Kukuruku! Umaga na! Good morning! What did you have for breakfast? Eggs benedict? At si Umberto ba ang nag-serve?
-Jennifer Cortez as Suzanne Reyes, Temptation Island (1980)
I actually had Eggs Benedict for breakfast at the Manila Hotel last week with a friend . It wasn’t served by Umberto though. Lol. We were there for a shoot, and since we had a long morning ahead of us, we decided to eat before getting to work. Breakfast was on her that day, and I’m really grateful for the treat because the food was on the expensive side, and not quite worth the price in my honest opinion.
She and I ordered the same thing, only she had her Eggs Benedict with smoked salmon and I had mine with ham. The first thing I noticed when the server set down our plates was that the food wasn’t all that appetizing to look at. Again, I have to apologize for the bad photo quality, as I used my ever so unreliable BlackBerry to take these. But poor quality aside, would you honestly say that this plate looks exciting? I think not.
I don’t understand what the yellow waxy thing on top of the eggs was. I mean look at it, it’s not even moving. I also am disappointed that the ham resembled luncheon meat more than it did the thinly sliced, Canadian-bacon type ham that I was expecting. The bread wasn’t toasted. It wasn’t even warmed, now that I think about it. The food was cold when it was served, like it had been sitting on a counter for a while before the server actually decided to deliver it to our table. The best part about this meal was honestly the hash brown, which I feel might have been one of those frozen ones you can buy at a grocery store. Sorry, Manila Hotel, but I am unimpressed. But because I was hungry, and I don’t believe in letting food go to waste, I finished my breakfast like a good
little big girl.
I had high expectations from this place because my mom has such fond memories from her visits here when she was younger. Unfortunately, I doubt that the food quality is the same. I also don’t think that the staff is as well-trained as the ones before, or that the management pays enough attention to the quality of their service as they did in the past. Of course, I’m just guessing since I’d never actually been to Manila Hotel before.
I have been to many hotels around the country though, both for work and on personal trips, and here are the reasons why I have doubts as to the quality of service that Manila Hotel really gives its guests:
- My friend asked what kind of iced tea they served. The waiter said he wasn’t sure, and instead of going over to the counter to ask, he shouts at a fellow server to find out what kind of iced tea they have. Guess what? They serve Lipton. Instant okay, not brewed. I suddenly missed the Twinings iced tea at The Mandarin Oriental.
- A waitress carrying an empty tray actually bumped into someone right in front of us and dropped her tray with a loud clang. I don’t remember her apologizing to the person she bumped.
- We asked for mustard and it finally came after a very long time. The waitress who brought it kept trying to set the saucer down in between two glasses where it obviously would not fit. After bumping the glasses several times, she finally decided to place the saucer on a more spacious part of the table. I don’t know if I’m just being prissy with this one, but that was just kind of annoying. And not very smart.
- We ask for the bill and my friend requests for an OR. The lady who brings us the bill leaves to get a pen. Within 10 seconds, another waiter approaches the table and picks up the check. The lady calls out from across the room, pen in hand, and tells the guy “hindi pa yan” (don’t get that yet). What’s it with the staff shouting at each other?
- The disappointing Eggs Benedict. Enough said.
The best part of it all was that our meal cost us just a little below P1,500. That’s for an iced tea, a glass of juice, a cup of coffee and two sad breakfast plates. Hotel food, why you like that???
We had breakfast at Makati Shang the day before, and we were really happy with our meal. So I guess it’s really Manila Hotel that’s the problem. I think that’s sad because the place is quite pretty, and of course it’s a historical landmark in Manila. Oh how I wish they would improve their food and their service. Sayang naman kasi.