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CULTURAL POTPOURRI | The Summer Lure of the Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao




Davao’s iconic Waterfront Insular Hotel


Summer-themed table setting

ORIGINALLY named Islandia Hotel by the Ayalas in September, 1961, when it first operated, the hotel then consisted of only three buildings. Additional structures had to be added in 1973 and again in 1977 to satisfy the clienteles’ increasing demands from Davao’s prime luxury hotel with the best location in the City.

By 1991, the Islandia Hotel was changed into the Insular Davao Hotel and underwent its first major renovations through the design team of GF and Partners and Chiming Lopez of Mariott Hotels in the USA.

Thus, the hotel’s modern structures were designed to blend harmoniously with the lush greenery surrounding it—including the breathtaking stretch of beach front showcasing the Davao Gulf and the picturesque Samal Island in the distance.

Landscaping was remarkably provided by Noel Altea of PDAA, an international landscape firm. The Insular Davao Hotel by then prided itself with having the most beautiful, sprawling garden in the 1990’s which was truly postcard perfect.

OIC Manager Jennifer Ricardo Romero with Café Uno’s culinary delights

It was, definitely, the most impressive hotel in Davao City. In 1998, the Ayalas sold the Insular Davao Hotel property to the Gatchalian family; and the hotel was consequently renamed, the Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao.

Japanese Rice Bowl

By the 21st century, the Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao is comprised of four low-rise buildings containing 159 luxurious guest rooms and suites. The rooms are fully equipped with such modern amenities expected from a luxurious and hospitable hotel establishment.

“The Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao is also well known as a heritage hotel as it showcases its antique tribal collection at the lobby for guests, both local and foreigners, to appreciate. These items have been in the hotel for years and have become a sort of trademark.

Presently, the spacious and airy lobby is decorated beautifully with lots of sunflowers to welcome summertime,” says Jennifer Ricardo Romero, the charming and hard working Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao’s OIC Manager in this challenging time of the Covid epidemic.

“Be whisked away off the coasts of Italy as Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao shares its summer dining experience with the Amalfi Coast-themed Café Uno.

Hues of blues, lots of greens and yellows fill the space with vibrancy and such energy to whet your appetite. With the aim of providing our guests with a lot of options, our revamped menu is well thought of, carefully prepared, and heartily presented through the collaboration of Waterfront Insular Hotel chefs of Davao and Mactan, Cebu.

The Amalfi Coast of Italy themed Café Uno interior

Chef Tristan Encarnacion, Chef Mimi Briones and Chef Bong Banday showcase their culinary prowess through their delicious gastronomic feast known as the Café Uno Superbowls. The Café Uno Superbowls promo is a selection of noodle dishes and rice bowls highlighting the rich culinary flavours of Asia.

Signature dishes of China, Japan, Malaysia, Korea and of course, the Philippines, offered at reasonable prices will surely be a heavenly treat for all food lovers,” entices Wilfredo Paolo M. Rosello, the Marketing Communications Officer.

All-Day-Gourmet set

Personally speaking, I would go for Café Uno’s “All Day Gourmet,” a three-course-meal option which includes the delightful pan-fried salmon served on top of a beef steak which came with mashed potato, salad and the soup of the day.

“With the present condition of our planet, the Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao is doing its mighty best to serve its loyal patrons as best as it can. So many business establishments have closed their doors and we struggle, really, to keep a hotel icon of Davao afloat.

We keep our fingers crossed that our loyal clients will keep on patronizing Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao,” appeals Jennifer Ricardo Romero with her bright smile as she adds, “Indeed, we at the Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao make sure that our guests get good value for the money they spend.

Undeniably, the Waterfront Insular Hotel-Davao is the right destination for fun, relaxation, business, and entertainment. We offer all our guests the right accommodation anytime.”

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