Weekends have become one of my favorite things during my short stay in Manila. It is on those days that I get to hang out with my travel buddies, the awesome gang from Team Red Horse, while we hang out and talk nonchalantly about our common passion – travelling, love, life, and even world history over cold Red Horse beers. And on this particular weekend, I was eager to hop on the MRT train bound for GMA Kamuning, the rendezvous point of some of us, before going to Luxent Hotel, a posh hotel in Quezon City.
When we arrived at Luxent, we were led to the luggage inspection area just a few steps before the hotel’s entrance. Some might perceive this practice as inconvenient but I didn’t mind as it meant having a safe weekend stay for me and my friends. After the unexpected check point, the twin glass doors were opened and we made our way inside the hotel’s lobby.
My eyes quickly scanned the sight in front of me. High ceilings, velvety red chair cushions, glass wall decors, huge red-themed art pieces, the ever so cute Lexie the Luxent bear comfortably sitting on top of every table, everything seemed perfect. The ritzy lobby looked grand and airy. I had to contain my excitement and settled with a huge smile plastered all over my face as I approached some of our friends who were already there waiting for us. This luxury hotel in Quezon City will be our home for the next 24 hours and will be the venue for the birthday party we have planned for our dear friend, Chino.
A sumptuous feast at the Lush Bar & Lounge
My friends and I arrived too early for the birthday party. It was still two o’clock in the afternoon. We haven’t had lunch yet so the group decided it would be best to sample the food offerings at the Lush Bar & Lounge restaurant, which is adjacent to the hotel’s lobby, while we waited for the rest of our friends.
The Lush Bar & Lounge serves Filipino and international dishes. Luxent Hotel promises each guest a refreshing way to experience a one-of-a-kind gustatory experience through its dishes. The stylish yet relaxed atmosphere at the Lush Bar & Lounge makes it a perfect place to hang out, whether to chat with friends, listen to piano music, or indulge your appetite with various entrees.
With the numerous food selections of the Lush Bar’s menu, it took us a while to figure out what we wanted. After some careful thought, we finally placed our orders. Then one by one, our orders arrived.
The Beef Tapa (P320) is served with US beef tapa and scrambled eggs served with garlic rice, fruit salsa, atsara or pickled papaya, and sliced watermelons.
Their Chicken & Pork Adobo (P300) is a famous Filipino dish made of braised pork and chicken in seasoned vinegar and soy sauce. This serving comes with garlic rice, fruit salsa, atsara, salted eggs and watermelon slices.
The Japanese Platter (P400) is a combination of shrimp tempura and California maki.
The Sinigang na Liempo (P400) is a soup-based dish made of braised pork belly cooked with various vegetables and its key ingredient, tamarind, to give off that signature sour or tamarind flavor.
The Spaghetti Cioppino pasta (P320) is served with fresh baby clams, shrimps and Tuscan garlic bread on the side. Some of the gang raved about how they love this pasta.
The hotel’s version of Japanese Ramen (P320) has pork shoyu ramen topped with quail eggs and key vegetable ingredients.
Lush Bar’s version of the Asian Salad (P380) has mixed greens, red cabbage, bean sprout, julienned cucumber and carrots, mandarin orange, ripe mango, crisp chicken served with sesame lime and peanut dressing topped with crispy wanton strips.
I ordered Roasted Chicken (P450), in an attempt to stay safe with my choice of dish. This one is a simple serving of a halved spring chicken, herbed then roasted. It is served with vegetables and pesto cream sauce. Surprisingly, it didn’t disappoint. The pesto cream (with me being a pesto lover) was an excellent choice for the chicken’s dip and I instantly fell in love with it.
By the time we finished our meal, all of us were already full. However, when we learned that Lush Bar & Lounge serves one of the best cheesecakes in Quezon City, it didn’t take us a second to think about ordering the dessert.
The Toblerone Cheesecake (P250) is one of the dessert prides of Luxent Hotel. It is a complex combination of chilled cheesecake, Toblerone, almond essence, double chocolate cookies served with chocolate and caramel sauce and strawberry coulis. How it’s prepared can puzzle the untrained. But for us who simply love to devour on yummy food treats, this sinful dessert was gone in a flash.
Our Rooms at Luxent Hotel
Once we were done satisfying our tummies, and after a smooth check-in process, we headed towards the elevator to settle our things and see what our home for the night would be like.
There were 10 of us in the group. We were given 2 Superior Queen rooms (check rates), which can accommodate 4 heads. An extra bed was requested on each room to fit us all. With the room’s 37 sqm floor area, there’s still enough space for movement.
The reasonable rates at Luxent Hotel makes it a great hideaway in Quezon City. It’s the perfect hotel in QC for family and friends to relax or simply unwind as it assures a comfortable and luxurious stay for everyone especially when you are in town for a business trip or when you simply want to treat yourself after a long day at work.
This 14-storey hotel has a total of 117 rooms with 109 Deluxe and Superior Rooms, 7 Executive Suites (49 sqm) and 1 Luxent Suite (161 sqm). Each guest is guaranteed to experience the services and amenities one would normally expect from a 5-star hotel.
We were assigned rooms at the 7th floor, the only smoking floor in the building. It gave us access to a small balcony where smokers can chill and it was the perfect venue for the birthday party we were planning.
Photo credit: Elal of The Shades of Grey
Our room amenities include a flat-screen TV with cable channels, a DVD Player, in-room safe box, refrigerator with mini-bar setup, complimentary coffee and tea-making facility, complimentary bottled water with daily replenishment, individually controlled air-conditioning system, spacious private bath with hair dryer and vanity mirror and telephone facility. One of the best perks that came with our stay would have to be the free access to the hotel’s WiFi connection, which was very strong.
