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“Best view of Malapascua” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Mangrove Oriental Resort

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Mangrove Oriental Resort
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   Daan-bantayan Logon, Malapascua Island, Philippines   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 12 Hotels in Malapascua Island
Manila, Philippines
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Best view of Malapascua”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2011

My partner and I stayed in Mangrove Oriental during our Easter holiday and we had the best time. We chose to stay in Mangrove because of its location. It's far enough from the busy Bounty Beach so we got the privacy and relaxing atmosphere, which was our main reason for choosing Malapascua (neither of us are divers and sightseeing/relaxation was our main reason for going to the island). The Bounty Beach was accessible by foot, it took us less than ten minutes to get there.

The highlights of the resort are the following: (1) Fantastic location -- Mangrove is in a unique location in that it is situated in the highest point in the island, giving guests the best view of Malapascua from the hilltop restaurant. It also has access to 2 private coves, a lagoon, forest trek and lovely gardens. Even though it's not near the Bounty Beach, it offers something different that other resorts do not have (2) tasteful interiors -- we got a beach cottage and we were pleasantly surprised with the way it was decorated with pretty oriental cabinets and other trinkets. The newly refurbished restaurant/reception was also charming. It's obvious that whoever decorated the resort's interiors had a well-thought out aesthetic framework (3) Excellent food -- seafood was fresh and absolutely delicious. Staff member Wendy gave us a "farewell dessert" of banana, limoncello and rum. We appreciate such thoughtful gestures.

I cannot comment on the security of the place but we were able to leave our laptops, cameras and cellphones inside our room/cottage without anyone taking them. The housekeeping staff also took the initiative to watch over our luggage which we left outside the cottage as we settled our bill at the reception.

The resort can further improve by: (1) providing better meals when dining outside the resort. We were given sandwiches as part of our island tour package, perhaps they can offer something more substantial. Some resorts (i.e. in Palawan, Bicol) have their boat crew double as chef and prepare/serve meals onsite (grill some fish/seafood in the island) while guests explore/swim. (2) giving divers the option to claim their 'free' breakfast after their dive. As divers usually leave early, they are not able to avail of the breakfast which is served until 10am only. (3) more economical transfers -- one of the pricier components of our trip was the transfer, it cost us 4,500 pesos (one way) to travel from the Mactan Airport to the island. If the cost cannot be lessened, perhaps the resort can organise a "carpool system" where guests from the resort (or other resorts for that matter) and coordinate and leave at the same time to lessen the cost. (4) Having a designated staff member discuss the guests' activities during their stay (a sort of activities coordinator) and give some tips on timetabling.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay in Mangrove. Josephine was an engaging host while the rest of the staff members, though shy, were generally competent, helpful and pleasing.

Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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31 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Hong Kong
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2011

I went there despite reading the previous reviews about people having stuff stolen at there, so you can imagine i was a bit apprehensive. But my stay there was without incident. My room had a safe where I could keep my valuables, so I didn't have to carry them around. What everyone says about resort being secluded is true - although only in the relative sense. It's a good 15 walk to the main bounty beach, but it's not completely cut off. the resort has its own private beach where you can relax away from the other holidaygoers if you are feeling anti-social. The restaurant is very nicely decorated with various Asia motif and it serves a limited but well prepared and well presented menu of both local and international foods. As an added bonus, it is open (usually) until 10pm.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2011

If you are looking for a calm and quiet Hotel, Mangrove is definitely right.
It takes about 10 minutes to walk through the small village to get to the "main beach" where all the other hotels, bars and restaurants are.
If you don't mind walking it is a great get away from the "crowd".

+ sides for Mangrove:
The rooms are great
The Breakfast is decent
We enjoyed the calm and quiet private beach

- sides:
There was no cleaning unless you gave them the key, apparently there is only 1 key to the room.

