The New City Garden Grand Hotel at the corner of Makati and Kalayaan Avenues in Makati City has 300 well-appointed rooms and suites, each designed with a seamless mixture of narra hardwood accents, marble, glass and onyx stone highlights.
The rooms are spacious, with hypoallergenic pillows (goose-down pillows are available on request), high-definition LED TV, coffee and tea facilities, and Internet connection.
“We aim to be a 4-star hotel that has five-star service at four-star costs,” said general manager Laurence P. Peña.
The Spice Café, City Garden’s breakfast and lunch restaurant, is on the 7th floor. The lunch buffet is worth its P988 price tag.
Highly recommended choices from the buffet are the roast beef station, assorted pizzas on the grill, and prodigious selections of sushi and sashimi.
Rarely do I encounter roast beef of this quality, priced at less than P1,000. The meat is tender, savory even without gravy, and perfectly cooked (or rare and bloody).
Diners may want the roast beef with authentic Yorkshire pudding—a popular English siding made with a batter of eggs flour and milk; it’s a perfect complement to the rich savory tastes of the beef and gravy.
Guests can also choose from Chinese, Italian, Japanese and Middle Eastern food stations at the buffet spread.
The Middle Eastern food station is a must-try. It has unlimited servings of hummus, yoghurt sauces, chili sauces, raitta salads, homemade pita bread and authentic paratha bread with curry sauce.
Diners may try the chicken shawarma station as well.
For the main dishes, there’s Braised Beef Caldereta, Grilled Pork Loin with Onion Chutney, Roasted Chicken with Maple Gravy, Pan Seared Dory with Salsa, Potato Croquette, Roasted Vegetable with Herbs, Chap Chae, Yang Chow Fried Rice, and Steamed Rice.
The Spice Café has beautiful views of Makati City; tables near the windows have commanding vistas of the metropolis.
Buffet lunch at the Spice Café is from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
For lovers of wine, go to Spice Café for Vino Infinito wine buffet special. For P650, enjoy unlimited servings of the wines in City Garden Grand’s extensive collection.
For the whole month of August, the hotel is celebrating Cocido de España. The feast will feature a Hispanic Especialle Smorgasbord—from tapas to antipasti, soupa, paella negra, chorizo and albondigas con salsa de perejil.
The hotel’s Firefly Roofdeck restaurant and bar lounge on the topmost floor has the best view of the city. The al fresco venue and full-service bar of the Firefly is very conducive to afternoon and evening drinking and socializing.
There’s also an infinity pool at the roofdeck.
City Garden Grand Hotel is at 8008 Makati Ave. and Kalayaan Ave., Makati City; tel. 8888181, 8901250); visit citygardengrandhotel.com.