Food & Dining Staycations Staycations & Vacations The GOppets

    Christmas Staycation at The Peninsula Manila

    I have always loved The Peninsula Manila. From the time I had my debut there over 30 years ago, to Ate‘s 18th birthday in 2012, and up to this very moment -my love affair with it knows no bounds. The Lobby is simply unparalleled when it comes to age-old beauty & elegance. High-ceilinged & spacious, bright from the natural outdoor light shining in from its impressive windows, and artificial palm trees strewn across & placed strategically -everything just comes together & is truly eye-catching.

    For four decades now, The Peninsula Manila has set the benchmark for luxury and sophistication.

    The Peninsula Manila is particularly enjoyable during the holiday season as the already grand lobby is decorated in festive ornaments & lit even more brightly with twinkling fairy lights. The traditional giant Christmas tree makes it presence & greets you majestically as you enter. And this year, a real gingerbread house accompanies it, making The Lobby even more beautiful & photogenic.

    The Peninsula Manila attracts many locals with their families as the joyful spirit it invokes is contagious, making this a wonderful place to celebrate the holidays. And we are no exception.

    Shhh.. what he doesn’t know won’t hurt him! :P #palosapwet

    When Kap took our Canadian guests for an overnight stay in Taal for a wakeboarding & hiking expedition, the giblings & I decided to make a quick, SECRET getaway & spent an impromptu evening at The Peninsula Manila to truly feel & embrace the Christmas spirit. (Plus, it gets lonely around the house without Kap in it.) :P

    The Peninsula Manila

    Corner of Ayala and Makati Avenues, 1226 Makati City, Metro Manila +63 2 887 2888

     

    Turns out, his boat won’t even start! ;))

    I purchased a Pen Card for the price of 9,800 php on the condition that I will be able to use the overnight stay on that same day -they agreed after some hustlin’ on my part & back and forth calls teehee. This includes an overnight stay for a Deluxe Twin Room for 2 adults & 2 children 12 years old & below (lowest-rated room is ordinarily priced at 9,900++), breakfast for 2 (normally 1,800 php person), complimentary dinner for 2 (2,600++ per person), a 2-lb. birthday cake, and a discount card which you can use in all the food outlets (less 50% for 2 diners, less 30% for 3 diners, less 25% for 4 diners, and less 20% for groups of 5 or more dining).

    The Deluxe Twin Room offers either 1 Queen bed or 2 Twin (single) beds. No can do as my kids are already giants. So I upgraded to a Superior Room (additional 990++) in order to avail of a bigger room with either 1 King Bed or 2 Double Beds. Upon checking, we established the need for an extra cot (additional 2k without breakfast, or 3k with breakfast) for my Babyson as the Double Bed is a tight fit, especially for a chunky mother & her grown son, lol.

    The only available cake on such short notice (at least 24-48 hours is required) because someone cancelled an order was this beautiful flourless chocolate cake. My lucky night indeed, don’t you agree? <3

    Overall, and in spite of all the add-ons, my Pen Card still gave me a good deal. The happiness on my kids’ faces for our UCBE (ultimate Christmas bonding experience) was priceless. Besides, we were celebrating the end of their first semester, and my Bae survived her initiation into college!! \m/ That certainly calls for a celebration, right? <3

    The struggle was real. College is a whole new ballgame but my Bae passed it with flying colors. So very proud of her.

    Dinner buffet at Escolta was not as grand as that of other hotels. It’s good that I had a Pen Card which shaved off 50% since I already had the complimentary voucher for 2. If I had to pay full price for our dinner, it would have made for a very sad evening, lol.

    Escolta’s international buffet features live cooking stations, home-baked breads, fresh pastas, hand-rolled sushi, charcuterie, Chinese noodles, carving stations, artisanal ice creams & desserts. Still, not a lot of choices compared to other hotels.

    Though few & far between, Escolta makes up for quality over quantity. The kids were happy with the simple feast so that also made me happy.

    After all, happy kids make for a very happy mommy. <3

    The 2 older giblings still had school the next day, their last, so we had an early night.

    It was a snug fit but I loved how the girls & I snuggled together as we pushed the 2 double beds beside each other & slept crosswise, while Babyson slept on the extra cot that we ordered from housekeeping.

    My Pen Card comes with a complimentary buffet breakfast for 2. My Babyson had to leave early to catch his last finals so he skipped the most important meal of the day. I smuggled a banana & bottle of water in his backpack though in case he got hungry. I’ll always worry about them & care no matter how old they may get.

    When dining alone, a 20% discount is given to holders of the Pen Card, and that’s what I enjoyed while the 2 ladies used the voucher.

    Again, Escolta had very few stations during breakfast, I think its was a maximum of 4 lang. But what they lacked in choices, they made up with yummy & thick pancakes, waffles, French toast, ham, and bacon. Plus, fresh buko juice all day err’day.

    I appreciated the grilled grapefruit. Not your usual fruit platter serving. <3

    After breakfast, it was just me & my Bae as the 2 older giblings left for school one after the other. I requested for a late checkout which front desk quickly approved. They let us stay until 4 in the afternoon to make up for our late check in the other day, truly grateful.

    Always empty nesting. Boo. Sad mommy. </3

    Bae & I took advantage of the fast wifi in the hotel & streamed Netflix movies the whole morning & afternoon in between naps. We really enjoy the baboy life as you can tell, lels. Again, because I had my Pen Card, I enjoyed a 50% discount on my bill. Afternoon Tea buffet at the Lobby is priced at 1,650++ each. Nasulit namin ang meryenda. ;)

    Happy to pig out on Filipino Christmas Specials like this bibingka, puto bumbong, and other kakanins. The Lobby afternoon tea comes with coffee, iced tea, or your choice of tea from their selection.

    It was a super fun & relaxing adventure which certainly made the time pass more quickly until I can be with Kap my Kap again. I don’t like being separated from him. </3

    Parents, build traditions of family vacations, and trips, and outings. These memories will never be forgotten by your children even after you’re long gone. We don’t remember days, but we remember moments. Believe me.

    Before I end, I need to stress that LYING IS BAD. To impressionable young minds reading my blog, huwag nyo akong gayahin, please lang. Since then, I have already come clean with Kap on our secret overnight stay & he has exonerated me of my “omission of actual facts” hehe.

    Bilang patunay, he was happy to use my Pen Card in our recent ice cream run. Yep, all’s forgiven on the homefront. :P

    We were serenaded by members of the Mary The Queen Parish choir while having EIGHTEEN scoops of Pen ice cream! The Peninsula Manila has several choirs on rotation for their Christmas Cantata.

    Pen Pals is a Peninsula classic. A loaded tower of rocky road, double dutch, ube, chocolate truffle, strawberry, mango, quezo, pistachio, chocolate, vanilla, mocha, buco salad and hazelnut brownie ice-cream plus raspberry and mango sorbet nestled on a bed fresh fruits. This delectable concotion of 18 scoops is finished off with maraschino cherries, waffle sticks, marshmallows, chocolate sauce and whipped cream. Serves 6-8. Price: 1,800++ php

    We don’t like sorbets so we requested for the regular flavors instead. You can do that too.

    “I heard the bells on Christmas day, their old familiar carols play. And wild & sweet, the words repeat of peace on earth, goodwill to men.” What is Christmas without carols?

    Christmas is the perfect time to celebrate the love of God and family and to create memories that will last forever. Christmas is a season not only of rejoicing but of reflection.