As for the toiletries, we were supplied with a shampoo with conditioner, bath gel, body lotion, dental kit and, bath soap. Additional toiletries such as a sewing kit, comb, vanity kit, slippers, and shaving kit are available upon request.
After checking our rooms, we couldn’t resist the call of our immaculate beds. Its properly folded white sheets was too tempting to resist. Our beds were super comfy. If not only for the planned party that evening, we would have dozed off to sleep right away.
But as soon as we heard our room’s door bell, we knew what was coming. One by one, our party food started to arrive. There’s a box of Bicol’s famous 3N toasted siopao, Isabela’s pancit cabagan and Tugeugarao’s pancit batil patong, with each noodle variety placed in a huge bilao that can feed utmost 40 people. The last door bell only meant one thing, our most-awaited, mouthwatering party food has arrived, Cebu’s Original Spicy Lechon Belly!
The Garden Café at Luxent
As much as we wanted to get our hands on those regional food specialties, we had to wait a little for we were scheduled to have our dinner buffet at Luxent’s Garden Café. The hotel’s buffet spread are prepared by their in-house and talented Filipino chefs.
Scanning the buffet spread, I saw different Japanese, Chinese and Filipino cuisines. However, my eyes were glued at this cute lechon de leche sitting in a corner. I was mentally stripping it off its skin and was strategically thinking of a way to get first dibs on its crunchy reds to find out how it fares with the lechons I’m used to eating back in my hometown in Cebu City.
While waiting to for someone else to murder the eyesore lechon de leche, I decided to ransack the Japanese buffet spread first. Even before my unexpected trip to the land of the rising sun, I already had this incurable weakness for Japanese cuisine.
So without hesitating, I filled my plate with makis, sushis, tempuras and all the other dishes served inside those Japanese boat plates.
The Garden Café is quite spacious and this is also where the guests dine during the hotel’s breakfast buffet, which comes complimentary for each stay.
I completely forgot about the lechon de leche when someone exclaimed in gusto how yummy the leche flan cheesecakes were. I’m a sucker for desserts and I found my feet gliding towards the dessert buffet spread in no time to sample those bite-sized beauties. Leche flan, mango flan, cheesecakes, chocolate cakes, there were just too many of them! Where do I start?
I had to try them all, I told my ego. But my tummy told my mind I can only take a few. So I settled for the mango flan and it was by far the best mango flan ever! Well actually, it was the first time I ate one but gosh, it was so good!
Seeing that all of us were almost done with dessert, the crew of Garden Café rushed to our table singing a Happy Birthay song for Chino while bringing with them a birthday cake with customized greetings placed in a huge plate.
Happy Birthday @travel360!!! Greetings from @luxenthotel and your #PinoyTravelBlogger family @kirkacebron @ejlsquared @kurtzkytravels @lakwatserongtsinelas @jerikdeguzman @blissfulguro @lakadpilipinas @marxtermind #travelblogger #travel #staycation #birthdaysong #birthday #luxenthotel #hotel #justchino #justjulia #birthday
Our birthday celebrant got surprised with the hotel’s thoughtful gesture and he was overwhelmed by what transpired. Overwhelmed and surprised but happy.
When dinner was officially finished, we went out to grab a few drinks and went back to our designated party room to start the merrymaking. If you are thinking of hard core partying with loud music and overflowing booze, then you’re wrong. Well, you got the overflowing booze part right. Our kind of partying meant staying up late in the room’s balcony sharing stories while eating more food and drinking beer till the wee hours of the morning. If only we had access to videoke inside our room, then that would be a different story. We were just glad we didn’t wake up any guests near our rooms with all those laughter and banters we were throwing at each other.
When it was almost sunrise, we decided we should get some shut eye. Some of us failed to make it to breakfast preferring the comforts of Luxent’s beds. As for me, I groggily dragged my feet and made way for the Garden Café. I found out I was just in time before they close the buffet station. I hurriedly grabbed a couple of waffles, smoked ham, bacons, and bread with frosted sugar and walnut toppings then asked for coffee and happily ate in silence.
When it was time to check out from our Superior Queen rooms, we asked permission if we could use the swimming pool.
The hotel management was kind enough to let us extend our stay and hang out in their pool area. And since we have too many leftovers from last night’s party, that took care of lunch.
Luxent Hotel’s AquaTrim Fitness Center
The hotel’s swimming pool is one of Luxent’s assets, if I may say so. Their pool design is brilliant. Its transparent side makes it a perfect spot for those who love to take selfies.
Soon enough, the gang started taking turns in asking to be photographed while they splashed their way into the pool, holding their breath before diving for that shot.
This swimming pool at Luxent Hotel can also be a perfect haven for freedivers who want to practice their breath hold. Aside from the countless cool underwater shots they can create, onlookers or their dive buddies can also get a clear picture of how they are faring under while holding their breath.
The gang enjoyed goofing around the pool area and before we know it, it was already sundown. The setting sun was a signal for the pool’s timely change of hues. For us, that meant it was time to leave as we go back to our daily routines.
Looking back, our overnight stay at Luxent Hotel in Quezon City was nothing short of wonderful. We had an awesome stay and it was super fun.
Luxent Hotel Location in Quezon City, PH
Luxent Hotel is located along Timog Avenue, near the rotunda linking to Tomas Morato Avenue.
For discounted room rates, book here.