Friday, 5 October 2018

Bakery World 2018 (Mandaue City, Cebu)

Opening of Bakery World 2018

Cebu: Interwoven
The Heritage Tree
The three-day (October 5-7) Bakery World 2018, held at the convention hall of J Center Mall, Mandaue City, is the first and largest baking and food service exposition in the Visayas, with exhibitors ranging from supplies, equipment, ingredients, services and packaging solutions. During this event, there will be seminars to help bakers and entrepreneurs improve or set up their businesses. The exhibit, as well as the seminars and other activities during the Bakery World, was free and open to the public. 
Cake Masters Competition entries

Organized by the Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) under the leadership of its President Stanley Go and Vice-President (for External Affairs) Steven Yu, they got help from Bien Enrico Ah, the Immediate Past President of Filipino-Chinese Bakery Association Inc., who has been doing similar exhibits, mostly in Manila and, recently, in Davao.  Ah, the founding president of the Philippine Society of Baking and the production manager of Liberty Food Mart Inc., always wanted to do a bakery exhibition in Cebu but the group’s directors are wary of its success.
Bakery World booths
Bakery World, already patented under the MCCI, will allow bakeries and relevant industries in Cebu and the rest of the Visayas and Mindanao to get access to new technologies, market trends, available products, and services by industry suppliers who can help them grow their business.  

Gingerbread house-inspired booth of Asian Grains Corp.

Bulawanong Bahandi
Viva Sugbu
Master bakers from South Korea and Taiwan also flew in to teach local bakers about trends in the international arena as well as new ideas and products that can be adopted.  

MCCI aims to make Cebu a leader in the cake production market by bringing cake decorating to the Metro.  

In order to bring in multiple cake designers to Cebu and have their works of art displayed for the public to see and witness, they organized the Cake Masters Competition.  
Bakers of General Milling Corp. at work

Pit Senor
Pit Senyor
The competition, graced by 38 professional baker contestants from multiple corners of the world who joined the contest to prove their skills in cake decorating as well as those who have aspirations of being a baker, was divided into two different categories - Wedding Cakes and the Best of Cebu and Mandaue.  

The grand winner would get a cash prize of PhP30,000 and a plaque, while the 2nd and 3rd place would be getting, along with a plaque, PhP10,000 and PhP5,000 respectively.
Cake Master Competition entries

Some 45 firms from Cebu and Manila joined the event.  The exhibitors from Cebu include A.D. Gothong Manufacturing Corp., Asian Grains Corp., Asia’s Best Industrial Sales, Beauchem Thermtech Group Inc., Bigfood Trade & Commodities/RAC, DMC Busa Printers, Ever HRI Sales Inc., Fabritech/Mandaue Libertad, Global Pacific Distribution Corp., Julie’s Franchise Corp., LTH Food Industries Inc., Magic Melt Foods Inc., New Datche Philippines Traders Corp., Ngosiok Marketing, Ricor Mills, Southern Synergy Sales Corp., SVI Distribution Corp., Sweetlink Inc., Treasure Island-iPak and Virginia Foods Inc..

Steven Yu
Joseph Sowers
(US Wheat Associates)
On the other hand, the exhibitors from Manila include Bakersfield, Besterm International Corp., Excellent Value Philippines Marketing Inc., Formway Trading and Services Inc., General Milling Corp., Heritage TPH Ventures Inc., Ingenti Radix Corp., Innobake, JMCool Solutions Inc., Kalinisan Chemicals Corp., Philippine Foremost Milling Corp., Restoserve Marketing Corp., Sealed Air Philippines Inc. and Tulip-The Embassy of Chocolate among others. 

