One of my favorite things to do whenever I travel is laying down for a very long time on the fluffy bed, and just inhaling the clean scent of my hotel room.
Back in college, accommodations whenever I went out of town weren’t really my priority—I was okay with just staying in a hostel or a 3-star hotel that provided the basics, like a bathroom and a bed. What was important for me then was how cheap the room was, and if it would fit my budget (I’m suddenly reminded of my Boracay trips with college and/or Ultimate friends, where we’d all share a tiny room and squeeze ourselves onto double beds).
All that changed now that I’m in my late 20’s, because suddenly, the quality of my accommodations moved up a notch on my priority list. Thread counts need to be higher, bathrooms need to be cleaner (preferably with a tub), and my overall experience needs to meet a certain standard otherwise I end up disappointed and restless.
When I received an invite from City Garden Grand Hotel to have a staycation weekend, I couldn’t stop counting the number of days until I checked in. City Garden Grand Hotel is one of the most charming luxury hotels in Makati that’s hard to miss, especially it being located along Makati and Kalayaan Avenues. It’s been such a tall, familiar sight for me, having worked in Makati for a while now, where the Cupcake and I sometimes even pass it in the evening on our way home.
City Garden Grand Hotel Lobby
On the day that we checked in, which was a Saturday, I actually had something to do for work in the morning at Power Plant Mall, where I helped set up the Glamourbox Beauty Lounge in Common Thread. For those of you who aren’t familiar with it yet, the Glamourbox Beauty Lounge is a makeover station where we often collaborate with retail channels and give customers a free makeover to get them to try our products. It’s fun, but it can also be tedious, which is why a weekend staycation sounded perfect after a hectic week (actually, a hectic month).
Part of my weekend routine is using a sheet mask to moisturize and revitalize my skin
After setting up and having lunch in Press Cafe (one of my favorite restaurants in Power Plant), it took less than 10 minutes to get to City Garden Grand Hotel, where valet parking was easily available (and free of charge). Check-in time was at 2pm, but we were there half past 1pm and we were immediately assisted by the Duty Manager herself, who gave us cookies as a welcome treat.
View from Room 1902
To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect of the room, but as soon as we entered, I felt extremely giddy to the bones! We stayed in one of the Deluxe Rooms, which had a humongous bed with a 500-thread count duvet, a marbled bathroom with a tub, and a smart TV that played all the channels I wanted! It had everything I always look for in a 4-star hotel—a big bed with extra fluffy pillows, white robes, clean towels, a refrigerator with complimentary water, coffee and tea, fast WiFi inside the room, a tub that could give me a nice, long bubble bath, and premium facilities like a gym, spa, swimming pool, bar, and restaurant.
La Famosa Spa
There was even an ongoing wedding reception the afternoon we checked in, which gave me the impression that the hotel must be buzzing even during off-peak season.
Staying in the room gave me more than enough time to rest and just forget about work and the world for a while. It also gave me a nice break away from recent events—I haven’t really talked about it on the blog, but days prior to my staycation, I had lost one of my closest friends (I’ll try to talk about this separately).
A little past 4pm, we decided to have drinks at Firefly Bar on the rooftop of the hotel, so that we could also check out the swimming pool. Had it not been for the cold weather and my recent LASIK surgery, I would have definitely taken a dip.
Rooftop Swimming Pool
After drinks, we quickly toured the rest of the hotel and its facilities, booked in-room massages at La Famosa Spa, and got ready for dinner at Spice Cafe, where we enjoyed our own bottle of Impetu Sauvignon Blanc (Php 1,100) and scrumptious dishes like Salpicao ala Diablo (Php 475), Lamb Chops in Mint with Beaurre Blanc Sauce (Php 1,075), Fillet Mignon Steak (Php 895), and Choco Molten Lava (Php 185).
Salpicao ala Diablo
Lamb Chops in Mint with Beaurre Blanc Sauce
Fillet Mignon Steak
Choco Molten Lava
As soon as we finished dinner, we got ready for our in-room massages. Though La Famosa Spa closes at 10pm, their in-room massage operates for 24 hours! It’s great if you want to just relax and de-stress in your own room, while watching a movie.
One other thing I always look forward to whenever I stay in hotels is the breakfast buffet—I always help myself to lots of brewed coffee and scrambled eggs cooked just the way I like them.
My entire stay was such a pleasant experience—I even loved talking to their staff because they were so warm and welcoming. I highly recommend booking a staycation at City Garden Grand Hotel soon. They have an ongoing promo where you can book an overnight accommodation in a Deluxe Room inclusive of breakfast buffet at Spice Cafe and a relaxing, full-body massage for two—all for just Php 6,488++.
Here are more highlights from my weekend staycation: