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“Come for the customer service, stay for the customer service (and the mango iced tea and pancakes)” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Dave's Straw Hat Inn

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Dave's Straw Hat Inn
Sitio Angol, Manoc Manoc | Malay Aklan , 5608, Aklan Province 1265, Philippines   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 134 Hotels in Boracay
Cincinnati, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Come for the customer service, stay for the customer service (and the mango iced tea and pancakes)”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2012

We stayed here for six nights in September and before we came, I checked Trip Advisor and based my decision on where to stay in Boracay solely on the reviews I found. Dave's Straw Hat stood out because it was one of the cheapest places advertised but was ranked #2. I thought something must be special if a place that simple can beat out all of the 5 star places. I can say that Dave's pretty much lived up to the hype, as long as you go in expecting that the low price you are paying is going to mean that your room is simple and not of 5 star quality. The room that we stayed in met our needs. It was a bit small but clean, had some highly entertaining American cable TV (didn't know Doomsday Preppers was actually a show), towels made into interesting shapes each day, and a shower that stayed hot for as long as you wanted!! We also had a little porch with a couple of chairs and mosquito coils that the staff would light at night which added to the night ambiance. It was nice that Dave's also has a restaurant so when you are not quite ready to walk down to Boat Station 2, you can walk five feet and order a full breakfast from the Dave's crew for a reasonable price. The mango iced tea and banana shakes were the best!! The best thing about Dave's though is the customer service! Janet exchanged several emails with me before we even arrived to help us with payment and questions that we had about getting to Dave's from Manila. She responded every time quicker than most of my family members. It was a bit difficult for our motorela driver to find Dave's but once we arrived, the Dave's crew made sure to learn our names and greet us every time we came down for breakfast or came back from the beach. You really feel like you are staying with a family with the space and comfort of staying in your own place. I have never stayed somewhere where the staff took such good care to learn my name and take a leaving photo with me. It was a nice touch. The Dave's staff will even arrange water/sports activities, massages, and transportation for you if you request it. They were very helpful with everything.

Two further tips for you if make it to Boracay and stay at Dave's:
1) It is a bit of walk but if you walk up the back path just behind Dave's, past the Orchids Resort, and up the hill to the main road, turn right on the main road, and walk for another three minutes or so, you will see a break in the trees, which is actually the entrance to the Mandala Spa & Villas, a five star resort complex with a wide variety of massages on offer. Though they are pricey, if you really want to treat yourself to an amazing luxury massage/spa package that is walking distance from Dave's, I would highly recommend booking a treatment there!
2) With the money you save by staying at Dave's Straw Hat Inn, eat a nice meal at one of the amazing restaurants near the 5 star hotels at Boat Station 1 (at least one night) . I really recommend the Kasbah restaurant.

Thank you so much for everything Dave's Straw Hat crew! We would love to come back some day!

Becky and Chuck

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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701 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
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English first
Baltimore, Maryland
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2012

It was actually what happened before I even arrived that made this place tops in my book. Janet was not just helpful with my reservation and what I wanted done, but she went over the top and gave me suggestions as well as setting things up before I even arrived....and this is what makes this place different than any other place I have ever been..not just Janet but the entire staff are over the top helpful..if you didn't know better you would think you were staying with family..the room was nice and is a three minute walk from the beach which is great....depending on the room, it can be small, but it was what I wanted for my trip and fit into my plans.. I will return and I look forward to seeing the entire Dave's Crew again!!!!

Room Tip: Had a small room which was great for two people, and the prices can not be beat..next time will get...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2012

I can see why this place is #2 in Boracy, it should be #1, the rooms are not 5 star at all, the location is not the best, but the rest is first class, Dave and his wife and the staff sure know how to treat guests, they are not trying to be 5 star, and are not charging for 5 star either, you get what you pay for, here you get more in my opinion

One tip, don't even think of staying at the Blue Mango if Dave's Straw Hat Inn is full, it is also rated high, most of the reviews can not be accurate, possibly written by the owner of friends of the owner (no other explanation for the positive reviews) Dave's is a way better place for the same price, rooms and service are 10000 times better at Dave's than anywhere else in Boracay.

