Thursday, March 31, 2022

The Philippines is Setting to Become the Biggest Gambling Hub in Asia

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Southeast Asia’s gambling industry has been on the rise throughout the past decade. And although land-based gambling locations are commonly found throughout Asia, the industry has been doing exceptionally well in the Philippines. The Philippines is home to many attractions - its main gambling hub is dubbed Entertainment City.

As of now, the Philippines is one of the fastest-growing gambling hubs in all of Asia. Many travel there just for the casinos and resorts. But that does not stop there for the country as the Philippines may soon become Asia’s biggest gambling hub. 


What’s Next for the Country?

The country’s gambling industry has brought in significant amounts of revenue and business. Currently, the country has set its sights on further expanding its casino portfolio to possibly earn the position of the world’s biggest gambling venue.

The country has also seen a significant rise in its online casino department. Those looking to bet at the best live online casino sites in the Philippines can refer to this list of legitimate operators.

Recently, numerous casinos located in Cebu and Manila have experienced an inflow of gambling enthusiasts entering their premises. In addition, an increasing number of casinos have been sanctioned by PAGCOR (the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation). As a result, these casinos have experienced an influx of gamblers.

This exponential growth has led to agreements between prominent casinos and game developers. It has also attracted the attention of the most popular entertainers to such venues. Many of such entertainers have also performed at resorts in that region, turning them into the most sought-out vacation getaways for those looking to gamble during their holidays.

One of the most noteworthy deals to have been struck involving the country’s casinos in recent years was the one finalized in February 2020. At that point, Electronic Gaming Equipment had also cut a deal with the JPark Palace Casino to supply their gaming machines to the locale. That deal was one of the many to have been made between casinos and game developers in the Philippines, signifying the location’s attraction to such corporations. 

With huge strides in the industry since then - very recently, Abbiati Casino Equipment also became a major supplier for the Hann Casino Resort. The Hann Casino Resort is a luxury integrated resort located in Clark.

The Philippines’ Gambling Foundation

Most of the success experienced by the Philippines’ gambling industry in recent years has mainly been linked to the involvement and efforts of PAGCOR. The organization is owned by the government of the Philippines, established in 1869. The establishment was created to evaluate new sources of revenue the state could make use of to enhance the country’s finances.

One way it was appointed as a field where the country’s government could earn profits was in the taxation and licensing of casinos. That plan had been executed in 1977. That was when a floating casino of sorts was built in Manila Bay. The casino saw success but was burned down two years after its initialization.

Four years later, several small-scale projects were funded by PAGCOR. Later in 2007, the organization issued licenses to run bingo halls and casino locations to several private operators. In addition, PAGCOR issued licenses to e-gaming cafes around that time as well.

The country has been seeing success ever since. The country now has above ten (and counting) renowned casinos operating throughout the country. This is highly remarkable when you compare it to the Philippines’ gambling industry’s main rival - Macau.

Macau is regarded as a hotspot for avid gamblers throughout Asia. It is also home to ten major casinos. This is the dichotomy of how effectively the Philippines’ stock has surged over the past ten years, owing to the efforts of PAGCOR.

Philippines Gambling Hubs

Entertainment City, also known as E-City, is the hotspot for gambling in the Philippines with attractions such as Solaire Resort & Casino, Genting Resorts World Bayshore, and the City of Dreams Manila. The location is a gambling strip spreading over a hundred acres, its design taking inspiration from Macau and Las Vegas.

The project’s formal name is Bagong Nayong Pilipino-Entertainment City, shortened to the current one. In addition, a total of four integrated resorts have been ratified to be established in E-City. The country also houses numerous privately-held gambling houses and casinos, operating under a PAGCOR license. The main benefit of E-City is that these casinos are in very close proximity to the NAIA (the Ninoy Aquino International Airport).

The country’s regulatory bodies have deemed it necessary for E-City investors to contribute a minimum of 1 billion USD to their facilities and infrastructure. They are also to follow a set ratio of gambling tables to hotel rooms. The gaming revenues acquired from E-City make up over 50% of the total gambling revenues in the Philippines. 

Thursday, March 24, 2022

UnionBank GlobalLinker partners with Lazada to help entrepreneurs expand their online presence

Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank), the country's leading digital bank for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), has again teamed up with one of the major e-commerce platforms Lazada, enabling online sellers to have more options when it comes to bringing their products closer to customers.

With the memorandum of agreement (MOA) signed last 10 March 2022, UnionBank through its digital MSME online platform UnionBank GlobalLinker (UBGL), will create a special site for all Lazada sellers and the latter will do the same for UBGL sellers. All existing Lazada sellers prior to the partnership will be automatically included.

According to UBGL and Lazada, the joint initiative aims to encourage more sign ups in both of their respective marketplaces. It will help entrepreneurs expand their online presence much easier, as enlisting with either platform automatically opens up another virtual storefront for them, resulting to more opportunities in doing business with customers.

Signing up offers numerous benefits to sellers. First, they will have access to a dedicated Lazada Onboarding Team. This crew can provide guidance on a number of ideas ranging from selling to strategies; help those who have questions or concerns; and notify sellers about the latest initiatives within the Lazada platform.

Monday, March 21, 2022

Lemon-Dou® is what the pursuit of perfection tastes like, says Myrtle Sarrosa and Chef JP Anglo


Myrtle Sarrosa endorses Lemon-Dou

The Japanese philosophy of Kodawari is all about producing things with great care, ingenuity, and the best ingredients. 


For the makers of Lemon-Dou®, one of Japan’s favorite chu-hi  (shochu highball), this meticulous process of beverage crafting starts with a whole lemon--crushed, blended into a puree, and infused with a distilled spirit.  Bubbles are added to complete this full-bodied, ‘wickedly good’ drink that serves ABV 3%, 5% and up to 9%. 


