Sunday, June 24, 2012

One Liberty Hotel

Rating - ♥♥♥♥
Address – 12 kalayaan Ave. Quezon, City
Telephone Number – 441.1111 / 0927.910.2836
Email –
Rates -

12hrs 24hrs
Wall Street Room 1450 1900
Manhattan Room 1750 2200
Times Squate Room 1950 2400


For weddings, having the key venues approximately near each other is essential as this will make everything convenient for everyone.

That's why when we decided that Adarna Food and Restaurant was going to be our reception venue, it was imperative for us to locate a church ( at that time ) then the ceremony venue ( later on.. ) as well as the hotel within the vicinity as well.

Since our wedding was set in the afternoon all the way to late evening, it's a must for us to find a hotel that has flexible check in/out hours*.

We spotted One Liberty Hotel when we dropped by Adarna for last minute checks. It was beside New City Food House (awesome food! but that's for another post =D) and was fairly new.

from the outside

What we liked

Proximity – located along Kalayaan Ave. as well, it was fairly near Adarna and Bonsai.

Check in/ Check out flexibility – they were fairly flexible with our preferable time to check in. Check out was automatically 24hours after.

Affordability – compared to all the hotels that we scouted, it was by far the one with the most affordable rate.

Amenities – given that it was fairly new, the amenities were still in perfect condition.


let's freshen up!

Staff – the staff, especially the receptionist, was very accommodating and has exceptional customer service.

We were suppose to book Times Square thinking that since it's the most expensive, it was the biggest. Knowing that it's for a wedding, she offered Manhattan instead. The only difference was the one had 3 small beds while the other one had a king-size bed which would look nice in photos. She also offered us a room on the 3rd floor so that there wouldn't be any wires outside the window for silhouette shots.

my gown - a nice addition to the backdrop =D

Inclusion – they have free breakfast at the cafe. The food tasted great!

The owner – we were able to chat with the owner at the lobby and he was very nice. He gave us advise regarding marriage and about life in general. A man who's not going to compromise his principles in exchange for money. We've met a lot of inspiring people during our wedding and he was definitely one of them.

What we took into consideration

Elevator – given that they're just fairly new, the elevators were not yet fully operational.

Aside from that, we liked mostly everything. It was a supplier worth recommending.


*(Most hotels follow the check in by 2PM / check out by 12noon policy)

photo credits
the one with the wedding gown by Chris Vergara

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Non-traditional wedding dress shots

One of the requests I made to our photographers were to come up with non-traditional wedding dress shots. I even unintentionally forgo getting a dressform to make it even more challenging.

Here are some of the photos.

piano in the dark

the arts and the dress

Kudos to them for rising up to the challenge.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Adarna Food and Culture ( reception set-up )

One of the reasons why we chose to have a restaurant reception vs. booking a venue and hiring a separate caterer is because we want to ditch the notion of having to hire an event stylist.

We chose Adarna because it's already beautiful in itself that it would only need minimal decorations from us.  This means less DIYs.

Still, I was expecting them to primp the place up a little bit more for the occassion. I'm proud to say that they didn't disappoint me.

Here are pictures of Adarna pre-wedding and during the actual event.

All photos courtesy of Candy Alvarez.

Our couple's chair

the centerpieces

the centerpieces using noteclips, recycled jars, candles and my books

loved the old school chairs

very native set up

The sari sari store on the left and one of the buffet tables near the window

Our DIY floating candles

candle filled-fountain

A great money-saver without compromising on the aesthetic value.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

House items that can be used for weddings

This post is for my virtual sister Nuriko for her whimsical country themed wedding.

Country wedding throws away the concept of stiff, formal events in exchange for a more personal experience. It is all about a relaxed, laid back feel. It is homey and cozy and rustic. It's beauty lies on it's simplicity and is usually pertaining to the outdoors.

Add in the whimsical factor on the mix and what you get is a fancy and simple yet elegant wedding.

If one has the means, any kind of themed wedding can be arranged. What if you're on a tight-budget though?

Country themed weddings are easy to stage, not to mention budget-friendly, because the elements needed are usually readily available.

Here are some items that are all too common yet can transform into something whimsical and pretty with just a little bit of work.

