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“Basic rooms, appalling advice on day-trips” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel La Roca

Hotel La Roca
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Hotel La Roca
Graham Avenue | Tagbilaran City, Philippines   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #28 of 28 Hotels in Bohol Island
Paris
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Basic rooms, appalling advice on day-trips”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2010

My husband and I stayed 2 nights at Hotel La Roca, in the city of Tagbilaran. Our goal was to use a day to see the famous Chocolate Hills and the tarsier (strange little primates who can only be found on Bohol) and then move on to another island. Since our ferry arrived late in the afternoon, we had no time to shop around in town for guided tours and decided to use the small travel agency of La Roca. Bad choice!

In the first place, the driver/guide arrived one hour late, and offered no excuse or explanation for his delay. More importantly, he did not take us to the official tarsier sanctuary, but to a construction of cages alongside the road, were the animals are kept in terrible conditions. Tarsiers are an endangered species and die when they're held in captivity. Another unpleasant sight was a monkey chained by his neck, held on very short leash.
When we protested, the driver said that the sanctuary was too far away, but he gave in when we made it clear we would not pay to visit this horrible place. He then reached the real sanctuary after a 15 minute drive. The guy there said that these faux ‘sanctuaries’ are indeed illegal and a big threat to the tarsier population, because the animals die so fast and new ones are taken out of the wild all the time. He also explained that some tourist guides are tempted to bring their clients there, because they receive a commission.

When I complained to the hotel, the girl at the front desk (who spoke English very well) pretended she did not understand the words ‘illegal’ or ‘animal unfriendly’. She did say we should have told the driver immediately we wanted to visit the sanctuary, because of the planning of the itinerary. She also said we could have booked a more expensive tour, which apparently automatically includes the sanctuary.

For the rooms: be very careful when you check in, and ask to see them before paying. The room we had booked (the cheapest) had hundreds of ants on the walls (and no, we don’t like animals thát much!). Another more expensive room was more or less clean, but very basic.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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34 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    2
    7
    9
    4
    12
See reviews for
11
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5
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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
marikina
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2009

I went to Bohol with my mom, but before checking in, we first visited bee farm and bohol beach club, so we arrived at the hotel at about 6-7 pm. The reservationist told us that the only room available was their deluxe twin, which is the most expensive room in their hotel. Since we were already exhausted and she guaranteed that we can transfer to our preferred room the next day, we availed for their only available room. FYI, I have a dust allergy and the moment I step in to the room assigned to us, I cant stop sneezing. The room seems to be so dusty and have not been cleaned for a long time. They also didnt gave us bathroom towels and the CR was also dirty. After eating our breakfast, we asked them to transfer us to a standard room as we dont really need a big dusty room. We were in bohol to enjoy the place, just a simple and CLEAN room will do. To our surprise, their standard room was cleaner and bathroom towels are provided. I thought that everything will now be okay, BUT the next problem was their airconditioner. We really sweat so much while we were inside our room. My mom told our concern to the hotel personnel, they said that they will fix it, but they did nothing! I also got mad when while we are about to start our 3rd day tour, they asked us to give them our key because they are going to clean our room. I asked them why do they need our key, when in fact they have duplicates and its been our third day, why only now? This is the first time I experienced surrending the room key to hotel personnel everytime I go out. Okay...since we dont want to argue anymore, we gave them our key, but to our dismay, when we got back, we learned that our room has not been cleaned. We asked them why.. Their answer?? "we forgot" DAMN!

Bohol is such a lovely place, I will definitely go back, BUT in a different hotel for sure.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Virginia
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2008

