Sun.Star Cebu - - LIVE! - CAS­SAN­DRA C. POCULAN

The four-star Maayo Ho­tel is an ur­ban re­treat known not only for its taste­fully ap­pointed rooms and well-thought-out well­ness ameni­ties such as an al fresco jog­ging trail and yoga space, but also for its on-site din­ing out­lets that of­fer hearty and healthy dishes to com­ple­ment its brand prom­ise. Cu­rat­ing ex­pe­ri­ences for both busi­ness trav­el­ers and leisure seek­ers, the ho­tel is in­tent on up­dat­ing the gas­tro­nomic land­scape to en­sure that the culi­nary as­pect is just as in­cred­i­ble as the ho­tel it­self.

Maayo Ho­tel re­cently wel­comed Luigi Man­gu­bat as its new ex­ec­u­tive chef, and Ahlmark “Marco” Al­bar­racin as the ex­ec­u­tive sous chef. To­gether, they can cre­ate ex­cep­tional fla­vors for the ho­tel, but in­di­vid­u­ally, they are also a force to be reck­oned with.

Com­ing from a fam­ily that loves to cook, Chef Luigi demon­strated im­pres­sive kitchen skills at a young age. But his ca­reer for­mally be­gan when he joined Marco Polo Plaza Cebu, where he rose through the ranks, start­ing as a line cook and end­ing up as chef de cui­sine. “The sim­pler, the bet­ter” would best de­scribe his cook­ing phi­los­o­phy. “I be­lieve that the fewer in­gre­di­ents you put, the bet­ter you can ap­pre­ci­ate the fla­vors,” he ex­plained. Hav­ing been sea­soned with 12 years of ex­pe­ri­ence, Chef Luigi is set to in­ject lin­ger­ing fla­vors to each of the ho­tel’s restau­rants.

Chef Marco, on the other hand, car­ries with him dif­fer­ent global in­flu­ences which he has col­lected over the nine years he spent here and abroad work­ing for a cruise line, a num­ber of restau­rants in Paris, and Quest Ho­tel in Cebu. While he ad­mits to be­ing used to for­eign cul­ture, Chef Marco wel­comes the chal­lenge of be­ing in a new en­vi­ron­ment. His goal for Maayo Ho­tel is in con­so­nance with that of Chef Luigi in that they both want to bring back the au­then­tic­ity of Filipino food. “The trend to­day tends to fo­cus on fu­sion so that we have for­got­ten our roots. We want to change that,” he said.

Un­der the helm of th­ese two, all-day din­ing Uma and fine-din­ing restau­rant Ani will now be putting the spot­light on the fresh­ness of lo­cal pro­duce while in­tro­duc­ing a spec­trum of rich fla­vors that are sure to stim­u­late the taste buds. “Guests can ex­pect Filipino food at its finest here at Maayo Ho­tel. I think that it’s about time we put Filipino food on the map be­cause it’s more than just adobo,” Chef Luigi added.

Promis­ing to bring un­con­ven­tional flair to fa­mil­iar dishes as well as to be the driv­ing force that will take your din­ing ex­pe­ri­ence to new heights, Chef Luigi and Chef Marco are all about bold fla­vors that still stay true to Ce­buano roots.

CHEFS. Luigi Man­gu­bat and Marco Al­bar­racin.

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