We booked with this resort in Dauin as the photos showed have large rooms with kitchenette (kettle, bar fridge & sink), hot water showers, included breakfast, private verandas and wireless internet in addition to having an outdoor pool with a swim-up bar.
The first down-side to this "resort" we discovered was that it was slightly out of Dauin and further to the west, away from Dumaguette, so the local taxis did not know it or how to get us there (and charge extra) and nothing is accessible by walking, and it is difficult to flag down a trike or a taxi, unlike many of the other resorts. They advertise "roundtrip airport shuttle" but we could not communicate with them until we arrived in the Philippines and when we called them to request the shuttle, they told us to take a taxi.
They offered us a scooter to rent for 300 pesos (about $10) per day but it was not a licensed rental, so we were likely not covered under their insurance as they told us to tell the police that we were friends of the owner of the scooter (we had no idea who that was) if we were stopped and provided us with two skateboard helmets.
The rooms are large in comparison to the average rooms at the resorts in this area, but the shower and hot water did not work so we were bathing from a bucket of cold water. The room towels were not changed for the week we were there but when you go to the pool you can ask for fresh towels at the bar. The bed is pretty standard to most places in the area - thin foam mattress on bamboo frame, however the sheets were thread-bare, stained with holes.
Although we were promised housekeeping service everyday, we did not receive this service and by the third day, had to request it. We were taking our own rubbish out to avoid insects and rank odours (and since they request that we do not deposit toilet paper into the toilet but into a rubbish bin - it was a problem not to have that emptied everyday).
Apparently the regular staff (ie: chef and housekeeping) staff was dismissed after our first night as we were the only guests and were left with a rude, and lazy young girl (17-yrs old sister of the manger we discovered) to look after us most of the time. So we were left paying fancy resort prices with backpacker services. Not really the ideal romantic spot we had hoped for on our honeymoon.
The "free wireless internet" did not work work in our rooms, only at the bar, and it went down, but no one knows where/what the/a router is never mind how to reset it, so we had no internet access.
The kitchenette is really only to provide you with cold drinks as the bar shuts early - it is not equipped to make any meals or anything more complicated than a cup a tea. Breakfast is good, Filipino-style (eggs, sausage/bacon and rice) or English-style (eggs, sausage/bacon and toast) and served at the bar, and the mango or banana smoothies are divine. However, you must order before 09:30 to get breakfast - so if you are wanting to relax on your vacation or very jet lagged you may miss it and have to pay for lunch instead. There is an excellent chef on staff but only shows up for the dinner menu and only if there are more than two guests.
The girls tending the bar are excellent at opening beers, or providing bottles of water, but are not skilled with mixed drinks or cocktails and do not admit if they do not understand your order. The brewed coffee would remove the paint off the walls, but the tea was nice. It was nice to be able to sit in the pool, in the shade with a cool drink on a scorching hot day, but since it is so far out, they rarely get visitors from the other resorts unlike Mike's Dauin Resort or the Pura Vida Resort so there was no one else to chat with or interact with. It was very quiet - which in some ways was nice as it was quite but resulted in a lack of services for us.
Laundry service is available and take 24-48 hours and each piece has to be itemized and paid for instead of the usual flat fee for a small bag.
If they charged back-packer rates we would not complain but we were charged top rates (USD$72/nt) for this area for no service, no shower, no housekeeping, no dinner service, no transportation, etc. We felt it was fair to ask for a discount on our room rate but they refused and since we booked and paid in advance they would not allow us to cancel our reservation and refund any payment to go elsewhere. We ended up paying 20% of the remaining two nights to go elsewhere after an uncomfortable discussion with the American fellow who ran the place (but was not onsite everyday) because when he questioned his staff about the lack of services they blatantly lied about fixing the shower or providing housekeeping.
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- Also Known As:
- Aqua-Landia Dauin, Dumaguete City, Philippines