Sunday, August 14, 2016


'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

Who cares?!
 When I'm cast away @ Balesin Isand!
Seriously, if I could get stranded in an island, you’d know where to find me.
Yes, I must confess: Balesin made me sin!
"How?", you may ask.
Oh,  I’ve been a cam whore, a drama queen & a lazy fat pig all at the same time & place.
700 photos in 3 days?! 
Yes, you heard that right.
Oh, what can I do when every nook & corner is just perfect for a photo shoot.
May my travel post inspire you too to have an adventure in this beautiful island someday.
Allow me to take you in a magical carpet ride overlooking Balesin Island.
Unbelievable sights.
Indescribable feelings.
Every turn a surprise.
It’s a Whole New World in this island!
Balesin is just a 20-minute plane ride from Metro Manila, departing from Alphaland Hangar.
Believe me when I say that this 500-hectare island is paradise!
It’s nothing you ever imagined---you'll be enchanted.

Our adventure to this exclusive island couldn't have been possible if it weren't for my friend!
Thanks for the special privilege pass to set foot in this strictly for members only island.
Believe it or not, you’d actually feel like you've rented the entire beach resort all for yourself.

So to give you an idea, a turbo prop aircraft will take you to the breathtaking destination.
It'll approximately costs Php8,000 per person.

While an overnight stay in a villa good for 4 approximately costs Php24,000 a night. 
We stayed at Phuket village, which is located in the southern part of Balesin Island.
Our villa had an outdoor deck overlooking the beach front.
You may ask what's so special with Balesin aside from its exclusivity and privacy?
Well, this island can boast of its 7 themed villages & 7 authentic cuisines.
Oh, you bet the inner pig in me cannot be contained at all!

Filipino. Indonesian. Thai. Greek. French. Spanish. Italian.
Whatever cuisine you're craving for, they're bound not to disappoint.
Each place never fails to impress and make you gush over something so picturesque.

And who would have thought that you can see 7 wonders in just 1 island?

Why spend on several plane tickets when you can just spend on 1?! 

Feast your eyes with the best of:
Balesin, Bali, Phuket, Mykonos, St. Tropez, Costa del Sol and Toscana

Of course, what's a beach without basking in the sun, sand and pristine waters, right?
So girls & boys, let's come out and play!

Oh, excuse my flabby beach body, 

I just can't stand leaving this island without a memory of this view. 
All I can say is 'Wow! I'm seriously not dreaming."

Thanks to Leevan and his GoPro, our beach pictures turned out to be spectacular!
Yes, burn, burn, burn baby.
Please don't burn our skin, just focus on burning our fats, okay?
If sunbathing ain’t your thing, don’t worry, there's various activities to keep you busy.
From archery, fishing, rock climbing, paint ball, scuba diving, tennis, wakeboarding, airsoft, boxing, yoga, ballroom dancing, karaoke to mahjong. Yes, it's a long long list alright!
But if you just want a soothing massage, they'll definitely pamper you the Balesin Way!

Part of my bucket list is to go horse riding by the beach.

Yes, I just love drama you see! 

Definitely worth my Php896 for 30mins of grand entrance & exit!
Exploring the island on horse-back  is something I’d recommend aside from having great pictures! I’m pretty amazed that the horses Krista & I rode were the exact horses Heart Evangelista & Chiz Escudero rode in Balesin for their Wedding shoot. How cool is that!
Thank God my bestie and I just chose a pony only ‘cause from how I saw it,
 they actually looked like a full grown horse alright! Aaaah!
 I was a bit worried that the horse might suddenly go loco by the beach.
Good thing, I was able to control it and toughen up for the experience.

I also tried paddle boarding & fell a couple of times.

Kayaking was fun too, but rowing under the scorching sun required much effort too.
Oh, felt like I was in a gym session toning my triceps.
Too bad, no photos for these adventures,
Can’t risk drowning my phone and losing amazing Balesin photos.

After all our indoor and outdoor activities, 

We couldn't help bond over wine and cheese, 

Outsmarting each other over board games, 
And not to mention scaring each other out with ghost stories.
Exploring the island is so convenient!
You can just call or inform any staff member in Balesin where you’re off to,
And lo and behold, a golf cart / jeepney will take care of you in a few minutes.
Definitely hassle and worry free!
We all hope that someday, you too, can set foot in this island.
'Cause we bring home smiles on our faces with relaxation painted over.

Pictures may paint a thousand words, but memories last a lifetime.
And this is one of those special memories with amazing friends that I’ll forever keep.
This is just the kind of hypnosis I’d willingly fall for over and over again. 
Truth be told, I’d love to have my Pre-nup shoot here if I’m getting married anytime soon. 
No words can fully explain the magic I’ve felt in my 3-day weekend getaway.
Yes, I'd be willing to get stranded in this island any time any day.
You bet no amount of pictures can ever give justice to the splendor of this place.
I'll leave this place for now with the thought that I'll be back.
Oh, I just can't wait to be scene-zoned @ Balesin once again.

Follow me at my blog SOPHIEsticated for more updates! 

Friday, August 5, 2016

How I Make Worklife Easier

Stress is a bittersweet relationship that everyone gets to experience once in their lives. Yes, those cups of Joe and obsessed glances at your phone connote that you’re probably a busy bee alright! Every beep makes you worry, every delay heightens your stress level and every failure makes you go insane. Work’s never easy as it demands the same time, effort and commitment required to make a relationship work.

