In my mind, the name “Ascot“ evokes the epitome of luxury, elegance to the max, fashion at its best. I remember having been so fascinated by Ascot Gavotte, one of the songs from My Fair Lady, performed by a group of extremely refined spectators of the Royal Ascot Races, calmly expressing their excitement at the event in a stiff, expressionless and snooty manner.
The Royal Ascot Races is a very fashionable annual British horse racing event west of London, and attended by members of the Royal Family. Many people go there to see and be seen, to display their respective versions of high fashion. Ladies look forward to this event, to show off their large, unique, out-of-this- world hats created by London’s most creative milliners.
The men also go there looking dapper with their “ascot,” a neckband with wide pointed wings, traditionally made of pale grey patterned silk and named after this prestigious event.
So, when Ascott Makati opened in 2007, I knew right away that, even with a double “T” in its name, luxury and elegance will be the hotel’s main draw. Being right in the middle of the ever-busy Makati Commercial Center, it’s like an oasis of luxury in the middle of the concrete jungle! I see it every time I go to Glorietta Mall and am awed by its imposing façade, but I never had the chance to check out its facilities and services.
Not too long ago, I finally decided to spend a long weekend staycation in the hotel and, just as I expected, I found myself luxuriating it its well-appointed facilities. I didn’t even have to worry about my car as the hotel offers guests their own free parking inside Glorietta, separate from the public parking area, and fully secured by a fence and a guard.
The cavernous hotel lobby is impressive because it veers away from the usual layout of having that long, impersonal Reception counter which guests have to contend with, while waiting for their room assignments. At Ascott Makati, they have individual desks, each of which provides a very comfortable Gregorian-style chair where the guest can be seated comfortably, while being attended to by a gracious Reception Executive.
When I walked into my one-bedroom suite, I was greeted by a spacious living room, which was right next to the dining area with an elegant dining table, which in turn was in front of the big, well-equipped kitchen, with all the appliances needed to cook up a hearty meal. I was almost tempted to call up my friends immediately and host a party with overflowing drinks and mouth-watering canapés. But, I had to remind myself that I was there to enjoy a stress-free, lazy and very relaxing long weekend.
Looking out from my king-sized bed in the Master’s bedroom made me feel like I was watching an IMax movie because the bed faced squarely the panoramic window, which offered a very refreshing view of Makati’s towering steel-clad skyscrapers juxtaposed with the peaceful-looking cumulus clouds in the sky. The scene was certainly an antidote to stress.
The layout of the unit and its facilities made me want to just stay inside, laze around, watch TV, eat and enjoy to the fullest the room’s luxurious accouterments. I did that on the first day. But, on the second day, I ventured to make use of the hotel’s location, being right next to everything, and that’s when I realized why guests prefer it so they can do as much in the shortest time possible.
Glorietta Mall is a few steps from the hotel. I spent the day by, first, attending Mass in the Mall, then shopping, having a sumptuous lunch, buying some groceries, having my haircut, and watching a movie…all these done in air-conditioned comfort, in just one building. I even had enough time to go back to my hotel room either to deposit my shopping bags or to freshen up.
No wonder it has a high occupancy all year-round. Everybody loves its luxurious facilities, gracious service and the convenience of being in the center of everything. I guess I can sum up my staycation experience by borrowing the lyrics to “Ascot Gavotte:”
Every duke and earl and peer is here
Everyone who should be here is here!
What a smashing, positively dashing
Spectacle: The Ascott Makati.
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