Manila Hotel Tips by planxty
Manila Hotels: 11,811 reviews and 432 photos
Drawing Room, Red Carabao, Manila, Philippines.
I had pre-booked the Red Caraboa in Manila through a hostel booking site on the basis of shared bathroom with a private bedroom and was expecting a pretty basic setup, which is fine by me, this was the capital, after all. I arrived late at night after a long journey from Europe and was quite exhausted. I rang the bell on the stout wooden gate and was admitted by a smiling young Filipino. This instantly reassured me as to security as there was simply no way of breaking into that place.
On entering, I was amazed by what I saw which was a very impressive room complete with a fully-stocked bar, a massive Christmas tree and numerous other Christmas decorations. Apparently, in the Philippines, Christmas is celebrated much longer than it is in the UK. Iced water was produced for me and very welcome it was after my journey. I was sat down and welcomed in a way that I have come to associate with the Philippines.
After a pleasant chat the night porter, the delightfully named Boggi showed me up to my room and I simply could not believe the surroundings. I think the images speak for themselves. I first encountered a drawing room that would not have been out of place in a five star establishment or indeed a luxury home. The whole time I was there I never sat on that sofa, I was afraid to! Next to that was the smaller room with two gorgeous plant stands, if such a prosaic term does them justice. The kitchen was huge and equipped to a very high standard including a six ring hob (four gas and two electric). The bathroom was similarly luxurious although with cold water only. In the climate of Manila, that was all I needed.
The bedroom was fairly basic with just a bed, aircon and a wardrobe but the place was spotless and the bed comfy. Although I had booked on the basis of shared occupancy, I never saw another person on this floor. I should explain this comment. I was on the fifth floor. This is something travellers with limited mobility should bear in mind, it is a bit of a climb and there is no lift. I only went to the communal area downstairs once and it was again fitted to a high standard with TV and cooking facilities. I believe there are shared occupancy rooms on this floor.
The fourth floor appeared to house a family judging by the shoes outside the door. All this led me to the conculsion that the place had been built as a block of flats (apartments) and for some reason not all of them were let and so converted into a "hostel". The only possible drawback I can see to Red Carabao is that it is away up North in the city in the area of Santa Cruz which is some way out of the centre. There is certainly no nightlife there and precious little to see or do (bar the nearby Chinese cemetery for details of which please see the separate tip on this page) but this is not the fault of the premises.
The staff were so friendly and helpful throughout my time there and the facilities of such a standard, I would have no hesitation in recommending this place.
Unique Qualities: Well, I would say that having your own luxury flat for a few pesos a night is pretty unique. I have never seen a "hostel" quite like it.
Address: 2819 Felix Huerts Street, Santa Cruz, 1003, Manila.
Comparison: less expensive than average
Directions: See the attached website which has completely detailed instructions on how to get there by any mode of transport.
Phone: +00 63 (0)2 740 3211
Price: less than US$20
Where2next Hostel, Manila, Philippines.
I was looking for somewhere cheap and fairly central for my last two nights in the Philippines and came upon this place through my preferred hostel search engine. It had pretty good reviews and I intend to add to that here as it really was rather good for the money.
The premises are on the upper floors above a Korean restaurant and here lies a small problem. The stairs are pretty steep and it was tough enough to hump my fairly light luggage up it. Not too much opf a problem in itself but unfortunately this place would be totally unsuitable to travellers with mobility problems.
Having negotiated the North face of Adriatico I was confronted with the reception desk where an extremely friendly young lady, who spoke flawless English, checked me in very quickly, issued me with bedding (there is a small deposit on this) and showed me to my bedspace. There appear to be two dorms here which are unisex if that is a consideration although it doesn't bother me. The dorm room had a male and a female bathroom, although that distinction seemed not to be adhered to very much. It was also spotless, as is the whole premises, the image gives some idea. There are small lockers for valuables but you need to bring your own padlock. There are also larger lockers available for rent should you need to stow your kit for a day.
I had a look round the communal area which consists of a TV room with a huge flat TV and some comfy seating. There is also a kitchen where you are invited to help yourself to tea or coffee at any time. This is also where the staff put together the complimentary breakfast which is basically a "continental" affair with bread, cheese, spreads, peanut butter etc. There is also free wifi throughout the premises should you need to check your VT account!
I paid 450 pesos for a Saturday night in July and 550 pesos for the Sunday.
Where2next is located on Adriatico which is a very popular nightlife area and there is more than enough to do in the evenings. There are also numerous very good eating options nearby.
Certainly, it is a hostel with the attendant problems of being awoken by loud and inconsiderate young fellow guests but that is no fault of what is no fault of what is an excellent hostel in a very good location.
Incidentally, apologies for the image which is rotated through 90 degrees. I could not manage to rotate it back but decided to include it to give an impression of the bathroom facilities.
Address: 1776 M. Adriatico Street, Malate, Manila Philippines 1004
Comparison: least expensive
Other Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: +00 63 2 354 3533
Price: less than US$20
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