• City of Manila

    The Army and Navy Club Transformed: A Peek Inside Rizal Park Hotel

    The Urban Roamer has talked about the Army and Navy Club a number of times now, bearing witness to its sorry state, a then-unknown future, and its renaissance-in-progress. And after years of work, the Army and Navy Club reopened recently, this time as a new hotel near Rizal Park named, Rizal Park Hotel. The hotel actually opened back in July this year though from what I understand, there are still some parts of the hotel that are yet to be finished. But it is seeing a good flurry of activity since its opening, despite the competition from nearby hotels, most notably the other historic hotel named after the park area, and the Grand Dame located…

  • Makati

    A Farewell to Hotel InterContinental

    As we in the metropolis are still having a Christmas hangover while looking forward to the New Year, unfortunately one beloved landmark in the city will bade farewell along with 2015 with the Hotel InterContinental Manila having its final day of operations on New Year’s Eve and its New Year’s Eve countdown to be held there being the last event to be held in this storied hotel. The Hotel InterContinental Manila has been pretty much a part of the cityscape of the Makati Central Business District (CBD) and the greater metropolis of Manila for over 46 years. While the hotel may not be as iconic as the Manila Hotel or The Peninsula Manila, it…

  • City of Manila

    Grand Buffet Dining at Manila’s Grand Dame: Cafe Ilang-Ilang at Manila Hotel

    It’s been a long while since the Urban Roamer has last stepped in Manila Hotel. And during that time, a lot of things have changed: a new logo, new uniforms of the staff. But the ambiance of old Manila remains alive in the hotel. My return that day though was for a somewhat different matter, which was to fully immerse myself in a filling buffet dining experience at the hotel’s main restaurant: Cafe Ilang-Ilang.

  • City of Manila

    Viva Manila: Luneta Hotel Reborn

    This is the 4th part of a series covering Carlos Celdran’s Viva Manila tour. Click here for Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 One of the stops of the Carlos Celdran Viva Manila tour was a visit to a historic hotel near Rizal Park that is not the Manila Hotel. I am of course talking about the Luneta Hotel which first opened in 1918. Designed in the French renaissance style by Spanish architect Salvador Farre, the hotel with its charm and elegance, rivaled the Manila Hotel as a popular place of stay among guests, especially notable ones like dignitaries, elite, and marine merchant personnel. Dwight D. Eisenhower, during his stint in the country…

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