Sports have always been a part of the life of every Cebuano. This is evident in the number of Cebuano athletes who have made a name for themselves, including basketball player Dondon Hontiveros, billiard player Warren Kiamco, karateka OJ de los Santos, and runner Mary Joy Tabal.
For people who are not as agile and strong as these athletes or who are simply happy to cheer for their favorite teams than play sports, there are some bars in Cebu City where they can watch their favorite sports over a bottle or two.
Raphael’s Sports Café
Luxury sports café located along Andres Abellaña Street
Photo courtesy of Rafael’s Sports Café
Sports junkies can easily watch the latest developments in sports on five 51-inch LED flat televisions at Raphael’s Sports Café
. Aside from showing live games and sports shows, the bar also offers a wide variety of food and drinks that customers can enjoy while cheering for their respective teams. While many of its regulars are foreign students studying at a nearby English language school, the café also has a number of Filipinos among their regular clients.
The menu at Raphael’s Sports Café is a good mix of Filipino, American, Japanese, Italian, and Asian fusion cuisine. The place also offers a number of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Prices for food items are between PhP80, for their gyoza, and PhP420, for their double deck burger. On the other hand, beverage prices are between PhP45, for the mineral water, and PhP140, for the piña colada.
Photo courtesy of Rafael’s Sports Café
Raphael’s Sports Café is open from 5:00 PM to 1:00 AM every day. They also accept reservations for functions, meetings, and other events.
The Raphael’s Sports Café dining area (Photo courtesy of Rafael’s Sports Café)
The best time to visit the place is at around 7:00 PM when the evening crowd has yet to arrive. While Raphael’s Sports Café offers ample parking space for its customers, there may be instances when it will not be easy to find a spot, especially when there’s a major sports event.
To get to Raphael’s Sports Café, visitors can simply take a taxi to Andres Abellaña Street. The bar is located along the right side of the road, a few meters away from The Original AA BBQ.
Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar
Sports bar in the middle of the entertainment hub of Cebu City
The Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar dining area (Photo courtesy of Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar)
Located at the heart of the newest entertainment hub in the city, Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar
touts itself as the biggest sports bar in Cebu City. The bar has a number of large-screen televisions showing all sports channels available in the archipelago. Customers can sit on the comfy sofas at the bar. In addition to meeting the viewing needs of its guests, Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar also has two pool tables and two dartboards for their visitors to use.
Guests watching a bout over a bottle of beer (Photo courtesy of Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar)
Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar offers American and Filipino dishes for its customers. The prices of the food items at the bar range from PhP100 for the french fries up to PhP380 for the 14-inch S/F Fire House Pizza. On the other hand, prices of drinks range from PhP40 for mineral water up to PhP7,350 for a bottle of Macallan Scotch whisky.
Alive band playing at the Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar (Photo courtesy of Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar)
Semi-Final Cebu Sports Bar also has a stage where a live band plays every 8:00 PM. The bar is open from 4:00 PM until 4:00 AM. The place also has enough space for events and functions for 150 guests.
While the place offers a suitable parking area at the back of the building, it may not be easy to find a spot at night since it shares the parking area with the other bars located in the same building. The best time to visit the bar is late in the afternoon until early evening since the place tends to become crowded after these times.
Banilad Sports Club
A sports oasis with a tennis court, a swimming pool, and a billiard table in the middle of the city
The entrance to Banilad Sports Club (Photo courtesy of Banilad Sports Club)
Formerly called Sand Trap, Banilad Sports Club
is one of the oldest restaurants frequented by expats in Cebu City. The place went through a major renovation in 2014 when the new owners took over and upgraded its facilities. It offers customers a place where they can sit and relax while watching their favorite sports over a bottle of their favorite beverage.
The Banilad Sports Club offers traditional Filipino dishes along with authentic Mediterranean cuisine. The place also offers a number of delicious vegetarian dishes for guests who want to eat healthy.
Poolside at the Banilad Sports Club (Photo courtesy of Banilad Sports Club)
Aside from the bar and restaurant, amenities at the Banilad Sports Club include a tennis court, a swimming pool, and a billiard table. Tennis court fees are at PhP250 per hour from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM and PhP350 per hour from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM. Swimming pool rates are at PhP100 for children and PhP200 for adults. Billiard rates are at PhP30 per game or PhP180 per hour.
The Banilad Sports Club is located at Paseo Saturnino, Ma. Luisa Road, Banilad, Cebu City. The place is open from 8:00 AM to 11:00 PM and the best time to visit is around 11:00 AM for lunch and just before 7:00 PM for dinner.
It may not be easy for first time visitors to get to the place, but the landmark is the Hola España restaurant along Ma. Luisa Road in Banilad. Visitors should tell the driver to take a right turn upon reaching the restaurant and simply follow the road leading to the Banilad Sports Club. The place has ample space for parking.
The Banilad Sports Club tennis court (Photo courtesy of Banilad Sports Club)
The prices of the food at the Banilad Sports Club are between PhP70, for the apple crumble, and PhP760, for the rib eye steak. On the other hand, prices of drinks are between PhP45, for bottled water, and PhP200, for a pitcher of iced tea.
Compared to that in Metro Manila, the sports bar scene in Cebu is just in its infancy. However, a number of establishments have already opened to meet the needs of Cebuanos looking for a good place to sit back and relax while watching their favorite games live on a widescreen television.
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