Philippine Daily Inquirer / 03:15 AM April 14, 2012
“For its rich cultural and gastronomic life, Barcelona is, without a doubt, my favorite destination in the world. From cutting-edge architecture and three-star Michelin restaurants to the jaw-dropping Boqueria market and Las Ramblas, Barcelona has everything. One whole month is not enough to experience the many wonders of this city and the rest of near-by Catalonia.
“In my home country, Colombia, the city of Cartagena has everything the modern traveler craves for: centuries-old Spanish fortresses, beautiful beaches, world-renowned restaurants and an exciting nightlife. Only a short boat ride away from the Boracay-esque Islas del Rosario, Cartagena is a favorite destination of the Spanish royalty, movie stars and entertainment icons. You may even see my kababayan Shakira or Gabriel Garcia Marquez enjoying the many charms of this Caribbean jewel of a city.
“Lastly, for nature lovers, Glacier National Park, in northwestern Montana, for its incomparable natural beauty and almost spiritual solitude. A true natural wonder.” — Chef David Pardo de Ayala, Discovery Suites
“OVER the Holy Week, the place I like to stay is at home. Manila is so nice and quiet. No traffic. My home (my new home) has become my sanctuary.
“I also love Bukidnon. I grew up among the pineapple fields, so it’s my second home and the weather is just perfect!
“And another place I love is Tiburon, north of San Francisco. Another quiet place and very unassuming. The houses are beautiful. And the view is fab!
“Only three places? There are so many places that are great. But my home tops the list! Home with an iced cold San Miguel, the perfect vacation!” — Marla Moran, owner of Café Mediterranean and Wild Ginger
“My favorite destination would be France — anywhere in France, north, south, east, west, middle. I just have to go each time. France never fades, it revives me. There is always an interesting discovery and the pastries are, of course, original and true.
“Another favorite is Italy, not the big cities but the countryside. I always look forward to eating in Italy. It’s always superb.
“Last, but not the least, is Hong Kong. I like the landscape, the quaintness, the foodie finds, the weather when it’s not summer and the thriving restaurant scene.” — Vicky Pacheco, Chateau 1771 group of restaurants
“Three destinations are not enough… Here are my travel choices: 1. Any where in the United States to be with my husband Bob Lumen where we can watch a live Eagles concert. 2. Spain, where Ferran Adria experiments with neo-culinary magic. 3. Mesopotamia or the Holy Land, whichever does not have a conflict. I want to see where Jesus will return to in the end days. I want to be there! 4. Back to Batanes to eat lobsters, dried brine-salted flying fish and “uved” (banana trunk). It’s so peaceful there and Internet for one hour is only P15! 5. Palawan. Heard so much about the beaches. I want to grill a fish caught just minutes before. The freshest meal I would ever have cooked. I’ll be ready with bagoong, ripe kamatis, lasona, coconut cream plus Kikkoman-lemon-wasabi. 6. Donsol. I want to relive my experience with the butanding and then try out the manta ray cove then get to eat authentic “pangat” in one of the locals’ places. 6. Tawi-Tawi because I’m curious about the food there. Is it worth getting hijacked for? I also want to connect with the women. 7. Alaska, to go fishing and whale watching with my hubby Bob and my kids, Joey and Amor.” — Nancy Reyes-Lumen, celebrity chef and author of “Adobo Queen”