Last year I wrote the top five reasons why you should stay at Jpark Island Resort and Waterpark in Cebu. As it’s easily one of my most favorite places in all of Cebu, when my friend Alex—Jpark’s Marketing Communications Manager—invited me join their biggest event of the decade, Jpark’s 10th Year Anniversary, I said “Yes”. They’ve actually added a couple more reasons to visit and stay at Jpark Island Resort and Waterpark.
The Philippines’ only 5-Star Waterpark Resort
The 17-hecatare waterpark has become a must-see tourist destination in itself—more than just a place to stay—frequented by many tourists coming from South Korea, Japan and China. Through the years, the resort has innovated its facilities to keep up with the growing demands of convenience and value-for-money of its guests.
We were here to be part of a grand celebration, the milestone that is the 10th year anniversary of Jpark. It has been a magical journey for this family-friendly resort that started in 2009. It was called the Imperial Palace before it was rebranded as Jpark Island Resort and Waterpark in 2014. The name is a combination of the founder’s name Mr. Yong Jun Park and the now full-owner, Cebuano businessman Justin Uy. Despite Uy taking sole ownership of the resort, the two men remain good friends to this day.
This time I stayed at one of their refurbished Deluxe Rooms overlooking the waterpark (the first time, I stayed at the 2-bedroom Cebu suite with a few blogger friends). My room is very spacious and cozy at the same time. Again, the drawback of staying in Jpark’s rooms is that you may not want to get out of the room.
Good thing though, the lure of the swimming pools’ giant water slides and the savory cuisines served at Maru (a Korean restaurant), the Abalone (they serve a wide array of international cuisines), Havana by the Sea (where we had our dinner), Nonki (Japanese restaurant), Aqus Pool Bar and Ching Hai (Chinese restaurant) gave me great reasons to get out of my room and join my fellow media buddies eat our way through Jpark’s impressive roster of in-house restaurants.
Pororo Park at Jpark Grand Opening
One of Jpark’s new innovation is the launching of a theme park based on a beloved Korean children 3D anime television show “Pororo: the Little Penguin”. The Pororo Indoor Park is the first of its kind in the country and only the 18th in the world—with 11 located in South Korea. The park features the show’s main characters; the gentle giant Polar Bear named Poby, the pink beaver Loopy—often, the gang’s voice of reason, Eddy the nerdy Fox and Crong the mischievous little dinosaur. These loveable characters appears on numerous scheduled performances throughout the day.
Inside the park, kids are entertained by an array of playrooms designed with interactive games and fun rides. Included in the more than 20 game rooms are: Patty’s Merry-go-round, Digital Sketch room, Aqua Play zone, Rodi’s Racing game, Tutu’s 4D rider, Sliding ball pool, Crong’s jungle gym, Eddy’s sliding car, Pororo Train, Pororo fishing zone and an indoor two-story high slide.
Apart from guaranteeing fun times to kids staying at Jpark, Pororo Park is expected to lure more foreign guests to the province of Cebu—mainly the Korean and Japanese tourism market.
“This will be an added asset for Jpark. This will be good for the Cebuanos and the Philippines as well,” Jpark Island Chairman Justin Uy said during the opening ceremony.
As we toured the Pororo Park, I quickly found myself trying out some of the interactive games and activities. I particularly love the Digital Sketch room where I spent extra time so I can design and send my shark to the digital ocean. As a grown-up adult, I easily find Pororo Park to be a haven of amusement. Just imagine what heaps of fun a nine year old kid would find here.
Poporo Themed Suites
Apart from the Pororo Theme Park, Jpark also converted 40 of its rooms into Pororo-themed ones. These rooms comes with trampolines, ball pits and mini slides in the living area of the suites along with Pororo-inspired interiors.
I will be posting a walk through video of the Poporo Theme Park and Themed Suites within the week. Please check back.
Havana by the Sea Welcome Dinner
I did found many reasons to get out of the room. I flew my drone from the balcony of my room to shoot a spectacular aerial view of the huge Jpark property. The property is technically within the drone NFZ (no fly zone) but far enough you can self unlock to fly.
During the welcome dinner of our first night at Jpark, a lavish buffet carefully selected by Mr. Christopher Shim, Jpark’s Food and Beverage Director, was served to the guests. It is worthy to mention that the nightly entertainment at Havana by the Sea is a great show. If you do stay there, you have to check it out at least one night.
But the highlight of the welcome dinner was when the newly elected Lapu-lapu mayor, Mayor Ahong Chan went on stage to dance with the amazing Jpark show talents. It was fun to see an elected official super game like that.
Jpark’s 10th at the Triton Ballroom
On our second night, we joined the 10th year anniversary celebration of Jpark Island Resort and Waterpark at the Triton Ball—the newly redesigned ballroom influenced by the mystical underwater kingdom of King Triton. Triton Ball is a state-of-the-art ballroom that incorporated modern and indigenous local materials. It can sit 1,500 people in a cocktail set-up, 2,000 in a Theatre setting and 1,000 in a Banquet gathering.
The celebration culminated to a fun night of bestowing honors to Jpark’s employees, tourism partners and media friends. Musical performances by Opera singer Zsarie Vidal and the night’s main act, Mister Pure Energy himself Gary Valenciano—who also sang heartfelt duet with her talented daughter Kiana Valenciano — serenaded the guests.
A raffle that awarded big-time prizes such as 3 nights stay at the Jpark Island Resort presidential suite (which I prefer over) and a round-trip ticket Cebu to New York (via Asiana Airlines) capped the night. I didn’t win either of the big prizes but happy go get some consolation ones.
Jpark Island’s Future
As Jpark Island Resort and Waterpark wrapped up its 10-years of industry leading existence, it continues to look forward to an array of expansion plans. Chairman and President Justin Uy reveals plans for immediate expansion in Panglao, Bohol—which is slated to open by 2020—and said to be even bigger than Jpark Cebu. “We have set plans for Cordova, and Oslob here in Cebu, and Anda in Bohol. We are also considering Siargao and Palawan in the near future” Uy adds.
Based on the fun I had from my twin-experiences staying at Jpark Cebu, I am already looking forward to staying at Jpark’s future locations.