Sunday, September 25, 2011

World's Most visited Attractions! Have you been to these?

I found this article on the web via Travel and Leisure, one of my all time favorite magazines. I just found it incredulous that Disney attracted more tourists than the pyramids? Why is that so?Maybe because there are counters in entrances of Disney parks and the Pyramids don't have these since you are free to look at them even from the bus. Luckily,I have been to most of these places and I encourage you to discover the wanderlust in you, too!

World's Most-Visited Tourist Attractions

Embrace the wisdom of crowds by adding the world’s most-visited tourist attractions to your bucket list.

By Lyndsey Matthews, Staff
Ever heard of Everland or Lotte World? Most Americans have never planned a trip to these South Korean theme parks, yet they rank among the world’s 50 most-visited tourist attractions—beating out the Great Pyramids (4 million), the Taj Mahal (3 million), and Stonehenge (1 million). And there are more surprises.

Where we choose to spend our vacation time says a lot about what we value, and despite—or perhaps because of—the lingering global economic crisis, we are traveling more than ever. International tourist arrivals were up 6.6 percent in 2010, according to the World Tourism Organization. China ousted Spain as the third most-visited country with 55.7 million foreign arrivals, whileFrance and the U.S. held tight to their first- and second-place rankings.

Like it or not, theme parks are just as appealing in these countries as they are in South KoreaDisneyland Parisdrew the same number of visitors (10.5 million) asSacré-Coeur, and two of the world’s 10 most-visited tourist attractions are Disney parks. America also dominates our list. Some credit goes to the weak U.S. dollar, which drew 8.7 percent more foreign tourists in 2010 than the previous year—and likely persuaded many Americans to explore within our vast borders.

To tally up the world’s most-visited attractions, we gathered the most recent data supplied by the attractions themselves or from government agencies, industry reports, and reputable media outlets.

So what is the most-visited tourist attraction in the world? And can 39.2 million people be wrong? Read on to see the results.

No. 1 Times Square, New York City

Annual Visitors: 39,200,000

Tourists flock to New York’s neon heart for the flashing lights, Broadway shows, megastores, and sheer spectacle. Pedestrian-only areas with café tables introduced in 2009 have only made it easier and more appealing to hang out here. Times Square can even be a convenient, if chaotic, base, thanks to hotels at every price point and easy access to public transportation: subways, rails, buses, and more yellow taxis than you can count.

No. 2 Central Park, New York City

Annual Visitors: 38,000,000

New York has larger green spaces, but none is more famous than Central Park, which stretches across nearly 850 acres of prime Manhattan real estate—an oasis for both tourists and locals. You can ride in one of the famous horse-drawn carriages; check out the modest-size zoo; climb to the top of 19th-century Belvedere Castle; or take a break from pounding the pavement to sprawl on the Great Lawn, gazing at the skyscrapers above.

No. 3 Union Station, Washington, D.C.

Annual Visitors: 37,000,000

Opened in 1907, this busy station shuttles some 12,500 passengers daily in and out of the city. But it also handles serious tourist traffic: 37 million who pass through to take in the impeccably mixed architectural styles throughout the colossal building: from Classical to Beaux-Arts to Baroque. More than 70 retail outlets make Union Station a shopping destination, and it’s also a jumping-off point for many D.C. tours

No. 4 Las Vegas Strip

Annual Visitors: 29,467,000

Sin City was hit hard by the recession, but don’t bet against this legendary destination, which got a boost from the summer 2009 blockbuster The Hangover. Last year, 79 percent of tourists (29,467,000 people) chose to stay at hotels right on the Strip like Caesar’s Palace—the choice of the movie’s zany four-pack. And why not? Roll out of bed and onto the Strip to catch the Bellagio fountains in action, shop, gamble, and, of course, people-watch (which can get especially fun later at night).

No. 5 Niagara FallsNew York andOntario

Annual Visitors: 22,500,000

Straddling the borders of the U.S. and Canada, this massive waterfall spills about six million cubic feet of water—from a height ranging from 70 to 188 feet—every single minute. While there are about 500 taller waterfalls in the world, Niagara Falls is spectacular for its sheer power. It’s also more accessible than many major falls, a short flight or drive for millions of regional tourists.

