Have a ‘Noche Bora’

CHRISTMAS has always been about family, friends and great food, that is why people often celebrate their reunions during this most festive of seasons. It is a time when most family members from abroad come home to enjoy the longest holiday season in the world.

Unfortunately, reunions can also be hectic and stressful and finding a venue at this time of the year can be tough, so if you’re planning a family get together, why not do it away from the maddening crowd of the city and go somewhere that is both laid back and festive?

Try Boracay—a white Christmas with a twist. Instead of snow, you’ll be greeted by the pristine white sandy beaches. And in lieu of pine trees you’ll see lined up coconut trees decked with Christmas lights and ornaments.

“Boracay is not just a summer destination anymore,” says Michelle Molano, banquet and events manager for Boracay Garden Resort. During Christmas and New Year there are plenty of activities that our guests can enjoy—from island hopping, snorkeling and other water activities to late night parties with live bands, performances by fire dancers, and firework displays along the beach.”

As for the food, Boracay Garden Resort has you covered with its specially prepared Christmas feast. “For Filipinos, Noche Buena may be the most important meal of the year. It’s that one special night when we gather for the simple joy of partaking dinner with loved ones,” says Mario Gamaitan, food and beverage manager of the resort. That is why we have decided to create a menu that features our all-time favorite Filipino Christmas dishes cooked just the way our grandmother’s or mothers did.”

The exquisitely chosen line up will be prepared by executive chef Patrick Obia, a Bicol native, who has gained extensive culinary experience from various international hotels in China, the Middle East and Australia. A master of Asian-fusion dishes that he creates at the resort, Obia promises to make this Noche Buena feast as traditional as possible.

“Among the dishes we’ve prepared include Pinoy favorities such as kare-kare, relyenong bangus, pork morcon, chicken embutido, sweet ham, arroz valenciana, lumpiang sariwa, sugpo sa aligue, sinigang na ulo ulo ng maya,”says Obia. He adds that for Christmas Eve and New Year they will also be tempting guests with such guilty delights like crispy pata, lechon baka and lechon baboy.

Popular holiday drinks such as hot chocolate, peppermint tea, salabat, ginumis and buko pandan all make it to the menu as well. As for dessert, there’s also be a variety of Pinoy delicacies such as bibingka, leche flan, putong makulay, kutsinta, tamales, suman sa ibus, ubeng halaya, maja blanca and espasol.

Boracay Garden also prides itself with their version of surf and turf—grilled tiger prawns and beef tenderloin wrapped in crispy pork bacon served with mushroom risotto, flowerets of vegetables and an emulsion of burgundy wine jus. For guests craving healthy food, they have an original creation called duo of scallops and salmon served with pancakes, sour cream and Ponzu emulsion over a bed of mixed greens and cherry tomatoes.

Formerly Hotel Seraph, Boracay Garden Resort is run by the Hennan Hotel Management, the same group that operates the Boracay Regency Group of Hotels. The 201-room hotel located at Station 2 boasts of a Triple-A rating, the highest for the resort category in the Philippines.

Hennan Hotel Management Chairman Henry Chusuey says the resort is still undergoing a lot of renovations to give the hotel an even more “garden-resort” feel. He also says that by next year guests can look forward to more improvements in the resort including a convention center, a new restaurant that will serve International and Asian-fusion cuisine, a koi pond and an even better garden landscape.

“I entered the hotel business because I like seeing people happy and making sure that they have the most memorable vacation—there’s no better satisfaction than that,” said Chusuey.

For inquiries about promo room rates, packages and reservations, contact Boracay Garden Resort’s Manila booking office 353-1111 or .

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