Every step of the process is handled with painstaking detail, from the creation of the lemon base and dilution of the sugarcane-based spirit to infusion and bottling. The underpinning philosophy for a process like this is called kodawari--and while there is no English translation for it, every Japanese artisan would know by heart that it is a relentless and life-long pursuit of precision, quality, attention to detail, and craftsmanship. 


Lemon-Dou® was first introduced in Japan in 2018 and then in the Philippines in Q4 of 2021 as an addition to Coca-Cola Philippines’ well-loved portfolio of sparkling beverages, juices, teas, and bottled water.  


Saturday, March 19, 2022

World Oral Health Day 2022: Cleene CLIO makes Clean Teeth possible for Filipino Families


Oral health is important. 

Oral health is fundamental to overall health, well-being and quality of life. A healthy mouth enables people to eat, speak, socialize and save them from embarrassment as well. Pain from untreated dental diseases can also lead to eating, sleeping, speaking and learning problems especially in children and adolescents which may affect a child's social interactions, achievements in school, health in general and the total quality of life. Rampant dental caries in kids may also affect the overall nutrition necessary for the growth in body weight and height. 

Diseased, crooked or missing teeth or a misshapen jaw can interfere one's speech. One can't also chew any food properly and may be difficult and painful which can also lead to expensive corrective procedures. Cavities are painful for your teeth where decay has eaten through the enamel and exposed the tooth's root. Hot or cold foods can send a sharp pain that signals something is definitely wrong.

According to the Department of Health, dental caries (tooth decay) and Periodontal Disease (gum disease) are two of the most common oral health diseases that affects most Filipinos. In a study, 87.4% Filipinos are suffering from dental caries while 48.3% has gum disease. If you ask my opinion, it is really very alarming and as parents, We must do our part to prevent this from happening within our family. 

Sometimes not even regular brushing works

5 botanical blends that will help you take on the new normal

While quarantine restrictions are eased, now is not a good time to hit the brakes and let our guard down in the new normal. It’s still a must to strictly follow safety protocols, and more importantly, to continue the good health habits we’ve started while in lockdown. As we’ve all learned, our body isn’t invincible as it needs proper nutrition, enough exercise, and quality sleep to stay healthy. It won’t also hurt to take extra steps for our overall wellbeing. 

Filipino plant-based brand Sekaya offers the Sekaya Botanic Infusions, a curated line of botanical blends for your health and wellness goals, that can give our body an added boost as it performs its many functions. Each blend is made with 100% organic plant ingredients that are non-GMO and non-irradiated and have been certified organic by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Quality Assurance International (QAI).


We’re dishing on 5 Sekaya Botanic Infusions to keep in your pantry as we step closer to the new normal:


Strengthen the body’s immunity with Immune Brew. Fight off viruses and other bugs with proper rest, and lots of fluids that include this infusion that aims to boost your immune system at its most vulnerable. Subtle and fruity, it contains botanicals like echinacea purpurea leaf, lemon peel, elderberries, and ginger root that have been traditionally used to keep the common flu and simple infections away.


Sun Life Supports initiatives that helps combat Diabetes


Diabetes education materials are being readied for the upcoming ribbon cutting and opening of the very first Sun Life Diabetes Corner

Sun Life Philippines (Sun Life) have always been a partner of Filipinos for them to live longer, healthier and with a brighter future. It latest partnership in its fight against diabetes, it launched initiatives that promote diabetes awareness and prevention through a healthier lifestyle.

Its initial project was  the launch of the Sun Life Diabetes Corner. Established and integrated with Sun Life Barangay Health Stations (SLBHS), this initiative of the Sun Life Financial-Philippines Foundation (Sun Life Foundation) began with Barangay Pansol in Taal, Batangas. 

Diabetes prevention is a global advocacy for Sun Life. We remain optimistic that with proper education and access to basic medical services, patients will triumph over this debilitating illness,” says Benedict Sison, Country Head and CEO of Sun Life. “We are grateful for this chance to help our countrymen live healthier and brighter lives.”

The people behind Sun Life Foundation would want the people to have accessible, available and appropriate primary health care even in barangay units so that they won't have to travel far to get to the hospital in dire needs for immediate health care. 

To reach even more Filipinos, Sun Life will also activate the “Sun Life Wellness on Wheels,” a mobile diabetes clinic that will go on a caravan to partner communities to conduct blood sugar screening, offer free consultation, and share relevant information. This will be done in the next phase of the program.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra Live Concert at The CCP Grounds


Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra live at the CCP Grounds

Measures taken worldwide to curb the spread of coronavirus or Covid-19 have seen numerous classical concerts and events postponed and cancelled, and concert halls around the world closed for indefinite periods since March 2020.

Countries banned gatherings, tightened their borders, and many have now seen various lockdowns for month. Some things are slowly starting to open up, but seeing live music still remains a rare treat.

As some of us are continuing to stay at home to work, self-isolate and look after the family, things may be slowly opening up and going live around the world, but we’re lucky that some classical concerts and events are being held in outdoors and streamed online for everyone to see—for free in many cases. It’s something that continues to bring comfort, solidarity and some beautiful relief in trying times…

PPO Concert Program

And when I was given the opportunity to see the highly distinguished Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra [PPO] at the Cultural Center of the Philippines [CCP] concert right at the front lawn of the CCP grounds, I immediately said yes. After all, it was the first outdoor concert at the CCP Grounds and I wanted to be part of it. 

Seats were on a first come, first served basis. And strict health and safety protocols were in place during the duration of the event. It was even livestreamed via the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ official Facebook page so that even those fans in the comfort of their homes can watch and enjoy the show and the group’s performances.

The PPO gearing up for their first ever concert at the CCP grounds

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