The Health Centrum: Center of Wellness in Capiz

.          It took more than eight years from the initial plan before this project was finally completed.  And once fully operational, it will provide QUALITY, AFFORDABLE and WORLD-CLASS health services to the people of Capiz and the neighboring provinces and towns in the Northern Panay area.

.          This is The Health Centrum (THC).

Location Map

The Health Centrum COMPLEX

.          The Health Centrum is a wellness center/hospital located in a 6 hectare property in Banica, Roxas City.  It is the centerpiece of the Health Centrum Complex and is a 100-bed capacity Level Four (4) tertiary hospital offering all services of all medical specialties with up-to-date medical equipment to compliment their medical staff.  Once the complex is completed, it will also include a retirement village, hotel & commercial areas and a spa.  It will live up to its’ image as the “Center of Wellness” of Northern Panay Island.

.          It was recently inaugurated during the festivities of the Capiztahan 2012, but the hospital will be open to the public anytime this coming May 2012.

Wide hallway leading to the private rooms

Room 203, a typical private room

Private en-suite bathroom

.         The Health Centrum, the new place to get well in Roxas City.

 

.

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

Architecture, Philippine Travel , , , , ,

The Evolution of the Roxas City Fountain

The Roxas City Fountain circa 1930s

.           I think the Roxas City Fountain deserves a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records – as the fountain with the most number of major renovations in a span of five years.  It has changed shape and form from November 2008 until this month of April 2012.

The Roxas City Fountain pre-2008

The Roxas City Fountain pre-2008, details show the fishes spouting water.

. The fountain stands in the rotunda fronting the Roxas City Cathedral – a landmark that has been there since I first arrived here in 1992.  I do not know when it was constructed, but it has remained the same until last November 2008 when they unveiled the “new” fountain with four kneeling men in the center.  It drew raves as well as criticisms, and it has polarized Roxas City.

The Roxas City Fountain circa 2008

The Roxas City Fountain circa 2008, with the details showing the original central column now covered.

.          Then a new administration was elected in 2010 … and they decided to renovate the fountain (again!) and attempted to restore it to its’ “original” beauty.  I was one of the many who applauded this project and wrote about it too.  It wasn’t exactly like the original, but it was close to it.

The Roxas City Fountain circa 2011 (unfortunately, I do not have a photo taken at night)

The Roxas City Fountain circa 2011, with the details.

.          And then sometime this year, the fountain was again fenced off and covered with a blue cloth and some work was started.  I asked around but I did not get concrete answers on what the renovation is all about but I did read that they will make it into a “dancing” fountain.  Last April 13, 2012, they finally unveiled the “geyser fountain” – reports said that a dancing fountain cannot be made with a “small” base, despite the fact that they actually enlarged the base to include the pocket garden that used to surround it.

The Roxas City Fountain circa 2012, with the details.

The Roxas City Fountain circa 2012, with the details - neon colored lights.

.          Again, as in the previous renovation of the fountain, this version has attracted both praises and criticisms.  Only time (and a new administration perhaps?) will tell if this version will last until the next election.  THREE make-overs in FIVE years?  Definitely a Guinness World record!

 

 

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

 

Architecture, Philippine Travel ,

RSO: Summer Immersion Through the Years

          When I was invited by Dr. Jose “JoGon” Gonzales, now the feisty Director of the Philippine General Hospital,  to be part of the UP College of Medicine Regionalization Program (RP) and to assist and guide our medical students in their summer immersion here in Capiz, little did I know that I will see in them, who I was 25 years ago when I went on my own summer immersion (then it was called “voluntary rural service” of the Department of Health) in the NPA-infested mountainous community in Balbalan, Western Kalinga.

 

          That was in 2004 when I first interviewed about 25 hopeful applicants from the Western Visayas Region (Region 6) to the University of the Philippines College of Medicine who wanted to enter the college as regionalization students – pre-selected students from Region 6 who will return here after their five year medical studies to render “return” service to the community for the education they got from UPCM, quality education largely subsidized by the Filipino people.

 

          Four made the cut – Jenus Sarabia from Kalibo, Joan Balgos from Roxas City, Lorenz Gonzales & Drew Camposano from Iloilo City, and entered the UP College of Medicine in 2005. They were my “babies” – the first batch that I would nurture every summer until they graduated in 2010.

