Destinations

10 spots Palaro players can chill in Cebu

By: - July 11, 2024

The entire city has erupted in a flurry of activity and anticipation as the 64 th annual Palarong Pambansa has officially opened, with Cebu City as its host. An estimated 15,000 students and players from 17 different regions have descended upon Cebu to compete in 28 sports and games held in various locations in Cebu City and neighboring cities. This marks only the third time the city has hosted the games since it first opened in 1948, with the first time being in 1954 and the second in 1994, so definitely a lot has changed since then. Amid the heat of the competition and youthful rivalries, players and guests can cool down in these exciting spots around town and appreciate the wonders that the Queen City has to offer.

Jollibee

Bida talaga ang saya sa Jollibee (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of Jollibee)

Bida talaga ang saya sa Jollibee (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of Jollibee)

Nothing works up an appetite like a big game, and with the tight schedules the players are on, it’s always best to go with something quick, hot, and freshly cooked. And nothing beats the OG homegrown fast-food brand, Jollibee. With over 70 branches all over Cebu, players can easily find a Jollibee near them for that burger or fried chicken fix.

Orange Brutus

Feast at Cebu's first favorite, Orange Brutus

Feast at Cebu’s first favorite, Orange Brutus (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the Orange Brutus)

For something more homegrown, Orange Brutus never disappoints. For sure many of the visiting delegates have yet to sample the delicious home-cooked fast food that Orange Brutus has perfected. From the delicious sizzling burger steaks to the decadent Chocolate Monster cake, you’ll be delightfully surprised that good food can still be this affordable.

Marina Seaview Restaurant

Dine and unwind at Marina Seaview (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the Marina Seaview)

Dine and unwind at Marina Seaview Restaurant (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the Marina Seaview Restaurant)

Whether you’re celebrating a big win or nursing a loss, it’s nothing delicious food with a stunning view can’t fix. With expansive interiors and beautiful décor, the dining experience at Marina Seaview Restaurant begins even before you’re seated at your table. The wide array of Filipino, Chinese, and Western dishes you can pick from the menu are best accompanied by the beautiful lights reflecting off the waters outside the window.

The Outlets at Pueblo Verde

Shop and save at The Outlets at Pueblo Verde

Shop and save at The Outlets at Pueblo Verde (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of The Outlets of Pueblo Verde)

For the ultimate lifestyle and shopping experience, head to The Outlets at Pueblo Verde, where you can enjoy up to 70% discounts on well-loved sports and fashion brands such as Nike, Adidas, and Levis. It’s a perfect destination for athletes wishing to upgrade their gear. At The Outlets, every day, there is a sale! Apart from that, The Outlets at Pueblo Verde also has an array of dining options and chill hangouts for visitors of the historic city of Mactan.

IL Corso Filinvest Malls

Be amazed by the stunning exteriors of the IL Corso Filinvest Malls

Be amazed by the stunning exteriors of the IL Corso Filinvest Malls (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the IL Corso Filinvest Malls)

One of the most underrated and beautiful malls in Cebu, IL Corso Filinvest Malls has some of the best al fresco spaces in the entire city. Sitting on reclaimed coastal property, the mall has an uninterrupted view of the Cebu Strait and the city skyline beyond. It’s the only mall in the whole island with a light-up dancing fountain and is home to many restaurants and cafes. Here is where the Palarong Pambansa’s billiards event will be held, and right across is Filinvest’s City Di Mare, the venue for baseball.

SM Seaside City Cebu

Marvel at the SM Seaside City Cebu

Marvel at the SM Seaside City Cebu (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the SM Seaside City Cebu)

One could argue that SM Seaside City Cebu isn’t just a mall but a destination, and it’s not hard to see the wisdom in that. Spread out over close to 500,000 square meters, it’s the largest mall in all of Cebu and sixteenth in the world, with many attractions, from restaurants to shops to entire gaming arenas, as well as the only ice skating rink in Cebu. It’s so massive, it will be hosting four sporting events for the Palarong Pambansa: aerobic gymnastics, softball, taekwondo, and wrestling.

SM City Cebu

Facade of SM City Cebu (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of SM City Cebu)

Facade of SM City Cebu (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of SM City Cebu)

One of the oldest malls in Cebu and second only in size to its sister mall (SM Seaside), the SM City Cebu is by far the busiest mall in town. The mall boasts an iMAX theater, a massive department store for affordable shopping, and shops and restaurants galore. But best of all, despite its size, the mall has a pretty straightforward layout, making it easy for first-time visitors to navigate the shops.

The Metro Stores

Shop all you want at the Metro

Shop all you want at the Metro (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of The Metro Stores)

The Metro Stores is another homegrown gem that has become a nationwide icon, and for good reason. Their tagline, “There’s something for you at the Metro,” is no exaggeration. Everything from clothing to appliances can be found at a Metro store near you, and the store also operates a supermarket. For athletes who are in need of a last-minute piece of equipment or supply, there’s also something for them at the Metro, with an expansive sporting goods section!

Mountains of Busay

Temple of Leah (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the Temple of Leah)

Temple of Leah (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the Temple of Leah)

After a rigorous week of competitive sports and endless training for the Palarong Pambansa, it’s time for a quick breezy getaway, wouldn’t you say? The mountains of nearby Busay can give you that and more. Nestled in the highlands, Busay is a haven of cool climate and much needed solitude. Explore the many quaint gardens that dot the area, take a sip or a quick bite at the many quirky cafes and bistros, take in the Cebu skyline at the lookout point, go looking for fresh fruits and vegetables (especially sweet yellow corn), or just drive aimlessly at the meandering roads. Best of all, with the wet season upon us, the inevitable fog will provide an otherworldy atmosphere that you won’t soon forget.

CCLEX

The majestic Cebu - Cordova Link Expressway (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the CCLEX)

The majestic Cebu – Cordova Link Expressway (Photo grabbed from the official Facebook page of the CCLEX)

It might seem silly to put an expressway as a must-visit, but hear me out. The Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway is an architectural marvel that should be experienced. It’s a massive piece of infrastructure that is truly something to behold. Spanning 9 kilometers and soaring over the Mactan Channel at a height of 145 meters, it’s not only the longest bridge in the whole Philippines but also the highest. And on it, you can get from downtown Cebu to the once- faraway town of Cordova in less than twenty minutes, all while getting to see Cebu from a whole new vantage point. Just recently, the bridge was opened to fitness enthusiasts to jog on, so
that’s something new to try. Personally, if you want to see make the most of the view, go on the bridge at sunset, so you can see Cebu bathed in a glorious golden glow once your on top, and then make a return trip just when the lights go on at nightfall. It’s the perfect little city jaunt.

And with that, we all wait with bated breath for the games to begin and to crown our new sports heroes. Good luck to all the players, and don’t forget to experience all that Cebu has to offer, for newcomers and return visitors alike. See you around the city!

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