I WAS thrilled to receive an invitation from Mister Helmut Gaisberger for the painting party of Movenpick hotel and resort in Cebu. Movenpick has now taken over of what used to be the Hilton hotel at Mactan Island. The Swiss hospitality company now manages this resort and is actually the first Philippine property for the Swiss firm. Movenpick started its empire with its creation of the marche concept that moved on to being one of the famous brands of ice cream in the world and now manages for than 90 hotels all over the world.
Mr. Gaisberger, a seasoned hotelier and more famous for being with the Mandarin Oriental hotel, has now joined Movenpick as its director of Development and Operations for the Philippines. He is still mum on new properties they will manage apart from the former Hilton but that is something to look forward to.
So, with the invitation of Mr. Gaisberger to join in one of their significant changes for the new Movenpick hotel — that is, to finally change the color of the hotel facade from pink to a nice ochre gold color. Pink did not quite suit well with the island I must say. It could have worked in the Mediterranean, but not here. So, to finally change the color brought so much excitement to Cebu and to Manila’s press people, too.
With the initiative of Mister Manny Osmena, the charismatic and brilliant owner of the hotel, a French colorist was hired to specifically analyze and suggest colors that will be used to mark the new beginning for the property. With the colors having been decided upon, Movenpick printed pink shirts with the Pink Panther, and a print that says, “pink no more,” which were distributed to the press and to friends of the hotel as they welcomed the changes beginning with a kitschy painting party.
Guests were treated to lunch with an array of pink inspired buffet theme. It was their way of saying goodbye to the color, and a symbolism of new changes for the hotel. The dessert buffet was an assortment of pink colored goodies from macaroons to pink chocolates!
Mr. Osmena envisions Movenpick to have the feel of the best beaches of the world — from Ibiza to St. Tropez beginning with a multi million renovation program. I cannot wait to go back to the new Movenpick hotel and resort, but this time, I would not be looking for pink landmarks.