           They chose Sitio Cambuyayao in the coastal baranggay of Pa-wa in Pan-ay, Capiz as the community they will adopt. I don’t remember now how they chose this place, except perhaps that Joan Balgos knew someone from that place.  But as fate would have it, the people of Pa-wa welcomed them with open arms.  And in April 2006, their love-affair with Baranggay Pa-wa started.

           I was not able to actively supervise them in 2007, as I underwent an emergency gallbladder surgery a week before their summer immersion started.  But still, they did their work on their own and only reported to me before they left the place.

          But from 2008 until yesterday, I have witnessed the hard work these students put into their community work every summer.  It was pure joy seeing how the community embraced them – loved them, would be the better term.  I saw the excitement in the faces of the children of the community, in the faces of the baranggay health workers. I also saw the happiness in the faces of my students.

 

 

         By 2008, the students already have a good grasp of the health problems of the community of Pa-wa and they were ready to implement their health program. That year, their group was joined by Jacqui Momville (from Iloilo) and Chris Reynaldo (originally from Region 4 but with roots from Aklan) of Class 2011 and from Class 2012, Rhoda dela Cruz (Iloilo), Kenneth Lasafin (Iloilo) and Jab Jayawon (Negros Occidental).  Their battlecry was “IKAAYO: Imo Kaayuhan Aton Alagaan. YES sa Organisadong Pangkalusugan”.  Whoever thought of that theme (a recurrent annual theme that reflected the work they did for the community), I have yet to commend.  Indeed they set out to change the community one step at a time.  It was all their hard work and I was just there to support them.

 

          Their most ambitious health program for that year was a medical-surgical mission for the people of Pa-wa. They successfully pulled it off – and the community rewarded them with more love and appreciation.  I will never forget the happiness of the students when they performed their first circumcision.  Everyone was tired but everyone was happy.  And that is what service is all about.

 

          In 2009, the group returned to Pa-wa with a new member, Wendel Marcelo (Iloilo) who invited two volunteers (non-RP classmates from Class 2013) also from Iloilo,  Marianne Naria and Rommel Gonzales.  They would be the last members added to the team as the succeeding students would opt to work in a community in Leganes, Iloilo.

 

          Their work in the community continued … and the fruits of their dedication and hard work paid off.  The community is now served by trained baranggay health workers armed with basic health skills taught to them by these medical students. These BHWs qualify as front-liners in helping the community in their health needs.

 

          But after seven years, it is time to say goodbye to the community.  We leave Pa-wa confident that we made a difference. I cannot thank them enough, the people of Pa-wa who have taught us so many things. And I cannot thank my students enough, for rekindling in me the love of community service which started in 1986 in Kalinga.

          Now I know the reason why God placed me here in Capiz.  I am happy.

 

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

People , , , , , ,

Baroto Race 2012: Race to Finish

          Last Sunday, on my way home, I passed by the century-old Capiz bridge that spans across the Panay River.  It was the last day of Capiztahan 2012, a three-day celebration marking the 111th Foundation Day of Capiz as a separate province (from Aklan).  The bridge was unusually full that day …

Both sides of the bridge was filled with spectators ...

          Only to find out that there was a scheduled “Baroto Race“, a small boat (banca) race for the fishermen of Roxas City.  It was a succesful event organized last year by a local radio station, and so they mounted another one this year.

As well as both iver banks ...

With the young ...

And the seniors too ...

          Unfortunately I had to catch a 10:00am sunday mass, so I didn’t stay long enough to witness the race itself.  Maybe next year, I will.  I might even hitch a free ride!

Waiting for the race to start.

 

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

Philippine Festival, Philippine Travel , , , , ,

The Electric Parade of Capiztahan 2012

.          It may not be close to the real Disney’s Electric Parade, but this year’s Capiztahan’s Electric Parade lived up to the hype and buzz of a dazzling parade of lighted sea creatures and flowers too.

That's a jelly fish ... minus the sting.

I think they are suppose to be water lilies ...

What's more symbolic of Roxas City than the prawn?

.          Many were afraid that the monstrous traffic jam created by the first Electric Parade last year will be duplicated this year.  So many people opted to go to Baybay beach earlier than the 6:00PM scheduled start of the parade from the Roxas City Plaza down to the People’s Park in Baybay.  We were one of those.  We were there at 4:00PM!

There were dolphins too!

