Cucina at Marco Polo, Ortigas: A Comprehensive Review

Cucina at Marco Polo, Ortigas: A Comprehensive Review

Nestled within the luxurious confines of Marco Polo Ortigas, Cucina offers an exquisite dining experience that beckons both locals and travelers to embark on a culinary journey like no other. My recent visit to this elegant establishment on a Sunday evening left me with a mixed bag of emotions. While the ambiance and service were commendable, the food offerings left much to be desired. In this detailed review, I’ll delve into every aspect of my dining experience at Cucina, discussing the ambiance, food, service, and overall impression, along with some menu recommendations and whether I would recommend this restaurant to others.

Ambiance (4/5)

As my companion and I entered Cucina, we were greeted by an air of sophistication and tranquility. The soft, ambient lighting and contemporary décor created an inviting atmosphere, setting the stage for a delightful dining experience. We were fortunate to secure a table near the window, which offered panoramic views of the bustling Ortigas skyline, adding an extra layer of charm to our lunch.

The overall design of the restaurant is chic and modern, with clean lines and a tasteful color palette that exudes refinement. The restaurant boasts ample space, making it an ideal choice for hosting family gatherings and celebrating special occasions.

Food (3/5)

Now, let’s talk about the heart of any restaurant – the food. Cucina offers a buffet-style dining experience, and while the selections were well-curated, they left much to be desired in terms of variety and innovation. The buffet featured a mix of international and local dishes, but the choices felt limited compared to other upscale hotel buffets in the city.

One notable highlight was the fresh salmon sashimi. It was impeccably sliced and exceptionally fresh. I also found their selection of maki to be quite enjoyable. The seafood station also allowed diners to have their seafood cooked or grilled to perfection, adding a personal touch to the dining experience.

Given the limited menu options, I opted to indulge in mussels and shrimp, which turned out to be my newfound favorites at Cucina. I requested the staff to prepare them in a delectable honey butter sauce, and the outcome was nothing short of delightful. I savored every bite, thoroughly enjoying this delicious creation.

I had high hopes for the steaks, lamb, and lechon. Unfortunately, the steak was a bit underwhelming. In other buffet establishments, they often offer a more generous portion of steak and inquire about your preferred level of doneness, whether it’s well-done or rare. During my visit, the steak I sampled was a tad on the chewy side and had an average taste.

On a brighter note, the lechon was a real standout. Its flavor was truly delightful and left a memorable impression.

However, my overall impression was that Cucina played it safe with their menu, offering the basics but lacking the “wow” factor that you’d expect from a restaurant of this caliber. This gave me the impression that the restaurant might not be as serious about maintaining its reputation as it should be.

Service (4.5/5)

One aspect where Cucina truly shines is its service. From the moment we walked in, the staff and chefs were attentive and approachable. They promptly attended to our needs, whether it was refilling our water glasses or answering our inquiries about the dishes. Their warm and friendly demeanor added a personal touch to the dining experience, making us feel genuinely welcome.

The chefs at the live cooking stations were not only skilled but also engaging. They took the time to interact with diners, explaining the preparation of various dishes and even customizing some according to individual preferences. This level of engagement enhanced our overall dining experience and showed a commitment to delivering exceptional service.

Overall Experience (3.5/5)

While Cucina at Marco Polo Ortigas certainly has its merits, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of disappointment with my overall experience. The ambiance and service were commendable, creating an atmosphere conducive to an enjoyable evening. However, the food offerings fell short of my expectations, especially considering the price point.

The limited variety and lack of innovation in the buffet menu left me craving more diversity and uniqueness. It was evident that some aspects of the dining experience, such as the cheese and bread selection, needed improvement to match the restaurant’s upscale reputation. I was left with the impression that Cucina may have downgraded its food offerings since my last visit, which was disappointing.


Daily | Breakfast | 6:30 AM to 10:30 AM
Mondays to Wednesdays | 11:30 AM to 10:00 PM
Sundays | 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Breakfast: Daily | 6:30 AM to 10:30 AM
Lunch: Thursdays to Sundays | 12:00 PM to 2:30 PM
Dinner: Thursdays to Saturdays | 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM

If you do decide to dine at Cucina, I recommend focusing on the fresh seafood and live cooking stations. The salmon sashimi is a must-try, and exploring the seafood options can be a rewarding experience. Engage with the chefs at the live cooking stations to get the most out of your visit, as they can prepare dishes tailored to your preferences.

Additionally, I would advise checking their menu regularly for updates and specials, as it’s possible that they may introduce new and exciting dishes in the future.

Would I Recommend Cucina at Marco Polo Ortigas?

My recommendation would depend on your priorities as a diner. If you prioritize ambiance and attentive service, Cucina certainly delivers on these fronts. It’s an excellent choice for a special occasion or a romantic evening.

However, if your primary focus is on the variety and quality of the food in a buffet setting, you might find Cucina lacking in comparison to some other upscale hotel buffets in the area. While the seafood and live cooking stations offer some highlights, the overall food selection might leave food enthusiasts wanting more.

In conclusion, Cucina at Marco Polo Ortigas provides a pleasant dining experience with room for improvement in its culinary offerings. It’s a restaurant that has the potential to shine brighter with a more diverse and innovative menu, aligning with the reputation of the Marco Polo brand.

Author: Polly Amora

Polly Amora is the señorita behind GoldenIslandSenorita.Net and the manager of a private company in Manila, Philippines. She is a lifelong learner who is very outgoing, speaks four languages, loud & outspoken, and loves to have adventures in the mountains, on the beach, and in the city. You can throw her anywhere, and she'll handle it like a pro. Ice cream and bourbon are two of her weaknesses.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Exit mobile version