As a businesswoman, entrepreneur and lifestyle blogger, I feel there’s not enough time in this world. Sometimes I tend to give up my social life just to give my career a big boost. Yes, you know something’s very valuable to me when you notice my eye bags and pimples starting to pop! But you know, I care not ‘cause I know what I’m doing is going to be worth it for sure. I admit I have very high standards so whether I like it or not, my stress level unfortunately doubles.

“Mediocrity” and “Impossible” are two words that don’t exist in my vocabulary. So you may ask, how do I lessen worklife stress & hassle? Let me share with you my 8 beautiful distractions:

1) Gugu Gaga Therapy

Babies are my Achilles heel! I just love seeing cute babies and downloading their pictures as my mobile phone wallpaper. Who wouldn’t gush over adorable baby pictures? Imagine baby blue eyes, blonde hair with a cute teddy bear while eating ice cream. Aww! That’s definitely a lovely feeling for me. Oh, these cutie pies remind me of innocence and simplicity, of how to laugh and look at life in a child’s perspective.

2) Back to Back Therapy

Remember you don’t necessarily have to go to the masseuse for a massage! Yes, you can simply get a two minute should and back massage from your work colleague. Just make sure you take turns massaging each other to help ease muscle pains. A simple hug and even a pat at the back can make you feel better. Relaxing doesn’t need to be costly, a sense of touch from someone that matters usually does the trick to help alleviate your stress. Trust me on this!

3) Heart to Heart Therapy
*pictures taken from Google

Talking to someone gives you an opportunity to unload and lighten your baggage. Having a support system barkada at work is very important to help face a stressful work environment. It’s good to know that someone has your back. If your friend is not a good adviser, he can just be a listener. A heart to heart talk will always make you feel better. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Check with your mates and learn to delegate tasks. You don’t have to do everything on your own. Let go of your pride and ego. Who knows other people can make you someone you never thought you could be. Their ideas can make you see things in a better perspective. Talk about the silliest and most serious topics. Who knows the simplest and most random brainstorming can solve your work dilemmas and make you shout: Checkmate!

4) Coffee-Doughnut Therapy
*pictures taken from Google

With this I mean, freshly brewed coffee and the aroma of freshly baked pastries and croissants. Sugar, spice & everything nice is and will always be the best mood changer. Something so warm, pleasant and aromatic will never fail to calm your mind, feed your belly and warm your soul. It’s the perfect distraction from your worries. 

5) Lips to Nail Therapy 
*pictures taken from Google

Bright colors make me feel cheerful while dull colors make me sad. So when work gets tough, I’d love to wear something colorful that would effortlessly speak my mind. I love swiping that red lipstick if I want to look more confident in the boardroom. Red makes us look strong, powerful and energetic. It instantly brightens my face from a Zombie look to a Game-face on. But if I’d like to look more sweet and charming, I’d swipe on a pink lipstick instead to look friendlier and more approachable. Yes, colors are fashionable statements that inspire and create a positive vibe. Whenever I look at pops of colors, it automatically makes me feel better and happier. Shine bright like diamonds, shine bright by saying it with your lips.

6) Pop the Pill Therapy

No matter how many orange juice we drink, we’ll never reach the daily C intake we need. Yes, something so small can make a big difference in our lives. Fern C is my spinach pill. I feel more energetic and healthy. Yes, with Fern-C, I’ve not really used my SL and VL at work yet. Fern-C is definitely a game-changer in my life. It's the secret to my 'Game-Face' look alright. Trust me Worklife ay Easy with FERN-C!. It’s definitely Subok Na! in making the stress and hassle of going to work and coping with work deadlines easier and more bearable. With Fern-C, I feel I’m in the best shape ever. Take Fern- C and C the difference too. Best of all, less trips to the restroom and no more bed rests because Fern C is made of Sodium Ascorbate, which is non-acid so no more stomach upsets! 

To know more about popping the right pill, check out the FERN-C website, and follow FERN-C on their social media accounts:

                            FERN-C Facebook:
                            FERN-C Twitter:
                            FERN-C Instagram:

7) Positive Vibes Brainwashing Therapy

Breathe in breathe out. Bring out your Ipod and play songs that fill your soul. Take a 15-minute walk to clear your head and walk off your stress. Gaze upon the wonder of sunsets and sunrise. Be amazed with how great the world is! Watch a short movie during your lunch break. Most importantly, do positive self-talk. “I can do this.” “Nothing is impossible.”“There’s no such thing as it can’t be done.”“If he did it, why couldn’t I?” Keep moving. Dance, jump, stretch even at the office. Just don’t be stiff because it will wear you down.

8) The Planner Therapy

Writing down your thoughts is always helpful. Having a personal planner is essential for me so I can better manage my work schedule. Yes, labeling your priorities either high, low or medium priority is definitely a breather. This way, you’d know how much time to allocate to something. Remember, life should not be all work without play. Save and splurge a little. Work hard but also party later.
*pictures taken from Google

No one wants to be an ugly duckling so make sure to smile more. Remember there’s always sunshine after the rain. Life may give us endless possibilities & opportunities, but at the end of the day, it's all about knowing one's priorities. Stress is controllable so try to be calm during the storm. Clear your mind and weigh your options. It’s really up to you how to act and react to a stressful situation. You can either break down or rise up from your problems, but remember never give up on your dreams no matter what! Each one of us has different stress levels so it’s up to us how we’re going to deal with them. Hopefully, I was able to help you unload your work stress! Don’t worry if you look crazy and stupid at times when you handle stress. Live a little. Laugh a lot. Life shouldn’t be lived too seriously every single time.

Don’t worry because there’s always the right therapy for everything. For now, eat desserts and smile. There’s a reason why stressed is desserts spelled backwards right?!