Ex-Cebu Plaza Employees' 2012 Reunion
- Winsome Chua () - March 17, 2012 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines -  Another year, another gathering for ex-Cebu Plaza Hotel employees. Once again, a simultaneous party in the US and Cebu took place, enjoying friendship from two different parts of the planet. This time the place is no other than the most exciting and entertaining city in the world, Las Vegas!

I had my whole family attend the reunion. We had to drive six hours non-stop from my home in Phoenix. It was quite a smooth drive and everyone was excited. We had not been back to Vegas for a couple of years now.

Nowhere else can you find a city that has all the spectacular and luxurious casino hotels, fine dining, state of the art convention and trade facilities, and wonderful live entertainment. Las Vegas continuously reinvents itself and even if you were there before, you would never run out of fun things to do.

We stayed at the RIO Hotel since we would have our reunion dinner at the Carnival World Buffet. Recognized as the best buffet in Las Vegas year after year by guests and critics alike, it has raised the bar in buffet dining. The restaurant offers more than 300 dishes prepared fresh daily and a contemporary design that makes it even better.

The attendees were Richard Suarez, Jessica San Diego, Maria Marlotte Gatterman, Jojo and his wife Mary Ann Nacua, all from Los Angeles. We had two participants who joined us from Chicago – Elie Villarin and Benjamin Capanas. One representative from Vegas, Cathy Diongzon-Cuayzon.

It is such great fun when friends are reunited once again. The good food and the cozy ambience were just perfect for the occasion. Some of the diners next to our table could not help but appreciate the fun and loving camaraderie that they observed at our table. They even volunteered to take pictures for us. I was a little worried at first that we created too much noise and that they would be uncomfortable, especially since we all spoke Visayan. Instead, they shared the happiness with us.

Right after we dined, we went up to my suite to have an online meeting through webcams to say hi to our Cebu friends. Unfortunately, we had technical problems and could not do it. We saw the photos afterwards and it looked like they were having as great a time as we had.

Starting this year, we had a reunion photo contest. Wonderful pictures were submitted and six winners took home the trophies, namely: Memie Diaz, Palmy Pe Tudtud, Elie Villarin, Richard Suarez, Winsome Chua and Matilda Chua. Congratulations!

 We stayed two more days to enjoy a little bit more of what Las Vegas has to offer. The following morning's brunch at Paris' Le Village Buffet was excellent. Authentic French cuisine paired with French infused atmosphere made it quite an experience. Le Village buffet brings to life five provinces of France through culinary expertise and visual attention to detail. The roasted prime rib was just out of this world! Hmmm! I know I'll be back there sooner than I think.

We enjoyed dinner at Planet Hollywood. Great seafood and some very tasty entries. It has a great location at the Las Vegas Boulevard strip and right across Bellagio, where we could see the magnificent fountains that were destined to romance your senses.

The following day, we were all excited to have a Filipino meal and we found a Pinoy Buffet at a very reasonable price. We then went into a Filipino bakery and we ended up with some siopao and ube bread. We missed those so much.

Well, do you know what was next door? It's Jollibee! So, we had Chickenjoy and Halo-Halo. Red Ribbon happens to be right beside Jollibee and that means more shopping for take home goodies.

We stopped by the Hoover Dam on our way home and what grandeur! It is situated right at the border the states of Arizona and Nevada.

I would say that the Vegas reunion was quite a success and an unforgettable experience. Everyone had a great time! Until next reunion, see you!

What happens in Vegas, should happen to you! (FREEMAN)

ARIZONA AND NEVADA AUTHENTIC FRENCH CARNIVAL WORLD BUFFET CATHY DIONGZON-CUAYZON CEBU CEBU PLAZA HOTEL CHICKENJOY AND HALO-HALO ELIE VILLARIN LAS VEGAS RICHARD SUAREZ VEGAS
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