There’s no doubt that hanging about in and around Davao can mean working up an appetite. With so many interesting places to visit, from the stunning Mount Apo and the electrifying crocodile park to the array of nearby islands, you’re bound to need some serious energy. The good news is that many of Davao’s restaurateurs are well aware of that, so there’s been quite a bit of attention paid to developing sumptuous buffets, where you can spend several hours eating as much as you can possibly fit into your stomach. You’ll find loads of them around the city, but here’s where you’re likely to get the most bang for your food buck.
A great hotel in Davao to indulge in a buffet in is the Park Inn by Radisson. The bright, spacious, contemporary RBG Restaurant offers an incredibly varied selection of beautifully presented eats. There’s a bunch of colourful local specialities, as well as a variety of international dishes, high-quality meat cuts and fresh seafood. The meats are especially appealing, as the RBG team cook their meat on the spot, meaning that you get it piping hot, straight from the grill to your plate. So you get the all-you-can-eat benefit of the buffet without sacrificing on a la carte quality and freshness. The Park Inn is situated at Asian Highway, 26 J.P. Laurel Ave, and RBG is open between 6:30am and 10:30pm every day.
For an elegant experience, Cafe Marco is an appealing option. It’s also the longest buffet to be found anywhere in the city. Like that found at RBG, it presents both local dishes and an immense range of international fare, but there’s a decidedly Asian influence, with offerings of Chinese, Japanese and Korean origins. Cafe Marco is located at Claro M Recto Street and is open for breakfast (6am-10am), lunch (11:30am-2pm) and dinner (6pm-10pm).
Zabs Buffet Restaurant
If you’re a crab connoisseur, Zabs Restaurant is where you want to be. Their buffet specialises in ridiculously fresh and tasty crab meat, as well as a particularly succulent roast beef. Zabs is found at Paseo de Roxas, right near Ateneo de Davao University. It’s open Tuesday to Sunday for lunch between 11am and 2pm and for dinner between 6pm and 9pm. The experience will set you back P329 for every diner aged 10 or over. 4 to 9 year olds eat for half the price, while under 3s eat for free.
If you’re an adventurous foodie, for whom an element of surprise is a welcome part of every meal, then drop into Chippens. Steering clear of typical Davao fare, this buffet offers some more unusual dishes, plus some excellent desserts, including blueberry cakes and buko pandan salad. The vibe is casual and the service warm and friendly. Chippens is situated at 368 Padre Gomez Street and is open Monday to Saturday for lunch between 11am and 2pm and for dinner between 6pm and 9pm. The price is P348 per adult and P200 per child.
Le Grandeur Cafe
For something different, there’s the afternoon tea buffet at Le Grandeur Cafe. That’s right; as many cakes, cookies, desserts, fruit and the like as you can handle. Plus coffee and tea of course. Housed in an airy, stylish room, it’s certainly a refined, relaxing way to while away an afternoon. Afternoon tea is served between 2pm and 5pm and there’s also brunch on Sundays between 10am and 2pm, as well as breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. Le Grandeur is found on Magallanes Street.