As a way of showing appreciation and gratitude for continued support and patronage, the Acacia Hotel Manila threw a Filipino-themed dinner party for all their VIP, long-staying and returning guests last August 14, 2013. It was held at the Grand Ballroom 2 at exactly 7:30PM.
The Upshaw Family received the invitation the night before so there was absolutely no time for us to plan our attire for that party. Not that invited guests were required to come in Filipino costume or anything, but you guys know me — I’m all for faithfully adhering to a party theme whether I’m involved as an organizer, a program participant or a regular attendee.
Anyway, we were assured that it was going to be very light and casual so I need not worry about that. So I said, “Okay. My daughter and I will be there” (Big Daddy was out-of-town at the time).
So what was it again? Very light and casual?
“Rrriiighhht!“, I thought as my daughter and I stepped right into this!
A long table was positioned at the (Ballroom) door where guests were asked to sign in and were given name tags. There were green and brown boxes of pastry souvenirs neatly arranged in rows right next to the registration area.
From the foyer I could see the colorful banderitas hanging from the ballroom ceiling and it immediately enthralled me! It definitely set a true Pinoy festive tone to the party.
Information about the many different Filipino Festivals were printed out and plastered along the walls. Although I liked the idea of enlightening guests on the subject, I would have preferred that this relevant information was instead shared by projecting the image on the screen for optimal readability. I could see that part of the purpose might be to encourage guests to walk around and mingle but there are other ways more effective in accomplishing that. There was just too much stuff to read while standing and many of the attending guests might have come from offices and were too tired to even bother (just my thoughts).
Speaking of guests being “tired”, THIS was a brilliant idea for a party treat:
The first things I noticed upon entering the venue were the cozy lounge areas created along two corners of the ballroom and in one of these nooks, guests were treated to a complimentary neck and shoulder massage. Well, Acacia Hotel Manila, you had me at Aaaahhh!!!
What truly defines a Filipino-themed dinner party is the authentic all-Filipino menu. The Acacia Hotel Manila didn’t scrimp on that. Pancit Canton, Lumpiang Ubod, Fried Lumpia, Chicken Barbecue, Beef Salpicao (Pinoy version), Tokwa’t Baboy were among the Pinoy dishes served at the buffet. Guests also feasted on well-loved Filipino desserts like Buko-Pandan Salad, Turon, Maja Blanca and Puto. (DIGHAAAY!)
After dinner, a short program commenced.
The program was opened by Acacia Hotel Manila Director of Sales and Marketing, Cherry Pea Maddela. General Manager, Bobby Horrigan, delivered the Welcome Remarks.
The program hosts warmed up the party with an ice breaker game while the Muntinlupa Science High School Rondalla provided the musical entertainment after.
To further complement the party theme, Acacia Hotel Manila staff led by Krystine Palmes (Guest Experiences Manager), along with Angel Villasoto (Guest Experience Associate), Nikki Tecson and Shane Chavez (Front Desk Associates), came in their colorful Filipiniana costumes.
I was told that the Acacia Hotel Manila intends to do this for all their VIP, long-staying and returning guests monthly or quarterly at the very least. This is a way not only of showing how much guests are deeply treasured here but of affirming that this hotel takes its slogan very seriously:
“Come in as a Guest, leave as Family.”
Each party will have a different theme. For this month, the Acacia Hotel Manila decided on a Filipino theme to share a little bit more about the Filipino culture with its foreign guests, as well as to support the government’s efforts in promoting the Philippines as a world-class tourism destination. By providing an authentic cultural experience through the music, the food, the costumes, the congenial and lively personality of the Filipino staff, guests are immersed in a general aura that is “Proudly Pinoy“.
Too bad, Arra and I had to leave early and weren’t able to witness the Balut-eating contest. I bet it was a lot of fun! Maybe I should find out who won that contest and ask how he/she enjoyed the experience. Haha!
Can y’all guess what the next party theme might be?
For inquiries and reservations:
Acacia Hotel Manila
5400 East Asia Drive corner Commerce Avenue,
Filinvest Corporate City, Alabang,
Muntinlupa City 1781
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