Their internet was not available unless they were forced to go into town to grab a computer (we chose not to force them) hehe

The restaurant could not serve everything from their "menu", they even asked us during day time if we planned on eating (we guess it was because they needed to purchase the food if so). It even closed earlier then stated in case they didn't have any guests.

We were basically all alone and never felt any pressence of the staff, we saw them at morning and sometimes at daytime but not very service minded even if we and 2 others where the only guests for a full week.

All in all, if you are looking for a calm and quiet place of your own where you basically feel all alone this is great :)

If you don't like to walk 10-15 minutes to get to the main beach and restaurants every day then this is not for you. If you like a place with a bar, music, great food and overall "cosyness" this is not for you.

We think that this Hotel probably have seen it's glory days but it has now turned into an empty resort.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2010

Beautiful surroundings but easy to break into as we discovered after a couple of days. Double locks on doors (of which only one was working) are useless if windows are impossible to lock. As we discovered after theft of our brand new camera (and 10 days worth of holiday pictures) during dinnertime. Although most of our valueables were inside the safety deposit box, it was too small to hold the camera and lens. Of course we immediately warned the manager, but no visible action was taken to find the perpetrator that same night. Which would have been easier than wait for the Cebu police in the morning since it is a very remote island. Next evening we had to endure 'CSI Malapascua'...and guess what: a lot of fingerprints (it wasn't that clean) but nothing useful was found.
And although the former owner was very friendly, we found the staff not very helpful at all.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Asan, South Korea
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 28, 2010

A wonderfully beautiful place to stay, friendly, accommodating, and helpful! The rooms we stayed in were gorgeous and clean and it was never a problem to find a staff member to book a boat tour for you or bring sandwiches down to the beach :) Yes, you can get cheaper accomodation in the Phillipines, but I would pay the asking price any day to relive the warmth of our stay at Mangrove Oriental!

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aalborg, Denmark
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2010

Situated on the forested hills right outside the village, Mangrove Oriental is in many ways a unique resort on Malapascua. Walking up the hill admiring the lush tropical garden, you cannot help but feel it’s a special place, and true to its name, the resort has distinct oriental touches everywhere. The owner of the resort, Josephine, treats it as her own home, and thus all rooms are very different, but all tastefully and exquisitely furnished. It seems most of Mangrove’s customers are Europeans who pre-booked their holiday or diving package, but Mangrove Oriental welcomes walk-in guests as well.
When you live in Mangrove Oriental you feel like you’re living in something between a tropical garden and a wild forest. Before the resort opened its doors in 2004 the place was just that - a wild forest, considered absolutely worthless by the locals, as it was wildly overgrown and strewed with giant boulders. However, instead of cutting everything down, the resort sort of merged with the forested hills, creating a very special place indeed.
Besides running the resort, Josephine’s the one to cook most meals, and she really knows her way around in the kitchen! She creates exquisite meals for both romantic candlelit dinners as well as banquets for larger groups. How she finds time to both cook, run the resort and tend the amazing garden is really anyone’s guess.
One of the things that sets Mangrove Oriental apart from the other resorts is the semi-remote location. Whilst most other hotels and resorts are located on Bounty Beach, Mangrove lies secluded at the far end of Logon Beach. This lends the place a lovely quiet ambiance, but If you want to eat out on Bounty Beach, you’ll need to walk ten minutes. Because of the many stairs it’s also not recommended for people having difficulty walking.
Everything good comes at a price, and Mangrove Oriental is admittedly one of the pricier resorts on Malapascua - but the ambiance and sheer style there can’t really be found elsewhere on the island.
If you’re spending your honeymoon on Malapascua, we’d say Mangrove Oriental would be your best bet for a romantic and beautiful setting! - you may get further info from visiting www.gotomalapascua.com

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Isle of Wight
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2009

We - myself, my wife and our fourteen year old son visited Malapascua in March/April 2008. Malapascua is a small island situated about a 40 minute boat ride off the northern tip of Cebu.
I have to say it's a trek and a half to get there - flights to Cebu via HK, a 5 hour drive up to the northernmost tip then a half hours boat ride. You'll feel pretty wrung out by the time you arrive but if you stay in the right place, it's worth every second of the trip. We did our own thing, booking our own flights & car transfer but some firms offer packages. These will probably take longer on the travel side.

