16 September 2013

anniversary staycation at crowne plaza, dfc

Since we’ve kind of made it a tradition to celebrate our anniversary at a hotel, Hubby and I decided to take advantage of our certificate from TVI Express and book our family of 4 in a room for 2 nights at Crowne Plaza, Dubai Festival City this year. It was a nice place in the city with easy access to the mall but relatively peaceful just the same.

As soon as we stopped in front of the hotel, the valet immediately opened our doors and took the keys to Pepper, the bellman automatically helped us take out our bags and put them on the trolley, and the guy at the front desk swiftly went through the process of checking us in.

We were booked in a Superior Room which had a view of the airport, and although I didn’t appreciate it at first, I found the view bright and pretty later that night when the lights went on.
As Hubby and I expected, Caila was disappointed when she saw the room. Masyado na talagang mataas ang standards nya ever since we stayed in the suite at St. Regis last year. Eh kasi naman anak, SUITE yun, atsaka libre pa. Standard rooms pa lang ang kayang iafford ng mga magulang mo ngayon. But after we switched the TV to a cartoon channel, she comfortably sat on the bed and forgot her disappointment. Sophie, on the other hand, was practically everywhere. The room was carpeted so we let her crawl around, allowing her to explore the room. Of course we made sure to keep our eyes on her in case she picked up anything or put her hands in her mouth. We had requested for a cot from the hotel, but when we saw that it had steel bars, we decided not to use it because Sophie might hurt herself. We just kept it aside instead to put some of our things in.

We had dinner that night at our friends’ and co-Unit members’ villa because of the MER1 Service Team Meeting that we needed to attend. We didn’t stay until the end of the meeting though; they understood that we were in the midst of enjoying our family celebration.

It was a pretty tight fit with the four of us snuggled together in the king-size bed that night, but very cozy just the same.

the view from our room at night
The next morning, we all woke up at pretty much the same time but were too lazy to get up. Ang sarap kasi matulog sa napakalambot na kama na katabi ang buong pamilya sa malamig na kwarto sa hotel eh. After a while, we finally got up and went down to enjoy the buffet breakfast at Zaytoun. Even though it was already the end of May, the weather was still really cool so we opted to sit at a table outside where we could enjoy the fresh air and view of the creek and Business Bay.

Much to the amusement of our daughters, there were a few birds flying around that would peck on any leftover food when a guest would leave his or her table. Whenever a bird would go near our table, Caila would chase after it. We didn’t go back up to our room right after breakfast; we just lounged around and enjoyed the cool breeze and scenery while our eldest daughter ran around the open area. Sophie was content on looking at the birds and eating whatever food we gave her.
our table

When Sophie began to get sleepy, we headed back to our room so that Hubby and Caila could get ready and swim in the hotel pool.

For lunch, we decided to play safe (translation: nagtitipid kami) and walk to the mall. Since we were still pretty full from the sumptuous breakfast we had earlier, we just ordered some meals from McDonald’s. After lunch, while Hubby and Sophie went back to the hotel, Caila and I went to HyperPanda to buy some snacks for us to munch on during our stay in the hotel. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it already in this blog, but she is soooo talkative! All the way to the supermarket and back to the hotel, Caila would talk and talk and talk about anything and everything she could see or think of. Sometimes she would ask me questions, sometimes she would point out something to me, other times she would just comment or blurt out a statement and then end it with “di ba, Mommy?” Don’t get me wrong; I’m not complaining. I’m really glad she’s developed her communication skills really well. May times lang kasi na nauubusan ako ng isasagot ko sa kanya, and sobrang slang na sya mag-Tagalog minsan. But at least her being talkative gave us an opportunity to bond and made our walk not boring.

A few minutes after we reached our room, the doorbell rang and Hubby opened the door to a nice gift from the hotel.
The rest of the afternoon was spent on the bed. We either slept or watched TV or played games on Tisoy and Tisay. Fast forward to that night when we all went to sleep, Caila insisted on sleeping in the hotel cot that we had earlier requested for Sophie. Since there wouldn’t be any harm in that, we just let her do what she wanted while Sophie slept between me and Hubby.
our eldest enjoying a good sleep
We enjoyed breakfast again at Zaytoun the following day. Just like the day before, the weather was perfect and we enjoyed it at the same table outside. This time, we didn’t stay too long because my sister, her son, Mama and Yaya Juliet had arrived just after we had finished eating. After a few minutes, we all headed down to the pool where all of us (except Mama, Juliet and Sophie) went swimming. I think we spent more than 3 hours at the pool area, just lazing around enjoying the water. There was a kind of half of bathtub there that Caila just liked to lie down on
Finally, when we felt that the skin on our hands and feet were all wrinkled up, we decided to head back to our room. We had just enough time to each take a shower, get dressed and pack our stuff before checking out.

It was a very relaxing staycation; a wonderful end to my two-week leave from work and a great way to top off our anniversaries and the girls’ month-birthdays.

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