Thursday, May 27, 2010

Felcris Toril in Davao now open!

The largest branch of the Felcris Supermarkets in Davao City opened its doors to the public today. Felcris Supermarket and Department Store Toril branch is the 6th branch, with the other five branches located in Calinan, Ilustre, Quirino, Magsaysay and Sales.

Occupying an area of almost 7,500 hectares, the two-storey Felcris Supermarket is the biggest so far. The Supermarket is a response to the demand of Toril residents for an accessible supermarket and department store, which sells affordable groceries and dry goods.

Toril residents flocked to the Supermarket early. even before the doors were opened to the public. The opening of the store is just in time for the school opening since the store offers a wide array of school supplies for all ages.

Felcris Supermarket Toril has also leased the front portion of the establishment, specifically near the highway, to various stores such as Mang Inasal, Honeybear, a bank and other stores. Cindi Yap said this is just the start of more exciting things for Toril residents.

Manufacturing, Wood and Food Industry Showcased in Davao Event

Three industries took centerstage in Davao City starting Thursday with the opening of the three-day Manufacturing Technology Davao on May 27. The show was held in the city three years ago and is now back with a blast!

Event organizer Global-Link MP chief executive officer Patrick Lawrence Tan said what makes this year’s show a must-see is the fact that it gathers in one roof “three specialized industry shows” including the Total Office Products Show (T.O.P.S.), Woodmach Davao (Woodworking & Furniture Making Technology) and the Davao Food Expo.

The Manufacturing Technology Show, which will be held at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, is open to the public for free.

Tan said this is one of the most successful shows in Manila and they are bringing it to Davao “because we know how strong the demand and growth potential is here.” He added that the exhibitors believe in the Mindanao region’s growth and they feel there is a need for businesses to have access to world class products and technologies of they want to remain competitive in the global market.

“This exhibit is the perfect venue for them to do exactly that,” Tan said. The Show offers a complete business experience, he said, since this is a one-stop destination for them to find all they need, book all their business deals and learn more about the industry.

The T.O.P.S. Show Davao will offer free seminars and trainings on office and business solutions for SMEs, technical presentations on CAD Design software, and other IT seminars.

The Food Expo 2010 is the 4th International Exhibition on Food and Beverages, Plastics, Packaging and Processing Technology, Bakery Equipment and Ingredients, Confectionery, Handling and Catering, Hospitality Industries, Franchising and Business Opportunities.

Among the products that will be displayed during the Expo include cake production equipment, baking equipment, bakery and confectionery, baked products, confectionery products and equipment, canned good and beverages, food ingredients and additives, health food and drinks, industrial bakery equipment, storage and refrigeration and many more.

Visitors will be able to witness free product demonstrations using the most advanced technologies, new product choices that will change the way they do business, on-site discounts and free seminars.

Dabawenyos still have until Saturday to see the exhibit.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mayor Sara: the new Duterte on the block

Mayor-elect Sara Duterte-Carpio has become one of Davao City’s major attractions, not just because she is the first female mayor of this city of at least one million population, but because she is more than her father’s daughter.

Dabawenyos rarely had a glimpse of Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s daughter Sara when she was still in High school and even in College. However, some who saw her riding the Big Bike with her father were either intrigued or remained in awe as to how this mestiza (thanks to her German blood courtesy of her mom Elizabeth Zimmerman Duterte) could inherit not only her father’s tough stance but even his passion for Big Bikes.

But that was a long, long time ago, way before Sara Duterte-Carpio became the vice mayor of Davao, with her father as the Mayor. A lot of people thought she was just a shadow of the elder Duterte at the City Council, but the younger Duterte has proven her critics wrong, both in terms of how she handled the Council and how she handled her father.

After almost 24 years of serving the people of Davao City as appointed vice mayor, elected Mayor, elected Congressman and with re-elections in between in both positions, Mayor Rody Duterte has finally passed on the Duterte magic to his daughter Sara. Not that he is leaving her alone yet, since the father and daughter tandem was just proclaimed the vice mayor and mayor of the city respectively,

The Duterte-Duterte team did not only win the May 2010 election but they won it hands down, leaving behind their rivals in the political dust, with 389,465 votes for Sara (versus Prospero Nograles who got 160,225 votes) and an overwhelming 440,030 votes for the elder Duterte.

