HERE’S our first few peeks at the town’s offerings for the Lunar New Year, the first day of which falls on Jan. 25

To officially usher in the Year of the Metal Rat, a special blessing ceremony will be held at the Ground Floor Lobby on the first day of the Lunar New Year. This ritual will be led by feng shui master Hanz Cua at 11 a.m. Guests may also look forward to the traditional lion and dragon dance after the blessing ceremony.

Meanwhile, the hotel’s Lung Hin restaurant offers several variants of nian gao (lucky glutinous rice cakes otherwise known as tikoy) that guests may purchase ahead of the Lunar New Year. The Double Gold Bar nian gao is available in a brown sugar flavor for P1,888++ per box, while the Single Round nian gao in red dates sugar flavor may be enjoyed at P798++ per box. The classic Large Round nian gao is available in two flavors: pandan and coconut, and red dates sugar. Each variant in this size may be purchased for P1,388++ per box. Orders may be placed through

Marco Polo Ortigas Manila’s award-winning authentic Cantonese restaurant also special set menus for dining parties of five or 10 persons from Jan. 24 to Feb. 3. The Good Wealth set menu features Lung Hin’s signature Sautéed tiger prawns with homemade chili sauce, Steamed fresh garoupa with superior soya sauce, and Crispy roasted baby duck. The Good Fortune set menu includes Baked slipper lobster in Supreme stock, Braised South African abalone with Japanese oysters and vegetables, and the Signature salt-baked chicken. Reservations may be made through 7720-7720 or by e-mail to

The gift of good fortune (it’s also tikoy) comes encased in an elegant round box with red and gold accents as New World Makati’s Chinese restaurant Jasmine highlights its special nian gao in koi fish and round shapes (P1,388 and P1,188, respectively). Bulk orders of 30 boxes or more get a 30% discount and delivery is free within Makati City.

A bountiful feast awaits with the restaurant’s two set menus and a Chef’s Recommendation à la carte menu. Each meal starts with the Salmon Yu Sheng salad for tossing with family and friends to usher in luck, abundance, and good fortune for the new year.

The first set menu then follows with the Braised shredded chicken with fish maw and dried scallop, Stir-fried scallop with shrimp in XO sauce, Steamed live garoupa in soy sauce, Braised pork knuckle with black mushroom and sea moss, Deep-fried spare ribs with salt and pepper and crispy milk, Deep-fried crispy chicken with minced garlic, Fried glutinous rice with Chinese marinated pork, Chilled red bean cream and sweet dumpling and an assortment of sweet nian gao pastries. This menu is priced at P12,880++ for six guests.

The second auspicious set menu has the Yu Sheng salad, followed by Roasted suckling Pig salad, Dried scallop with shredded chicken, bamboo pith and crab meat soup, Stir-fried scallop with celery, Sliced preserved duck leg meat, Steamed live garoupa in soy sauce, Braised baby abalone with black mushroom and sea moss, Deep-fried minced shrimp ball and crispy milk, Fried glutinous rice with assorted Chinese marinated meats, Chilled red bean cream and sweet dumpling and an assortment of sweet nian gao pastries. This menu is offered at P14,980++ for six guests.

For guests who prefer to dine à la carte, the Chef’s Recommendation menu also offers the Yu Sheng salad as well as the Poon Choi “big bowl feast,” Braised pork knuckle with lettuce, Steamed black mushroom stuffed with minced shrimp, fish and sea moss, Deep-fried minced shrimp balls and crispy milk, Deep-fried crispy chicken with minced garlic, Braised baby abalone with duck feet, Fried glutinous rice with Chinese marinated meats, and Stir-fried scallop with celery and sliced and preserved duck leg meat. Prices start at P888 per dish.

The Chinese New Year set and à la carte menus are offered from Jan. 24 to 26.

Jasmine also highlights six savory and hearty à la carte duck creations prepared by Chinese Executive Chef Wong Kam On: Boiled salted duck, Ground ginger braised duck, Stewed duck-Chinese style; Deep-fried boneless duck, stuffed with minced shrimp; Roasted duck breast rolls; and Sautéed sliced duck with pineapple. Prices start at P880 and are available until March 31.

For more information or to place an order, call Jasmine at New World Makati Hotel via 8811-6888 ext. 3679 or 0917-809-6856.

Shangri-La at the Fort starts the celebration with a lion dance show at the Lobby on Jan. 25 at 10 a.m., followed by a family feast at Canton Road on Level 3.

Chinese Executive Chef Wang Wei Qing has developed a series of limited-time offer set menus good for ten persons. Starting with a traditional Salmon Yee Sang and continue with favorites such as Ming Dynasty Peking duck and Stone-fired suckling pig. Select seasonal set menus are inclusive of one bottle of wine and select non-alcoholic beverages and are offered for lunch and dinner from Jan. 22 to Feb. 8. A Dim Sum Class experience is also available on select dates this January offered at P28,888nett good for 10 persons.

For something different, the Ministry of Crab, Manila will offer a family-style set menu for four on Jan. 25 highlighting fresh Philippine seafood and Sri Lankan flavors for P3,500nett per person.

Nian gao and special hamper boxes are available for pre-order until Jan. 25 and may be picked up at Canton Road three days upon confirmation of order. The nian gao comes in three flavor options: radish, coconut milk, and taro. These are available in double-fish or round varieties inside a one-tier or two-tier box starting at P2,126 nett per box. For orders, e-mail For further inquiries and reservations, e-mail or visit

For a limited period, Starbucks is offering the Year of the Rat Paper Card, with an initial activation amount of P300 per card. The coffee chain also celebrates the Lunar New Year with a collection of tumblers and mugs decorated with friendly looking rats, decorated with cherry blossoms and orange trees in red and gold (for luck) and shades of Starbucks green.