Twigs - they are aplenty and anyone can practically obtain it anywhere. It's great for Wishing Trees. Instead of a traditional guestbook, place twigs in a vase and have cards tied with ribbons ready on a table. Have them hang their well-wishes on the makeshift tree.

Spray paint it with silver or white for a whimsical effect. Use colored pens and ribbons to match the motif for a unified look.

photo credits

photo credits

Birdcages - Remember how lovebirds where such a rage before? Almost every household had a pair. Now that the fad is over, you may use your birdcages for something else. Nothing speaks of country and nature more than it does. It makes a simple yet beautiful Centerpiece. Find birdcages of various shapes, sizes and colors at Dapitan Arcade as well.

 For a whimsical effect, paint it with pastel colors then fill with flowers. Use baby's breath or stasis to keep it affordable.

photo credits

Mason Jars - Mason Jars are pretty in it's simplicity, one can never get enough of it. It is so versatile that it can have a lot of different uses.

Read more about it in my post : The versatile mason jars

Clothespins - who would have thought that this common laundry commodity can be used for weddings. This is perfect for holding small escort cards for your guests.

Add in your photos for a whimsical touch.

photo credits

Buntings - these are nice alternatives to drapes and is very easy to make. Rummage your closet for clothes that are no longer used. Run it over by the sewing machine or do it by hand. For those who doesn't have the time or patience, they may simply cut it into triangles. Scrap fabrics are also available by the kilo at Taytay, Rizal.

photo credits
Add lace to make it more whimsical.

photo credits

There are a lot of options out there that can be used for weddings. It doesn't necessarily have to be expensive. Some can even be salvaged from the trash bin. We just have to allow ourselves to shake off our notions of how a wedding should look like and be willing to search for alternatives.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Stainless Jewelry rainy day sale!!!!

Wedding rings have evolved overtime. Gone were the days when value was only given to gold rings. A whole range of options are available nowadays.

For couples who are on the look-out for affordable yet elegant wedding and engagement rings, a great alternative would be to go for Stainless. It is more stronger than gold or silver and is easily maintained.

A new supplier emerging in the market is Stainless Jewelry. They offer quality stainless jewelry at easy-on-the-budget cost.

Take advantage of their Rainy Day Sale and get 15% discount on all items from June 5th - 12th.

Visit their website by clicking here. Or like them on Facebook here.

Hurry! There's only 3 days left!

Dear Mamang..

How are you there? I bet you're having a grand time with the angels and all. I just wanted to say I miss you.. It's only been a year and it still feels surreal to not be able to see you again.. ever.

By the way, Eric and I finally tied the knot. I'm sure you've heard all about it. We really hoped that you were able to hold on up to the wedding date but I guess, the Lord has other plans..

It was beautiful, Mang.. How I wish you were there. I know you would have been happy for me and for us. I can't describe the feeling but I know that had I told you, you would have understood.

I remember how you would tell us stories about you and Papang. How you met. Your dates. The hard times. The lessons.

I remember it all. But what I remember the most is how happy you were despite all the difficulties.

You taught me about unconditional love at a very young age. How you loved us all. You took care of us even though it wasn't easy. You were always patient even if we weren't always good. You accepted us without questions. Loved us without any inhibitions.

Through you, I learned how it's suppose to be.

I miss you so badly, Mang.. I do..

me with my beloved Mamang..

 I guess, I always will..

Friday, June 8, 2012

Adarna Food and Culture (the review)

RATING : ♥♥♥♥♥

Contact number : 926.87.12 / 0917.9618113 
Email Address : / 
Website : 
Address : 119 Kalayaan Avenue Quezon, City

Fees : it depends on the menu of your choice. 
There is a minimum rate to be able to block a certain function hall however, this amount is consumable for the food. ( see details below )

Function Hall pax capacity amount to block

Bulwagang Adarna -  40-60 P25k airconditioned
Patio Rosas - 40-50 P12k
Hardin ng Sampaguita - 40-60 P15k
Silid ng Reyna -  15-20 P5k airconditioned
Silid ng Bituin - 20-25 P7,500 airconditioned

Other charges : 12% VAT ( exclusive from the menu rate )
                           10% service charge
                           cake corkage - P500*
                           wine corkage - P500**
                           lechon corkage - P1k

How to book : read and sign the contract. make a down payment to block the date. 50% must be paid a month before the wedding. The rest is to be settled after the event.


Adarna Food and Culture was the very first supplier we've ever booked. We paid the down payment as early as January of 2011.

What we liked about Adarna Food and Culture

Aesthetic Value - beautiful in itself, Adarna is a something to behold. It embodies the laid back, relaxed charm that we wanted to incorporate in our wedding.

Location and Accessibility - it was easy to locate and go to even via public transport. At the same time, it's very near the hotel and the ceremony site.

Food - the food was heavenly. And all dishes have twists which coincide with our wedding planning. The servings were huge and there were more than enough for everyone. Given that, we still have a lot that we took home.

our friends having a photo op at our table while we're doing the rounds. =)

Unlimited Iced Tea - I just had to say this because Eric and I are fond of unlimited iced tea. This is our main consideration when dining out and it sure makes our day. I think I had more than 10 glasses that night. Tee hee!

Also, unlike other caterers, they agreed to serve iced tea once the guests arrive. We made this request since we're anticipating that the guests would be parched from being outside the whole afternoon.

Staff - the staff were the nicest ones ever. They were all smiles and pleasant to look at. They were attentive to all requests of the guests. They were not in a hurry compared to other caterers. They only packed the food after all the guests have left and only did so after I gave the go signal.

Chef - Chef Giney Villar made it all possible by whipping up the delectable food for everyone.

Easy to talk to - We never had a problem dealing with the staff of Adarna. Aries, their POC, answers my texts right away. Even Chef Giney, responds to my email and PM on facebook as soon as she's able. We had a lot of requests that they were able to meet.

They allowed us to use the sari-sari store,

photo credits : Candy Alvarez

have the twinkling lights on the tree fixed before the event,

and even let us borrow these cute candle holders we saw them use for Earth Hour.

photo credits : Candy Alvarez

Candy, our WC also requested to have 2 buffet tables where one is situated outside. Initially, they didn't agree because it might rain, but on the day itself, they still agreed. Having 2 tables set-up was very convenient for the guests.

What we took into consideration

Vat exclusive - the menu was still vat exclusive. It blew our food budget out of proportion. The prices were already expensive in itself. And we felt that the amount of VAT we paid was enough to feed a set of guests.

Corkage - There were a lot of corkage. They have it for the cake, wine, lechon and I think for other equipment. We only paid for the cake though because we didn't have wine toasting. We also forgo the others.  

Lay out - Since Adarna is a house, there were a lot of partition between the guests. Our work around was to go around and mingle instead of just sitting in our chair. That way we can interact with all the guests.

photo credits : Candy Alvarez
Weather - We planned to use the patio area which will be drenched in case of rain. We just prayed really hard that the heavens give us a fair sky.

photo credits : Candy Alvarez

There may be some things that made us think whether booking Adarna was the right decision. However, the reasons why we did far outnumber the the reasons why we shouldn't have. It was a choice that we never regret in making.


*according to them, the cake corkage was supposedly P500 per layer. However, it wasn't indicated on my contract nor was I properly informed so I negotiated to pay only the amount I was told which is P500 all in all for my 2layer cake and a cupcake tower.

** Amount is based on what we can recall. I'm not so sure though since we didn't use wine during the reception. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Jumping for Joy! ( our wedding jump shots )

I'm totally baffled in people's fascination with jump shots. However, it doesn't take the fun out of doing it. So we do.

And for our wedding, we did. =)

TIP for a perfect wedding jumpshot:

Find the right people - Not everyone is comfortable letting their hair out. Before they jump, make sure that they're totally okay with it. Otherwise, it will show in their expression.

Jump shots are very much like marriages. Marriage is a leap of faith. Like it, you would need to find the right people to share the experience with.

Once you've chosen, Jump and leave the rest to your photographers.:D

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

my unconventional wedding shoes

There are women who absolutely adore shoes and then there are those who can get by with just a trusty pair of sneakers. I fall into the 2nd category.

I'm not much into shoes. My husband is. I do have a pair or two of high heels when the sexy me calls for it. And I do have my cutesy flats for my dainty and feminine side. I even whip out my boots when I feel like it. But for my everyday get-up, it will always be a choice between my chucks or my draven sneakers.

