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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

NOVOTEL MANILA ARANETA CENTER: The City of Stars has a New Star! @NovotelManilaAC

If you noticed, I haven't been reviewing much about hotels lately because I felt at some point that they are all the same. Nothing much excited me. Was it because of the long lull that our stay at Novotel Manila Araneta Center was extra special?

From the outside, it looks like any other new building in the Metro --clean, pleasant, inviting. So, with a lot of new hotels in Metro Manila, what sets Novotel Manila Araneta Center apart from the rest? There are so many things to say. Read on.

Novotel Manila Araneta Center

Araneta Center is the only commercial district in Metro Manila where Mrt-3 and Lrt-2 converge. That gives Araneta Center the edge in terms of location and accessibility, not to mention it is along Edsa. Novotel Manila on the other hand is smacked at the heart of Araneta Center Cubao. It is strategically located next to Smart-Araneta Coliseum and few blocks from Kia Theater and Gateway Mall so it is very convenient and you can expect a good mix of crowd staying here. Accessibility equals convenience.

Modern Araneta Center Skyline
Araneta Center is transforming  into a chick destination for events, shopping, dining and lifestyle choices and Novotel Manila Araneta Center is part of the transformation. Novotel Manila has redefined Araneta Center as a premier leisure and lifestyle destination. Talk about a new and exciting place to be.


Fast Elevators
I tried a hotel in Mandaluyong a few weeks back and they only got three elevators servicing 50+ floor and 2 were not working. Imagine the horror. It felt like queuing for a ride in MRT. I was surprised at how fast elevators are at Novotel Manila to think the building is only 25 storey or so high. We were checked in at the 20th floor and we were at our floor even before I finish saying something to my companion. That fast. haha!

And there is an elevator dedicated for handicapped with special buttons at the left.


401 Stylish Rooms and Suites
We stayed in a suite room with a pool view and it was awesome. Earth colors pleasant to the eyes and a dash of artsy accent on the wall. Wifi very fast and centralized you don't need to worry about being disconnected anywhere you go in the hotel. The bed is so soft we had a very good night sleep. And the pillows too! One of the softest I tried. The bathroom I love because of glass partitions. So classy. So elegant. Power shower at its best. We just had a little issue with the control of hot and cold shower but taking a shower is always a pleasure.


The Finer Details

- Fresh fruits to welcome you brightens the day
- Mini-bar with a coffee espresso maker was a wow!
- I have never seen this many plugs in a room. Other than the ordinary a/c socket, there's ports for hdmi, usb, cable jocks and what have you. Cool!
- Fair trade toiletries, admirable!
- Wifi single log-in. No more disconnections anywhere in the hotel. Hassle free!
- Towels, robes, pillows, lines and bed on sale at the Novotel Online Store. Yes, even the beds!
And the 32’’ multi-touch play table too!

For pick-up when you check out. How convenient.

Do check the items at:


The 6th Pool Bar and Lounge
We all know that space is a major challenge in Metro Manila. Even hotels have difficulty putting up pool amenities. The sprawling pool.of Novotel Manila Araneta Center is therefore the envy of many hotels in town. So it is possible after all to have a big pool and pool vicinity. Since it is located at the 6th floor, the view is almost unobstructed. Being at the poolside therefore gives that resort-in-the-city feel. I love the relaxed ambiance here. Either you lazy around one of loungers or indulge in a refreshing drink at the Snack Shack, you will surely find your fun-in-the-sun moment here. Indeed a place where you wanna be.


Outdoor Bridal Garden
Not only that the pool is spacious, beyond the pool is the Outdoor Bridal Garden. Novotel Manila has indeed positioned itself as an events place with this lovely green space. Wedding, birthday, anniversary and other celebrations can get a different fresh twist here.



Family-Friendly Hotel

Kids under 8 years old get to eat for free. Well, we heard that before. And that is a good. But Novotel Manila has taken the kids-wat-for-free concept to a new level --15 years old and below. Wow! A teenager would still get to dine for free for a room-for-two cost. Not only that, 15-year olds don't get charged extra-person as long as you maximize the available bedding in your room and not request for extra bed. A good deal! 

There are also dedicated spaces for kids. I am not just referring to the kiddie pool and kids playground at the 6th floor, at the lobby, there is a section with 32" multi-touch play table with interactive games that both kids and adults will enjoy. At the 24th floor next to the Premier Louge is a room exclusively for kids of VIP guests to play as they are not allowed in the Premier Lounge so as not to see adults drinking.

Premier Lounge
The Premier Lounge at the 24th caters to VIP guests and we spent hours there enjoying the privacy and exclusivity chatting over in-house wine and Sapporo beer and a unique buffet spread. The view from here is very nice. You can see the whole urban sprawl through the floor-to-ceiling glass wall and still feel serene and safe inside this comfortable private space.


Food Exchange Manila

I am not gonna pretend I am a food review expert because I am not one. I am just a travel blogger who appreciates delicious food when I taste one without going the technicalities. Food Exchange Manila, the main restaurant of Novotel Manila, has this "lively modern city restaurant vibe" to it. I like the space available for both dining and the buffet spread. 

