The Frugalicious Mantra

The Frugalicious Mantra

Wednesday, May 11, 2016


"Raffles Makati is an outstanding five-star luxury hotel in Makati City..." is how Raffles presents itself to the world through it's website. 
Indeed, it is.

I knew beforehand that the name of my mother, Emily is an English name. It would be someone dainty, gloved finger and spreading sunshine to the world. My mother is all that except the gloved hands. LOL!

As I was trying to look for the best mother's day gift for her, I came across this game over the net; Emily's Tea Garden. 

A brilliant idea hit me fast. But I thought it won't be a frugal one. After all it is the Raffles, but I only want the best for my mom, who in turn wanted only the best for me while I was growing up.

*Nanay Emily holding me as a toddler then.  There's also ate Flor and her daughters Tina and Chean.

The funny thing is, it never crossed our minds to engage in an afternoon tea before! My family and I used to go to a lot of hotels, as early as when I was 11 years old, because my older sister works for Cathay Pacific as a Flight Purser. Later on, I followed her footsteps and worked as an international cabin crew for Saudia too.

So, we are used to going and dining in the best hotels in Manila. Places like Manila Hotel, The Peninsula Bayview,  Intercontinental etc. during those times the family had to visit us during our flight to Manila.

But it never really occurred to me and my sister, to take our mother to an Afternoon Tea. Too bad she's on flight so we had to go ourselves without her. My brother is in Dubai so it's left to me to make her smile on her special day. That's why I took my mother for AFTERNOON TEA at the Raffles.
Along we took the 'boy's and the Senior Citizen's Barkada once again headed out for an excursion at the Raffles or a trip, is a more current term.
So what is an Afternoon Tea? Let me quote from; 
 *Painting by Alexander Rossi
" Afternoon Tea is a tea-related ritual, introduced in Britain in the early 1840's. It evolved as a mini meal to stem the hunger and anticipation of an evening meal at 8 PM.

Afternoon tea is a meal composed of sandwiched (usually cut delicately into "fingers") scones with clotted cream and jam, sweet pastries and cakes. Interestingly, scones were not common features of early afternoon tea and were introduced in the twentieth century.

"In Britain today, Tea is usually enjoyed as an accasional indulgence or to celebrate a special even such as a birthday, or a pre-wedding or baby shower party with a group of friends".

I booked nanay Emily's Mother's Day Celebration at the Writer's Bar.  According to their website; "The Writer's Bar at the Raffles Makati is styled as a library.  This bar is a tribute to the writers who have stayed at the Raffles Singapore or have written about it."

Here's The Writer's Bar Menu for those who are interested, taken from their website.

Here's a partial list for their Beverages:

Raffles Makati is situated at  #1 Raffles Drive, Makati Avenue, Makati 1224. 

Toll-fee:  +800-1-7233537

Tel:  +632-795-07777

Fax:  +632-555-9799

Their website priced Php 1, 222 for a set good for two people. But do not expect that the price above will  be the net price you'll be paying for. I'd like to quote them "All prices are subject to 10% service charge and applicable government taxes."

If you asked me the frugality in this event, there isn't a lot. I paid almost Php 3,700 pesos for two afternoon tea sets. 

I forgot to take the receipt, and was reprimanded by Bubbly Hubby, because we always collect our receipts for Accounting. But come to think of it, it was not so bad given that it was good for 4 people.

But don't be fooled by the pictures. These pica-pica as some would put it, stuffed us to the brim and we were not able to finish it all up. 

*Connected to the Raffles is Cafe Macaron

The day after, I was able to talk to an employee and asked them to e-mail my receipt. They agreed but it's been two days and it is yet to arrive. The applicable government tax or VAT is 12%. Remember, "All prices are subject to 10% service charge and applicable government taxes."

Before this activity, I scouted and looked for 6 course meals, buffets and trips. This Afternoon Tea may be priced around a Php 1,000- buffet from any hotel, but depending on the occasion it is wonderful than a standard hotel buffet. Why?

It was the silent adventure of learning a new activity with your family! That's the fun part! We have our own houses, cars and businesses. But I have to be honest with you that we are not the sort of people from Manila, who 'take afternoon teas'. 

This luxurious activity turned out to be a walk in the park and so delightful and enjoyable we all agreed to do it again. The Raffles made it's mark in our hearts.

In retrospect, it was really fun seeing the delight in my family's eyes as they  indulged themselves with Raffles hand-crafted sandwiches and pastries. 

They had the TLC stamped "I love you mom" and "Mom is all you need" in those edible chocolate cards.

Those self-standing Paris macaroons, chocolate pieces with edible gold-flecks in them and hammed finger food was scrumptious! 

The salmon on top was, for lack of a better word -perfect! A Japanese person would have given a thumbs up! 

The very healthy Sencha tea, what nanay Emily chose was just heavenly too and dignified. I for one thing of course, liked my two lumps of sugar and wanted something 'deadlier'. You know I like living the sweet life.

On the other hand, drinking the Paris tea was almost tantamount to drinking real perfume, only without the after-taste; if in case, you've actually tasted one by accident like I did when I sprayed near my face LOL! 

I noticed that I've already sipped and gupled the Paris tea, and yet when you smell through your nose, the scent lingers in your senses. 

How luxurious!

"I shall return." 

No, that was not me, it was Bubbly Hubby. He said, we'll have to do it in another special occasion of course. Perhaps all the more when his mother mommy Inday comes in, we'll bring her in as an addition to the Senior Citizen's Barkada. 

Mommy Inday, Happy Mother's Day and know that you always have a seat in our table.