I'm not sure why type of fish this is ...

This one too ...

.          But the long wait was well worth it.  We were visually impressed!

There were seahorses too!

And Nemo ... oooppsss

This crab was facing the other side of the street where I was!

Pusit!

Although it was really crowded, there was a semblance of order.

.          See you again next year!

 

 

.

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

 

Philippine Festival , , , ,

Capiztahan 2012: Fireworks Display

.          Capiztahan was coined from Capiz and Pista (Fiesta) – a merriment of sort. It marks the Foundation Day of the province of Capiz (“ceded” from what was previously Capiz-Aklan). It also marks the death anniversary of the most famous son of Capiz, President Manuel Acuna Roxas.

.          To celebrate the 111th Foundation Day of Capiz, the organizers mounted a 20-minute powerful fireworks display off Baybay Beach, to the delight of thousands of spectators who braved what they thought would be another traffic nightmare reminiscent of last year’s monstrous traffic jam that held Capiznons inside they cars for more than four hours in what should have only been a 10 minute ride back home!

.          This year, the organizers were prepared. There was order in the streets and traffic jam was limited to a few areas only. We were home in 30 minutes (but the normal travel time would actually be just 5 minutes).

.          Also this year, they used a barge and mounted the fireworks away from the shore, giving spectators a better view of the colorful flash of lights without suffocating in thick smoke. We were also lucky that the weather cooperated – clear skies complemented well the display of lights.

.          Until next year, an election year so expect more “fireworks” than what we saw this year.  For sure, Capiztahan 2013 will be a lot more interesting.

.

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

 

beach, Philippine Festival , , , ,

Happy Birthday ACC Coffee & Crêpe!

Located at Pavia Street in Roxas City, Capiz

.          It used to be that when we were craving for real good crepes in Roxas City, we had to drive all the way to Boracay, or fly to Manila.  Two options that can be quite expensive just to fill our need for crepes and to satisfy our palates.  And then  ACC Coffee & Crepe opened last year – it was crepe heaven for us!

Open on Easter Sunday to celebrate a special event.

Buffet spread: ACC's Signature spaghetti with meat balls, Fish fillet with tartar sauce, Baby Back Ribs, Egg & Potato Salad, Chicken Alexander, Rellenong Bangus.

.          Time surely flies fast. Today, April 8, 2012,  ACC Coffee & Crepe turned ONE year old.  And to help celebrate the event, they opened their doors for the first time ever on a Sunday (they are open Monday to Saturdays only) and threw an eat-and-drink-all-you-can lunch buffet with overflowing coffee to boot.  They also had a pair of acoustic singers to lull us to food and coffee nirvana!

Waiting for the buffet table to open ... listening to live acoustic music

Ham, corn and asparagus soup.

My plate ... first round.

Free overflowing freshly brewed coffee ... mine was decaf, as usual.

.          They even held a raffle … from a big glass jar, you pick one gaily colored easter egg with candy mints inside and if you are lucky (I was!), you bring home a souvenir coffee mug!  I wish I could bring this mug every time I go visit the place and get a FREE coffee refill. *wink*

Easter Egg raffle time ... where's the Easter Bunny?

I won a mug!

As expected, Rica did not win anything!

Will I get a FREE coffee refill every time I bring this silver coffee mug to ACC Coffee & Crepe?

 

.         Cheers! Here’s to more years of serving real good coffee and crepes (in Roxas City and beyond … like Iloilo City perhaps?). Burp!

With the princess of ACC ... Toni, Pip's unica hija.

The man behind the success of ACC Coffee and Crepe, Dr. Victor Federico "Pip" Acepcion. Full-time barista, part-time Urologist?

 

.

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

 

Food, Philippine Travel , , , , , ,

Snorkeling in Misibis Bay

          Misibis Bay lists snorkeling as one of the fun water activities one can enjoy while  in their exclusive resort.  After all, Cagraray Island is surrounded by the marine-rich Albay Gulf and the underwater scene must be great as well.

It was raining when we were there.

On-going construction

          To the right side of Misibis Bay resort (if you face the gulf), they have dedicated a beachfront property and developed it into a marina (still under completion and finishing though).  They marked off a part of the sea for snorkeling.  They even “imported” giant clams which have now grown in considerable size and has adapted well in Misibis Bay!

