SOFITEL HOTEL, ROXAS BOULEVARD – The Manila German Club celebrated the 2017 Oktoberfest at the Harbor Garden Tent, Sofitel Hotel at the Philippine Plaza Manila last October 6 and 7. This an annual tradition of Germany celebrating the marriage of Crown Prince Ludwig, later to become King Ludwig I, to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on 12th October 1810.
The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the festivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the happy royal event. Horse races in the presence of the Royal Family marked the close of the event that was celebrated as a festival for the whole of Bavaria. The decision to repeat the horse races in the subsequent year gave rise to the tradition of the Oktoberfest.
Mr. Michael Scheile, co-chairman of the house committee Oktoberfest of the Manila German club, was the Master of Ceremonies who formally opened the celebration with Ms. Eiffelene Salvador as co-emcee. Acknowledgement of the sponsors of the event were announced by Mr. Scheile. The two night celebrations were attended by more than 4,000 guests who serenaded by the Bavarian Sound Express directly from Munich, Germany.
Mr. Bernd Schnerider, President of the German Club Manila, Adam Laker, general manager of Sofitel Philippine Plaza and Dr. Andree Buhl, commercial counsellor representing the German ambassador gave the welcome remarks in the first night. Mr. Laker announced more than 6,000 liters of beer are consumed along with half ton of pork knuckles, 1.5 tons of fried chicken, 700 kilos of sauerkraut, 1 ton of German sausages and schnitzel. The Sofitel Hotel have been hosting the Oktoberfest in partnership with the German Club Manila for the past eight years.
In the second night of Oktoberfest, German ambassador H.E Gordon Kricke also gave the welcome remarks. He cited the 79th Oktoberfest is the best in the whole of Southeast Asia and said the German Club Manila along with Sofitel Hotel did a great job hosting the event.
After the welcome remarks came the official tapping of the barrel by the officials of the Manila German Club, Sofitel Hotel executives and the German Ambassador. The German toast “O’zapt is!” was shouted by the guests.
There were beer drinking contest by the female and male audiences and raffle draw with the first prize a round trip ticket to Germany courtesy of Etihad Airways. The event lasted thru the two nights with the German band belting out German music with some modern music as well. Much of the guests said this is their first time attending the Oktoberfest and will enjoy attending again next year.