A few months before the election, Sara Duterte said the computerization and interconnectivity of the important offices (if not all offices actually) in the local government will be given priority if and when she becomes the mayor of the city. And now that she has won, Duterte said her priority remains the same as this will pave the way for faster delivery of services to the people.
“Health, education, peace and order, economics and tourism,” she added when asked about her other priorities as the city’s first female mayor.

The Duterte magic

The Duterte magic is not an urban legend after all as proven by Mayor Sara’s landslide victory in the polls. The magic actually started when her father, who was then a city prosecutor, was appointed vice mayor in 1986 after the Edsa Revolution, under the provisional government of President Corazon Aquino. Defeating interim Mayor Zafiro Respicio in the 1988 mayoralty election was a preview of what’s to become of his future political opponents.

He was re-elected twice as City Mayor between 1992 and 1995 and between 2004 and 2007. His mayoralty posts were only interrupted by his stint in the House of Representative from 1992 to 1998.

There is no doubt that Inday Sara’s (as how friends and even Dabawenyos call her) victory in the previous election as vice mayor came as a result of the Dabawenyo’s affinity with her father. However, no one can deny that Inday Sara’s recent victory in the polls as Mayor of the city is not only because of the (Rody) Duterte magic but it was a result of her performance as the city’s vice mayor.

The younger Duterte’s term as vice mayor was not intrigue-free and was even characterized by a lot of exposes, most of which involved some of the well-known councillors. Add to that her regular disagreements with the Mayor, who she said even challenged her to resign.

But all those controversies only proved that Inday Sara was her own woman and that she can be tough just like her father the mayor. But more than that, she has proven that she is not just her father’s daughter but a public servant with her own decisions and principles and those do not have to coincide with what the mayor believes in.

Fortunately for her, she has won the Dabawenyos’ heart hands down, with or without her rebellious streaks. And now, it is safe to say that Sara is indeed the next Duterte to wield the Duterte magic in the palm of her hands.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Samal as retirement haven

This second class city with a population of 82,609 people (as of the 2000 Census) is already an established vacation site thanks to its white sand beaches with 118.5 kilometers of continuous coastline and pristine clear waters. However, the island city may just end up in the world map once again as a retirement haven.

“That’s part of our vision ----to be a retirement haven,” Island Garden City of Samal information officer Noel Daquioag said.

The Philippine Retirement Authority is also confident about the potential of IGACOS as a haven for retirees. Daquioag said “the agency is active here and they have been talking to foreigners, usually married to Filipinas, encouraging them to invest here in Samal.”

“There have been initial talks about signing a Memorandum of Agreement with the local government since last year and we hope to continue with that after the elections since this is a busy season,” PRA regional chief Jaime Llanes said.

Llames said the MOA primarily consist of talking points declaring Samal as a retirement destination especially for foreigners. It is a very strategic area for retirees and some of them have already settled in the area, he added.

Most of the retirees prefer the tropical weather of Samal with temperatures normally ranging from 26.9 degree Celsius to 33 degree Celsius at this time when it’s really very hot.

Samal is deemed a coastal paradise with five major urban area namely Penaplata in Samal District, Villarica and Pichon in Babak Disitrict as well as Sta. Cruz and Poblacion in Kaputian District.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Samal beaches doing brisk business

If there is one attraction that has brought the world’s attention to the Davao Region, that would be the region’s clean and pristine beaches particularly those found in the Island Garden City of Samal. It is thus not surprising that the island’s bountiful beaches are doing great business.

“There is actually no need to get out of Mindanao because we have a lot of summer destinations here,” Department of Tourism XI regional director Sonia Garcia said. The reason why we keep on coming up with various events for our destinations like the Samal Island is for people not only from Mindanao but also from other areas, to get to know more about these destinations, she added.

Attractive beaches are interspersed within Samal Island’s116.3 square meter area, which is populated by only 82,609 residents as of the 2000 Census. The island’s population has however greatly increased in the past years as more and more expatriates and retirees have made the island their home. This number can also pop up during the summer season when people from all walks of life and from all parts of the world trek to the island’s white sand beaches.

“Samal Island has almost 40 resorts and each one is thriving thanks to the increasing number of tourists going to the island,” Regional Tourism Council secretary Araceli Ayuste said.

