place really brought me back to that time while I was still a child. When I first saw it, 14 Four Cafe being tucked in the vicinity of Tanay, Rizal, brought me to memory lane. Since we are from the South, it was really difficult for us finding it, as we are not similar to that place.

Some drivers doesn’t even know where 14 Four Cafe is. And finally, when we reached it. I felt like a child once again. I roamed around instantly without even informing the attendants who pleasantly welcomed us of the instruction given to us when we reserved a table for two as they do not accommodate walk-in guests. Visits are limited too, which is an advantage since they can better taking care of guests unlike when it is peak, attendants will be so busy. Their service, since guests are limited is more personal.

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Now I know that 14 4 is the # of their house.
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I captured some millennials enjoying their stay as well.

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Ironically, even if we found it hard to locate, guests keep coming. The house, more so, the whole place speaks for the artist who owns it. It is owned by Nikki Sambile, a designer. His father, who happens to be an artist too (like my father), showcases his furniture collection on this same place too.

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I want these chairs in my garden too. =)
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Photo credits: https://www.facebook.com/14FourCafe/

Can you imagine that I traveled all the way from Laguna just to have this vegetarian dish? It is Veggie Quesadilla with pesto soaked tomatoes, shitakes, melted mozzarella topped with garlic crema. It has grilled eggplants too and nachos on the side. While Jen, still full from our real lunch on our way to Rizal (2pc. chicken please! lol!), had something light and sweet. She had Amaretto French toast. She chose it because of the toasted almonds. She was overwhelmed with the whipped cream though.

Lighter meal for us.

It was funny that they have Milo to offer as drinks. It really reminded me of my childhood days. I was a Milo kid then.

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I ❤ Milo! =)

I would even eat it alone scooping portions continuously.

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Table for two?=)

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Nope, I actually visited because I needed an inspiration. Being an artist myself, I have to see others in that same niche too.

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An artist’s imagination is infinite.
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Rustic type of a faucet and its’ basin.
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This is the showroom of Stick designs. http://www.14fourcafe.com/location.html

Get the feel of it and be inspired instantly!

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I am not that happy with this photo. We were not able to capture all the colors behind me.

Which surely I did! We don’t even want to leave and hoping to stay longer, however, like I said, it took us almost half of that day traveling.

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So, we left after relaxing in one of the couches al fresco, wondering if we can make time to really come back. Maybe.

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Siesta – afternoon nap.

ps

They’re a favorite of those whose about to wed too, for pre-nup photos. =)

14 Four Cafe is located at:
144 Magnolia Lane, Gregoria Heights Subdivision, Bgy San Isidro
Taytay, Rizal

For reservation, you can call them at: 0999 888 0144

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A whimsy and quirky place in Lubao, Pampanga

Prado Farm – A whimsy and quirky place in Lubao, Pampanga

“Seeing how beauty and functionality have been coaxed out of chaos, perhaps accounts for the sense of magic that one feels for Prado Farm”. ~Mariel Francisco~

It is a rare occurrence that I get to find things that are new to me. Things that inspire, fascinate and drive me to move forward. Even slowly but surely getting where I want and who to be.

Over the years, I have explored in my own little way and maybe more in the coming years if I can afford them already. A few friends inspire me too, pushes me to my limits because they know and desires seeing me making my big dreams come true.

They knew what’s it like how to place random items together and uncover a new-born artistry. They don’t just know how, they feel it.

Targeting a place somewhere in Bulacan, as I do my research, I went farther north and landed to a farm in Lubao, Pampanga. Thanks to fellow bloggers, they unveiled to my senses a place that arrested my attention.

I researched further if those who wrote about it are professional photographers as their photos are really amazing and soulful. It reminded me that it takes two to create beautiful pictures. Someone who’s got the eye for it, and the subject itself. I didn’t include a modish dslr, cool tripods/ monopods or even gargantuan lenses. All it takes are young convivial hearts that are unafraid, seeking and lovers of fun with their up-to-the-minute mobile phones. And voila!

So their photos brought us one weekend to Pampanga. A few hours travel by bus and we reach our seasoned and whimsical destination.

Prado farm is located at Siongco, Prado in Lubao, Pampanga. It is strategically situated in the main road and can easily be spotted if you have your own vehicle or just riding a bus.

The gate that’s made of old gas tanks was the only thing that I wanted to see in my own eyes, but Jen introduced me to several Instagram photos that there’s a lot more to it. Seriously, I don’t know what inspired the owners but the place is a mixture of anything which results into a very bewitching place.

I even got a vintage coaster which has a “1930” stamped to it. There’s a lot of grizzled items but they’re a bit pricey. Just to get there is sufficient to me already and to shop is something I candeal with another day soon.

I must say the 5-hectare farm is truly a “wander and wonder” thing to me.

The Facade

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The Souvenir Shop

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The Blue House

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The Old Train Station converted into a Museum

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On our way to the Yellow house

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The Yellow House

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On our way to the Hotel

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I opted not to visit the pool as like a mermaid I might plunge into the water instantly, rather, listed in our bucket an overnight stay with them soon.

Junk architecture, sustainable designs, vivid colors, a vast flora, unique innovativeness, organic food, a set of artworks here and there that are literally surprising, country and vintage feel, a place that brings you back in time, giving you feelings of incredulity yet reckon that they are real right there in front of your eyes. All quirky and whimsy. =)

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If you want to visit the farm, their address is: Km 94 -95 Jose Abad Santos highway, Prado Siongco Lubao, Pampanga. You may call contact them at: 0920 903 0964 and you can visit their website too: http://pradofarms.com/

 

PINTO ART Museum…

Pinto Art Museum – Your portal to one of Philippines’ greatest Art collection. 

I am seeking, I am striving, I am in it with all my heart.”
~Vincent Van Gogh~

If you look at my blog site, my Facebook page, my Instagram and Pinterest account, you will instantly conclude that I am an artist by heart.

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Yes I am.

When I took up Interior Design, I have witnessed genuine artists. My classmates, my Professors and their colleagues.

We were exposed to museums, art galleries and exhibits. Some of which are ours where each student represents one creation.

I did not dare to categorize myself with them because I am not good at freehand drawing like my other classmates. However before graduation, our mentors since we’re freshmen identified the strengths of each. I in particular, my mentor claimed that I have tons of ideas to create original designs, that I am very detailed and that an artist never required excellence in freehand drawing so I can still excel with doing abstracts. And I tried a few times. She also enumerated what occupations would fit us. I remember her saying I am a free soul since I did not limit myself with established borders.

I did not end up like a Professional Artist. But it was good enough for me (just to mend a broken heart for not being a full-time one) that I was able to utilize my degree at some points in my entire career life. I did booths for exhibits, sleepless during ingress, commended for a beautiful color scheme by a former boss. He asked me to reproduce more sets, however, I only did them from the remaining fabrics that were already discontinued. So I can not clone that one anymore which eventually annoyed him. =(

I did window displays of Merchandise shops. Took charge of the the interiors and exteriors of a significant part of a theme park where I used to work, spear-headed annual competitions, emulating Broadway hits and won thrice. And as stupid as I can be sometimes, my designs were even stolen twice. These are some of my pride.

I love art. I love colors. Bright ones. Sometimes I love the soft pastels too. I am inspired by gifted hands and tried to do them in my own special way. DIYs, reproductions, tweaked in such a way you will be allowed to own it.

So anything that has to do with Arts. I am in that leaning. I am like a child who won’t stop asking her mom to give in to what I am wishing for.

One of the galleries I really wanted to see is Pinto Art Museum.

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Welcome arch..
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We’re here, finally, after four long hours of traveling.
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It’s still Christmas at Pinto..

It was a bit hard on my part since I have to spend 5 hours to get there by commute. A total of 4 rides.

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Nature and Arts combined.

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And then finally, I was able to visit it by chance on a Sunday. Which we realized isn’t wise to do since the place is a bit cramped. Considering you have to savor each piece, those works of art laboriously brought to life by renowned artists.

Jen and I had to wait (long) for our turns to revel on each piece and she ran out of patience and asked me if we can leave since she is no longer enjoying. I actually feel the same way but I tried to ignore it since I am in between enjoying the place and running out of patience at the same time.

I might suggest to the management the possibility of limiting the number of visits per day and maybe manage the galleries in such a way that bystanders won’t linger just so to give chance to others. Or it’s just a wishful thinking as I remember visiting this theme park with more than 10,000 guests at that time. Should we limit it or not might be a major concern.

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Yay!

I also asked Jen whether the “Pinto” is the surname of the curator or they are literally referring to the word which is “Door” in the English language. It is the latter.

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I have collected several photos with “doors”. And archs, stairs, windows and of course with the different art works carefully distributed in each gallery.

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Several stairs..

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You will find there everything related to the Arts:

Sculptures

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Photography

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Negatives lighted from the back. And most of them are Saints..

 

Drawings

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Paintings

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Huge!
Huge!

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Conceptual Arts

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For the girls!

Crafts

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This one is inside a glass cabinet..

Junk arts

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Thought it was a man’s ribs then I saw that padlock.

Historical and religious items

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There’s a chapel to welcome you at Pinto..

And even Architecture

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And nature in all its’ beauty.

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A day is not enough to revere in their pulchritude.

And so we will make a second visit. A planned one. =)

This blog is like a gratitude to the curator who assembled hundreds of different masterpieces. It is beyond question, one of Filipino’s pride. Thank you for promoting a world-class prowess.

Pinoy pride...
Pinoy pride…

PS

And secretly, I wished that I have one of my piece displayed there, under a pseudonym. =)

MAARTE Fair 2016…

Maarte Fair 2016

“I was created to create.”

Maarte Fair kicked-off 3 years ago and much as I want to see it then, time didn’t permit me.

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Since 2013…

So come 2016, I looked forward to it and kept an eye as to when it’ll be held and of course where.

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Photo source: http://www.manilashopper.com/2016/08/maarte-fair-at-8-rockwell-august-2016.html

Upon seeing the event’s title, I remember our own exhibit before I graduated from college. It says: “Artenikulasa”. It featured our actual execution of what was in our thesis. It was held at Shangri-la mall, in Mandaluyong City.

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OMG! 1993! ahaha

Being “maarte” might insinuate a not so positive thought to many, however, with me, at times I am being associated with everything that is “maarte”, I didn’t mind and even took it as a compliment.

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Ground floor of Rockwell 8..
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Best booth awardee..
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Everything is nice and pretty…

I’d rather be known as “maarte” than be bland, not necessarily being up to date with all the current trends, just making sure there is artistry, be it with the way I dress, the way I fix my sanctuary, even with my cooking and how I blog or write as well.

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Due to a really very busy schedule, and hunting for friends who would take their time out just to accompany me, even if at times it’s not their cup of tea, I found my way to see the fair on a Sunday. It’s the last day of the event. For the last three years, it’s been held every last weekend of August, from Friday to Sunday.

I had this fear of not being able to make it again this time, for one, I got sick last week, the whole of Saturday was pre-planned to celebrate my sister-in-law’s birthday and I made sure that Sunday would be free. And I had to mention being thankful to my ever supportive buddy – Jen, she is not just my travel and foodie buddy but also my art buddy as well. I am good to attend it alone, It’s just that it would be great to share with her this experience and get her views too.

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Cheese platter…

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Anthill from Cebu was there..=)

So this it, finally I get to see the fair. I could not express how happy and excited I was to make it and see myself witnessing artisans from all over the country showcasing the best of their crafts. It was an assembly of individuals with a common ground. Their love for art.

An artist’s life has two sides like a coin, the other is the realization that you are one and the other side is living the realization. They are the other side. While I, I think I’m on my way.

The artist in all of us is seen in all our surroundings. It is there each time we speak, it is traced in our gaze, it is evident in our every actions, with the way we express ourselves and it is felt in our hearts. You would instantly notice it upon meeting another.

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The fair was a gamut of everything that is nice and pretty and tedious. I say tedious because it took someone’s time and effort and laborious days and nights to finish a masterpiece. Signed with uniqueness.

plates

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coasters

ethnicity

pillows

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Time is gold…

And once it is finished, it spelled happiness in every artisan.

You will also wonder as to what inspired them to create one when passion is calling their names out loud. To create a piece, there is always an inspiration behind, and believe me, each story is uniquely interesting.

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Buslo.. and intricately embellished clutches..

Creating a piece for me is like two souls intertwined, the one who created it and the one who was why it was created. That piece itself is like a bond that will pull them together for as long as the memory can recall.

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Every artist can evolve… everyone can…

These are the things that inspires me as well, so I am looking up again next year to witness all things beautiful reborn. Who knows, I might see myself as one of them too.

TAZA MIA – Another local entry for coffee lovers…

Taza Mia – Another local entry for coffee lovers…

Just last week, we just had nachos with artisanal coffee at Taza Mia which is located at SM Sta. Rosa, Laguna. This is my __th coffee for the week on top of my usual intakes at home. Which is kind of crazy to think about.

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Storefront… those lights I so like! =)

Though, having tried this with a long time friend cum foodie buddy (travel buddy too), is a time well spent away from the stress of life. Besides, she likes what I like and wherever I drag her, she is so willing to go and even if it’s not more of her, she is always willing to give it a try. To be adventurous is cool.

While we were checking their menu, it is on an easel at their storefront, what I tried to find first is if they have nachos. And they have it so off we go to this 2 seater sofa and wood-finish laminated table and placed our order immediately.

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Nachos? Check!
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Choices!
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I like their logo..=)

It’d be always this usual combination. Our choice of coffee, nachos and blueberry cheesecake. According to the attendant, they run out of the cake and so we just had nachos. I had their roasted caramel iced coffee and Jen grab a fresh brewed in butterscotch variant.

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Best choice! =)

We liked it that the salsa is served separately with the nacho chips. It’s tidier to consume and not like those that salsa were already there as toppings. It usually consume too much tissues.

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Very tidy!

Now comes the verdict on the coffee. I really like what I had. Jen liked her choice too.

I also discover in amazement that beans of Taza Mia is sourced-out locally, specifically from Lipa, Batangas. And with their ambiance, the great taste of their coffee, I think they would succeed in being a local chain of cafes in the country.

Looking around, the shop was well thought-of. From the interiors, their menu, their furniture, the tableware are personalized/ logoed, they have paper mats and tissues with their logos on it, and of course, one of the most important criteria in judging a restaurant, is the stance of their staff.

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Done professionally..
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Cool..
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They have merchandise too..

Long way to go Taza Mia! Another Pinoy pride! =)

ps

They’re planning to put up new branches in the northern part of the country, they have almost 10 in the southern part and counting! =)