The hotel was fully occupied on that weekend of our stay so you can imagine how busy the restaurant got during breakfast. It was also full of people the night before but I still always find my own private spot here and I never feel crowded. They have sous chef from India and China. No wonder why these sections are the favorites at Food Exchange Manila. We had breakfast buffet here overindulging on the wide selection of food we really enjoyed. Nothing very fancy like steak and stuff but already quite a feast on the palate.


Gourmet Bar
Our dinner at The Gourmet Bar was the most memorable one. Gourmet Bar is a section of Food Exchange Manila which serves serve ala carte with house specialties like tapas. That makes it different from all-day dining that is Food Expo.

What we had that night.

Pizza Lunga 
Pesto Pasta with talangka paste 
Beef Caldereta slider
Unleaded cucumber (drinks)
Le Mont Gourmand

The pizza was to die for and the beef caldereta sider was a welcome twist. My partner loves pasta so he really enjoyed the pesto pasta with talangka paste --another unique offering here. The bomb was the Le Mont Gourmand, it is a 15-scoop ice cream dream with in-house macarons, syrup, nuts, marshmallows, etc. It is so large that it is good for 5 persons. We felt very guilty we couldn't even finish half of it as we were already very full at that time. That was one overloaded meal.

Unleaded cucumber
Beef Caldereta slider
Pesto Pasta with talangka paste 
Pizza Lunga 
Le Mont Gourmand

Pillar-less Grand Ballroom
7 spacious meeting rooms
The hotel is very proud of it Pillar-less Grand Ballroom. That translates to big uninterrupted space. Plus it is connected to the car park of Araneta Colliseum so the doors opposite to the hotel-side entrance can allow cars to get inside the halls, meaning, hosting big events even as strenuous as a car show is an easy thing. No wonder why this is a very busy venue. Good thing I was given a rare chance to see it empty as it was prepared to host a round of IELTS test on the time of our stay. Their boardrooms too. Cozy, intimate and tastefully designed.


Fitness Center
Had to burn all the calories the next day in the gym at the 6th level next to the pool. Although a little small, the gym is ready with the best equipments sufficient for a full workout. Too bad the sauna there was still not operational during our stay.


Virtual Concierge

One thing I also love about Novotel Manila is that they have their own mobile app they call Virtual Concierge. This app is exclusive to Novotel and is available to all Novotel Hotels around the world. Every information you need to navigate your trip is in there whether it's checking your flight, nearby attractions and restaurants, maps and directions, weather, built-in messaging system and a whole lot more. So handy for a hassle-free trip.


on Social Media for the latest promos and events.

Be Sure to use the following hashtags:

Also find them on >>> Tripadvisor

City of Stars, Hotel of the Stars!
Quezon City is also called the Philippines' "city of stars" because major tv stations are located in Quezon City. With Novotel near Kia Theater and next to Smart-Araneta Coliseum and with the Araneta"s linked to Bb. Pilipinas Charities, it's no surprise Novotel Manila has already hosted a number of stars and beauty queens in the short time that it has opened its doors. No less than Ms Universe Pia Wurtzbach and Ms USA Olivia Jordan we guests here. Other popular artists too like Brian McKnight, Gary V, Aldub to name a few. I call Novotel Manila, the hotel of the stars.

Note: All photos in this section bearing the Novotel Manila logo courtesy of their Facebook page:

Brian McKnight, The American R&B singer-songwriter

Miss Universe Malaysia 2015 Vanessa Kumares and 
Miss Universe Myanmar 2015 May Barani Thaw

Miss Universe 2015 Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach posing in front of the hotel

A display of warm Filipino hospitality from our Binibining Pilipinas 2016 
candidates as Miss USA 2015 Olivia Jordan arrives at their official residence.

#NovotelNow: Gilas Pilipinas Road To Glory Presscon 
and Send-Off #RoadToRio #FIBA2016

Canadian YouTube Vloggers Christian LeBlanc and Laura Reid 
starting off their day getting lost at the Premier Lounge!

NovoDog K9 Rex
He came to the spotlight because of his selfie with no less than Ms Universe Pia Wurtzbach and again with Ms USA recently. I got to meet Rex after checkout, he greeted us farewell. Very cute and friendly!


Miss USA 2015 Olivia Jordan takes a moment with K9 Rex 
before heading to the Binibining Pilipinas 2016 Coronation Night.

Pusangkalye kissed by #NovoDog Rex! YES, The popular K9 dog of 
#NovotelManilaAranetaCenter kissed me! 

World-renown Management
Then I realized. It was not just the location and the best of amenities, it was people.
In the end, it's who runs the place that makes it great. And I noticed how innately friendly the staff are, not to mention being well trained for their work. Everything becomes a breeze because of the excellent service.

The hotel brims of positive energy because of the warm hospitality. This hotel is a feel-good place. I learned that the hotel is professionally managed by the AccorHotels Group which is the world's leading hotel operator so it was no surprise. You can see the difference of how smooth things are because of putting the right people in right positions. This hotel has it all going right.

Quezon City indeed has a new star!


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