Fabulous Hotels in the Philippines
Posted on 05/18/2017
When it comes to refined tourism, the Philippines still have a long way to go. The destination is way behind neighbors like Thailand and Indonesia.
Western visitors should expect a little below average accommodations and service, especially when staying at a 3- or 4-star property.
Yet, with a good amount of digging, travelers can find a few hotels that are better than most. These mid-range properties' aesthetics and service rival those in more established destinations.
The Henry Manila, Pasay, Metro Manila
Mid-century modern furnishings apparently blend well with that traditional Filipino-Spanish vibe, as evidenced by The Henry Manila.
Set a stone’s throw away from the famous Mall of Asia and Entertainment City, this boutique hotel is a thoughtfully designed property that makes guests feel like they’re in a Filipino home—except ever so slightly more refined.
The rooms and suites have a two-person occupancy, so perhaps it’s not family-friendly. However, the elegant amenities are generally meant for adult consumption anyway—stand-alone tubs and minibars, for example. Notice the exquisite tile floors all over the property.
The service, you ask? Top-notch.
Eco Hotel El Nido, El Nido, Palawan
With all the hotels and resorts that pepper El Nido's narrow streets, choosing the best option to match someone’s taste can be frustrating. To make things even more complicated, many of the properties do not offer online booking, have their own websites or answer the phone during business hours.
Eco Hotel El Nido might be one of the few hotels that travelers can count on when it comes to great service.
The property itself is beautiful—it’s like being in Tulum, Mexico, minus the beach bars, fish tacos and yoga. Here, vernacular architecture meets Western palate. Solar-powered hot showers, desk fans and pendant lights are on hand to battle the constant power outages.
The Henry Cebu, Cebu City, Cebu
As The Henry Manila’s sister property, one would expect The Henry Cebu to boast the same aesthetic—subtle, classical and unique.
The unique part is down to a T. But this hotel is in-your-face trendy and unapologetically fun, from its funky lobby that mixes pop art with vintage suitcases and Victorian style furniture to its colorful, themed rooms that offer more space than two people would ever need.
There are contemporary and street art pieces speckled around the hotel, bursts of colors everywhere and an overall European vibe, all wrapped in a cool industrial package. Best of all, the staff will pretty much take care of anything for the guests, even if it means staying on the line to order food delivery.
Fox and the Firefly Cottages, Loboc, Bohol
Loboc, Bohol, may not be the most sophisticated tourist destination in the Philippine islands, so a luxury hotel might be a bit of a tall order. That is why Western vacationers in this small town are glad for Fox and the Firefly Cottages, owned and operated by a husband-and-wife team who are certified SUP instructors, among many other things.
This beautifully lush, hostel-type property set on the banks of Loboc River cannot help but stand out with its warm hospitality, vernacular architecture and delicious farm-to-table dining. Dorm-style accommodations are on hand, as are private cottages. The WiFi is gloriously reliable—a luxury in these parts.
A stay here isn’t complete without a paddle boarding tour on the river.