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Cosina de’ Marina Lunch and Dinner Buffet: A Review

     Hey guys, welcome back to The Pinoy Wanderer. I’m here to review another restaurant in Legazpi City that offers a fulfilling buffet experience. This next destination in my series of reviews is a cool addition to the list I’m creating which will feature top “Buffet Destinations in Albay.” Let me introduce you folks to -- (drum roll please) -- “Cosina de’ Marina.”


     Cosina de’ Marina is located in Brgy. Cruzada, Legazpi City and owned by the incumbent Punong Barangay of Cruzada, Mr. Edsil N. Llaguno. The restaurant took the name “Marina” from the owner’s mother-in-law and is also a playful derivative of the bicol phrase “mari na” which means to invite others to join and partake. Of course “Cosina” means kitchen, so yeah, come and join the feast in Marina’s kitchen. Anyway, the restaurant started its operation just last March 2014 and offers lunch and dinner buffets all days of the week for only P180.00 per head. Lunch buffet is from 10am to 2pm while dinner buffet starts at 5pm to 10pm, Mondays to Sundays. Below is its location on Google Map so you won’t get lost.


     Unlike what happened on my previous review, this time, my brother and I arrived at the restaurant on time. How unbelievable for me, haha! And so we had a feast on all of their home-made cuisines. Check out the photos below to have an idea what to expect in case you try Cosina de’ Marina’s buffet:

Mr. Crab Lunch/Dinner Buffet: A Review

     My friends from out of town would often ask me which restaurants to try whenever they’re in Albay or somewhere in Bicol -- and I would always end up not having a concrete suggestion. So now that I’ve become less busy, I finally will have the time to get a fresh perspective of the culinary destinations around Albay and perhaps, its neighboring places. Yep, I think it’s time for me to make a list. For my first stop in this series of reviews (that I shall tag as “Buffet Destinations in Albay”), let me introduce you folks to Mr. Crab & Seafood Diner.


     Mr. Crab & Seafood Diner is located along Airport Road corner Washington Drive, Legazpi City and have been serving the Albayanos since July 2011. The restaurant, not more than three months ago, is now under the management of Ms. Aida Del Castillo. For those who aren’t big fans of seafood, don’t despair because I’ve checked their menu and found out that they have traditional cuisines that Filipinos usually go for. That, plus local recipes that are innate of the province such as pinangat and laing which are usually a hit among visitors and locals alike.

Where Mr. Crab is on the map, courtesy of Google Maps. Click HERE for directions.

     Anyway, this series of reviews will target restaurants in Albay that offer “eat-all-you can” dining experience since if we want to indulge in food, buffets are the best way to do it. Mr. Crab offer their lunch/dinner buffet only once every week during Wednesdays. Buffet starts at 11:00 am to 2:00 pm (lunch buffet) and 6:00 to 9:00pm (dinner buffet) at P200.00 per head. The food served during the lunch buffet is the same as what's served on the dinner buffet.

     So what can we expect from Mr. Crab’s once-a-week buffet? My brother and I came in late (around half past 12 noon), so there’s not much left on the table. No matter, here’s what we managed to put on our plates…

Tune Hotel Ortigas: A Review

     It’s been more than a year since my brother and I gave up our apartment in Pasig that’s why now, we rely on friends for a place to stay whenever we’re visiting Manila or – we stay at a hotel which suits our budget. It was in July 2014 when I first stayed at Tune Hotel Ortigas when my brother came home from the US. I’m not really well-versed with hotels. With my previous travels, it’s either I stay with relatives or friends, or the person I’m visiting takes care of my hotel, or it’s my brother who takes care of my accommodation (more likely because he’s with me). Like I mentioned on a previous post, I was browsing Agoda.com last July when my laptop died on me. It was barely 2 weeks after typhoon Glenda and electricity lines have been severely affected in our area. I went to Tune Hotel Ortigas and found out that there’s a huge difference when booking directly at the hotel and booking through online sites like Agoda.com. Anyway, the first time I booked through Agoda, I paid approximately P3,500.00 (inclusive of taxes and fees) for 2 days and 2 nights stay at the hotel. I booked on that same day. The second time, I booked a week ahead and paid approximately P3,100 for the same room we had last time (Double Room) and for the same duration (2 days and 2 nights stay), still inclusive of taxes and other hotel fees. Interesting to note, however, that we could have paid a bit less if not for the higher exchange rate that Agoda.com implemented that time. Including all the other fees, we were charged around 69.70 US dollars -- and with Agoda’s exchange rate of P44.45 pesos to a dollar, it converted to P3,100. At that time, the exchange rate at my bank was barely above 43 against the dollar. I've found out just recently, while writing this post, that the same room can be availed at a lesser amount through Hotels.com. Will sure to check Hotels.com next time I book a hotel. We all need to be budget conscious. ☺
 

     Anyway, I’m not sure what areas I’m supposed to evaluate when reviewing hotels, but as far as a common guy like me knows, here goes:

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