Drinks, music, sunset at the Cove

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THE Sunset Lounge at Okada’s the Cove.

SEEING MANILA’s famous sunset inside a climate-controlled dome nestled in the 44-hectare Okada Manila property is the perfect way to end a hectic work day — that’s the proposition of the Cove Manila’s newly introduced Sunset Lounge.

“For tourists in Manila, you should at least see the sunset once,” Heathcliff Motorga, senior manager for operations at the Cove Manila, told BusinessWorld during the launch on March 5.

“Seeing the sunset inside a dome and seeing [it] reflected on the glass makes it much more beautiful. Another good thing is we’re saved if it’s too hot or too cold outside since we’re viewing the sunset inside,” he added.

Mr. Motorga noted that he introduced a similar sunset session at Dubai’s 360 nightspot in Jumeirah Beach Hotel and it was deemed a success, and this success led him to introduce a similar concept in Manila.

The whole point, Mr. Motorga said, is to make the Cove a destination so tourists actually stay in the capital for a couple of days and take in the sights instead of just treating Manila as a way station while waiting for transfers to other islands.

“In the past two years I’ve been in Manila, there are quite a few sunset sessions but they are not a point of attraction yet, and that’s my aim — to see the Cove Manila Sunset Lounge as a point of attraction in Manila,” he explained.

Opened last year, the Cove Manila — a 9,000-square-meter entertainment space featuring a nightclub and a beach club ensconced inside a dome facing the Manila Bay and its famous sunset — was envisioned to change the nightclub scene in the country and the region. The sunset lounge is positioned as one of its main attractions.

“We don’t only sell the music, we also sell the experience, and all for the same money you can spend in any other place. The Cove is not more expensive nor cheaper than any other place, it’s just more value for money,” Mr. Motorga explained.

He added that the lounge is perfect for people aged 25 to 40 who want to wind down after work, listen to what he described as “ethnic-melodic deep house” music, have a couple of drinks, go home, and go to work the next day.

“The music that we listen to here is music they will not hear from radios or other clubs. The music is completely different, something everyone can listen to and like.”

The cocktails available at the Sunset Lounge include the Cove G’ n T (P400), a Gin Mare blended with grapefruit bitters, olive brine, and finished with tonic water. Others are the Spicy Whisky Sour (P500), made up of Jim Beam, spiced honey water, and celery bitters, and El Saraboso (P400), which features blackberry liqueur blended with Cazadores Reposado Tequila, apple juice, agave syrup, and ginger ale.

For bar chow, Cove Manila offers Choripan (P480), an Argentinian sausage on sourdough baguette, aioli, salsa criolla, chimichurri, and house-made pickles with fries on the side; and Cornflake Chicken Fingers (P470) — cornflake-breaded chicken tenders with parmesan and honey mustard dressing.

“We want to create a legendary club in the Philippines and for the world to say that there is a place in Manila where you have to go… [because] Manila people deserve it,” Mr. Motorga said.

The Sunset Lounge is open from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m. on Sundays to Wednesdays, and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays. Happy hour is from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. where all drinks are buy-one, get-one. Group packages are also available.

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