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“Fascinating Concept Resort”

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Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Bagac
Manila, Philippines
Level Contributor
44 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Fascinating Concept Resort”
Reviewed November 18, 2012

A visit to Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar is an overwhelming experience. First of all, it is perfect for a weekend getaway from Manila as it is a manageable 3 hour drive away. Secondly, the prices are very reasonable. We stayed at a super spacious loft-type room for 4 in the Escolta inspired hotel of the resort. I think staying at one of the actual restored houses is more expensive.

But other than the accommodations (which comes with a set breakfast), what was fascinating was the place itself. The concept is solid and well-thought out. With the heritage homes, a free walking tour every hour, the cobble stone streets, the staff in Spanish colonial costume, batis-like pool, PLUS the over-all picturesque beauty, Las Casas Filipinas is a living museum.

If you want a different kind of holiday where you revisit and relive our history and at the same time relax in a well-maintained resort, this place is a definite must-try.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
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1 Thank domileo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (123)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Dasmarinas City, Philippines
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed November 8, 2012

For a hotel and a vacation getaway that’s only been opened to the public and operational for 2 years, Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar was able to give me and my family a vacation beyond what is expected as it was packed with very nice people, tasty food, and historically-filled tour.

The place is perfect if you want to see what it’s like in the 1800s during the Spanish colonial period. Big, old houses from different provinces of the Philippines were moved here and were given a new life thanks to the owner’s passion for restoring and reliving great wonders and stories of the past.

At the tour, we learned a lot of our untold history. Each house has their own unique and intriguing stories to tell which probably you may not have heard of before nor is written in books. Kudos to the researches!

Also, though the place may seem old as they intended it to be, they were able to merge modern conveniences to accommodate guests’ needs. We stayed in Studio Deluxe with Loft. It was big enough for the five of us and I think it can accommodate 6 to 7 people tops. It was fully equipped with LCD TV, DVD player, electric kettle, two air condition units, hot & cold shower, bath tub, hair dryer and complete set of toiletries for each guest. They also provide a safe where to keep your valuables.

The thing about the rooms in Paseo de Escolta though is that the flooring is made out of woods so it is inevitable to hear creaking noises when you pass certain floor areas. Good thing our room was on the third floor; we didn’t have to deal with somebody upstairs but we were also careful not to be a pain for those situated below us.

Room service? Fast. Very good. Staffs from Café Marivent may even go to your room to bring their menu and take reservations and advance orders!

Some may comment on the lighting as there is nothing but incandescent lighting in most part of the vicinity but I don’t mind it - the place looks rather more captivating! For someone who’s used to be under fluorescent lights during work, incandescent brings a more relaxing atmosphere.

There is an on-going construction estimated to be finished by next year so don’t get startled when you see a lot of construction workers passing by. We we’re also told to expect a lot more improvements – beach bar, casino, etc.

Overall, it was indeed a very pleasant experience for me and family, and we’re looking forward to coming here again.


Tips:
The management has this protocol that you can’t check in yet unless it’s EXACTLY 2:00PM so take your time to eat lunch. You may want to grab lunch in San Fernando, Pampanga before heading to Bataan as there are NO, believe it or not, McDonald’s or any other fast food chains and drive-thrus along the way. Otherwise you’ll have to take a detour to Balanga City.

If you’re coming from somewhere really far and had allotted extra time for stopovers, etc., you may want to visit DAMBANA NG KAGITINGAN (SHRINE OF VALOR) [http://www.bataan.gov.ph/ragingpeninsula/dambana.html] since you’re already in Bataan. It’s just along the way and is about 20-25 minutes away from Las Casas.

Take the first-scheduled tour at 8:30AM. For many, waking up early while in vacation is killing so if you take the earliest one out there will be less people taking the tour with you and you can have the tour guide for yourselves – you can ask as many relevant questions as you want, plus they are more energetic! Early tour can also keep you from drying yourself out in the sun (you will walk from a house to another). It is also more convenient to wear slippers or slip-on shoes (with socks for hygienic purposes) as you will take them off entering some of the houses.

