Fyre away

Fyre away

Music for everyone and the best baked mussels in town

The open air resto-bar-turned roofdeck has a casual vibe to it

In the character-laden village of Poblacion in Makati, where the swanky, gritty and the artsy collide, springs yet another resto-bar alluring to the middle-class Filipino crowd.

Fyre, which opened in December 2017, sits on an open-air roofdeck of a building on the corner of P. Burgos and Guerrero Streets. It’s no frill—wooden tables, benches and stools fenced in by planters, strings of lights hovering above, views of the immediate Poblacion vicinity and lit buildings of Rockwell Center in the distance. But don’t be fooled because it transforms into a legit party place as the night sets in.

If you come at 7pm you’ll spot guests having early dinner and drinks; the lights are brighter; the music, quieter. All these change by the hour.

On music, nobody’s left out. From 90s R&B to the most up to date tunes—the dj has got it covered.

There’s no scrimping on crew at Fyre and we appreciate its after effects—fast and efficient service.


The basked mussels are a must try. They’re grilled to perfection, seasoned just right

Mostly bar chows. The star attraction is the Fyre Roasted Pork belly, which was not what we had on our first visit. Instead we ordered bar chows we thought would go well with our drink of choice: ice cold beer. We had Chili Cheese Kropek, your typical crackling except that it’s coated in cheese powder and served along with pickled onion, black vinegar and chili on the side. We also ordered the TBT—tofu skin, bangus (milkfish) belly and tofu. Upon our request, the chef prepared it with no bangus but more tofu. It came out nice and light—fried-to-perfection on a bed of special sauce and sprinkled with chopped onions, tomatoes and herbs. I fell in love with the baked mussels—seasoned and baked just right—and the tasty chicken wings, which I thought could go well with steamed rice.


Local and imported beer, cocktails, hard drinks.

The basics
About Php400 (USD8) per person. Facebook.com/fyrerooftoploungeph

If you plan to go on a Friday or a Saturday night, reserve a table at least a week in advance

Seda Vertis North

Seda Vertis North

Find out how the biggest Seda hotel in the Philippines perfectly meld artsy and comfy. Plus more!

Contemporary giraffe wire sculpture adorn part of the lobby

Contemporary giraffe wire sculpture 
There is something likeable in the spacious lobby of Seda Vertis North, the sixth property of the Seda Hotel chain and biggest yet located on
Edsa in Quezon City. It’s like a hive of activity day in day out, all happening in a backdrop of muted hues, modern architecture, practical but beautiful furniture by Kenneth Cobonpue and Vito Selma, and fun, Instragramable artworks by Ann Pamintuan.

438 guest rooms, meeting rooms for up to 100, a grand ballroom that can accommodate up to 700, and an Ayala Mall right within the same compound are some of the pluses of Seda’s’ fairly young hotel, which opened in April 2017.


Author Ferdz Decena’s nest: The deluxe room

I stayed in a 32sqm deluxe room, which had a view of EDSA. Its sleeping comforts are notable—apt bed and beddings, faux wooden floors and adjustable in-room lighting—as were its modern conveniences like the 40-inch LED cable HDTV, media panel for connecting and charging gadgets, and an ample work desk.


Misto serves international and local cuisine, buffet or a la carte style. They have good coffee and pastries, while for the main, I liked their steaks. A la carte specialties are the Vertis Budger, four cheese pizza, and the super point chocolate cake for dessert.


Straight Up bar specialty includes local craft beer

Enjoy craft beer sourced from La Union at the relaxed Straight Up bar on the 23rd floor. Or have cocktails, wine, lager, beer or even coffee.


The large outdoor pool is as inviting as it can be no matter what season

While away at the large outdoor pool; have a treatment at the full-service spa while sipping delightful sambong tea; stay fit while on staycation using the hotel gym’s excellent lineup of Life Cycle equipment and free weights. A room dedicated for yoga and pilates is available.


From Phop5,000 (USD100) per night.
Visit Seda Vertis North.

Story and photos by Ferdz Decena

The place in Manila to get perfect hair

The place in Manila to get perfect hair

If money is not an issue then you should head to Philippe Tordjman Le Salon
 and get you the perfect hair cut, the perfect hair color, and more!

“Trend to me is what suits the person,” quips hair expert Philippe Tordjman when asked how he would de ne today’s hair trend.
Philippe casually chats with me, taking mental note of my habits and quirks. Then says, “you’re getting married; you don’t blow dry; and it seems to me you literally don’t do anything to your hair.”

