Friday, June 30, 2017

#kolokoytravels - Hong Kong 2016 - Hello Kitty Chinese Cuisine

So as I mend my broken heart over my self-imposed hiatus from booking a piso fare flight via Cebu Pacific ongoing promotion, I decided to just reminisce about my previous travels. Since I'm not yet keen on blogging about my already not-so-recent Seoul trip, I'm blogging about a way more not-so-recent trip to Hong Kong way back April 2016. It was my second time in the city, though my first time to have it in DIY mode, and one thing I very much remember is the Hello Kitty restaurant in Canton Road.

I'm not a huge Hello Kitty fan, and neither my companions, but we all loved themed cafes and decided to give this one a try. Note that though there's a lot of Hello Kitty themed restaurants and cafes all over the globe, this they say,  is the world’s first Hello Kitty restaurant that serves Chinese cuisine.

Getting There

Basing from Google Maps, it looks like it is very near Austin Station. However, the exit (F) leading to Canton Road from the station itself was a challenge and we learned the hard way that it is actually nearer if coming from Jordan Station. Here's the complete address:

Shop A-C, G/F, Lee Loy Mansion, 332-338 Canton Road, Jordan, Kowloon

Now that I'm a bit wiser, the should be accessible via MTR Austin Station Exit B2, walk about 3 minutes; or MTR Jordan Station Exit C2, walk about 5 minutes. Why have I not found out about it before? Tsk.

I'm not sure if it's because we got there way past dinner time, but the actual vicinity is not that enticing itself. Located on a corner dilapidated (for lack of better term) building where alleys are not well lit and few pedestrians can come across, the restaurant itself is a breath of fresh air or view. The huge iconic pink bows is a telltale sign that you reached the right place.

Going in by the gift store at the side, you will be greeted by Hello Kitty itself?, herself?, offering a steamed bun. Don't you dare refuse.

The restaurant itself explodes with everything Hello Kitty (duh) but with a strong ancient China feel. Old school Chinese wooden tables, chairs, and lanterns all engraved with Hello Kitty’s face. Every single detail from the windows, chopsticks, table napkins, teapots and tea cups were branded. There are also ancient style paintings of Hello Kitty depicted as some kind of deity, I think.


It was late dinner time when we reached the place so we were seated almost immediately even though the restaurant itself is still almost full of customers. Ordering took some time, not because of language barrier (I'm not really sure if there was an English menu back then, there is one now, and we rely on pictures) but because there are so many options to choose with so little budget. Haha. Waiting time is standard 20-30 minutes, of which we took the opportunity to go around and be the shutterbugs that we are. When our food were brought out, instagrammable was the first word I thought of. The details are perfect and I don’t think I’ll ever had such cute food for a few months or so. I’m not sure of how many photos we took of our food before we started eating it but it was definitely a lot. 

Lau Sa Bau

Har Gau

Stir Fried Glutinous Rice

 Saffron Fried Rice with Shredded Chicken in Apple Sauce. Whew.

Steamed Egg Whites and Prawns with Hello Kitty Rice

Hello Kitty Pudding with Milk

For die hard Hello Kitty fans, I believe It will take a lot of willpower to actually start eating as it all looked too good to eat. But I'm not one, so here's an obligatory I-ate-Hello-Kitty-and-I'm-not-sorry shots.

And here's one from our birthday boy Yuki:


As far as I remember, we spent almost Php 5,000 (too lazy to check my credit card statement, and wise enough not to try) for all the above dishes, so yeah it's a bit on the pricey side. Be prepared to fork out some cash as these nice kitty dishes do not come cheap after currency conversion and all. But worry not, I just found out that my favorite online travel activity booking site is offering a voucher. For as low as Php 851, one can avail of the 1 person set which consists of:

1pc Hello Kitty Creamy Egg Yolk Bun
1pc Hello Kitty Shrimp Dumplings
1pc Hello Kitty Baked B.B.Q. Pork Cake
1pc Hello Kitty Pan Fried Turnip Cake
Inclusive of service fees and tea fees

Not bad. I wish I knew about this at that time. Oh well. 

Was the food, good?

I honestly don't remember, except that I enjoyed it. I would recommend for first timers and definitely for hardcore Hello Kitty fans. In my humble opinion, whenever going to themed cafes or restaurants, always keep your expectations to a minimum level. You came for the experience, the theme, the bragging rights to actually say been-there-done-that on Instagram or whatever social media account you have. Tasting good is just an extra icing on the cake. Most online reviews say that the food was meh, bland, too pricey, etc, but they are not thinking about that when uploading their pics, are they? Case closed.

More to come! :)

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Cebu Pacific's Piso Fare Promo June 2017

This really breaks my heart. :(

Promotion starts today, June 29, 2017 12:00 AM until June 30, 2017 or until seats last. Travel period until March 15, 2018.

Image from Cebu Pacific website

As much as I would want to, I have a lot of many things to prioritize first over my wanderlust. 

Image from Cebu Pacific's FB page

Thanks, but I'll pass. *deep sigh*

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

eBay 101 - Funds Availability

Image from ebayph twitter page

I've been an occasional seller in eBay PH. Most of the time, payments are made upon meet up and bank deposits. With this, cash is immediately accessible. With PayPal, eBay's only automatic accepted payment method, they have a policy that would hold a buyer's payment for a maximum of 21 days to ensure successful fulfillment. 

Though I have been a member since 2012, it was my first time to successfully sold an item on eBay US and mt second time accepting payment via PayPal. As such, my account is tagged as a new seller and my funds were not readily available. I'm quite familiar on how funds availability works but it's very different if you are the one experiencing it. 


It is important that you have extra cash on hand to send the item to the buyer while you wait for your funds to be available.  Most sellers make the mistake of assuming that payments are readily available but ends up not being to send the item since they are out of pocket. In my case, it was a good thing I was able to shell out my own cash to send the item to the US

Two words: successful fulfillment. All you have to do is to upload tracking information and your funds availability date would change to 3 days after estimated delivery date. 

If by any chance you sent the item without tracking, the best thing to do is to mark the item as shipped and your funds availability date would update to 7 days after estimated date of delivery.

If your item is being collected in person, it would be an automatic 21 days waiting time. It's better to receive cash payment upon collection. Note that payment upon collection will not have the transaction be covered with eBay's or PayPal's seller protection. If it would be of any help, collection in person wouldn't also be eligible. 

It would be a plus if you receive a positive feedback from your buyer. Once your tracking information shows that the item has been delivered, contact customer support and ask for the release to be expedited since you have proof that the item was received by the buyer and you already got a positive feedback for the transaction. 

This has worked for me but is not a guarantee to work for everyone. Otherwise, you really need to wait for 3 days after the estimated date of delivery to have your funds released. 


Friday, June 23, 2017

Secured Credit Card - Letting go of RCBC's Instacard

Just in:

Dear Branch,

Good Day!

In line with issue reference number XXX, please be informed that branch may now release the hold out deposit of Mr. XXX for his Instacard account with card number XXX. Account was cancelled last April 18, 2017 and already completed the required 60 day holding period. The account of client do not have any outstanding obligation.

Thank you.

After reading so many horror stories about how people went through hell and back for their hold out amount to be released, I am so relieved that I didn't went through countless follow ups, calls and emails. All I did was to call RCBC's hotline, state my request, and patiently wait for 60 days clearing period to be over. Thank you RCBC!

My profile:

Php10,000 hold out amount
100% credit limit
Used for a 12 months installment purchase
Occasional usage, about twice in a month
Fully paid before due date
Was given a regular Gold RCBC credit card on my 10th month

With that, it's adios from me for RCBC's Instacard.