The only big problem here is you have to book well in advance or you will not get a room, they are often fully booked, be warned, don't just show up, you will not get a room most of the time!!

Room Tip: don't stay in the room by the front desk, to much noise and close to all the commotion, if you d...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
cayman
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012 via mobile

We stayed here last September 2012.. we loved it.. the staff are very helpful they will try and do everything for you.. Will assist on everything you need. the location was perfect it wasn't crowded unlike in station 1&2.. it's only 15 mins walk to station 1&2 anyway.. Bars beach resto and shops are 2 mins away.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Montreal
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012

You choose Dave's not for its location or rooms but for its value and friendliness.

Honestly I'm not at all impressed by the rooms, the equipment or amenities. If you're lucky to have deluxe room, you'll probably enjoy your stay a lot more. But they have only about a dozen units, so they're almost always fully booked thanks to the rave reviews. It'd be a good idea to book months in advance, even during the low rainy season.

The place is not far from the beach but still a pretty boring walk, especially during the rain. I unfortunately visited Boracay during the rainy season which made a whole lot difference. It was rainy and windy, the beach was dirty and the road was messy. I think Boracay is way overrated compared with other beaches such as Phuket in Thailand. The dry season might make the difference. But I digress...

What sets this place apart is the people. They're so nice that they can take care of everything for you. They arrange for your activities and get you a good price. They take you to wherever the activities take place and keep you safe. Don't forget to pay for their return fare. They make you nice meals and keep you entertained. And they always smile. Really nice people!

Room Tip: book way in advance for a deluxe room; don't go with standard, it's too small
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2012 via mobile

My wife and I have just finished a weeks stay at Daves and loved every minute.
From the second we arrived the staff were so warm and friendly ,doing everything they could to make us feel welcome.
Daves is a minutes walk from the beach on station 3, it's nice and quiet at night and was the perfect location for us.
Rooms were great, very clean and tidy with all you need,good air conditioning with a ceiling fan too,so rooms always nice and cool,cheap mini bar too, items cost the same as in the shops!!!
We will definitely be going back to Borocay in the future and we are both very much looking forward to staying at Daves again.
Also,they can book things like sailing trips,diving etc a lot cheaper than you can find with the vendors,so don't waste all day haggling,bok through them.

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2012

Trip Advisor listed Dave's as a number one choice, however we felt that unless you got one of the deluxe rooms, it seemed a bit overrated. When it was breezy at the beach, Dave's was hot and buggy. The bungalow room #8 was serviceable but not very private and located across from the desk; smallish room with smallish bathroom; not enough places to put your stuff; tired a/c. Can't say enough good things about the staff who were very helpful in arranging boat trips and the mango pancakes were indeed formidable, but all and all, would rather have paid a bit more and stayed on the beach somewhere near the same Station 3 location which was quieter than the circus at Station 2 and cheaper than the ritzier Station 1. The walk from the beach back to Dave's was interesting at first but got old after 6 days - would especially advise to avoid a massage at the green BSS massage house along the way - incompetent people compare to others. Dave's might have been more attractive in our backpacker days, but as a well traveled couple in our 60's, we were underwhelmed. It also made us wary of putting too much faith in Tripadvisor reviews.

Room Tip: The deluxe rooms seemed much more spacious than the bungalows and the a/c was newer in the one we lo...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dave's Straw Hat Inn

Address: Sitio Angol, Manoc Manoc | Malay Aklan , 5608, Aklan Province 1265, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Visayas > Panay Island > Aklan Province > Boracay
Amenities:
Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Best Value Hotel in Boracay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Charming Resting Place, which offers a serene and intimate tropical nirvana, located less than a minutes walk to the beautiful Boracay Island "white" beach. Allow the staff to cater to your needs while you spoil yourself in the beauty of Boracay. Enjoy the family atmosphere and those amenities that most big Boracay resorts offer without the high prices. We have been referred to as the "best budget hotel on Boracay," but without skimping on the comforts. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dave`s Straw Hat Hotel Boracay
Daves Straw Hat Boracay
Daves Straw Hat Hotel
Daves Straw Hat Inn

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