No. 6 Grand Central Terminal, New York City

Annual Visitors: 21,600,000

Unlike harried commuters, visitors take their time in the main concourse of this Beaux-Arts landmark, pausing to view its glittering ceiling painted with a map of the constellations from the night sky. There are shops and events to distract your attention, and, a level below, the historic Oyster Bar—featured on an episode of AMC’s Mad Men—serves two million fresh bivalves a year.

No. 7 Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Boston

Annual Visitors: 18,000,000

Dating back to 1742, Faneuil Hall (“the Cradle of Liberty”) once hosted speeches by such greats as Samuel Adams and George Washington. Today, the downtown marketplace has more than 100 specialty shops and eateries and occupies a pedestrian-only, cobblestone area that swarms with tourists and street performers.

No. 8 Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, Orlando

Annual Visitors: 16,972,000

The Most Magical Place on Earth is high on virtually every family’s to-do list and remains the most-visited theme park on the earth. The Kingdom’s most notable feature, naturally, is Cinderella’s castle—complete with a moat and built at special angles to appear even grander than its actual height of 189 feet. Paths branch out to classic rides (Dumbo, the Mad Tea Party) and newer additions like The Pirates of the Caribbean.

No. 9 Disneyland Park, Anaheim, CA

Annual Visitors: 15,980,000

Though not as massive as its Orlando counterpart, the original Disney park—which occupies about 85 acres of land—welcomes enough thrill-seekers to qualify as the second most-visited theme park in the world. One of its coolest rides is still Indiana Jones Adventure, careening over lava, past swarms of beetles, and under that 16-foot rolling boulder.

No. 10 Grand Bazaar, Istanbul

Annual Visitors: 15,000,000

Hand-painted ceramics, lanterns, intricately patterned carpets, copperware, gold Byzantine-style jewelry, and more eye-catching products vie for your attention within this 15th-century bazaar’s vaulted walkways. It has since expanded and become increasingly touristy, but locals, too, were among 2010’s 15 million bargain-hunters. If it all gets overwhelming, break for a succulent doner kebab or strong cup of Turkish coffee.

Tokyo Disneyland, Tokyo: most-visited tourist attraction
Photo Japan / Alamy

movenpick in Sunstar newspaper!

I WAS thrilled to receive an invitation from Mister Helmut Gaisberger for the painting party of Movenpick hotel and resort in Cebu. Movenpick has now taken over of what used to be the Hilton hotel at Mactan Island. The Swiss hospitality company now manages this resort and is actually the first Philippine property for the Swiss firm. Movenpick started its empire with its creation of the marche concept that moved on to being one of the famous brands of ice cream in the world and now manages for than 90 hotels all over the world.
Oyster Station
Heidi Ng and Mövenpick Director of Development and Operations Philippines Helmut Gaisberger
Mr. Gaisberger, a seasoned hotelier and more famous for being with the Mandarin Oriental hotel, has now joined Movenpick as its director of Development and Operations for the Philippines. He is still mum on new properties they will manage apart from the former Hilton but that is something to look forward to.
So, with the invitation of Mr. Gaisberger to join in one of their significant changes for the new Movenpick hotel — that is, to finally change the color of the hotel facade from pink to a nice ochre gold color. Pink did not quite suit well with the island I must say. It could have worked in the Mediterranean, but not here. So, to finally change the color brought so much excitement to Cebu and to Manila’s press people, too.
Bernie Wang, Golly Talens, Klaus Graesslin, Denis Shin, Ruby Son and Edward Kin
With the initiative of Mister Manny Osmena, the charismatic and brilliant owner of the hotel, a French colorist was hired to specifically analyze and suggest colors that will be used to mark the new beginning for the property. With the colors having been decided upon, Movenpick printed pink shirts with the Pink Panther, and a print that says, “pink no more,” which were distributed to the press and to friends of the hotel as they welcomed the changes beginning with a kitschy painting party.
Dessert Station
Chefs Antonio Famador and Terry Styles with their pink farewell creation
Mia Sy, Dawnie Roa, Helmut Gaisberger, Rose Libongco, Armi Garci, Golly Talens, Rowena Montecillo, and Jojo Clemente
Guests were treated to lunch with an array of pink inspired buffet theme. It was their way of saying goodbye to the color, and a symbolism of new changes for the hotel. The dessert buffet was an assortment of pink colored goodies from macaroons to pink chocolates!
Mr. Osmena envisions Movenpick to have the feel of the best beaches of the world — from Ibiza to St. Tropez beginning with a multi million renovation program. I cannot wait to go back to the new Movenpick hotel and resort, but this time, I would not be looking for pink landmarks.
Rowena Montecillo of DOT Region 7, Moevenpick Director of Sales Golly Talens and Honorary Consul Armi Garcia.
Helmut Gaisberger, Rose Libongco, Cecille Saa, Maricris Encarnation and Janice Yuvallos
Golly Talens, Agnes Gupalor, Terry Styles, Armi Garcia, and Klaus Graesslin
Helmut Gaisberger with Amparito Lhuiller and Moevenpick Chefs Terry Styles and Antonio Famador
Popularity: 1% [?]