We stayed at The Mangrove Oriental Resort, tucked away on the East side of the Island far enough away from the main beach but not so far as it was impracticle to reach the dive centres etc. We dived with Thresher Shark Divers, a British run outfit. Standard PADI stuff with great local guides & boatmen.

Returning to Mangrove, the word "Resort" I think ,could possibly put you off. This place is not a resort in the traditional sense. The owner, Josephine, bought the land some ten years ago or so, against the advice of all the locals who said she was mad. It was a hillside plot with a small rocky beach. Over the years she cleared the beach of all rubbish to leave a crescent shaped totally secluded private cove & built the ten or so rooms into the hillside plus a few on the sand. What's now here is, in my opinion, the most perfect hideaway you could wish for. Meals can be taken in the dining room, often accompanied by Josephine herself. There is no set menu. If you wish to eat in, ask her what's on offer that day. If you have a preference she'll do her best to accomodate it. The walk to the nearby restaurants takes about 15 minutes if you want to try elswhere. Power on the Island is sporadic, most places - Mangrove no exception - have their own generators and if you go to the main beach area you'll need a torch to get back at night. The stroll through the village, past children playing pool & the inevitable karaoke, tethered pigs and inquisitive locals was, to me, one of the highlights of the trip.
No roads here so no cars. Mopeds are about but even they may be phased out if the council has it's way. Despite the village being dirt poor the most magnificent Catholic church takes pride of place in the village centre. Aways lights burning bright here late into the night despite the villagers being in candlelight!

There's no getting around the fact that Mangrove is probably the most expensive place to stay on the island but it's all relative. We had a house on the beach with nothing between us and the sea some 15 metres away. It was huge, sleeping three of us with ease. If you're a backpacker on a budget stay elsewhere. Wouldn't want you shattering the peace anyway!
Josephine was in the throes of building a new restaurant at the top of hill which may, in this travellers opinion, spoil some of the charm it had during our stay. Mealtimes always felt like we were dining with a friend in her house but in the larger new facilities this may not be so. Time will tell.
My purpose for this visit was the shark diving. I always dive solidly on my dive trips. Not here. After a few dives, very good I must say, I found laying in a hammock with a good book listening to the water lapping at the shore & the Palms swaying above me was more then enough to keep me out of the water. No contest really. Truly idyllic. This traveller has never been so relaxed or read so many books on a trip in his lfe!
If you like the idea contact Josephine directly - google Mangrove Oriental for the web site. Be aware that as of the date of this review communications to Malapascua are still very slow. Internet is patchy since there is no standard phone service on the island, only mobiles. To counteract the reliability problems Josephine relies on her daughter in Hong Kong to receive all emails then relays them in phone calls to her mum. This will mean delays to your enquiries. If you have the patience to do this she can arrange all transfers from Cebu city and back.

Most of the dive centres can arrange the transfers and accomodation in most of the resorts on the island but be aware they will take a commision from the chosen resort as their fee. They will offer you a package - diving , transfers & accomodation but I reckon doing it yourself gives more flexibility and possible savings. Josephine tells me if you book direct with her she pays no commision so will pass that saving on to you!

Just do me favour. If you like it, don't go telling others. Lets keep it to ourself!

Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mangrove Oriental Resort

Address: Daan-bantayan Logon, Malapascua Island, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Visayas > Cebu Island > Malapascua Island
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Malapascua Island
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Malapascua Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Mangrove Oriental Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 21
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Also Known As:
Mangrove Oriental Hotel Malapascua Island
Mangrove Oriental Resort Malapascua Island, Cebu Island

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