There is an endless number of wonderful things to be found in Marriott Manila. From their dazzling chandelier to their tasteful interior, the list of spectacles featured in the world-class hotel just goes on and on. But being the bottomless chasm of all things edible that I am, what impressed me the most was their buffet.
Aside from the actual hotel itself, Marriott is also known for their café, more specifically their buffet. And it really is nothing but a spectacle. With an array of cuisines ranging from western, to Asian, and to our very own Filipino food, they were prepared to welcome our army of newly minted WIM interns or, as our bosses like to call us, WIMterns.
What met us right away were the softest selection of bread rolls and the creamy collection of cheese. And imagine all of this with a plate-full of salami to the side—a delightful pop of pink amongst that carbo-filled golden brown and yellow. Bliss.
And then, it was seafood galore.
They have an entire section where people can have their pick from a bountiful selection of sea food, and have it cooked according to their preference. Customers can choose from oysters, crabs, prawns, and mussels, all of which are fresher than your crush.
For those who want to skip the wait of having your food cooked, however, they can go on straight ahead to the Japanese food. There, they have something both for the sushi lovers and for those who just can’t get enough of their tempura, too.
The salmon and tuna sashimi are served just as fresh as the oysters and the mussels. Their variety of sushi is as satisfying as they are colorful.
Right as I was about to get my own share of tempura, it just so happened that they ran out. This is where I would like to commend the staff’s service and the speed by which they refilled their servings. As I stared at the empty line of tempura, the station’s chef was already frying up some more. All I had to do was wait a couple of minutes, and bam! There was tempura on my plate, hot and crisp, and perfect.
If Japanese and seafood aren’t your thing though, don’t fret because there’s so much more. Right beside the shellfish is the halal station where there are chips, dips, potato wedges, and so much more goodness.
Speaking of goodness, if healthy is what you’re looking for, there’s another station solely for salads. Here they have everything—from your atypical macaroni salad to the more sophisticated roasted pumpkin salad. If you’re more particular about your greens, though, you can also opt to create your own with the salad bar, which offers a variety of leaves and toppings to satisfy your diet.
As if one DIY station isn’t enough, the pasta station gives you the choice to mix and match pasta, sauces, and toppings! After choosing between penne, linguine, and spaghetti, and choosing whether to top it with red, white, or pesto sauce, agonize over the diverse number of toppings; from the usual choices like bacon, mushrooms and shrimp, to gourmet options such as capers and sun-dried tomatoes.
Beside the pasta station is where you can find this gorgeous roast beef. It is easy overcooking beef, losing its taste in the process, but Marriott’s roast beef is cooked at a perfect medium well, thus retaining its juice and flavor.
If you’re overwhelmed by the international options, the Filipino food section brings things closer to home with local classics such as liempo, sinigang, and chicken afritada. Beyond the Filipino station is Chinese food galore! It may be slightly hidden from view, but if you explore enough, it’ll be worth it, especially with options such as dimsum, chicken, and duck. There’s also yet another DIY station, where you can make your own noodle soup.
Their dessert station is a dream come true. At the time of my visit, they had a wonderful variety of mousses, cheesecakes, tarts, and even tiramisu. There is a variety of unique flavors of ice cream and gelato as well, such as the Palawan walnut ice cream. And for the chocolate enthusiasts, a fountain stands in the center of the station flowing with chocolate, and the toppings that surround it are just waiting to be dipped in sweet ecstasy. They even featured a couple of our local sweets, kutsinta and leche flan. My personal favorite was the scrumptious leche flan topped with macapuno!
It’s safe to say that when the WIMterns came to Marriott, they were ready.
GF, Manila Marriott Hotel, 10 Newport Blvd, Pasay, Philippines
Written by Anthea Reyes & Joel Anthony Lim