My intention was to find a good massage. As I strolled by Rajah Park Hotel on Fuente Osmeña Circle in Cebu City, Philippines, the yellow sign for the hotel’s Banyan Tree Spa was a so-bright-you-can’t miss-it calling card. An hour long Swedish Massage was roughly $5. On Mondays it was less. The promise of relaxed bliss brought me into the hotel to check it out.
As with many Cebu City hotels, Rajah Park Hotel rates are a bargain, but just because the price is low doesn’t mean the quality is. This 3 star hotel offers welcoming service and a more elegant ambiance than the bargain hotels in the area. It doesn’t have the catering to westerners feel of the Crown Regency where I took my spin on the Edge Coaster and stopped in Starbucks to pick up a Cebu City mug.
The Rajah Park Hotel is more subtle than flash. The lobby is a lovely blend of Asian and Western styles with comfortable seating. Lush, flower arrangements add the sense of a respite from the traffic outside. The hotel is in the midst of one of Cebu City’s shopping and eating centers where McDonald’s and Robinson’s Department store are part of the scenery that includes hair salons, bakeries, restaurants, banks, bookstores and other money exchange places. Here’s where you can get any business done–except buying postage stamps or finding out where to mail letters. (That involved a separate trip to the main post office I later found out.)
A breakfast buffet of a mix of Filipino and Western food is included with the room rate and served in the hotel’s restaurant, Fuente O. Lunches and dinners include Filipino favorites like Lechon Kawali–a dish that includes slow cooked park. In the evening the restaurant becomes a lounge with live music.
Guest rooms, 87 all, are range from deluxe to executive to executive suites. Bed options are: 1 queen bed; 1 double bed and a single bed; a queen bed and a single bed. The excutive rooms have a sofa bed along with the hotel beds which makes for a decent size for a family.
For a view, pick a room facing Fuente Osmeña Circle–a place where action never seems to die down.
Guest rooms include: free WiFi in the lobby; LAN Internet connections in rooms; cable TV and a refrigerator.
The Rajah Park Palace does have a casino and night club style entertainment.
The Banyan Tree Spa massage was as relaxing as I had hoped it would be and did help relieve the tight muscles in my neck that I acquired from my long flight to Cebu from the U.S. The staff was attentive. I did opt for the Swedish massage since it was part of the Monday deal. Other spa treatments include detox treatments, facials, foot massages and reflexology–all incredibly affordable.
You can book a room directly at the hotel’s website. Or check out Hotels.com or agoda.com. A deluxe room is listed as $39. An executive is $46. If you are going to be in Cebu for awhile, week rates are considerably cheaper. Contact the hotel to find out the details. The staff here is incredibly friendly and helpful.
CEBU RAJAH PARK HOTEL
Fuente Osmeña, Cebu City, Philippines
TELEPHONE : (6332) 412-3337 , 253-1812
FAX : (6332) 412-4899
E-MAIL : [email protected]
Post and photos courtesy of Jamie Rhein