Thursday, September 8, 2011

BEABI published in Wander Woman Sunstar Newspaper Philippines

At first I thought Beabi was an imported brand brought in by enterprising sisters Willin Chan and Winnie Go but surprised to find out that is a local brand! It started out when the two sisters could not buy anything here that was versatile enough to bring to travels, so they thought of putting a brand that catered essentially to their traveling needs.
What started out to be a shop that sells functional bag organizers, little bottles which are very useful for traveling so you do not have to bring your whole bottle of moisturizer, for example and makes it passable for airport security, is now a brand with 8 branches and soon to expand in the provinces.
Archie Carrasco, Willin Chan, Sari Yap, Vina Morales, Meryll Yan, Vavam Berena
The brand espouses a minimalist design for ease of use and for the least impact on the environment. Great care has been taken to make sure that all plastic products are made from recyclable materials. The use of refillable containers also encourages reusing the containers, instead of disposable ones that clog landfills.
Margie Duavit, Heidi Ng, Cherrie del Rosario
In its latest collaboration, Beabi got three prominent personalities to design bags for them and proceeds of which will go to charities. Pambansang Kamao Manny Pacquiao leads the pack by using our country’s colors in designing his two bags with Filipino pride in his mind. The proceeds will go to Pacquiao Partnerships for the Poor Inc, a foundation focused on people helping themselves through education, knowledge and skills. Designer Rajo Laurel designed one bag which uses color blocking, as he is in tuned with the fashionable Pinay.
Hilque Dairo, Sunny Vergara, Aida Cobankiat, Linda Ley, Ruby Chua
Karen Joven, Susan Joven, Willin & Benedict Chan, Lloyd Joven
ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.'s Paul Mercado
Auction winners Johnlu & Marilou Koa
The EJ Litton Foundation Inc.'s Johnny Litton
Pacquiao Partnerships for the Poor, Inc.'s Kit Mercado & Stephanny Domingo
The other one uses a photograph of tree branches he took while on his travels in London. Proceeds from his bag sales will go to ABS CBN’s Bantay Bata foundation. Young actress Kim Chiu, a Cebuana native, works on her favorite color pink and the beautiful butterflies. Bag sales will go to Bantay Kalikas an and Bantay Bata.
Winnie Go, Mia Florencio, Hilque Dairo, Willin Chan, Wency Lagumbay
The event was hosted by the vivacious Tessa Prieto-Valdes with Johnny Litton joining in on the fun. A special auction was held that gave specially signed bags to the highest bidders. The tree photograph bag went to French baker and Escada’s Johnlu and Marilou Koa; the Manny Pacquiao bag went to his kumare actress and singer Vina Morales with her cute daughter Ceana in tow. Ceana is actually the god daughter of Manny Pacquiao in her christening.
The Kim Chiu bag went to Aida Cobankiat of Ace Hardware. A surprise donation was made to the foundation of EJ Litton Foundation Inc, a foundation in honor of Johnny Litton’s son Ej who was passed away too soon.
It was a night of food and music as DJ Wency Lagumbay provided nonstop grooves that night.
Willin Chan & Winnie Go
Kim Chiu with her tote bag
Tessa Prieto Valdes, Kim Chiu, Rajo Laurel
Benedict & Willin Chan, Winnie & Frederick Go
Mike Lim, Winnie Go, Winky Li
Popularity: 2% [?]