Guests and members of media during the opening
L-R:-Steven Yu (MCCI VP - External Affairs), Carlo Fortuna (Mandaue City Vice-Mayor), Joseph Sowers (US Wheat Associates - Regional VP t for Philippines and Korea), Stanley Go (MCCI President)

J Center Mall: 165 A. S. Fortuna St, Bakilid, Mandaue City, 6014 Cebu, Philippines.  
Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI): 2/F, FCB Financial Center Bldg., A.C.Cortes Ave. cor P. Burgos St., Alang-alang, Mandaue City, 6014 Cebu.  Tel: (032) 343-3491.  Fax: (032) 236-8245. E-mail: MCCI Secretariat.  Website:

Thursday, 4 October 2018

Hotel and Inn Review: One Central Hotel & Suites (Cebu City, Cebu)

Date of Stay: October 3-5, 2018

RATING (Scale of 1 to 10)
Location: *********
Rooms: **********
Condition and Cleanliness: **********
Staff Performance: **********
Room Comfort: *********
Food and Beverage: ********
Other Amenities: *******
Value for Money: *********

One Central Hotel & Suites

The 3-star, Art Deco-style One Central Hotel & Suites, located within a 16-story building called One Central Tower, is a mixed-use development that also houses One Central Mall (home to local and international retail outlets).

The hotel is managed by the wholly Filipino-owned Bluewater Hospitality brand which offers a distinctive brand of Filipino service centered on providing the "best of Filipino culture." 

The tower, located on a 1,200 sq. m. property once occupied by the 70-year-old Luzon Lumber store, has help revitalize and modernize the landscape of the old Colon downtown area in Cebu.  It was designed by Architect James G. Jao, a pioneer of eco-architecture and sustainable development in the Philippines.

Front Desk

Cebuano trading and distribution firm Alain Asia Group of Companies, under chairman Steven Yu, decided to enter into the robust retail leasing and hospitality business by establishing the Akropolis Stars Realty Development Corporation, thus joining the rising number of local investors cashing in on Cebu’s vibrant retail and hospitality industries. 

Aside from trading and distribution businesses, the Alain Asia Group, via its subsidiary Avalon Scion Foods Corp, is also engaged in food venture being the franchisee of four Bonchon restaurants (including the one in One Central Mall) in Cebu.

De Luxe Double Room

Now Downtown Cebu's premier business hotel destination, One Central Hotel & Suites had its soft opening last April 6 this year after a 2-year construction time, and had its grand opening last October 4 which was attended by distinguished members of the business community and members of print and online media.  

Junior Suite
Junior Suite Living Room

The hotel has 157 elegantly-furnished and fully airconditioned non-smoking rooms arranged over seven floors  - 24 De Luxe Single, 24 De Luxe Double, 101 De Luxe Twin, 6 Junior Suites and 2 Executive Suites.  

The 21 sq. m. De Luxe Single (PhP3,800) has 1 single bed; the 23 sq. m. De Luxe Double (PhP4,500) has 1 double bed, the 23 sq. m. De Luxe Twin (PhP4,500) has 1 double and 1 single bed, the 70 sq. m. Junior Suite (PhP6,500) has 1 king bed and the 85 sq. m. Executive Suite (PhP10,500) has has 2 bedrooms with 1 king bed and 2 double beds.

De Luxe Twin

Rooms have anti-bacterial inverter air conditioners; magnetic door locks; a large flat screen, full HD cable TV, IDD phone,  a minibar, work desk with vanity mirror and studio lights; a private ensuite bathroom (with rainshower head, hair dryer and free toiletries); tea/coffee making facility; free bottled water and slippers; in-room safe; black out drapes and a full length mirror. 

There's also free WiFi in the room as well as in public areas. The Executive and Junior Suites comes with bathtubs and a living and dining area. For security, only the guest's magnetic key cards can access the elevators.

Cafe Tartanilla

From the grand lobby, at the 9th floor, you will find the huge, elegant and cozy Cafe Tartanilla which offers an international and a la carte menu. It has a delicious buffet spread that is worth every penny. Cafe Tartanilla offers breakfast buffet (6 – 10 AM) for PhP350 pesos per head and brunch (11 AM -2PM) for PhP450.  

The breakfast was lovely and very filling - fried bacon; cereals; garlic or plain rice; longganisa, fried danggit; coffee, tea or juice; tocino; waffles; sausages; beef tapa; etc. There's also an egg, salad, bread and dessert station.  From the Viewing Balcony next to the bar/restaurant, we had great views of the city. While dining at night, they opened the curtains so that we can enjoy the night view of the city.  We capped off the evening with their longest Happy Hour (4 to 11 PM), with Buy One, Get One Free promos on local beer and certain cocktails.

