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Thursday, April 25, 2024

Auspicious offerings to ring in the Year of the Wood Dragon at City of Dreams Manila

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City of Dreams Manila ushers in the Year of the Wood Dragon, considered as the luckiest sign in Chinese Zodiac which comes once every 60 years, with its auspicious offerings.

The integrated resort’s signature restaurants, Crystal Dragon and Red Ginger, pull out all the stops in welcoming the lunar year.

Crystal Dragon

Enjoy a prosperous meal at Crystal Dragon, City of Dreams Manila’s outlet specializing in Cantonese and regional Chinese specialties. 

From January 25 to February 12, the restaurant highlights its Lunar New Year specialties from lunch to dinner, including the signature Lunar Year Prosperity Abalone Yu Sheng.

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A quintessential Chinese New Year celebratory fare, Crystal Dragon’s version of the symbolic yu sheng salad consists of sliced abalone, colorful julienned papaya, pomelo, carrots, radish, onion leeks, chopped peanuts, and deep-fried flour crisps drizzled with oil and sweet plum dressing. The abalone symbolizes abundance, while the oil represents a wish for a smooth sailing year. The chopped peanuts and deep-fried flour crisps signify prosperity, and the sweet plum sauce denotes a sweet and harmonious family relationship. The green papaya carries the auspicious meaning of youthfulness, the radish for progression at a quick pace, the leeks for cleverness, and the pomelo and carrots for good luck. 

Deep-fried Nian Gao (tikoy) with cheese — a delicious way to usher in good luck and progress

Yu sheng is a uniquely Lunar New Year tradition that’s popular in Chinese communities in Southeast Asia, particularly in Malaysia and Singapore where heritage Chinese restaurants introduced it in the 1960s.

Other culinary delights offered in an a la carte menu for lunch and dinner this season augur harmony and good fortune: Sea Treasures Broth with sea cucumber, crab meat and crispy dried scallop; Slow-braised Pork Knuckle with 10-head abalone, conpoy (dried scallop) and sea cucumber; Steamed Star Grouper with aromatic coriander and yellow chili paste; Slow-poached Yellow Skin Chicken (whole); Wok-fried Prawn in fragrant oat with pomelo fruit salad and roasted sesame dressing; and Wok-fried Fragrant Rice with Chinese liver sausage, lap cheong (Chinese sausage), and mushroom. For luck and togetherness, Crystal Dragon also offers Deep-fried Nian Gao (tikoy or sticky rice cake) with cheese.

A pineapple pastry caps the meal for guests dining on the eve of the occasion and on the day of Lunar New Year for good fortune.

Red Ginger

City of Dreams Manila’s Asian bar and bistro renders a Southeast Asian twist to yu sheng salad with its Prosperity Prawn and Pomelo Salad, featuring sustainable prawns, local pomelo, hydroponic-grown lettuce and Vietnamese Nước chấm dressing. As it is customary to eat fish for its symbolism of abundance during this occasion, the restaurant also offers Deep-fried Whole Tilapia with calamansi, ginger and steamed bok choy. Crispy Orange Chicken with toasted sesame seeds, and Red Ginger’s rendition of the ubiquitous Nian Gao consisting of custard-filled glutinous rice cake and fish-shaped tikoy are also highlighted. 

Red Ginger’s menu for the Lunar New Year is available from February 8 to 18 for lunch and dinner.

Other festivities

Activities that bring good fortune and delight are lined up during the festive season, headlined by an eye-dotting ceremony, and a lion and dragon dance on February 10 at 5 p.m. at the main casino entrance. Following Chinese mythology, the god of fortune is set to make appearances around the property to wish guests abundance and good luck.

From February 8 to 11 from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. at The Shops at the Boulevard, a pop-up bazaar of jewelry and charms from Alfredulla and Charming Lady adds to the festivities, while tarot and palm readers hold court to help guests chart their destiny and find out what is in store for 2024.

(For inquiries and reservations, call 8800-8080 or e-mail [email protected]. For more information, visit www.cityofdreamsmanila.com)

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