Um… He’s right.

This no-nonsense advice is what you get if you book a service at Philippe Tordjman Le Salon located at Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila. The salon is just about the right size, fuss free, with young, well-trained staff; plus there’s the hands on boss, Philippe.

Once my hair’s been rinsed, Philippe takes the shears and cuts away, giving me a layered bob with asymmetrical bangs.

Then Yenji, Philippe’s senior hair stylist, does my hair color.

Yenji first dyes my hair to achieve a light ash brown color, and shows her assistants how to place the highlights. When done, another rinse, and finally a blow dry.

Then, voila! Got me the perfect-for-me hairstyle.


The basics

Haircut is from Php1,200 (USD24); hair color with highlights from Php7,250.

Visit Philippe Tordjman Le Salon

Story by Monica De Leon; photos by Daniel Soriano

Harana restaurant: Lazy times and delightful eats

Harana restaurant: Lazy times and delightful eats

Surfer Luke Landrigan loves Harana’s food and vibe. He says he likes ordering their poke bowl

It feels like time has stopped. At least this is how I felt when I visited resort-restaurant Harana on my visit to Siargao. Guests are sprawled on beanbags or cocooned in a hammock, whiling away on their smartphone as they wait for the waves to come up to do the more exciting kind of “surfing.” One guest rubs a resident dog’s tummy, saying hello.

Chill R&B music plays in the background—tame enough to not disturb napping guests—as I sip my cup of joe. Harana restaurant is a large open air native-themed space, hugging the wonderful sea breeze. There are wooden chairs and tables, colorful beanbags and low tables, distinctive hung woven lamps, and a vibrant bar manned by friendly staf.


Breakfasts here area delight. We had very good tocino, homemade honey and salt-cured pork and chicken meat served with egg and garlic rice, and arroz caldo, fascinating for its annatto oil drizzling and unusual toppings of dried fish, string beans and water spinach. There were grilled eggplant, international breakfast served with two eggs, bread, fruits and bacon salted just right. The Harana Fried Rice was remarkable.

Breakfasts are as beautiful as these: fresh fruits and vegetables, tortang along (grilled then pan-fried eggplant), dried fish, rice and egg


Ginger tea, fruit shakes, calamansi juice, softdrinks, beer, and an extensive liquor collection.

The basics
About Php300 (USD6) per person. Haranasurf.com, tel + 63998 849 5461

Story by Monica De Leon; photos by Daniel Soriano



Dr. Wine Manila: There’s a doctor you’d like to see

Dr. Wine Manila: There’s a doctor you’d like to see

Escape into this handsome bar in Poblacion, Makati where wine is the star and the vibe takes you to Europe

Rustic perfect. We need not say more

If you’ve never been to a European wine bar, you don’t need to travel far as sommelier Vincent Landais brings the same warmth and nostalgia into Dr. Wine Manila, a handsomely designed wine bar with rustic appeal, which soft opened in trendy Poblacion, Makati in July 2017.

Though unassuming from the outside, Dr. Wine makes a strong statement inside—deep, dark, wood panels repurposed from a centuries-old ancestral home in Pampanga, dim lights, and olive and ochre chairs, which beautifully complement the tints of the wine bottles on the shelves. One side of the bar features a wall lined with hundreds of empty wine bottles—an intriguing centerpiece.


At Dr. Wine, ask for the perfect red or white to go with this smorgasbord of cheeses, cold cuts and sausages and you will be answered

The trio Provencal spread appetizer—chickpenade, tomatenade and polvronade— tomatoes and sweet, roasted bell peppers—is delicious with the crisp, homemade bread. The doctor’s Platter of Cheese and Cold Cuts, an impressive plate of French cornichon, rustic pate, assorted cheeses, and the incredibly memorable organic Maple Syrup Chicken Liver Mousse, and homemade sausages are stellar.


Dr. Wine elevates the wine drinking experience for both connoisseurs and casual drinkers

Dr. Wine removes the snobbery of wine drinking by welcoming both connoisseurs with more refined palates and casual drinkers. Its staff—if not the wine doctor himself—will happily recommend wines. The 2012 Bordeaux Supérieur Château Cap de Fer went well with our food. In stock are wines from Emilio Moro (Spanish), Elian Da Ros (Southwest France), selections from Bernard Baudry (French), and picks from Landais’ travels.

The basics

About Php800 (USD16) per person. Visit Dr. Wine Manila.

Story by Kristel Lagorza; photos by Daniel Soriano

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