One Central Hotel

Cebu's premiere luxury affordable hotel
By Earl D.C. Bracamonte

For many years, the bulk of business activity, whether governmental or proprietarial, was confined to Cebu City's downtown district. At the dawn of the new Millennium, developments in Mactan and the Ayala Technohub Park offered alternative venues for trade.

Of late, there are signs that the bulk of business transacting is back to the downtown area. And one of the key players in the arena is the Yu family and their newest undertaking - the One Central Hotel: a one-stop shop for both urbanites and savvy businessmen.

The One Central Hotel (OCH) building looms high above the downtown area; joining other high-rises in creating an interesting skyline in this part of the city.

The hotel's roof deck, at the 20th floor, affords guests with a panoramic view of the metro and its suburbs, the entire expanse of the Tañon Strait, as well as the hills and promontories that form part of the province's mountain ranges. A floor below is the pool area where guests get to enjoy their dips with a whiff of breeze from the sea. OCH is an intermarriage of a resort vibe within a city hotel; mingling the two concepts for a unique stay experience.

"OCH kicks off the renaissance of the downtown area business district. It pioneers this progressive movement in business and trade. OCH signals the sprout of future developments in the area. This hotel concept is completely different from the existing hotel services in the downtown area.

"We soft opened in mid April this year and from an occupancy of 30 per cent, that figure shoot up to 70 per cent in our July/August calendar. The direct flights from mainland China into Cebu will increase over time, and, with that, so will our potential guests. The MICE bookings will fill up the hotel during the lean months," shared spokesperson Margie Munsayac, PRMarComms director of the Bluewater Hospitality Group.

OCH is strategically located at the junction of Leon Kilat and Sanciangko streets in downtown Cebu, beautifully spreading out its 157 rooms in twenty floors of mixed-use convenience. The first two floors of the edifice comprise the mall area while the 9th floor functions as reception area and dining salon, the Café Tartanilla. In the same floor are function rooms for private huddles and a grand ballroom proferring venue for both intimate and grand occasions.

"Cebu City is a preferred destination for travelers and businessmen; being a hub of trade and commerce in the Visayas-Mindanao region. It is the birthplace of Christianity in the Philippines. The Queen City of the South has also sired many of our leaders in government.

"The property where the hotel sits is part of a complex train station that serviced Danao to Argao during the American era, and has been with the family for the past seven decades now. One Central Hotel is located strategically at the center of the downtown area. OCH helps our guests savor the city's history and culture, including trips to the wet market, that's still rife with its 16th century charm.

"It is very near the bus terminal station that ply routes to several getaway destinations. OCH is a ten-minute walk to historic sites like the Magellan's Cross and the Santo Niño Shrine. For a piece of gustatory experience with a vintage feel, there's Casa Gorordo. The peace and order situation here is very much okay.

"After accreditation , we will aim for a 4-star rating from the DoT. Our Wi-Fi service is top-notch and there's an unlimited connectivity of devices in each of the rooms. This hotel project was two years in the pipeline. We derived inspiration from all over the world in coming up with the design elements. This area used to be a lumber yard. In creating this hotel, we are creating a new landmark in the city. Our family has been involved in banking, trading, textiles, food, and lumber. Now we are trying our hand at property development. Choosing the management team for this hotel started from strong familial ties," intimated chief executive officer Steven Yu.

OCH is managed by Bluewater Hospitality's brand of 'amuma' pampering with excellence.

"Cebu is cradled in history and culture; seeing the beginnings of our Catholic faith. The city's streets give us glimpses into our colorful past. Today, OCH is your respite in the city as you experience our signature 'amuma' pampering. This is our first foray into property management.

"Loyalty runs in how we serve our clients. Therefore, we look for partners with the same values as us. The Bluewater brand started in Mindanao - Agusan - in 1983 with our city hotels. While our focus may be in the Visayas-Mindanao areas, especially with our properties in Sumilon, Panglao, and Lapu-Lapu, hopefully we can have properties to manage and operate in Luzon," enthused Julie Alegrado-Vergara, president of the Bluewater Hospitality Group.

The grand launch of OCH was graced by Dept. of Tourism regional director Shalimar Tamano, Mandaue City vice-mayor Carlo Fortuna, Mandaue Chamber of Commerce prexy Stanley Go, Cebu Chamber of Commerce prexy Antonio Chiu, ABC president Hon. Franklyn Ong, ARC Hospitality operations manager Kerbasi Ugarte, Bluewater Hospitality prexy Julie Alegrado-Vergara and VP for Finance Rhyz Buac, OCH chief executive Steven Yu, as well as other members from the Yu family - Ninarose Yu, Pinky Yu, Sanny Yu, and Aimee Yu.

"People is our brand. That is why we can deliver excellent service because of that. Unlike our other upscale properties, OCH is a price-driven market catering to businessmen and young travelers; yet they still get our brand of pampering," intoned Bluewater's VP for Finance, Rhyz Buac.

For easy booking, simply get in touch with the hotel's trunklines through tel. nos. (+63 32) 888-8000 and (+63 32) 888-8111 or send them an email via You may also check out their Web site, for more details.


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