Garcia said Samal Island plays an important role in promoting the region’s tourism. With the tagline “From the highlands to the island”, Mt. Apo and Samal Island are expected to be in the forefront of the campaign to lure tourists to the region.

The thrust of the private sector now, which is being supported by DOT, is to make the expatriates who have made Samal Island their home comfortable and knowledgeable of what the island has to offer.

“We want the expatriates to help us promote Samal Island to their respective countries,” Ayuste said.

Thus, several activities are in line to keep the Samal Island spirit very festive during summer. On top of this is the “Fun in the Sun” program which was launched last Tuesday. Another festival, the Caracoles Festival which will be held during the last Saturday of April, is expected to bring in domestic and foreign tourists.

The beach resort owners in the island have their own marketing and promotional schemes to encourage visitors to their beach resorts. Here are some of the affordable resorts in the island which offers fun in the sun!


This is one world-class resort right in Samal Island which boasts not only of its white sand and clear blue waters. BlueJaz is perhaps the only resort in the island which offers a gigantic slide for P90, free small water slides for children, free use of their swimming pool, free open cottages by the beach and reasonably-priced but high quality cottages. Owner Jazmin Middleton said they are constantly trying to improve their service and the products they offer to keep the resort very competitive. A day’s tour will cost you P90.

Paradise Island

This affordable resort which is accessible from the mainland in a few minutes by motorboat has always been active when it comes to promotional events. While the entrance fee has remained very affordable for the masa (except of course the cottages which are priced a bit steeply for the common tao), Paradise Island Park and Beach Resort has always offered various forms of entertainment to its visitors. Aside from the regular Weekly Fitness in Paradise which is in coordination with the Metro Lifestyle Fitness Center & Spa, the resort has also prepared an Easter Festival for the whole family.

Camp Holiday Resort And Recreation Area

This new resort is just near the barge area and at an entrance fee of only P50 for both adults and children, it is one of the most affordable destinations in Samal Island. Huts will cost you P150, while there are Bahay Kubos with bathrooms for unlimited number of persons for only P2,000. The Resort offers camping grounds, waterslides, beach, playground and a restaurant.

Costa Marina

This is one of the barest but still comfortable beaches in Samal Island. Development in the area has been kept at a minimum which will appeal to those who love to commune with Mother Nature Entrance fee if only P120 for adults and children for day tour, or P220 overnight. Cottage rates range from P2,500 to P5,000 depending on capacity. Among the amenities are table tennis, dart, billiard and volleyball, which will cost you from P35 to P100 per hour.

Isla Reta

This resort is actually located in Talicud Island or at the back of Samal Island. This resorts offers one of the most affordable rates at only P75 per head for adults day tour, P150 (adult) and P75 (kids) overnight. The good news is that they offer discounts for kids from 4 up to 10 years old. Kids below three years old are free of charge.

There are actually more beach resorts in Samal Island than we can enumerate. Visiting all these resorts during the summer can be a challenge for the sun worshippers. Bur then again, wouldn’t that be really the ultimate fun in the sun?

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Gold bullion as an investment prospect.

Dabawenyos and Filipinos in general are still old-fashioned when it comes to saving their hard-earned money so the most popular option is to put money on the bank. This may be one of the safest investment option but it will take an eternity before you can even earn a decent interest rate.

Why not try to buy gold bullion? Gold is one of nature’s most precious metals and its value continuously increases through the years, making it a wise investment medium. Aside from gold, you can also opt to buy silver which is available in ingot (this is actually pure bullion silver that comes in a size and shape more convenient to the owner) or coin form. Gold is also available in both forms.

Davao is near the gold-rich district of Mt. Diwalwal in Compostela Valley and people around this area are aware of the value of gold. Gold bullion is actually nothing new to the world since it has been used as a unique investment piece even during the olden days of the Greeks and Romans.

Amassing dollars seem to be a losing proposition now considering how the value of currencies can fluctuate. If you want to preserve your purchasing power and make sure your wealth never depreciates, invest in gold bullion or even silver. Since 1990, demand for silver has continuously been more than the yearly production.

Sending money through rural banks now cheaper with blockchain

Sending money anywhere in the Philippines is now a lot easier thanks to the various money remittance centers like Palawan Express, Cebuana ...