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#StayForSummer for only Php 2,023 per night at celebrity homes on Airbnb

This summer of 2023, Airbnb has partnered with three renowned Filipino celebrities-turned Airbnb Hosts to make their homes available for only Php 2,023 per night**!

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Summer travel is finally here! Excitement around summer continues to surge in the Philippines with searches for Airbnb Stays on the platform spiking by almost 400 percent year-on-year*, as Filipinos look forward to hitting the beach or mountains for a quick getaway with family and barkada.

This summer of 2023, Airbnb has partnered with three renowned Filipino celebrities-turned Airbnb Hosts to make their homes available for only Php 2,023 per night**!

From a private room in a luxurious villa in Quezon to bed and breakfasts in surf destinations La Union and Baler, celebrity Hosts Zsa Zsa Padilla, Mylene Dizon and Glaiza de Castro will warmly welcome you into their homes. Starting today, guests can book each celebrity’s Airbnb stay for an exclusive two-night stay for only Php 2,023 per night this May**, on these special dates:

“For Filipinos, summer is an amazing time to rediscover the rich wonders and beautiful destinations of the Philippines, while enjoying the iconic Filipino hospitality that our Hosts offer. We hope our #StayForSummer celebrity Host collaboration will encourage Filipinos to enjoy precious time with friends and family, and create meaningful summer memories together,” shares Amanpreet Bajaj, Airbnb’s General Manager for Southeast Asia, India, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

What are you waiting for? Bookings open today, fastest fingers first!

May 12 to 14: Zsa Zsa Padilla’s Casa Esperanza

Nestled between swaying coconut trees and emerald rice paddies in the tranquil town of Lucban is Casa Esperanza, the beautiful weekend home of renowned singer-actress Zsa Zsa Padilla and her partner, famed architect Conrad Onglao. The villa offers guests an impeccably stylish and private getaway in the countryside.

“At Casa Esperanza, we warmly welcome groups and families seeking to create unforgettable memories. Take a refreshing dip in our saltwater pool, stroll through our lush garden, and savor the serenity of dining inside our greenhouse. We love seeing our guests refreshed and rejuvenated after spending a night or two in our home, and we can’t wait to host more guests on Airbnb this summer,” says Zsa Zsa.

May 19 to 21: Mylene Dizon’s Surfstar Elyu Room 8

You don’t have to be a surfer to enjoy La Union, which is full of hip coffee shops, delicious restaurants and exciting nightlife. But if you’re looking for a place with incredible views of the surf, check out actress-model Mylene Dizon’s Surfstar Elyu.

Mylene enjoys touring guests around and making them fall in love with Elyu, “We hope to make your stay as exciting and meaningful as when we first discovered this charming coastal town in the North. What was once a sleepy fishing village is now a buzzing vacation and surfing destination in the Philippines! We welcome our guests to join us and experience the incredible beauty and laidback lifestyle of La Union, with all the comforts of home.”

May 26 to 28: Glaiza de Castro’s Casa Galura

Singer-actress Glaiza de Castro’s gorgeous bed-and-breakfast opened just in time for the summer season. Located in the quiet town of Baler, Glaiza shared that the stay reminds her of her childhood and large family reunions. The home is spacious enough for large groups and features a pool, workout area and rooftop.

Similarly, she wants her guests to create memories with their loved ones that they can look back on in future. She shares, “I hope everyone who stays in Casa Galura will make fun memories in Baler. I want them to feel relaxed and at the same time, build a more solid connection with their loved ones and friends. Some people say you really get to know more about people when you travel together and I agree! Baler has so much to offer and we are here to share how best they can explore this beautiful place.”

*Based on internal Airbnb data

**Price is per night and does not include service fees

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Philippines as the country with the world’s largest bats

“The Philippines has 79 recorded bat species, half of them endemic,” explains Dr. Mariano Roy Duya of the University of the Philippines Institute of Biology (UPIB). North America, with a land area that is 66 times larger – has but 45. We have an incredible diversity of bats since each of our 7100 islands is geographically unique. And of course, we have the largest bat of all.”

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By Gregg Yan

Did you know that the largest bat of all is found only in the Philippines? Planet Earth has 1400 known bat species and the Golden-crowned Flying Fox (Acerodon jubatus) earns the top spot for size and weight. Known locally as kabog, it is endemic or found nowhere else but in the Philippines.

Strikingly patterned with a golden cap, reddish fur and chocolate-brown wings, adults weigh over a kilogram and can boast of a wingspan nearly two meters across – longer than most people are tall.

“The Philippines has 79 recorded bat species, half of them endemic,” explains Dr. Mariano Roy Duya of the University of the Philippines Institute of Biology (UPIB). North America, with a land area that is 66 times larger – has but 45. We have an incredible diversity of bats since each of our 7100 islands is geographically unique. And of course, we have the largest bat of all.”

Once widespread throughout undisturbed lowland forests across the country, hunting and deforestation – particularly from slash-and-burn upland farming or kaingin – have whittled down bat populations.

Dumaguete-based filmmaker Rhiyad Maturan and I were recently invited by the Energy Development Corporation (EDC) to film a thriving kabog colony inside the Bacon-Manito Geothermal Project, a heavily forested geothermal reservation nestled between the provinces of Albay and Sorsogon on the island of Luzon. Though the area is now verdant and alive, it wasn’t always so.

“Believe it or not, that entire mountain range was once logged-over,” says Ed Jimenez, corporate relations head for EDC’s Bacon-Manito Geothermal Project, pointing at well-forested hills nearby. “The only trees left were the ones loggers ignored. To bring the mountains back to life, we worked with the local communities to help reforest this area while providing them with an alternative source of income. Decades later, the organizations we helped form, like the Alliance of Bacman Farmer’s Association Inc. Agriculture Cooperative (formerly ALBAFAI) and the Bacman Host Community Multi-purpose Cooperative (BMPC), have become some of our most passionate champions. Even the grandchildren of the original members are helping us plant trees, promote community-based conservation and protect these forests.”

Aside from bats, Bicol’s forests also shelter wild deer, pigs, monkeys and birds – most of which were driven to remote areas by decades of hunting and forest loss.

“I learned to shoot kabog with an airgun when I was still a kid,” recalls Joseph ‘Doy’ Gabion, a former bat hunter. “Bats are easy to hunt by day because they hang upside down from their roosts. When the roosts were eventually protected by EDC and its conservation partners, we hunters had to wait until the bats flew out to their feeding grounds. Back in the 1990s, my uncle and I would wait for them to pass to be able to catch two or three bats a night. Kabog meat has a slightly woody taste.” Doy has since stopped hunting and now volunteers with the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ CAFGU Active Auxiliary Unit II to help protect the very animals he once hunted.

The kabog colony moves from one area to another within the Bacman reservation and we chanced upon them roosting on a grove of pine-like Agoho (Casuarina spp.) trees. “We have about 700 kabog individuals here now, our flagship fauna species for this site,” explains Forester Neil Miras, EDC Bacman’s watershed management officer.

Representing iconic wildlife found in its geothermal, solar and wind sites, EDC’s Flagship Species Initiative (FSI) aims to popularize some of the nation’s lesser-known forest denizens. The eight other flagship species include the Philippine Warty Pig (Sus philippensis)Visayan Hornbill (Penelopides panini)Apo Myna (Goodfellowia miranda), plus native trees like Mapilig (Xanthostemon bracteatus), Katmon Bayani (Dillenia megalantha), Red Lauan (Shorea negrosensis),Almaciga (Agathis philippinensis)andIgem-dagat (Podocarpus costalis). EDC has been planting native trees across the country since the 1980s.

“Though millions of trees have been planted under the BINHI Program, we should still recognize the importance and effectiveness of natural seed dispersion – either by the wind, water or by local wildlife,” explainsForester Abegail Gatdula, EDC-FSI project manager. “Flying animals like birds and bats eat the fruits of various forest trees and disperse them far and wide within life-giving guano bombs, giving the seeds a vital headstart.”  

Though not as popular as the Tamaraw or Philippine Eagle, the kabog has been quietly doing its part to make the Philippines greener. “Think of them as the ‘silent seed planters’ of nature. We never pay them but they keep working for our world,” concludes Jean Dayap, Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Officer (MENRO) of Manito in Albay.  

So tonight, please look up at the night sky to thank our uncelebrated wildlife heroes, quietly working the night shift to make the Philippines a little greener – one guano bomb at a time.

Watch our Golden-crowned Flying Fox documentary HERE.

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Ways to dispose of used medical sharps while traveling

For both existing sharps users and people using sharps for the first time, disposal can be confusing, especially while traveling.

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It doesn’t matter if you are traveling by plane, train, car or staying home this holiday season, it’s important to know how to safely dispose of used medical sharps. Millions of people in the United States use needles, lancets and syringes – otherwise known as sharps – to puncture the skin and dispense medication to help manage short- or long-term chronic conditions like diabetes, arthritis, cancer or auto-immune diseases.

For both existing sharps users and people using sharps for the first time, disposal can be confusing, especially while traveling.

People who use sharps can often dispose of them at home or on the road. It’s as simple as 1-2-3:

  1. Place used sharps in a strong, plastic container like a laundry detergent or bleach bottle.
  2. When the container is 75% full, seal it tightly with duct tape and label it “do not recycle.”
  3. Place the sealed container in regular household trash.

Disposal rules are different in every state, so it’s important to confirm local disposal regulations.