We were just about on our closing days in our visit to the Philippines when my fiancee ( a Filipina) begged me to make some quick changes on our trip so she can see her best friend one more time before we left for the U.S. We arrived in Tagbilaran city around noon & we were suppose to catch the last flight off the island in the late afternoon. To make a long story short, my fiancee & her best friend got into an emotionally charged conversation (I don't speak any Filipino but i could tell because of all the crying & hugging going on) - I love my fiancee that I just couldn't find it in me to disturb them to remind her of our scheduled departure time (besides, I don't want to represent the "rude American", lol). We got to the airport very late & saw our plane on the take-off position ... so that's it for that flight. So her friend invited us for dinner & offered us accommodations at her home. After dinner, I found out that the family was offering us their parents' room & that the rest of the family will be sleeping & crammed in on the second room (the only 2 air conditioned rooms in the house) - so I respectfully & adamantly refused the offer. I asked them if they can suggest a hotel or motel nearby that's affordable & comfortable enough for a one night stay - so they suggested Hotel La Roca which was only a block & half away from the house. When we got to the hotel it was late in the evening but the staff was kind enough to help us check-in. At first, I kind of hesitated due to the fact that the room we requested was so cheap for that quoted price, the saying "You get what you pay for" mentality comes to mind. (I wanted to check the rooms before we check in but then again I don't want to be the rude American, lol). When we got to the room, I was very pleasantly surprised - the room kind of reminds me of the rooms in Motel 6 in the US (on some cases even better) - was very clean & when I tried the beds - was very comfortable ... indeed the hotel was comfortable & very affordable. Before going to bed, my fiancee & I had a beer or two with a side order of "Beef La Roca" (the waiter suggested it & I must say its delicious & goes very well with San Miguel beer), and that's when we were able to meet the hotel owner Mr.Jerry Lim. I find him very friendly, approachable & unassuming kind of a person. I bet he was a bit surprise of our late check-in but we easily got ourselves in a lively conversation. I was able to tell him our story for the day & what had happen with our missed flight. Before saying goodnight, Jerry told us that he knows people with the airlines and offered us assistance in straightening out our traveling arrangements for tomorrow - so I thanked him & gave him our tickets. That night my fiancee & I had a very restful sleep. In the morning, we ordered & ate at the hotel's restaurant, after eating I said to the waitress that I'm paying in Traveler's checks (its well known here in the Philippines how big of a hassle to use traveler's checks - it even took me over 2 hours to cash them in a bank in Davao so people tend not to deal with them) so she just giggled for she knew I was just joking. To my surprise I think the waitress must have recognize our problem with traveler's checks & told the hotel's management - Juvy, Jerry's wife, came to our table & offered to help us in cashing in our checks. At first I didn't want to cause her any hours of inconvenience but she assured me that she knows a manager of a local bank that can help us - so I gave her my checks. In short, less than 45 minutes later - all my checks were cashed (with an internet printout of the hourly updated Dollar/Peso exchange rate) in Pesos and was not even charged with any transaction fees (just plain wow, i should say).
Fixing our missed flight & cashing in our traveler's check - the management could have easily charged us for these as concierge services, I offered but they declined it. Juvy later on told me that she knows the family of my fiancee's best friend. So at noon I took my fiancee, her friend and her family to lunch at a local restaurant & surprisingly announced that my fiancee & I are extending our stay in Bohol - it was meet with wondrous cheers & I got a big kiss and hug from my love. For Bohol, we checked in on a Friday night & ended up checking out Monday morning. My fiancee & I got to see the Chocolate Hills & other prime tourist spots with a van guided tours and was able to check out the beautiful beaches of Panglao & Balikasag - oh, don't forget the riverboat tour with lunch !!! So for Hotel La Roca - its no 5 star hotel but for the value on the accommodations that they can offer - its 5 stars on my book. I highly recommend this hotel for the budget conscious traveler & for people that want to maximize or extended their stay to visit Bohol. Its definitely not like the other hotels that are specifically design to cater only to foreign tourists & dollar-priced as such. The hotel has a family feel to it for it is family-owned & managed. Again, I feel grateful to have met Jerry & his wife Juvy, and for the staff I thank you for making our stay in Bohol a very pleasant & memorable one.

  • Liked — the value on its price for the accommodations
  • Disliked — no 24 hr room service - but then again i have yet to order food at 2am, I'm usually asleep
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2008

I was visiting my family in Bohol, and found a great deal at Hotel La Roca. For a great value in the city of Tagbilaran, I would recommend this hotel. It has that charming feel which makes you forget that you are in the city. The staff was friendly and catered to the guest needs. I would definitely come back in the future.

  • Liked — Charming feel and staff
  • Disliked — Size
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Taipei
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2008

Last summer June 2008, I went to Tagbilaran City, Bohol for business trip and to visit some of my relatives which I didn't see them for 6 years ago. Before I arrived there in La Roca Hotel, Bohol I contacted the Manager. He met me in the pier and we had a simple dinner with his family. I was really so tired from my travel yet I slept well in this hotel like my home in Mindanao. It is so clean, cozy place to stay and their staff were so welcoming. I wish to come back in this particular hotel in the near future if I have the chance to visit again in this beautiful island of Bohol.
Lastly, I would like to recommend to all travelers to visit their website and have reservation soon to experience something like your own cozy home even if you are far away from it. Enjoy, have fun and relax to any season of the year...

Josephine Taban-ud
Taipei, Taiwan

  • Liked — cozy hotel room
  • Disliked — none
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
toronto
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2008

We had a pleasant stay in Bohol and in the hotel. It is simple yet clean and everyone is also friendly. During our stay there, I would make a request to the staff to make up the room, etc... which they did very well. I could see how much the staff and managemen wanted to please us to make our stay a pleasant one.

  • Stayed April 2008, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Luzon, Philippines
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2008

Filthy hotel. Smelled of mildew. Barely slept thru the night due to disgust. Checked out in the am.

  • Liked — close to airport
  • Disliked — cleanliness
  • Stayed January 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel La Roca

Address: Graham Avenue | Tagbilaran City, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Visayas > Bohol Province > Bohol Island
Amenities:
Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #28 of 28 Hotels in Bohol Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This Economy class hotel has 26 rooms, and is located in Graham Avenue, Tagbilaran City. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel La Roca Bohol Province, Philippines

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