It's good to live the sweet life! In moderation and preparation, there is almost nothing stopping us to experience the good things, this world has to offer. We live in a free nation and the last time I checked, there are no microchips implant that compels us to stop making our own decisions.

This is the reason why I'm frugal but refuse to be a money Nazi. We only get to live once so it's up to us to find balance in life. It would be splendid for me to look back when I'm old and spent and smile knowing  my family and I lived a full life.

As for those who are yet to do something special for their mothers, it's never too late. If you are looking for something extravagant, well the Raffles is always there to assist you in 'wowing' your mother. But just so...everyday is Heart's Day. Do things, just so. Love just so.

I shared this poem with Bubbly Hubby back when we were in High School. Now, allow me to share Khalil Gibran's quote on children; "They come through you,but not from you. And though they are with you, they belong not to you."

Bubbly Hubby and I chose to love our parents not because we are compelled by our Filipino culture and society. It is not all about indebtedness or utang na loob, like some parents trick their children into. 

Sad to say, there are those who are uneducated or worst, cruel who try to extract to their children a never ending 'fee' of being raised by them. On the other hand, there are those children who were deeply loved that they grew up with a false sense of entitlement against their parents.

Love and care should come from the heart. It's the only way to make living sweet. Once we are already all grown up, our parents will be old and vulnerable. There is no need to burden them any more for any wrong or failure they have inadvertently done in the past. 

Now that our time has come, we should have the heart to forgive. They did their best at the time. If you grew up as a matured adult, you should know that by now. If not, God bless you and may you see the light of truth before it is too late.

Remember this and well. While our parents were busy raising us, they also had their own careers, friends, older parents to take into consideration, secret dreams and wishes, mostly forgone in lieu of raising a family.  

It is only through the generosity of their hearts that they continue to shower us with love and affection day after day, year after year. I repeat, however small or a lot it may be.  If this isn't a miracle of love, I do not know what else is. God bless all the mothers and fathers out here. Salamat po ng marami.

For those who gripe and can no longer phantom this, because of a sweet life you savour with your own families now, then think again. Stop fooling yourself that you made it alone. No one makes it alone. Everyone's success is a community effort.

There are millions of abandoned children all over the world. Our parents, on the other hand, shared  and saved what they had then, to keep us alive. No, we did not asked to be born by them. But it is through them that we are now alive and well. 

Again, it is not indebtedness but a loving heart that just wants to give back. The long and short of it, now that the children have the power and the tables are turned for the aging parents, be better. Do not make your parents suffer in your hands.

Nanay Emily was beaming as we finished our tea. She seem to have basked in the soft glow of the chandelier and the melodic piano tunes nearby. She held on the single red rose stem in her lap as she sipped her tea and enjoyed the quiet conversation among her loved ones.

The afternoon tea at the Raffles Makati made nanay Emily's Mother's Day truly unforgettable. 

She looked so happy and content, and for  a moment I felt my heart smile too. - charieclarin

I would like to add a couple of things, before I go.
I have learned from Dra. Pie of the the #mannyandpiecalayanclinic that they have recently opened at the SM Seaside City Cebu located at the 3rd floor of "Seaview Wing".  FYI, this SM is the third largest mall in the Philippines.

They also opened at the  SM Lanang Premier Davao. Congratulations to the Doctor to the Stars, Dra. Pie and Dr. Manny Calayan! #mannyandpiecalayanclinic #cebu #first #beautyexperts #wellnesszone #skinauthority #cthedifference #slimming #pioneer #therealone #worldclass #philippines

I'd like also like to add a PRESS RELEASE by SM last May 6, 2016. And I quote;


These are clothes described as “après sport” or “gym to office”, basic pieces that are smart, lightweight, frill free, and sometimes even architectural. And designers and retailers are have created a lot of buzz about “athleisure” collections, which are appropriate for either athletic or leisure pursuits.
Leisure wear is everything casual and comfortable in a woman’s wardrobe, usually consisting of loose fitting garments made of breathable fabrics like cotton or nylon.  For the woman on the go, leisurewear is a practical solution for running errands or exercising.
But just because it’s casual doesn’t mean it can’t be stylish. And SM Woman takes a minimalist spin to leisurewear; with simple, easy, and practical separates. Photographed against the modern architectural façade of One Esplanade, these are pieces that show the softer side of minimalism with the use of soft, breezy fabrics, staple knits, and a neutral, monochromatic colour palette. A subtle hint of soft pastels here and there, gives the overall silhouette an urban, contemporary edge. 
SM Woman’s top hits: high-neck sleeveless knits, cropped tops, asymmetrical hem shirts, boxy blouses, and flattering tunics. Cool culottes and cropped pants will make any ensemble look simply chic, while sleek long vests jazz up even the simplest of outfits. Keep accessories and sole choices to a minimum to maintain the fluidity of the whole look.
Shot on location at One Esplanade, the latest SM Woman separates are available at The SM Store.

SM Woman available at The SM Store

Raymond Celestino

Make Up
Jet Babas

I'm personally a fan of casual clothing. 
And guess what to do after shopping?

For the Rizalenos:

The Frugalicious Pinay shops and spends, 
but always wins in the end! 


Thanks for reading guys!

Stay frugalicious y'all! - #charielclarin

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Charie Clarin

Charie Clarin
"The Frugalicious Pinay"


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NANDITO ANG MGA KATOTOHANANG PINOY NA NAPAPANAHON. *Feel free to SHARE but do not claim as your own. These are all original thoughts, except the photos.