Neri: Sampaguita stories, biggest Megaworld hotel in the PH

Little Local
Neri: Sampaguita stories, biggest Megaworld hotel in the PH

I took a Cebu Pacific flight to Manila for what I had initially thought was “just your friendly everyday hotel opening ceremony” and ended up, instead, witnessing the country’s President inaugurate the biggest hotel in the Philippines. The experience was definitely beyond what I had imagined.

True to its title, the country’s largest hotel developer and property giant Megaworld, just formally opened a hotel as big as its name — the Grand Westside Hotel.

As the biggest hotel development in the Philippines to date, Grand Westside Hotel’s ceremonial inauguration deserved to be and was done by none other than President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., who was welcomed onstage for his speech by Department of Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco. This milestone came in perfect timing with Megaworld’s 35th anniversary that happened in June.

President and chief executive officer of Alliance Global Group Kevin L. Tan started the ceremony by shining a light on the bigger picture — talking about future developments of the Westside City township to achieve their “Broadway of Asia” vision and the positive impact the project has had on local employment. Grand Westside Hotel will be connected to the rising Westside Resort complex, a sprawling entertainment complex that will feature four theaters — the biggest of which will be The Grand Opera House, with a 2,000 seating capacity.

Zeroing in on the hotel itself was Megaworld Hotels & Resorts' Managing Director Cleofe Albiso, who gave us a glimpse of the other plans the developer had in the pipeline for the two-tower, 19-storey hotel.

Grand Westside Hotel is a massive development stretching across the 31-hectare Westside City Township that features 1,530 rooms nestled within two 19-story towers. Its interiors are very particularly designed with wave-inspired aesthetics and watery movements to pay homage to Manila Bay.

Every tasteful detail for that special night — from having used only fresh flowers for every floral arrangement down to the velvety texture of the table cloth — was meticulously curated by Megaworld’s vice president for public relations and media affairs Harold Geronimo with the support of his team.

After the ceremony dinner that featured a very nice signature Sampaguita Cheesecake for dessert, the night was topped off by the buzz of an afterparty and entrancing fireworks show at the hotel’s fifth floor.

Serving experience on a silver platter, one of the things that particularly stood out at the hotel itself was the floral aroma of Sampaguita that washed over me the moment I stepped into the lobby. That certain element, along with the Sampaguita-infused refreshments and wall decorations, proves the thoughtfulness Megaworld puts in continuing to incorporate its brand of hospitality into the overall customer experience.

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