Sizzling summer awaits Casino Español

They own two Roland Garros-looking tennis rectangles. There’s a full-length basketball court. There are six world-class bowling lanes. Badminton? Recently renovated where layers of wood and rubber were glued underneath to soften the bounce, the two Taraflex badminton courts may be this city’s top facility. Billiards? Two tables await. Poker? Mahjong? Other games where you sit down, chat, order a glass of Dondi Joseph’s wine, socialize? They’re available. If your sport is the sport of fishes, the Casino Español de Cebu’s swimming pool, swarmed with palm trees amidst the cluster of Spanish architecture, is picturesque.

Golf? Does this most-heralded of clubs, built in 1920, own a golf course? Unfortunately, given it’s centrally-located V. Ranudo St. location, the answer is No. But that doesn’t prevent the Casino Español from organizing a golf tournament.

Yes, named the Copa de Casino Español de Cebu, each year, close to 200 golfers gather under one sun to swing and boogie (and yes, bogey) on grass.

“This 2009,” explained Nonoy Tirol, the chairman of The Copa, “our golf tournament will be in northern Cebu… Medellin. We’re scheduling it during the last week of April or early May. The fee is P1,500 per person and this includes plenty: green fees for Saturday and Sunday, an overnight stay in Medellin, giveaways, and free dinner during the Awards Night. This is a team event composed of four in a group. For every team, only one needs to be a Casino Español member—so plenty can join.”

Is The Copa a purely-golf affair? No it’s not. It’s an annual event that includes plenty.

Kudos goes to the support of the club president Manuel Sainz and his Board of Directors: Gabby Leyson (VP), Buddy Veloso (Secretary), Rene Kintanar (Treasurer), Nonoy Alba (House Chairman), Jimmy Escaño (Cultural Affairs Chairman) and myself (as Sports Director). And special mention, of course, to the exemplary performance of the club’s General Manager, Ed Tongco—who all contribute to this tournament that continues to thrive.

What events? There’s tennis. Last year, Jeffrey Dico and Danny Mella stood as Class A tennis champions. The year before, it was Macky Michael and Stanley Yap holding up high the trophies. Donald Ruiz (the president of the tennis group) also won last year; same with Paquito Borromeo.

Badminton will be a smash. With plenty who drop shot, lob, return serve and flick their right-handed wrist on Casino Español’s two green-colored courts, this event—missing from the roster of events in ’08—will be an event that should not be missed in 2009. There’s Louie Moro, Martin Montenegro, Gina Juan, Roel Dihiansan, Ato Alvarez and, of course, Albert Ledesma, among dozens of other members, who’ll be smash hits.

Bowling? Basketball? Swimming? Yes, events are planned for these events, as well. All tournaments are scheduled this April and May.

SUMMER. Since school, for most, is about to end, it’s a must for parents to not enroll their children in this program: TV Watching.

I’m serious: if you don’t schedule your children’s April and May, these 60 days will fly as fast as The Incredibles’ character, Dash.

Summer offerings at the Casino Español will be plenty. There will be badminton sessions. Karatedo is planned. Bowling classes every Monday, Wednesday and Friday—for free—will be conducted by top Cebu coach (and Casino member) Lolito Sy.

The sport of swimming? Of course. The most popular of summer lessons, dozens of well-trained instructors will be in the pool ready to train.

With tennis, one of the country’s most esteemed coaches will be back. Butch Bacani, whose lifelong background has planted him from the top camps in Florida to Australia to his base in Manila, will lead tennis.

All these to commence after the Holy Week—from April 15 to May 15. For more details on how to join The Copa and the Summer Offerings, contact Rudy Rubi of Casino Español at 253-1260.

John Pages

By John Pages

I've been a sports columnist since 1994. First, in The Freeman newspaper under "Tennis Is My Game." Then, starting in 2003, with Sun.Star Cebu under the name "Match Point." Happy reading!

1 comment

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *