Guam: Fiesta Resort Hotel, Premium Outlets, Two Lovers Point, Planet Hollywood, The Plaza, Talfofo Falls Park.

Before this trip, I honestly knew nothing about Guam except that it was a US territory and that it  played a big role in World War II.  I imagine it to be just an empty island containing nothing but a large US naval base, like the ones in Olongapo and Subic.   Boy, was I wrong.
 
Guam is an island in the western Pacific Ocean and is an organized, unincorporated territory of the United States. It is one of five U.S. territories with an established civilian government.  The island's capital is Hagåtña (formerly Agana). Guam is the largest and southernmost of the Mariana Islands.

Guam is actually a shopping destination with a number of designer shops and American stores.  It's also a good summer destination with beaches akin to that of the Philippines.  No wonder Guam is so popular with the Japanese!


Day 1
24 September 2010

Strolling by the beach.

My Mum and I stayed at Fiesta Resort Hotel since it was the only hotel by the beach packaged with a Philippine Airlines ticket.  Rumor has it that Lucio Tan, owner of Philippine Airlines, owns the hotel as well.  I guess that explains it. 

The room was ok but a bit cramped compared to all the other hotels and resorts I recently stayed in during my travels.  There were two twin beds, two cabinets, an office desk, a TV and a fridge.  The bathroom had a shower and a bathtub but I found the tub a bit too small for me.  What I liked the most is their sink. 

I'm a sucker for modern sinks!

Their toiletries were complete but nothing great.  And despite having a bathtub, they didn't provide bathfoam like Melia Hotel in Vietnam did (read my blog entry on Melia Hotel).

Toiletries.

Toothbrush and face towels.

My Mum and I arrived at Guam around 4:45am.  The driver, who was Filipino, was courteous enough to bring us to the resort instead of waiting for the rest of the group to arrive (we were waiting for around 15-20 minutes already).   Since it was still too early to do anything, I decided to get my book and stay by the beach.

I finally have time to read!

Can you see the boat?

Before lunch, I started getting ready to explore Guam.  But first, my Mom and I got some ice cream from the biggest Haagen Dazs branch on the island which was conveniently located at our resort's lobby.

Loose thread from my dress I had to cut off.

Mum just kept clicking and clicking.

Happy with my ice cream.

Going around the shopping areas of Guam was easy since there were trolleys that stopped at hotels and malls every 15 minutes or so.  Rates were $3/way, $10/day and $22/week.  It's cheaper to get a day pass but be mindful that there are different trolley companies and each company only honors its own pass.

The trolleys reminded me of San Francisco!
 
Since we only had half a day, we chose to go to the biggest mall -- the Guam Premium Outlets.  GPO is currently the only outlet store in Guam housing brands such as BCBG, Goody's Sporting Goods, Famous Footwear, Surfbreak, Guess, Fragrance Outlet, Nike, Levis, Nine West, Anne Klein, Payless and Ross.

Let the shopping marathon begin!

Got suits from Anne Klein.

GPO has a food court offering a wide array of choices like Subway, Panda King, Charley's Steakery, China Wok, Taco Bell, Sbarro, KFC, Burger King and a whole lot more.

I always crave for Chinese food whenever I'm in the US (Guam included).

Sad that they don't have Panda Express in Guam, only Panda King :))

There are also a number of restaurants and food stalls around GPO such as Cold Stone Creamery, King's Restaurant, Wendy's, Ruby Tuesday, Chili's and Beard Papa's!
 
Mum falling in line for our cream puffs.

Chocolate for me and vanilla for my Mum.

Empty puffs.

They also have Mochi balls.
 
If you have time to kill, you could catch a movie at the Hollywood Theaters or browse books and magazines at Bestsellers, the only US bookstore in Guam.  GPO is open Mondays to Saturdays (10:00am to 9:00pm) and Sundays (10:00am to 8:00pm). 


The new Twilight-Archie comic magazine!
 
Day 2
25 September 2010

Since we had a whole day to go around, Mom and I rented a car from the hotel.   We first headed to Two Lovers Point at the top of the cliff in Northern Guam.

Garden beside the parking area.

"The Legend of Punta Dos Amantes (Two Lovers Point)

Once long ago, in the time when Spain ruled Guam, there was a proud family living in Hagatna, the capital city.  The father was a wealthy Spanish aristocrat and the mother was the daughter of a great Chamorro chief. The family owned land and were highly esteemed by all, Chamorro and Spanish alike.  Their daughter was a beautiful girl, admired by all for her honesty, modesty, and perfectly natural charm.  Her beauty bestowed the greatest pride and dignity unto her family."  