For a fun-filled and knowledge-packed tour, look for DEXTER MANANSALA. He’ll give you the best tour ever!

If you want to bring instant coffee and/or chocolate drinks, go ahead as they provide electric kettle and you can always ask for (drinking) water refill from Café Marivent.

If you come mostly for swimming, make sure to maximize your time soaked in water. Though they have visible lifeguards around the beach and swimming pool, you have limited hours to swim. Beach swimming is only until 6:00PM (it becomes pitch black out there!) and pool swimming is only until 10:00PM – said they have to treat the water. Be very careful in the pool, it’s rocky and not that deep – definitely no diving!

Don’t miss the sunset!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank purplepaws31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quezon City, Philippines
Level Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2012

We found a great deal for an overnight stay at this resort so we just couldn't help but book it. This lovely resort will take you back to Old Manila which is quite a unique experience for us. They have modern hotel rooms without drawing too far away from their turn of the century theme. They also have old houses, or "casas", from different parts of the country, each with their own "family history". We were there on a weekday so there were only a handful of guests on the resort. It took us about 3 and a half hours (from SM North EDSA) to get to Las Casas (including lunch). yes, we drive slowly. We took the SCTEX route so expect to pay more on toll fees. Anyway, back to the resort. The front desk greeted us like they were really expecting us! So that's rather nice. And whenever we go to the cafe or the reception area, the staff (in their costumes) would greet us by our names (prefix then last names)! The batis inspired pool was really beautiful. The beach was not for swimming though. Or walking. Or anything, for that matter. The place was huge and there were still on-going constructions and improvements. All in all, we had a very lovely time in Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar.

Oh, and, tip, you can actually have your dinner leftovers (cause they serve in such huge portions) be kept in their kitchen fridge and have them reheated for next day's lunch! Awesome.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank eggpie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philippines
Level Contributor
24 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed November 4, 2012

My wife and I absolutely loved the place. There's no other place in the Philippines where you can actually feel how it would be like living during the Spanish-American colonial era, even for just a couple of days. Even the resort staff are dressed in colonial garb. The nice beach and swimming pool will remind you that this place is indeed a hotel/resort. But no question it's main attraction is the feeling it gives its guests of going back to the 1800s. The place is still expanding. So expect some construction noise ongoing on the farther part of the resort nearer the beach shore. Overall, my ratings vis-vis the cost are as follows (5 being the highest): Accomodation-4; Service-4; Facilities-3.5 (beach, pool, game room); Food-3.5 (Filipino restaurant - so so!, Italian restaurant - very good!); Cleanliness-4 (as mentioned earlier, some ongoing construction resulted in a slightly lower rating). Finally, my personal tip is, if you some cash to spare, the pictorial package in the Fotagrafia IS A MUST!!! For a family of 5, it will set you back for P1K, plus another 1,500 if you want to bring home the photos in soft copy. But to us, it was worth it.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank 7107Islands
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manila
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed October 31, 2012

We travelled to Bataan as a family of 7 (5 adults and 2 kids) on a Sunday. We left early morning coming from the South at 5:30am. We followed the map provided in the website of Las Casas (and with the help of the GPS) and took the SCTEX route instead of the San Fernando exit (toll fee around php300). Since it was still early, we took a side trip (there’s enough road signs to lead you there) to Mt. Samat (got there at 8am and it was a good time to stretch after the 2 ½ hour drive) through winding roads going up the mountain.

Entrance fee for our group (that includes entry to the museum) was php110 which included the php20 parking fee. We first drove all the way up to where the cross was on top of the mountain. It was a sight to behold from that point of the mountain until you get inside the cross (through an elevator in the vertical part of the cross). An entrance fee of php10 per person was charged for the elevator ride. The elevator stopped at the viewing deck (first on the right then on the left which was the horizontal part of the cross). This was another breathtaking experience to see how seemingly small the world was when you were at that height. Second stop was at the museum (on the lower part from where the cross was) which provided the visual historical past of the valiant heroes.