View of the resort side from the marina

Dry dock for the motor boat

 

Neon green colored life vests

          Complete snorkeling gears are available for use free of charge for guests of the resort.  A dive instructor is always at hand to guide you.  He even has a bag of bread to throw into the water to lure the fish while you are in the water.

Rica with the dive instructor

 

The octagonal-shaped marina

          Unfortunately, the weather was not cooperative that day.  We opted NOT to venture out and be swept out into the open sea! Maybe another day.  We wish.

This is the ramp where you go down to snorkel.

 

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

beach, Philippine Travel , , , ,

Misibis Bay Eco-Park

          There is more to Misibis Bay than the beach and the swimming pools.  Part of the Misibis Bay Complex is the Misibis Bay Eco-Park, located just adjacent to the beach-side property, outside it’s perimeter fence.  But this one is perched on top of the hill – with a commanding view of the Cagraray Island and the nearby Albay province and Mayon Volcano.

Our mode of transportation - electric golf cart

One of the pit-stops of "The Amazing Race Asia"

 

          One would need to hire the motorized golf cart to bring you around.  Our first stop, just a few meters from the entrance of the park, was the ampitheater.  Imagine the Stonehedge transported in a Greek Ampitheater and placed on a hilltop with the Mayon Volcano as a backdrop.  That’s exactly what this place is.

 

I guess the end of the zip line is at the foot of the hill.

          Our second stop was the ZIP line.  Since it was raining hard the whole day, we didn’t want to try it and get wet all over again.  So we passed up on that.

 

The big white board behind the altar got me curious.

Beautiful capiz shell chandelier

          And set on top of the hill is the chapel.  It appears half-finished – as only half of the structure (the front part) has glass walls and painted while the other half is just a shell of what could have been a beautiful church had it been completed.   I also have this impression that they placed the main altar at the original entrance of the chapel, meaning the back part became the front part.  Our guide-cum-golf cart driver said that a celebrity couple got hitched here last year – and it was a grandiose event.  I bet.

A monkey left out in the rain in the Eco-park.

 

          The short tour left me wondering why they called this place an Eco-Park. Anyone knows?

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

Architecture, Philippine Travel , , , ,

The Crucifixion: An Ignacio-Alajar Family Tradition

             Family traditions run deep among Filipinos.  For the Ignacio-Alajar family of Roxas City (Capiz), it has been for more than six decades that they have faithfully participated in the annual Good Friday parade with the central tableau of “The Crucifixion“.  It is a tradition kept alive at present by the second-generation Ignacio-Alajars.

The 2nd Generation Ignacio Alajars: Marian Ignacio and Judge Nacy Alajar

The 2nd Generation Alajar side: Tes Villagracia, Boy Villagracia and Dennis Kapunan

             This is the essence of Good Friday – the crucified Christ flanked by Demas, the “good” thief and Gestas, the “bad” thief with the three closest people looking up at Him from the foot of the cross: Mary his mother, Mary the Magdalene and St. John. 

         This float (or carroza) has the most number of life-sized characters (the Last Supper, although having more characters, they are not scaled to size).  And it is not peanuts trying to mount this float every year for the past six decades.  A fact that is not lost among the third generation Ignacio-Alajars.

          Preparations start actually several days (weeks?) before the scheduled procession. Each hair piece meticulously brushed, each costume washed and cleaned … the float decorated with fresh flowers and lighted up with a generator.

         And the younger generation also participate as musicians, playing musical instruments as the float makes the circuitous route around the city.  These “musicians” have been doing this for ages also, some of them based abroad and come home every Good Friday to fullfil this promise.  And they are blessed abundantly for this religious “panata“.

 

          There are traditions that we hope will continue forever.  This, I fervently hope,  will be one of them.  For a long, long time.

For SHE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog1

For HE SAID BLOGS:  http://panaylakbay.com/blog

Follow us at:  Twitter

Like us at:  Facebook

Official Website of Lakbay Capiz Travel and Tours

Back to Homepage of Panay Lakbay

Contents of this site, blogs and photographs are owned by the website owners of www.panaylakbay.com.  Copying of any content, in any form without permission from the owners of the said site, is prohibited by the law. The whole site is protected by tracebacks and high security alert. If interested to use any of the blogs and photographs, email the site owners at heshe@panaylakbay.com.

Family, People, Philippine Festival , , , , ,