Standing on T.M. Kalaw Avenue in Manila is an elegant six-story building whose “Mansard roof, French windows, carved details, attractive grilles and studied proportions”, as described by Philippine historian Bambi L. Harper, hark back to the French renaissance.
A stone’s throw from the Manila Harbor, the Luneta Hotel in its heyday in the early 1900s faced what used to be the grassy expanse of its namesake park, the Luneta, and towered over humble homes and warehouses in that part of the city.
Throughout its long, storied life since it first opened in 1918, the Luneta Hotel, designed by Spanish architect-engineer Salvador Farre, has charmed everyone with its beauty: society’s elite and foreign dignitaries, as well as officers and men of the merchant marine.
It was one of the few survivors of the mass bombings in World War II and played host to the American military, becoming at the time an erstwhile symbol of the country’s elated acceptance of a new colonial yoke.
One of the hotel’s most famous guests, U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower, who stayed there for months-long stretches in 1930, once wrote, “To this day it [The Luneta] lives in memory as one of the most pleasant, [sic] indeed even one of the most romantic spots, I have known in this entire world.”
The hotel’s ownership exchanged hands several times since then, and the years saw a steady deterioration in the state of the building. There is no record of the exact date when it stopped operations.
In 2008, the National Historical Commission approved the retrofitting and reconstruction of the hotel, building on the main furnishings, the lounge bar, and window and ceiling details that remained intact even after its abandonment in the late ‘80s, in an effort to restore it to its former grandeur, and to pay proper respect to its part in both the landscape and the heritage of the City of Manila.
The Luneta Hotel’s historical character, its elegant renaissance architecture and well-appointed rooms, and its gastronomic offerings – a fusion of traditional American, Spanish and Filipino cuisine – make it the embodiment of Old Manila elegance and charm, a model of the varied cultural influences that flowed into the City during the Belle Epoque, a great venue for educational tours, conferences, fora, workshops, and exhibits, and a unique and interesting place to bring family and friends.
For this notable architectural character, and for its part as a significant feature of the Old City of Manila, the National Historical Commission placed a historical marker on the Luneta Hotel, which reopened its doors to the world in May 9, 2014.
The Commission and the new management under Beaumont Holdings believe that the recognition manifest in the land marker, along with the resumption of the Luneta Hotel’s operations, will bring to the City – indeed, to the metropolis – a glimpse of a past beautiful, sophisticated, pleasant and peaceful.
Indulge your romantic side with the enchanting ambiance of the Luneta Hotel. Tucked inside this historic property is Café Yano and Filomena’s Garden a newly-rediscovered prime dining destination in Manila. Inspired by the union of the old and the new worlds, the restaurant offers a cozy candlelit space for quiet conversation over fine food and wine in a classic and regal ambiance. . The quiet, elegant atmosphere, coupled with the view, makes this restaurant a romantic choice. The updated menu prepared by our creative culinary staff offers a variety of dishes, including American Spanish and Filipino favorites. It is sure to inspire many return visits.
Reliving an Old Manila atmosphere along with gourmet dining and impeccable service. Delight in imaginative entrées, vegetables, salads, and fruits in their prime, and fanciful desserts. Cap off your evening with an excellent vintage from our select cellar collection or go healthy with a smoothie of fresh fruits in season while watching the non-stop cable programs on wide-screen HDTV.
Guest Rooms and Suites
Luneta Hotel’s concept of modern and contemporary guestrooms are manifested in its furnishings , as a result the hotel has a distinctly elegant feel, in addition to which all the bedrooms feature are range of decorative accessories and amenities. A perfect getaway is a revitalizing experience that one should not ignore. Appointed with modern convenience ( HD flat screen TV’s, internet ,mini bar) Why cant’ you have the best of both worlds.
Strategically located at the heart of Manila,near Luneta Park, Intramuros Wall City,Museums,Planetarium and the Cultural Center of the Philippines, LUNETA HOTEL is one good stop after a cultural and historical tour in the country’s cultural area.