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“Not worth the high rating.” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Amarela Resort

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Amarela Resort
Ranked #6 of 48 Hotels in Panglao Island
Certificate of Excellence
Macau, China
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Not worth the high rating.”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2011

Regardless of all the good reviews I previously read on Tripadvisor, our view is that this a 3 star "resort" masquerading as something else.
Right across the board you can see that whilst there was intent to create something special everything fell well short...from the lack of ocean view rooms even though their website claims the opposite...to the noisy air conditioner in the bedroom (302).....to the limited selection of breakfast (your choice of continental; English or Philippine) - one plate of food...usually served cool to cold, not especially tasty, not especially well cooked...and on our last morning..."Sorry, we don't have any bacon left"...to the pool which if it had more than 6 people in it would feel overcrowded.
Very limited meals menu and what there was was quite pricey.......very small bar.......room service is +15%.....a large book & DVD library, however, there is no index so the only way to make a selection is trawling through the shelves.....
Who would I recommend this place too? Only someone who really wanted to be on their own and did not mind paying a high price for it (Note:- we stayed in the Marco Polo in Cebu at the end of this trip, and it was cheaper & better that Amarela).
Final note - read your quote carefully...even though when you make the inquiry you might ask for a price for 2 adults + 1 child in one room...the price quoted is only for the 2 adults...there is an add-on of PHP600 for the child's bed....

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank scottking48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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501 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (86)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
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English first
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
26 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 29, 2010

SUMMARY: Hands down a near perfect blend of warm service, sumptuous dining, breathtaking hilltop sea views, and home style charm. Two huge thumbs up and highly recommended.

ROOMS: My room was large and had a mesmerizing vista of the sea. A plate of ripe mangoes and other locally grown fruit came upon my arrival, and I'm convinced the air conditioner was the best working one on the whole island. Local and custom artwork was evident throughout the rooms and there was even an art gallery that provided a glimpse into Filipino culture and history!

SERVICE: The service was impeccable, from my pickup from Tagbilaran boat port to the check-in to the wait staff to the airport drop-off. There was no shortage of genuine smiles, and all staff were very polite and honest. While lazing in a hammock by the beach, my blackberry fell out of my pocket and an observant staff member alerted me of this . . . potentially avoiding a disastrous situation prior to my departure a few hours later.

AMENITIES: I wasn't expecting business hotel amenities, but to my surprise there was actually WiFi throughout the public spaces and even in the rooms. There was no fitness center, but there was a sand volleyball court, swimming pool, and private beach for all my exercising needs. But really, who needs a business center or WiFi when you have a library with real books and even board games like Chutes & Ladders?

LOCATION: The secluded location was about 20-25 minutes away from Tagbilaran airport . . . a nice journey through the main town and jungles before arriving on Bohol Island. The resort is perched up on a lushly landscaped hill with the rear grounds that slope downward to the ocean, providing stunning vistas throughout the resort.

CLEANLINESS: No issue with cleanliness, as the staff was visible cleaning the property interiors, grooming the public spaces, and even organizing the board games, books, and DVDs in the library. The landscaping was immaculate with dense greenery and vibrant colors that were flawlessly maintained.

VALUE: Compared to the larger resorts on the island, the Amarela offers tremendous value for what you pay. When in Bohol, never mind the super facilities of these mega resorts and instead opt for the quaint charm and lush beauty of Amarela.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
15 Thank wangderlust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philippines
Level Contributor
25 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 24, 2010

Amarela… Portuguese for the color yellow. This is the boutique resort’s name where we stayed during our short vacation in Panglao, Bohol. As the name implies, the building’s walls are painted in sunny yellow accented by beautiful, local artworks.

Since it was low season when we went there, only about five out of the 25 rooms were booked during our entire stay. But as I observed, the resort could have been exclusively booked for us alone since we hardly saw the other guests during our 3-day stay there. I guess having such a lovely place all to ourselves approximates the lifestyle of Hollywood stars seeking total privacy when they go on vacation.

We have been to many places together and have seen our fair share of resorts and hotels. I must say that Amarela ranks up there among the best we’ve been to. It might not be as luxurious as a Shangri-La resort but their combination of architecture, service, ambiance, and food all come together in a right way that makes you fall in love with the place.

To begin with, the resort makes use of Visayan influences in their design and furniture. Massive doors restored from old houses lead to contemporary furnishings inspired by traditional pieces. Wood carvings by local artists adorn the walls. Paintings by Visayan artists such as Nene Lungay provide a splash of color around the resort. Orlina and Cacnio sculptures can be seen in the common areas. Small antique altars and religious icons accentuate corners. Even persons not passionate about art will learn to appreciate the works displayed here.

The rooms are immaculately clean and so are the bathrooms, which is very important to us. The resort is over three years old already but the maintenance made me feel it was just opened this year. We stayed in one of the superior rooms but if you have money to spare, I suggest you stay in the Amarela or Antiquera suites. These are big rooms with commanding views and a jacuzzi to boot.

The infinity pool looks over the sandy pathway leading to the beach. Its temperature was always perfect whenever we swam no matter what time of day it was. Amarela’s beachfront is dotted by hammocks and wooden loungers that are perfect for reading books or taking a nap. The color and texture of the sand is hard to differentiate from Boracay’s. I think the only disappointment (though pretty minor) that we encountered was the amount of sea grass that grew thicker as you swam further from the shore. But this can easily be resolved by walking a few meters to either side of the resort where there is less grass.

Their library collection was amazing for such an establishment. They have something for everyone. Fiction, biography, architecture, children’s books, history, religious, and self-help titles are available to the guests. Equally impressive was their DVD collection.

I intimated to my wife that the resort’s staff was always hidden from our sight but would effortlessly appear every time we needed something, as if on cue. I take this as a mark of great service. Finally, but certainly not the least, was the food. This is one hotel where the food is actually good. Our favorites were the carabao cheese fritters and herbed chicken. The mangoes were so sweet too that we decided to buy from their supplier but unfortunately lacked the time to do so.

As you can see, we really enjoyed our stay in Amarela. In fact, we’re already looking forward to our next trip there. As my wife said, it was a soothing balm to her soul. As for me, Amarela could simply mean… AMAzingly RELAxing.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Waray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
Level Contributor
50 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 21, 2010

The Amarela is a small but cosy hotel, tucked away on a hillside, overlooking the ocean. A courtesy bus to and from the airport is provided, unlike some of the bigger, well known hotels we stayed at in the Philippines! If you want to get away from it all, Amarela's the place to be - although you're pretty much confined to the hotel unless you take a taxi out. The grounds are beautiful, with the private beach reached by going down a flight of steps. The staff are very friendly and attentive. Dvds and books are free to borrow.

We only had one complaint - our day trip sightseeing which was arranged by the hotel. Our driver was in a real rush to get round all the sights and we were very disappointed to see the Tarsier monkeys in a road side stop rather than in a sanctuary. Clarify this before you go!

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank yvonnecar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Level Contributor
23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 16, 2010

Our original plan was to stay in Bohol for 3 nights only, but after the first hours in this paradise we decided to extend our visit for another 3. The hotel is nicely situated on top of a hill overlooking the ocean, in between a vast native vegetation, where trees are full with fireflies, butterflies, lizards and geckos (don't worry they are friendly and you will spot a handful while staying in this hotel). The beach is nice with clear waters and white sands; this beach seems to be almost untouched by men.

The hotel is 30 minutes away from Alona, the closest town, which deserves to be visited, with a nice night life and delicious local restaurants where you can try exquisite fish and prawns.

The hotel is able to provide local tours to all the islands around, the Chocolate Hills, Firefly watching, Island hopping, dolphin spotting, photographic safaris. It also has a great masseur.

On our trip a baby of 7 months got sick and the hotel provided us with all the assistance to get an appointment with the local paediatrician.

in shot, the natural surroundings and the attentive and always helpful service of Alona Staff make this a great hotel.

We look forward to visiting Amarela again soon, and we will recommend it to everyone.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Damiansra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 14, 2010

Our trip to Amarela was an absolute blast. The resort has so much charm and personality, and the staff were extremely observant, helpful and approachable. The rooms were very clean, and you can enjoy great and affordable massages from the comfort of your very own bed.

With the resort perched atop a small hilltop, the views from breakfast are beautiful with a very comfortable and refreshing breeze. The food was very good as well, with a good variety of both western as well as local dishes. I also loved the fresh young coconuts, which were enormous and delicious. While not officially part of the menu, you can find urchin (uni) right along the shallow waters of the beach during low tide and enjoy the fresh uni right there on the spot.

The reef just off the beach was beautiful, with crystal clear water, perfect temperatures and abundant sea life to be explored below. The resort offers free snorkel equipment, which was very clean and well-maintained.

There’s also a very comfortable and relatively private pool, which overlooks the treetops between the resort and beach. Great for cooling off after laying out, and perfect for having food served to you poolside during those lazy periods. And if lazing around is what you seek, there is also a great DVD library (and DVD player in-room) and board games.

Overall, it was a great stay at Amarela and we really enjoyed the intimate coziness, genuine service and unique charm of this small but fantastic resort.

Just one minor transportation tip: If departing through Tagbilaran Airport, make sure you arrive at least 1.5 hours before your flight, as there are very few check-in counters and many waiting passengers (quite a few appearing to be waiting on standby as well). We arrived a bit late and AirPhil Express gave up our seats with a very minimal refund that has yet to appear on my credit card statement.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Liudogger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 31, 2010

I loved the service, Bry, Jake, Norbert, Nejel, Jennifer and all the other staff were Supreme!! I hope to come back waaayyy sooner than expected!! I will tell all my friends and family of the Amarela!!! Panglao, Bohol is amazing and all the people too!! Have the Filipino breakfast while watching the sunrise, then take a morning walk in the friendly neighborhood (and meet the local Barangay Capitan!!) :) The people are soo warm and welcoming. Then in the afternoon go to the white sand beach or the pool..Relax in a hammock beachside... Oh and before I forget, if you like a relaxing fresh fruit cocktail, have Bry make you an Amarela Special with the local Tanduay Rum!! Me being from Puerto Rico, Bohol is definitely like being at home!!! DO NOT THINK TWICE AOUT COMING TO AMARELA!!!!!

Giovanni

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Dahlface
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Amarela Resort

Property: Amarela Resort
Address: Barangay Libaong, 6340, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Visayas > Bohol Province > Panglao Island
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Panglao Island
#5 Luxury Hotel in Panglao Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Amarela Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Amarela is a cozy yet elegant boutique resort atop a gentle slope with a stunning panoramic view of Bohol Sea and neighboring islands. Natural sandstone pathways run through native landscape, leading to the long stretch of white beach. The resort showcases local art and culture in meticulous detail - highlighting antique & traditional furniture, artifacts & handicrafts, old hardwood doors & floors, as well as an outstanding collection of sculpture & paintings. ... more   less 
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TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Agoda, Hotels.com and Jetsetter so you can book your Amarela Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Amarela Hotel Panglao Island
Amarela Resort Bohol Province/Panglao Island
Amarela Hotel Bohol

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