Credit Hann Casino Resort Group, owner of Widus and Hann casinos, for putting up Swissôtel Clark that gives Filipino domestic travelers a peek of far-away Switzerland.
Swiss chocolates, Swiss cheese, Swiss watches, and the like are popular products to consumers: but, what will be realized in a stay at Swissôtel are the Swiss hospitality, Swiss bathroom essentials, traditional pralines, and as you enter the hotel, the sight of the cool Doorman’s Uniform, custom-made in Austria but from Swiss fabric.
The Doorman’s Uniform is as Swiss as what you see in travel brochures, designed by Ida Gut (uniform) and Sebastian Fässler (shoe buckles) from Appenzell, Switzerland. In fact, the hotel prides itself with it, devoting some hotel videos on its traditional design, fabric, and accessories that go with it. The uniform costs around 50,000 pesos a set.To say the least, Swissôtel is a cultural mix of sorts—Korean owner, Swiss tradition, French-managed (Accor), Italian chef, Tunisian GM, Filipino staff, and many other small, but significant matters like being in Pampanga, the culinary center of Luzon.
The 372 stylish guest rooms and suites are said to be the most inventory of suites in the region, attributing the name Swiss to its Executive rooms and Grand Suites. It is here, at the higher-level floors where the magnificent view of the Zambales mountains takes you to the “green version” of the Swiss Alps.
“We are overwhelmed by the continuous support that our guests and customers have shown since the hotel’s soft-opening last March 2022,” said Tarek Aouini, General Manager of Swissôtel Clark during the opening of Ristorante di Verona, its 10th restaurant.
“We are fascinated with the warm acceptance to the #SwissHospitality and #SwissTastes concepts from us. After three months of soft operation, and as we continue to offer unique dining experiences for our guests, we are hoping for your continuous support,” he added.
The hotel has 10 F&B outlets — Markt, the all-day dining restaurant that serves European cuisine, steaks and grilled dishes in charming market setting; The Atrium, for those who are into healthy fruit and vegetable drinks or lounging in the afternoon for tea, coffee, or snacks
“We have the biggest gin and tonic bar in the Philippines, with more than 45 selections. On the other hand, Vitality foods like carb-free burger, vegan food make us a vitality brand of Accor promoting peace of mind,” revealed Alex Aquino, Assistant Director of Marketing of Swissotel Clark. Then there’s Oma’s dessert bar where an introduction to Swiss-baked goodies like freshly-baked pastries and cakes are showcased, Swiss Tropics at Level 5 offers a nice view of the Zambales mountain range where drinks, comfort food, and the like are served beside the pool area. Also on the 5th floor, Italian cuisine at its best was created in the newly opened Ristorante di Verona by Chef Alessio Leddo. He hails from Sardinia, Italy and has opened many Italian restaurants around the world and here, with stints in several five-star rated hotels in Metro Manila prior to joining Swissôtel Clark.
Inside the Hann Casino are four more restaurant outlets: Nasi (rice, in Pampanga) for delectable authentic local dishes; Spice for a sampling of Asian street food; Kai, offering Korean cuisine; and 20, an upscale all-day entertainment destination.
Worthy of mention is Wu Xing, a Chinese fine-dining restaurant not within Swissôtel but within the Hann Casino complex at the adjacent Marriott Hotel. Wu Xing serves authentic Peking duck aside from popular delectable Cantonese dishes.
How Swiss can you get with a spa? The soon-to-be-opened Pürovel Spa & Sport facility is only offered at select Swiss Hotels & Resorts. Pürovel, a contemporary design with emphasis on natural materials, uses essential oils from Alpine flowers and herbs complemented with well-designed amenities, and modern sports training facilities.According to Aquino, a big part of their brand’s DNA are activities to fill a guest’s needs.
“We have plants, yoga classes, and mindfulness activities. At the concierge you get desk cards for biking, running, coloring books for kids, also within Clark there are eight golf courses, more than 20 within Pampanga. Swissôtel is a destination within a destination (Clark), just 3-km away from the airport, within Clark there is an 8-km biking course (Red Lane), jogging trail, and different staycation themes.”
With the mantra of “life is a journey”, Swissôtel aims to help the guests live well through its vitality offerings in every corner—rooms, food amenities, activities around and within the hotel, add to that, pass by the dessert bar upon check-out and have a little piece of Switzerland to go. Grüezi!
(Published in Hospitality News Philippines, August 31, 2022 print edition)