Truthfully, I've been partial to my draven sneakers ever since I bought it. With it's cute heart eyes, monster fangs, and polkadot ribbons, it's soo lovable, I wear it almost everywhere.


I pair it with almost everything..

Whether it be shorts,







and yes, even dresses.


It followed me to the muddiest of markets to the poshiest of malls without complain. With this kind of loyalty, it is but right that I take it with me to the most important walk I'll ever make.. my walk to the altar.

Sure, it may be battered and bruised. But with all the runnings and the goings.. it served me well.

Wearing it was the perfect choice. :D

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Saving on our candy buffet

A tip to save on weddings is to make use of anything and everything that is available for free. Be on the look-out for freebies whether it be as simple as free aisle flowers or as big as free honeymoon vacation. Grab it right away!

Usually, these are out in the open, however, there would also be times when a dash of imagination is needed. 

When the trend of buffet spreads* took the bridal country by storm, I was also inspired to add a candy buffet to our reception. The corkage fee held me back.. until an idea came up.

You see, the restaurant we booked had an indoor sari-sari store, maybe to pay homage to it's part in our culture. The owners used to have it stocked for patrons.

photo credits: Adarna food and culture


This was the opportunity that I was keeping an eye for.

We asked if we could refill the jars with candies for our guests and they agreed. Amazingly, it also followed our concept of putting twists on how traditional weddings are done.

Instead of a spread, we displayed the candies, sari-sari style. We provided brown paper bags so that the guests can help themselves.  

It was a nice touch and it was such a hit, not just to the kids..

paper bags filled with candies =D

but even with the grown-ups.

stuffing their paper bags.. =D

a child checking if there are any candies left..

A very simple addition that totally went a long, long way. And we didn't even have to pay for corkage. :D


*These are additional buffet for specific food such as a pasta buffet, a salad buffet or a dessert buffet. It can also be more specific like a cookie buffet or a candy buffet.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Adarna Food and Culture (an introduction)

During my research for Tiffany chair alternatives, I stumbled upon Adarna Food and Culture from a bridal magazine.
photo credits by Adarna Food and Cuture. This is the actual photo I saw on a bridal mag.

It gave me the idea of having the reception at a restaurant vs. renting a venue and hiring a caterer separately. 

After reading more about it, Eric and I decided to drop by.

Adarna Food and Culture is a very quaint, homey restaurant secretly tucked along the busy streets of Kalayaan Avenue in Quezon, City.

Stepping onto it's threshold transports you into a bygone era of olden Philippines. Where family gatherings are the norm and good food holds it together.

Adarna is divided into 5 function halls that can be rented separately depending on the number of guests.

Just after the foyer is Hardin ng Sampaguita. An al fresco garden that has a makeshift fountain made from an old kawa. 

It turns enchanting when lighted with candles.

Photo credits : Candy Alvarez

An old mortar and pestle used for grinding rice decorates a corner.

A big tree with hanging lights makes the place cozy and romantic.

On the right side of the garden is Patio Rosas. It is also al fresco however, it does have ceiling fans and humidifiers for ventilation. There is an antique jukebox beside an in-house sari-sari store. In front of it is a wooden chair that has a "dama" board etched on it. Reminiscent of days when sari-sari stores are more than just shops but a place where people gather to chit-chat, have discussions and be with friends and neighbors.

A row of vintage bottles serve as decoration.

When not used for an event, this area is made comfy by sofas and couches that makes you want to prop your feet up and just relax. 

Bulwagang Adarna is the main dining hall and is airconditioned. It's the one stationed closest to the bar.

Rotary phones are at arms reach from tables while an old piano sits by the corner. Various photos can be seen near the ceiling.

The Silid ng Reyna and Silid ng Bituin are the 2 rooms upstairs. It is ideal for small gatherings, private meetings and functions. It can be booked separately or together as it has a moving wall panel that can be put in place or taken out as needed.

Framed photos of beauty queens in the late 60's and 70's are hanging on the walls.

Vintage stuff is the main centerpiece of Adarna's decor. It serves as a reminder of how it was back then. Not only through the food it serves but through it's visuals as well.

Coming up next is the review.. See you then. =)


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