If you've heard of (or maybe you are even a member) of the Facebook group "MooM" or Memories Of Old Manila, you probably saw a lot of discussions about Binondo and Chinatown.
Before Makati, and BGC, Manila was the most modern part of the Philippines and right in the center of it all is Chinatown.
Nowadays, we only hear of Binondo and Chinatown during the Chinese New Year celebrations where people go on a food trip and walk around the old streets and trace back the rich history of one of the oldest city in the Philippines.
Unfortunately with the terrible traffic in the vicinity, there is only so much you can do in a day, make that a few hours to explore the city.
But now you can revisit the city with friends and balikbayan relatives and even do a staycation with the opening of The Blulane Hotel located where all the activities are happening.
The BlulaneHotel is located inside the chinatown area, walking distance to Sta.Cruz Church if youre coming from D. Jose LRT Station. If you are a local, and is familiar with gold jewelry stores. The hotel is located just 2 street corners away from them.
I admit, all the memories flashed back before me when we walked going to hotel coming from D.Jose LRT Station together with my grand kid Finn.
Since I grew up in Manila. I had a lot of fond memories of Sta. Cruz, Recto and Quiapo area. I studied in a university located in Recto. I used to hang out (make tambay) with friends around the vicinity back in the 80s where I used to buy cheap paperbacks and imported magazines like Time and Glamour. Chinatown, is where I bought my first gold bracelet from my first salary and door lucky charms. Estero is where my father used to bring us after Sunday mass for authentic delicious Chinese dishes.
After 3 decades and a half, the place has been modernized with establishments, restaurants and buildings surrounding the area. But its old charm remained intact with the esteros eateries and old churches.
So if you want to check Sta.Cruz, Recto and Binondo in a day or two. You should try The Blulane Hotel. Its a must visit tourist spot for those who want to have a taste of Old Manila and Fil-Chi culture. Its a 17-story building with 172 rooms, established to cater to the needs of the local guests, business travelers, international delegates, and foreign guests.
The aesthetics is clean and contemporary with Asian- inspired interiors to make guests feel at home.
We arrived at the hotel at 3PM last May 25. We were told to wait at the BluCafe located at the 2nd floor for a short briefing regarding the tour , from the Hotel Manager together with selected media.
Finn asked if there is a wifi in our room and I said yes. Just because wifi is life for both of us
After an hour, we were told to checked in at our designated rooms. We stayed at a 33sqm Deluxe Airconditioned Room with King Bed. This room is ideal for couple. Rate is P8000 a night. With complimentary wifi, bottled water and coffee. Bathroom is huge with hot and cold shower.
After freshening up, we were told to proceed to The Blu Spa located at 16th fl for a day's pampering. We tried their 15 minutes shiatsu massage. It would be better if they have extended the complimentary massage to 1 hour.
After the massage, we were told to come and dine at the Blu Dynasty located at 3rd floor for The Grand Cantonese Dinner showcase especially prepared for us. I admit for me, this was the highlight of our staycation. As we were famished, we dined with gusto. I love all the dishes that were served from cold cuts to appetizer, to main dish and desserts. If there is one reason to come back. I guess it would be for the Blu Dynasty's cantonese sumptuous dishes. Everything is perfect.
The dinner was superb. Even my grandkid approved and ate a lot. That means he loved it, he being a picky eater. We slept at around 10PM. I never had the opportunity to attend the videoke night grand launch at the Function Room located at the 17th floor.
This was our last day. We woke up late at around 8AM. We took our shower, dressed up and hurriedly packed up in preparation for our check out. We dropped by the Blulane Ballroom, 2nd floor for The Big Breakfast Banquet at exactly 9AM. We learned later that breakfast were open for hotel guests at 6AM. Since there were no food available at that time. We opted for spaghetti, pastries and a black coffee.
Their lattes are the best. Baristas assigned were good. I wanted a slice of cake but backed out because of my diet.
We checked out at around 1130AM, May 26. Staycation was good, I know Ill be back for the Blu Dynasty for their food and this time I will bring my parents and kids with me. .
Blulane Hotel consists of modern amenities and a classy and sophisticated ambiance that distinguishes it from other nearby hotels in the area. There are a total of 120 for Superior room; 29 rooms for De Luxe; 9 Premier; 10 Execuitve and 4 VIP rooms for a total of 172 rooms. For a luxury pampering head over to the 16th floor for a SPA treatment and for dining, there are two specialty restaurant located at the 3rd Floor, The Blu Dynasty.
For more photos check out my album
The Blulane Hotel is located at 609 Tomas Mapua St. Binondo, Sta.Cruz, Manila.
For inquiries and reservation pls call (02) 777-2258 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.theblulanehotel.com