I remember when I was new here in Manila many, many decades ago, my new-found friends and I would embark on our favorite pastime every weekend—hotel hopping, as that was the time many new five-star hotels opened in the metro.
We all felt we were enjoying the “lifestyle of the rich and famous” as the hotels’ facilities and services would take us to a world of luxury and fun.
Last week, my Houston-based elder brother visited me. It’s been close to 60 years since the last time he visited Manila so I felt the need to take him around—hotel hopping!
Out of curiosity, we checked on three hotels and what special offering they had for that red-letter day.
The Manila Hotel
At the hotel’s famous Café Ilang-Ilang, they had an extensive collection of buffet delights. As they were expecting an overflow crowd, they offered two dinner seatings, first from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. and the other from 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
I also checked on the Champagne Room because that’s my favorite venue in the hotel. The romantic design and décor of this fine-dining restaurant is always something to marvel at. On the menu was a sophisticated culinary landscape of delectable European fare. I was almost tempted to sit down and partake of the P6000-menu but my brother preferred the buffet at the other restaurant.
The hotel also has an ongoing super-discounted promo rate for a de luxe room for only P10,000 nett, inclusive of a breakfast buffet for two and a dinner buffet for two. On our way out of the hotel, I saw, at the lobby, a crowd lapping up the hotel’s well-loved pralines and chocolate hearts which are perfect gifts for friends, family, or loved ones.
As we entered the hotel, we went straight to its signature buffet, at the Brasserie on 3, to check on what they had to offer.
They greeted guests with Welcome Canapés and had a rich ensemble of gastronomic creations, including Slow-Roasted Rib Eye, Seafood Platter, and Whole Fish Salted Crusted Salmon, among many others, thanks to Executive Chef Warren Brown.
Since my brother and I were already full from the dinner we had at the other hotel, we decided to check if the hotel’s specialty restaurant, China Blue by Jereme Leung, had something light to offer.
Executive Chinese Chef Eng Yew Khor specially prepared a luxuriously scrumptious five-course Valentine’s set menu with premium highlights such as Wok-fried Lobster with Salted Egg Pumpkin Sauce, Sautéed U.S. Premium Beef and Stuffed Mushroom with Black Olive Red Bell Pepper Sauce, Pan-fried Scallop Green Ginger Spring Onion Sauce and served with Onion Rice Mushroom Truffle Broth, among others.
Still looking for a lighter repast, my brother and I ended up at the C Lounge, where they had a Seafood Tower made up of the freshest clams, oysters, prawns, and scallops, paired with two glasses of sparkling wine, with the appetizing and captivating view of the bay to boot.
As we left the hotel, we saw at the hotel’s Welcome Lobby a kaleidoscope of attractive signature cakes and chocolates, perfect gifts for people we treasure. My brother and I could have bought some but we are both single, with nobody to share sweet moments with.
Manila Prince Hotel
A block away from home is another hotel so we decided to drop by it to see what they had. The Manila Prince Hotel is a subsidiary of The Manila Hotel, and has 300 well-appointed rooms, six function rooms, an elegant lobby, a business center, a swimming pool, and gym access. Its all-day dining restaurant is Marcelino Street Café and the hotel is connected to the UN Square Mall.
At the Café, they had a specially crafted rich menu which was offered at a real bargain. In fact, they were offering a Valentine Promo which included overnight accommodations for two, breakfast buffet for two, buffet dinner for two, and two glasses of red wine, all for only P3400 nett. A real bargain indeed.
Since it was way past our bedtime, we decided to call it a night. It was very interesting to see how these hotels attract guests with their unique offerings that make life in the metro more enjoyable.
If you’re free on weekends, hotel hopping could be a fun way to while the time away.
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