Yes, Valentine’s Day is a cliché. It’s commercialized and a bad day to go out on a date. However, if you do wish to take your loved one out on this special day, ditch the restaurants-and-movie thing and go on a most romantic date in the city: the Manila Bay Sunset Cruise aboard M/V Spirit of Manila.
Offered by Sun Cruises Philippines, the same company that runs the Corregidor Tours, the sunset cruise is a definitely a treat. I was with a group of travel bloggers (invited by Bobby Aquino through Ivan Henares) and we couldn’t get over how romantic the whole thing was, from slowly cruising Manila Bay going towards SM Mall of Asia, to the darkening sky, and the soft crooning of the live band.
When you make your reservations, specify that you would like to stay on the upper deck. From there, you can feel the breeze and appreciate the sunset all the more. As the ferry goes toward SM, you’ll see the mall getting closer and closer. Aside from the great cityscape though, you’ll also see a lot of ships, some docked, others just leaving. Framed in the backdrop of the setting sun, it’s easy to imagine that you and your loved one are alone amidst such beauty.
Don’t expect too much of the dinner provided though. It’s a set meal and you don’t get to choose what dish you’ll have. At the time when we were there, we were served fried chicken, rice, and dessert. Good enough, I suppose, but for someone like me who doesn’t eat meat as much as possible, it can be a turn-off indeed.
The docking area of the Manila Bay Sunset Cruise is beside the Jumbo Palace floating restaurant in the Cultural Center of the Philippines complex. There are three trips daily: from 4:30pm to 5:45pm, 6:15pm to 7:30pm, and from 8:00pm to 9:15pm. The ticket costs P550 per person, and it covers the roundtrip fee, dinner, and live entertainment onboard. Make sure to be there 30 minutes before your schedule so that you can get the table you want.
Call (63 2) 834-6857 or 527-5555 to make your reservations, and do it weeks in advance especially since they’re expected to have a lot of customers on Valentine’s Day. You can also visit the website of Sun Cruises.
How about you? What are you going to do this Valentine’s Day?