At the entrance.
One day, the girl's father arranged for her to take a powerful Spanish captain as her husband.  When the girl discovered this, she was so distraught that she ran from Hagatna all the way to the north of Guam until she found a secluded and peaceful shore.  There, on the moonlit shore, she met and fell in love with a young warrior from a very modest Chamorro family.  He was gentle, with a strong build, and had eyes that search for meaning in the stars.  
The legend in drawings.
"When the girl's father learned of the two lovers, he grew angry and demanded that she marry the Spanish captain at once.  That day at sundown, she stole away to the same high point along the shore, and once again met her Chamorro lover.  Her father, the captain, and all the Spanish soldiers pursued the lovers up to the high cliff above Tumon Bay.  The lovers found themselves trapped between the edge of the cliff and the approaching soldiers.  All the young warrior could do was warn them to stay back, and the father ordered the soldiers to halt."

A short version of the legend is written on this rock.
"The lovers tied their long black hair into a single knot.  And acting as if they were entirely alone, they looked deeply into each other's eyes and kissed for the final time.  Then they leaped over the long, deep cliff into the roaring waters below.  Her father and all who remained rushed to the edge to stare in great anguish.  Since that day, Chamorros have looked to the jutting peak above Tumon Bay with reverence.  The two lovers remain a symbol of true love--a love in which two souls are entwined forever in life and in death.  Forever after, the high point on the cliff was known as Two Lovers Point."

Nowadays, Japanese couples go to Two Lovers Point to latch 'love padlocks' on gates and fences found around the area.   The locks usually contain their names and important dates such as anniversaries and birthdays. 


Too bad I can't read Japanese.

There are locks for sale at the souvenir shop if you don't have your own.

Variations of the lock tradition include plastic luggage tags.

Cute bunny.

Aside from being famous because of the legend, Two Lovers Point is also a good place to take photographs since the cliff offers a dramatic view of the Philippine Sea and Tumon Bay.  Park admission is $3/person and is open daily from 8am to 8pm.


You can still see padlocks on the fence.

The shoreline.

Our next stop was Micronesia Mall.  This mall was very disappointing compared to GPO.  I guess the only thing that attracts tourist to it is Macy's Department Store.


A store dedicated to Paris Hilton bags, accessories and apparel.

We then headed over to Duty Free Shops since it's known to carry almost all famous designer brands such as Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Chanel, Marc Jacobs, Prada and so on.  A tip for all tourists:  Get a shopping card before going in because there's a game for visitors near the Godiva shop.  I won a luggage tag!

Mum and I had late lunch at Planet Hollywood which was located at the 2nd floor of DFS.  And even if you don't feel like eating there, might as well drop by for a photo op.  Ask for directions though because it's a little bit hard to find. 

Elizabeth.

Guess from what movie!

Don't be fooled. It's downright filling!

Across DFS is another high end shopping arcade called The Plaza.  Stores include Gucci, Bottega Veneta, Coach, Rolex, Marc Jacobs, Bally, Furla, Cole Haan and Vivienne Westwood.   The Plaza is  connected to the lobby of another hotel by the beach called the Outrigger Guam Resort.  Mum and I are thinking of staying here next time since it's nearer the shops.

Walking outside The Plaza.

Just further down the road is Underwater World containing one of the world's longest tunnel aquariums.  Park admission costs $23/person. 


Here fishy fishy!

Across the street from Underwater World is Slingshot Guam.  Definitely not your ordinary amusement ride, you get catapulted up into the sky for only $20.  Too bad I was wearing a dress so I couldn't try it.  Maybe next time when I go back with T ;)


At the entrance.

"The GUAM SLINGSHOT is powered by a unique spring machine which applies over 40 tons of force to 250 springs. This innovative amusement device is by far the most exhilarating vertical attraction available today. Passenger's experience 6 G's of acceleration to 0 gravity, attaining heights of 230 feet and reaching speeds of up to 100 mph.  Designed and patented in 1996, the Guam SLINGSHOT was first introduced to Guam in 2001. It is the 1st model in the Asia Pacific. Twenty SLINGSHOTS now operate in the USA with 40 more operating in Europe and Asia.  This Guam tower model known as the "Water Tower 2003" has been specifically designed for Guam conditions. The base of the tower is filled with water adding an extra 5 ton to each tower base. To add more strength during Typhoons 100 TONS of reinforced concrete and steel was added to strengthen the foundations."

At the entrance, they showed funny DVDs of past riders.

The bubble seat.
 
Spring machine.

Day 3
26 Sept 2010

We woke up really early the next day since we had to return our rented car around noon.  Like always, we had breakfast at the hotel before heading out.   Fiesta Resort's breakfast caters more to Asian tourists, specifically the Japanese.  All that's American in the spread are cereals and bread.


Breakfast time!

Korean and Japanese appetizers.

Salad section.

Row of breakfast goodies.

Ham and bacon.

Pasta.

Japanese soups.

Omelette station.

Bread and fruits.

Guam isn't that big so driving around the whole island would only take around 3-4 hours.  However, Mum and I didn't have that much time so we just decided to concentrate on the Southern part where most of the tourist attractions were.  

Scenic route.

We drove along Route 1 and passed by different landmarks.  I took note of each and every one of them for my next visit.  We only stopped when we reached Talofofo Falls Park.


Just a photo op since we had no time to explore the place.

The only creepy thing I noticed while we were traversing Route 1 was that dogs always appeared in twos.  Always!!!  And they were usually of different breeds, mind you.  They were everywhere, whether the place was inhabited or not, there were dogs.  It eerily reminds me of the enchanted creatures we have in the Philippines.  No wonder they cautioned us about driving along Route 1 late at night.

ANYWAY... 

We made a quick stop to K-Mart before heading back to the hotel.  Since there was nothing else to do, I hung out by the beach once again and finished my book. 


View from our floor.

I'm a really lucky girl, weather-wise.  Hotel staff told me that it had been raining  in Guam non-stop the whole week.  But since my Mum and I arrived, we were always greeted by the warm rays of the sun from high above.  


Clear blue skies.

So relaxing.

A funny candid moment my Mum captured (and I wasn't even trying to strike a pose!)

Swimming.

I don't wanna go home yet :(

While reading my book, I noticed a Japanese girl in a wedding dress and a guy in a suit running around by the beach.  At first I thought it was just a photoshoot of some sort but they really just got married!  Out of curiosity, I left my beach chair, walked along the shore and saw that there was indeed a chapel just near our hotel.  The chapel was so pretty!  I wanted to go inside just to confirm if it really is a chapel (there's a giant cross in the middle of the structure) but the gates were closed.




I spent the whole day reading and sleeping alternately under the sun.  I didn't put any sunblock though so I had to deal with a really bad burn by the end of the day. Since we were both tired, Mum and I just stayed at the hotel and had dinner there.   Fiesta Resort offers a daily Beachside BBQ and Cultural Show featuring local Chamorro dance and music for $60.

Local chamorro dance.

15 comments

  1. joei!!! you finally blogged about your guam trip! yay! haha

    - sygryd

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  2. syg. hey!! i was just about to message you. haha! happy reading ;)

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  3. syg. by the way, i also published an entry about my hanoi trip but i moved it down to september so maybe you didn't see it :)

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  4. DEFINITELY awesome trip...and yes, LUCKY you, seems sun welcomes u in all its glory, all photos were amazing.
    MAYBE, a next time is on the mill?

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  5. Oh I always thougth Guam was beautiful (seen pics of their nature before), but it's your post that made me wanna go!! I also love your dresses - you're so impossibly lovely in them! Love that sink too! Oh, and I feel like we have a lot of things in common when it comes to our traveling preferences, so if you ever invite me to travel with you, I'm not gonna say no haha :p

    Are you still traveling or are you back to work now? Whatever it is, I hope you're having a good time doing it! I'm finally back home after almost a month away, so slowly getting back into teh swing of things here and in the blogospehere.

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  6. Gah! You are absolutely gorgeous; and I absolutely love experiencing Guam through your photographs - each one is more lovely than the last!! :)

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  7. i miss reading about your travels sis! :) glad you had fun on your last vacay :)

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  8. imriz. yes, there'll definitely be a next time! So many more places I wanna see like the marine sanctuary and Cocos Island :)

    julia. welcome back!! We missed you at the blogosphere! Im back as well but will be traveling again soon ;) i still have travels that I havent written about. Ill try to 'backblog' some more.

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  9. erika. thank you!! :)

    erlyn. a lot more blog entries to come! :)

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  10. Sounds like a fantastic holiday! I want to go to the beach :)

    Leia

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  11. Thank you for sharing all those fabulous photos! Guam looks like an amazing vaycay destination spot!

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  12. i loveee these photos :) :)

    you captured guam very well here !

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  13. It looks like such a fun trip. And your mum is really pretty.

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  14. leia. me too! sad that it's all thunderstorms here now.

    kristin. it really is! :)

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  15. michelle and sherin. thanks to you both :)

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Thank you for the love!

I enjoy meeting fellow bloggers and readers from all over so feel free to comment and I'll get back to you as soon as I can :)

♥ joei