Molave Dos Function Room
Molave Tres Function Room
Beside CafĂ© Tartanilla is the large, 186.41 sq. m., 9.60 x 19.41 m. Molave Grand Ballroom where you can hold corporate and social events.  

It can also be customized to fit intimate gatherings and can accommodate 250 pax in a banquet, cocktail and classroom setting and 300 pax in a theater setting.  

Narra Dos Function Room

There are also 5 function rooms (the 26.41 sq. m., 10-pax Molave Uno; the 53.14 m., 35-pax Molave Dos; the 32.27 sq. m., 15-pax Molave Tres; the 39.35 sq. m., 12-pax Narra Uno and the 60.90 sq. m., 18-pax Narra Dos).

Molave Grand Ballroom

Molave Grand Ballroom during the October 4 grand opening of the hotel

Poolside bar
Sun loungers
The Infinity Swimming Pool and Jacuzzi, on the 19th floor roof deck, has a breathtaking, 360-degree view of beautiful Cebu City landscape including the city’s seaport (technically just a few minutes away), the live scene of SRP (South Reclamation Project) Road, the SM Seaside Tower, and the sea.  There's also a Poolside Bar and sun loungers. In the future, there are plans to set up another dining option at the roof deck.

Infinity swimming pool

The hotel has a 24-hour Front Desk, on-site car park (self parking), Business Center and two elevators.  

The  airconditioned Fitness Gym, also on the 19th floor, is equipped with a flat screen TV and Impulse cardio and strength fitness equipment such as a vertical lat pulldown, elliptical crosstrainer, commercial upright exercise bike, treadmill, flat bench and assorted dumbbells. 

Fitness gym

Happy Hour promo
Viewing balcony
The hotel also offers 24-hour airport shuttle (surcharge), daily housekeeping, luggage storage, car rental, concierge, laundry, dry cleaning, safety deposit boxes, currency exchange and 24-hour room service.  

Check out is 11 AM and check in is 3 PM.  The hotel is highly accessible by public transportation being just 280 m. from the South Bus Terminal.  The Cebu North Bus Terminal is 4 kms. away. Numerous taxis and public utility jeepneys ply the streets in front of the hotel.

Evening live entertainment at Cafe Tartanilla

Molave Uno Function Room
Narra Uno Function Room
Being located at the busy downtown area, everything you need is just around the corner.  It is near E-Mall (Elizabeth Mall, where you can have fastfood dinner or buy snacks from the grocery); museums like Museo Sugbu (1.3 kms.), Casa Gorordo (1 km.), Sandiego-Yap House (900 m.) and Jesuit House; 900 m. from Magellan's Cross; walking distance (100 m.) to Taboan Market where dried fishes (danggit, pusit, dilis, dulong, dalagang bukid, espada etc.) Cebu is famous for can be bought a lot cheaper than in souvenir shops; a 15 min. walk to the ferry and is just a stone's throw away from Abellana Sports Complex Perfect, a perfect location during Sinulog.

Check out "Magellan's Cross"

View of the city from the swimming pool

It is also 1.2 kms. from Fort San Pedro;  1.4 kms. (a 10-min. drive) from Fuente Osmena Circle; 2.4 kms. from Ayala Mall and SM Seaside Cebu City Arena; 2.9 kms. from SM City Cebu; 8.3 kms. from the Temple of Leah, 8.9 kms. from Tops Lookout; 9.3 kms. from Mactan Cebu International Airport and 13.1 kms. from Mactan Shrine.

Check out "Fort San Pedro," "Temple of Leah," "Tops Lookout," and "Mactan Shrine"

Business Center

Like an oasis in the middle of desert, One Central Hotel & Suites truly was a lovely surprise in the downtown area, providing luxury accommodations at an affordable price. It made us feel at home whether we were there for business or leisure.


The room, with a 4-star quality feel to it, was very comfortable and the staff was very courteous, helpful and friendly.

Nighttime view of the city

One Central Hotel & Suites: Cor. Sanciangko and Leon Kilat St., Cebu City 6000, Cebu.  Tel: (+6332) 888-8000, 888-8111 and 888-8168.  E-mail: Website: