A royal treatment

Someone once said, “Don’t pray when it rains if you don’t pray when it shines.”

A year has passed since Café La Carmela opened in Bel-Air, Makati City. And like many start-up restaurants, it wasn’t always sunny weather for the business especially during the first crucial, six months. Yet, its owner my good friend Boy So and his people kept on giving the same impeccable service, offering the same quality food and standing by the same business principle of treating customers like kings.

Last Nov. 30, Café La Carmela celebrated its first anniversary by holding a thanksgiving party for some of its loyal customer, friends (showbiz and non-showbiz) and business partners. Friends Kris Aquino, Ruffa Gutierrez, Rhap Salazar, Sam Milby and Erik Santos were just some of the stars who greeted Boy via VTR for a job well done.

Boy has played host to a number of movie stars and celebrities in his resort, La Carmela de Boracay, where Café La Carmela got its name. In fact, when locals of Boracay want to see movie stars at any season of the year, all they have to do is go by the gates of La Carmela de Boracay and they are sure to get a glimpse of their favorite movie stars.

I know Boy’s generosity. He sincerely loves people. He runs his business like family.

Although Boy could have basked on the accolades, he chose to step back and re-train the spotlight on the people who helped him turn the venture into a resounding success. Aside from treating them to a limitless buffet of the best food Café La Carmela has become known for, Boy also awarded several plaques of appreciation to agents and agencies who have been patronizing both Café La Carmela and La Carmela de Boracay.

Boy is also introducing a new product line, Sir Boy B-B-Q which will have its first kiosk in January at Star Mall near the MRT. According to Boy, he realized the need for such a product in light of the current economic recession that has had many people penny pinching. He said that coming up with food that is both affordable and delectable is his way as a businessman to serve his countrymen.

The barbecue tastes so good. I know because I love barbecues. By the smell of the barbecue alone, I can tell if it is good. The secret is in the marinade, the non-acidic vinegar fermented from tuba, the method of preparation, and also the good intention, the love and gratitude of the people who offer and serve it. They play equal parts in filling up the tummy, in putting a smile on the face and warming the soul of whoever eats it.

Boy’s love and high regard for Filipino cuisine in general could also be one of his trade secrets. Although Café La Carmela offers specialties from different countries, he is happiest when Filipino dishes take the cake (in a matter of speak) among his customers, especially foreigners.

A very simple man, Boy’s tips to having a successful business is nothing any Business or HRM course can teach future restaurateurs:

1) Be sincere to your customers and to people in general and blessings will come your way.

2) Be honest. Recognize the strengths and weaknesses of your product or service. Play up the first, improve on the second. In short, be honest to yourself.

3) Take small steps so that if things don’t go well right away, you don’t lose your balance.

Short Notes

Sam Milby  will be spending Christmas with his family in the US. It is his first time to celebrate with his family in 10 years. Sam promises he will have something special for Anne Curtis before he leaves for the US.

Angel Locsin beautifully sashayed at the Emmy’s Red Carpet in Michael Cinco’s gown. She walked like a winner even if the trophy went to Julie Walters. “Just to be in the company of the great actresses in the world is something that I can really be proud of,” said the actress.

ABS-CBN will do a remake of the iconic movie of the ’80s Working Girls. The new cast includes Eula Valdez, Ruffa Gutierrez, Eugene Domingo and Cristine Reyes. Some members in the original cast (Hilda Koronel, Chanda Romero, Baby Delgado, Carmi Martin, Gina Pareño, Maria Isabel Lopez) will get to appear in the remake version. Working Girls was a huge success at the box-office.

First Posted: DIRECTLINE By Boy Abunda
The Philippine Star

Showbiz topics in this article:

boy abunda resort, la carmela de boracay owner, boy abundas resort