Archives For October 2010

The Amazing Race Asia Viewing Party at Embarcadero de Legazpi

For all those who watched the Philippine leg of The Amazing Race Asia.  You saw Legazpi Airport, the Cagsawa Ruins, Mount Mayon, Lingnon Hill, and Misibis Bay.

Last Thursday, October 21, 2010, Embarcadero de Legazpi, held a viewing party of The Amazing Race Asia, with the following celebrity guest.  For the entertainment,  they had a live concert of Ely Buendia of Eraserheads.  Also present were Rovilson Fernandez, Richard Herera, Pia Campos, etc.

Below is the article from Manila Bulletin, regarding The Amazing Race Asia, Legazpi leg by Jojie Alcantara.

Philippine team's two Richards, host Allan Wu, and Ms Tessa Prieto-Valdes at the Misibis Bay Ecopark and Ampitheater

Truthfully, I wasn’t an avid fan of the Amazing Race Asia since the first season (okay, I may have rooted on and off for Mark and Rovilson). I have been watching way too many reality TV shows to keep track.  However, life has a way of humoring and poking me annoyingly the way Facebook does. When you’re not asking for it, it is given to you on a sizzling hot plate.

Last June, a call came from PR Asia’s head Joyce Ramirez. She asked if I can fly to Legazpi City at short notice. The Amazing Race Asia Season 4 (TARA 4) has chosen Legazpi City in the Philippines as a pit stop and since it will be shown this October, I was asked to keep the trip confidential.

Misibis Bay Luxury Accomodations

I didn’t mind the waiting time from Davao to Legazpi via Manila, two hours of sitting in a café for the connecting flight. My first trip to Legazpi, gateway to the picturesque Bicol region, was an eye opener. I met the fascinating Miss Tessa Prieto-Valdes, who played a valuable one-liner role in TARA’s pit stop at the Eco Park of Misibis Bay Resort, a beautiful location where the production stayed in. It takes a separate article to write about the luxury of my host resort in Cagraray Island. It will take paragraphs just to describe the view from my huge villa, where I stayed alone (picture a Jacuzzi at my terrace!).

The infinity pool and the beach

Dressing up Miss Valdes for the episode was the tall, sociable Edwin Tan, designer to the stars. Her vibrantly colorful outfit was made of abaca, which was Albay’s prime product. I also met longtime Legazpi Mayor Noel Rosal, who gamely let me take a portrait of him and his pretty wife Geraldine Rosal (who was then the incoming Mayor), from Lignon Hill with a spectacular backdrop of Mayon.

We have two Philippine teams, the “Riches”—Richard Hardin (34), basketball player, and Richard Herrera (31), actor; and party girls-slash-models from Australia, Jacinta James (27), also a tattooist, and Lani Pillinger (27). Both Richards had shaved heads when they arrived in Legazpi. I actually mistook them for twins the first time.

Kayaking just like The Amazing Race Asia contestants.

According to the Riches, this season was a close fight. It was anybody’s game of mental skills and physique among a diverse cast of personalities from wacky to outrageous. They were all praises for the other teams. The camaraderie among them was evident during the shooting break. However, with a very tight running schedule which involved flying to Manila, a 10-hour road trip to Legazpi, taking a jeepney to Cagsawa Ruins to either learn the dance of the Ibalong Festival performers, or going for that slimy, muddy pig… the flurry of activities left them with funny, strong smells that they brought all the way to the open amphitheater, where host Allan Wu and Tessa waited with professional cameramen hiding all around. There I was, invisible and squeezed in between shrubs high on a hill, aiming for a paparazzi shot, since it was strictly ‘no cameras’ allowed during the shoot (they had to fend off locals who were recording from their cellphones while the Riches were ridiculously catching pigs). We waited until the last of the teams came in. No retakes.

The beautiful Mount Mayon, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World!

The Amazing Race Asia’s Philippines episode aired last October 21, showcasing the immense beauty of Legazpi City, and the perfect volcano it is known for. When people asked me what I was doing there, the easy reply was shooting Mount Mayon from a chopper (thanks to Misibis Aviation). This month, I see my photos in the papers and blogs, and realized I was the only one not writing about it yet!

Will the Philippine team win this time, perhaps? Your guess is as good as mine. Let’s start rooting for them.

(Jojie Alcantara is a travel photojournalist and SunStar columnist based in Davao City. Actively promoting Mindanao tourism, she has been writing and painting before she picked up a camera and expanded her world through images published in magazines. View her works and adventures in www.pbase.com/jojie_alcantara and on Facebook.)

Unfortunately, the Riches, one off the Philippine Team, came in second.  They had a hard time at the hog catching challenge.

The representative of Albay, spoke with me this October, and he told me that scholarship is open to the constituents of Albay, who cannot afford to send their children to school.  They are currently accepting applications.

Simply fill up a bio data with all the necessary informations, such as full name, address, contact telephone number, age, etc., and send it to the following address, #51 Green Lane, Jamora Subdivision, Cabangan, Legazpi City 4500 Phils., or call the following numbers, +6352 4805216/+6352 4806415, for more information.

After screening they will contact you if you are one of the thousand of successful applicants.

Remember this is open to all legal constituents of Albay!

It’s been some time since I wrote a blog.  Lost the touch for a moment, but it came back, and I have a lot of things to share with the readers of my blog.

Misibis Bay Cagraray Island

Heard that on the show of The Amazing Race Asia on October 21, 2010, is going to be held in the Philippines.  And that leg brings them to Legazpi City, and of course Misibis Bay.

You read my post on Misibis Bay, now is your chance to see it.