It took an hour drive to Las Casas Filipinas from the time we left Mt. Samat arriving at 10:30am. The 2:00pm check in time was strictly implemented. Therefore, the following is a suggested schedule of activities for a maximized overnight stay given the schedule we followed of travelling early morning, the historical side trip to Mt. Samat, and the strict enforcement of the 2pm check in time.

Day One
10:30am arrival: swim at the batis (their version of an infinity pool)
12:30pm: lunch at the Filipino/Spanish restaurant at Casa Unisan
2:00pm: check-in time
6:00pm: cultural show (only during weekends)
7:00pm: dinner at La Bella Teodora (Italian restaurant – open only on weekends)

Note: Swimming and lunch would make good use of the waiting time before the 2pm check in time, the cultural show was a wonderful way of connecting to our being Filipino (and appreciating what is Filipino) through music, songs, and dances (the background information of the emcee was an added value for the trivia it provided), and dinner at the Italian restaurant is a must dining experience for the perfect combination of ambiance and great food (note that they are only open on weekends).

Day Two
8:30am: first heritage tour of the day (takes about an hour and 15 minutes)
10:00am onwards: free time till check out at 12nn

Note: The heritage tour is done by the hour from 8:30 am to 11:30am and 1:30pm to 4:30pm daily. It was ideal to take the first tour in the morning since it was cooler. It was not as crowded as well since it was the first tour of the day, so we had the tour guide all to ourselves which made the tour quite personal and interactive. There were more than 20 houses we visited and we were able to go inside in some of them.

The benefit of this schedule is we were able to take in all that the place could offer for an overnight stay with enough spare time to do other things in between as we pleased. The food in both restaurants was really good (Filipino and Italian) and the service truly Filipino, warm and authentically attentive. The room (studio deluxe with loft) was just right for a family of 7 (though we added an extra bed for an additional cost of php950/night but no breakfast included). Housekeeping was attentive to our needs and the room was comfortable in terms of its amenities (bed, air-conditioning, a personal ref, and strong water supply). Below the hotel (Paseo de Escolta) were shops (spa and photo) and stores (drinks, snacks, and miscellaneous) for the guests. The whole experience was truly worth the trip as it provided a glimpse of the past, an appreciation of the present, and optimism for the future.

Room Tip: Studio de Luxe with Loft and Executive Suite ideal for big families/groups
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank pilgrim7691
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manila, Philippines
Level Contributor
23 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed October 30, 2012

Never expected to see a gem of an attraction in this part of our country. kudos to the developer who conceptualized this novel idea of restoring what is very distinctive... filipino. had the pleasure to spend 2 wonderful days in this nostalgic atmosphered place. cobbled walkways, plazas, bridges and ancestral residences from different regions of the country matched with superb accommodations, two good restaurants serving filipino, spanish and italian dishes, an entertaining cultural show plus an attentive tour guide and staff make it a winning formula. we stayed in the well appointed six bedroom casa san miguel that came with spacious bedrooms (each room came with 2 queen sized beds) with individual bathrooms, a 12 seater wood dining table, a receiving/living area that had a mid-sized ref and a 50" tv with dvd and satellite tv connection... plus an official size billiard table. if in case you prefer a smaller accommodation, the hotel-like casa de escolta will be fine (driver's quarters with meals is also available if needed). the place also provide the visitor with horse drawn calesas and bancas to go around the area, a batis-like swimming pool, guided tours to museums, a photo shop that come with filipinana costumes/accessories for you to use (if you wish) to make that most memorable shot and they even had a sunday morning eucharistic service. a one night stay is enough and the cost reasonable considering the experience you get in return. suggest you take the san fernando route going to las casas and take the drive via subic (lunch in one of the many eateries there... i suggest texas joe) on the way back to manila. you'll enjoy this one... for sure.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank rbsamson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Makati, Philippines
Level Contributor
24 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 401 helpful votes
Reviewed October 28, 2012

Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bagac offers a quite unique perspective on what a resort could be. A touristic attraction with a strong upper class historical connotation may interest aficionados of historical facts centered on the Spanish post-colonial period. The houses have been dismantled and reassembled in this unique location, most materials are original and some have been duplicated, but the appearance has been set to mimic the way the house was before being transferred.
The tour guide was knowledgeable of the history of the house giving the clients a unique perspective on the historical values of some houses. Some houses are not opened to the public, while other are limited to some floor. Maybe the fact that the houses are available for rent does hinder the accessibility to the rest of the viewers.
This is not a museum, rather a collection of old houses set in a wide area, paved with stones. Very refreshing for a day tour, but limited for a longer period due to the limited access to “historical landmarks” as those houses do indeed bear historical values to the Filipinos.

Now being a resort, Las Casas offers a fresh water pool (too small, too shallow), an entertainment hall (beneath one of the house) and the access to a wide portion of the fine black sand beach, clean and secured, no interference from the outside (although I was proposed to buy pirated DVD from passer by…), early morning people are combing the beach and removing floatsam as to enhance the experience of cleanliness.

Food is available in two restaurants, one serving local food and another serving Italian food. Now it must be noted that the food we ordered is rather good (7 over 10) but is really expensive. Considering the location (Bagac) and the availability of fresh produce, the resort itself does NOT justify such price tag. Foreigners will be at lost, Continental or so-called American breakfast is a concept that must be learned. Not everybody can eat tocino and rice in the morning. We have been accommodated and given alternative bread, butter and jam with egg and ham or egg and bacon but we had to fight for this to be considered as an eligible alternative of the free Filipino breakfast.

The management should try to get out and eat in other resorts within Morong. US$9 for two eggs with bacon and bread is a bit too much…

The room we were given is modern and spacious, the toilet was clean but the Kohler bathroom faucets and fixtures are leaking. They should look into this as to reduce their water consumption and provide a better experience.
The resort being quite big, walking around is definitely possible.
A show presented by high school student of the neighboring community was offered. One of the best display of cultural dances we have seen in the past 15 years!

Buildings are under construction, a hotel as we were told, hence more visitors. Will it be the same? Going there on a weekday was blissful; the weekend was horrendous (overcrowded), the management will have to redefine their priorities and objectives as the resort could becomes a financial oasis but a poorly rated resort if amenities are left as is.
Las Casas is a different kind of resort, going there to enjoy the pool is not a wise choice. Access to the houses will have to be improved.


Will we go back there? Yes we will consider going back there in a year or two as to see if the overall positive experience will be duplicated or not.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
18 Thank Thomas S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar

Property: Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar
Address: Brgy. Ibaba, Bagac | Bataan, Bagac, Luzon 2107, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Luzon > Central Luzon Region > Bataan Province > Bagac
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Bagac
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar 3*
Number of rooms: 189
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A fine showcase of Filipino history and craftsmanship, Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in Bataan takes you back to 18th-century Philippines in the twinkling of an eye. Architectural pieces of a bygone era, from different parts of the country, were reconstructed brick by brick, plank by plank. The noble-class mansions, wooden stilt houses, and a grand main building made of stone stand proudly in a village of cobblestone streets. To add up to the ambiance, a backdrop of majestic mountains, expansive rice fields, and a running river that flows to the sea, are found in the vast property. Truly a travel destination unlike any other, this resort in Bataan is a living museum of Philippine heritage. The traditional houses as hotel accommodations are the centerpiece of this Bataan beach resort about 125 km northwest of Manila. Even so, this destination resort does not lack in providing avenues for entertainment, relaxation, and recreation. It has the Napiya Spa, a swimming pool, private beach, gaming center, 3 restaurants, conference and banquet facilities, cultural shows, and heritage tours. Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar takes pride in giving you a glimpse of the past, reliving the age-old yet distinctive Filipino traditions, while providing the luxuries and comforts of contemporary times. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Las Casas Filipinas De Acuzar Hotel Bagac

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