Luxury living in the Metro
Lester Gopela Hallig (The Philippine Star) - July 13, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - We take pleasure in discovering accommodations that are both luxurious and affordable. That was what we felt when we found out about Fernandina 88 Suites Hotel. Apparently, this has become a favorite of balikbayan guests and business companies in the Araneta Center-Cubao area. One would be even more amazed to learn how Fernandina 88 started.

Fernandina 88 managing director Joselito Alvarado says Fernandina 88 happened in the middle of the late 90s’ Asian financial crisis. “We originally intended this building to be a residential structure, but due to the crisis, no one was buying and we were not selling,” he recalls.

That was when Alvarado decided to get into the hotel business and, lo and behold, Fernandina 88 was born. The decision was also spurred by the absence of hotels in the Araneta Center.

“Before we knew it, we were able to pay our debts and experiencing a deluge of happy guests,” he shares. “You can definitely say that the hotel turned a crisis into an advantage.”

Advantage is what Fernandina 88 has been giving for over 15 years now. As an all-suite hotel, Fernandina 88 boasts of the biggest suites in an all-suite hotel in Metro Manila. A three-bedroom suite in a little under 100 square meters can accommodate up to eight people.

“These are ideal for big groups. We have big balikbayan groups and corporate guests staying here for weeks, so the setup is perfect for them, complete with living, dining, and kitchen areas. Our rates and occupancy limits will show that we offer better value for our guests,” says Alvarado.

Rooms are classified into studio type, and one-bedroom, two-bedroom, three-bedroom, and four-bedroom suites. All rooms are fully furnished and fully air-conditioned, with hot and cold shower, and cable television. The hotel also offers free breakfast for two on daily and weekly rates.

The accommodation also includes a free one-hour in-suite whole body massage. Alvarado says, “That is what makes us different. Instead of the guest making spa appointments, it is our staff who asks our guests when they want to have their massage.”

He mentions that the therapists come to the room and turn the suite into a spa. He says, “Our spa is the same five-star quality one gets from the bigger hotels. Since most of our guests are balikbayan, they choose the traditional hilot. We do offer other massage therapies, including shiatsu, Swedish, and Chinese reflexology.”

Another advantage is the hotel’s location, something that Alvarado is very pleased about. “You cannot get any better than being right across Araneta Center where everything is here, from supermarkets to high-end retail shops. Plus, we are close to transportation hubs, so guests coming and going have no trouble with commuting.”

Dining is one of the strongest suits of this all-suite hotel. The 1572 Restaurant & Ballroom offers local and international cuisine at very popular prices, indeed quite surprising given that this is hotel dining we are talking about.

The Vigan Hall and the Executive Room are both favorites for birthdays, conferences, anniversaries, weddings, and other functions. Aside from being spacious enough for a given number of guests, these rooms are fully equipped with the latest audio-visual aids.

For guests who have other ideas for relaxation, the hotel has a roofdeck pool and children’s pool. “From the deck you can see the hills of Antipolo and the Manila Bay sunset on a clear day,” Alvarado says.

If there is one standout quality that Fernandina 88 is rightfully proud of, it is its brand of service. Alvarado says it is because of their service that they have a long list of loyal, returning guests.

“As soon as they come back, they look for a particular staffer to assist them. It has reached a point wherein they will request for specific hotel people. I think our intention of making them feel at home has been effective,” he volunteers.

Part of their guest-pleasing ways is their strong concierge services. Alvarado reveals that a lot of long-staying guests have become so accustomed to them that they would request the staff to do their shopping for them. “Take note, we do personal shopping for our guests at no extra charge,” he says.

Short of saying, Fernandina 88 knows how to spoil its guests. No small wonder, given that good service and facilities are all it takes to win clients’ hearts. Well, the Fernandina 88 hospitality is evident in its sister properties, such as the Fernandina Garden Suites along G. Araneta Avenue in Quezon City and the Fernandina Tagaytay Villa in Cavite. More properties are about to rise, too, due to guest requests for more places to stay in.

“These things keep me on my toes,” Alvarado says. “I intend to keep the same level of positive consistency of luxury living here in Fernandina 88. It is what makes us different from the rest.”

***

Fernandina 88 Suites Hotel is located at 22 P. Tuazon Boulevard, Araneta Shopping Center, Cubao, Quezon City. For more information, call trunk lines (632) 911-6954 and 911-6965 or direct lines (632) 438-6686 and 438-6688; fax at (632) 913-8687; e-mail at inquire@fernandina88.com.ph; or visit its website at www.fernandina88.com.ph. Photos by Fernan Nebres

 

ALVARADO ANTIPOLO AND THE MANILA BAY ARANETA AVENUE ARANETA CENTER COM FERNANDINA GUESTS HOTEL SUITES HOTEL
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