Commonly Used Medical Sharps

  • Needles – fine, slender, hollow pieces of metal, typically attached to syringes, used to inject medication under the skin or withdraw fluid from the body
  • Lancets, also called “fingersticks” – often used by people with diabetes to get drops of blood for testing
  • Auto injectors, including epinephrine pens – syringes pre-filled with fluid medication designed to be self-injected into the body
  • Infusion sets – tubing systems with needles used to deliver drugs to the body
  • Connection needles – needles that connect to a tube used to transfer fluids in and out of the body

Learn more about the rules of safe sharps disposal this holiday season at SafetyIsThePoint.org.

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15 Facts you may not know about Emirates A380

To celebrate 15 years of the Emirates A380, below are 15 fun facts about the remarkable aircraft that you may not know.

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This year sees Emirates, the world’s largest international airline, celebrating 15 years of operating the Airbus A380. Operating to 50 destinations* worldwide, Emirates is the largest carrier of this iconic aircraft, with a total of 116 of the aircraft in its fleet.

To celebrate 15 years of the Emirates A380, below are 15 fun facts about the remarkable aircraft that you may not know:

  1. Making History: When the A380 first began flying in 2008 many airports had to overhaul their runways and air bridge to accommodate, as the aircraft can weigh up to 575 tonnes – equivalent to two and a half times the weight of New York’s Statue of Liberty.
  2. Largest Ever Capacity: With space for as many as 615 passengers in a two-class configuration, the A380 is the largest passenger aircraft ever made, with over 550 square meters of usable floor space across two full-length decks. There up to 24 Emirates crew on every A380 flight
  3. Widebody Wings: The A380’s wingspan is a whopping 79.8 metres – which is as wide as 32 double-decker buses or an Olympic size swimming pool.
  4. First Class Luxury: The A380 also offers some of the world’s best in-flight experiences, with signature amenities in First Class such as the Shower Spa, which features Emirates Private Collection Bvlgari amenity kits.
  5. Suite Deal: There are 14 fully-enclosed Private Suites available in the A380’s First Class, where guests can enjoy an experience that gets as close as it comes to having their own private jet. You can select your own meal and bedtimes, with fine dining at any time. A short walk away is the on-board Shower Spa, as well as the ultimate Onboard Lounge.
  6. High-End Gastronomy: 1,800 chefs create more than 12,000 recipes a year to cater for Emirates’ fleet including the A380, catering for more than 43 million dine-in guests travelling on flights every year.
  7. Tasting the Stars: Emirates is the only commercial airline in the world officially serving Moët & ChandonVeuve Clicquot and Dom Pérignon onboard, with exclusive agreements in place until 2024. Moët Hennessy Champagnes have been available for Emirates passengers onboard for over 30 years, with First Class guests enjoying unlimited champagne and caviar during their flight.
  8. Shortest and Longest: With a flight duration of under 2 hours 50 mins each way, the shortest route on the Emirates A380 is Dubai to Jeddah. The longest Emirates A380 route meanwhile is Dubai-Auckland, with an estimated flight time of over 17 hours.
  9. A Whole Lot of Luggage: The Emirates A380 can carry up to 20,000 kilograms in baggage allowance. The A380’s vast cargo capacity also means the aircraft carry a host of items for export including flowers, fresh meat and fish, luxury goods, and pharmaceuticals.
  10. Entertainment for Hours: Emirates’ award-winning ice inflight entertainment system allows passengers to choose from 6,500 channels of movies, TV shows, live sports and breaking news, alongside in-flight Wi-Fi. Films available on ice that were released when Emirates first launched the A380 in 2008 include The Dark Knight, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, and Mamma Mia!.
  11. In It For The Long Haul: The A380 is one of the longest-range aircraft in the world, capable of flying distances of up to 15,000 kilometres between take-off and landing.
  12. With a cruising altitude of 43,100 feet, the A380 flies at over 15 times the height of the world’s tallest freestanding building, the Burj Khalifa and over 42,000ft above The Shard. The vertical tail fin stands at an impressive 24m tall, capturing attention wherever it goes. 
  13. The Emirates A380 is typically powered by four Engine Alliance GP72000 engines, with the over 290,000 lb of take-off thrust across the wing providing the horsepower equivalent of around 2,600 cars at 110hp each.
  14. Each wheel from the 22 that make up the A380’s full landing gear supports around 26 tonnes of weight, equivalent to just over one and a half fully loaded articulated trucks. These allow it to complete a 180-degree turn within a width of 56.6m.
  15. Overhauling: Emirates is in the process of carrying out a US$2 billion retrofit program, fully refreshing cabins across 67 A380s to include the latest products and interiors across all cabins, including new Premium Economy seats. There is also a new livery, which was unveiled on the first A380 in March 2023. It takes over 4,000 litres of paint to cover the entire 38,000sq ft surface of the aircraft.

Filipino customers flying through Emirates’ global hub in Dubai and beyond* can experience all that the iconic Emirates A380 has to offer, from the world-class customer service to in-flight features that continue to redefine luxury air travel as we know it.

To book a flight, visit http://www.emirates.com/ph/english/.

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