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“A real nice week”

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El Nido Resorts Apulit Island
Ranked #10 of 88 Hotels in Palawan Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 14, 2013

We spend one week at Apulit island and really enjoyed our stay. The manager Franck and his staff really took care about us. We still remember the "surprise dinner" at the bech as a great evening. The bungalow was not so big but enough space for two. You can sit on the balcony looking for small sharks in the water. Nice. Very good with wifi in the bungalow. Food was buffet style and very good in our opion. Not too much, good variations and very tasteful. All regards to the chef.
Apulit island gave us a fantastic week.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Olahel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 14, 2013

My heart and my head are in complete conflict in writing this review. 

The journey from Manila by private plane, jeepney and banka boat was fun, well organized, easy and run by numerous helpful and friendly people. The arrival at the island was positive, with a cold towel, drink and staff singing a welcome song. 

The pool and restaurant areas are lovely. The views are amazing and location is idyllic. From the balcony of my cottage, it was fantastic to watch small sharks, angel fish, parrot fish and numerous other sea life swimming below me. There was some great snorkeling (right from the beach) and scuba diving. The complimentary island hop boat trip was fun and was another opportunity to snorkel the outlying reefs. 

The cottages and F&B operation are a completely different matter. My comments are partly in light of the cost and value for money. 

The cottage, to be blunt, has no design, cheap fittings and a very small bathroom. An island resort is not expected to be fitted out to the same standard as a 5* hotel but this is just not good enough. 

The buffet restaurant was fine but had an average and disjointed offering. Lovely rare roast beef joint with gravy and .. spaghetti?! The ingredients were obviously there - this is the Philippines - but the direction and some skills were not. This would seem to be a relatively easy fix to turn ok in to good. Surely El Nido have an executive chef for their resorts?

The team members at the resort were fantastic! Friendly, helpful and ever smiling. A real credit to the GM. 

The natural elements - the location and the people were great, the standard of accommodation was  poor. I don't know if this is down to the property owners or the hotel company but it is a crying shame. 

I am very happy to have visited what can honestly be described as paradise, I don't believe I would again pay the same rates for an average at best hotel offering. 

So, I am left with a happy heart (friendly paradise) and a confused head (over priced hotel and the current waste of a fantastic opportunity by the hotel operator/owner).

I hope for the sake of this beautiful island and the great team, the operators/owners get their product sorted out sooner than later!

  • Stayed: February 2013
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4  Thank DB_HK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 11, 2013

This place has everything you could ever want for from an island holiday. The island is remote and gorgeous. The huts on the water was great our favourite part was walking along the boardwalk and spotting all the baby reef sharks. The staff are amazing and cater to your every need. They are friendly and do anything they can to make your time there wonderful, a special thanks to Angel our activities coordinator and Alan our very attentive waiter. The highlight was a private dinner on a secluded part of the island where we had our own chief, waiter (thanks again Alan) and private boat. We were also there over new years and they organised a great event on the beach with entertainment, fireworks and more. Thank you for a fantantic time!

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank travelsharks1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2013

We chose Apulit for a unique, relaxing snorkel trip—and it exceeded our expectations. We agree with fellow reviewers: it’s not a 5-star western experience, the food is average (but with plenty of choices), and everything else is a delight!
We were thrilled with the charming staff, beautiful grounds, and fabulous sea life.
We loved the house reef and island hopping tours. So many fish and healthy coral. A dream!
We enjoyed a 2 level “loft water cottage”—with snorkeling directly from our room and leisurely walks to the main eating area (well-lit and paved path).
The other guests we met were happy with Apulit, too. They were mostly from Australia, the Philippines, South Korea, and Switzerland… A great trip!

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Peace-L4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 24, 2013

Apulit Island, El Nido Resort is a beautiful resort tucked into a quiet cove surrounded by dramatic limestone cliffs. There are lush trees, colorful flowers, thatched-roofed cottages perched on stilts above crystal clear turquoise water. This place was truly the perfect place for a forget-about-the-world-for-a-while type of vacation.

From Manila, we took a 19-seater charter plane exclusive to the El Nido Resorts and it took about 75 minutes to get to Palawan. From the dirt-floored airport, we took a jeepney for a 10-minute ride to a secluded wooden pier for the boat transfer to the island. The boat ride took about 75 minutes and as we docked, we were welcomed by the resort staff singing and dancing. We were given a refreshing drink, rice cakes and a necklace of a palm leaf braided into a fish.

We stayed in 2-storey Deluxe Cottages that opens up to a private deck that has stairs leading directly into the water for you to swim or snorkel anytime of the day. The panoramic view of the sea and the resort is very beautiful and it was so amazing to just look at the water underneath our deck and find colorful fish and baby black tip reef sharks!

Apulit Island Resort offered three buffet meals a day. Everything was so fresh and homemade with the fruits and vegetables grown locally, most on an organic farm. The seafood was caught daily in the local waters. Speaking of food, another must-do for anyone staying at the resort is a private meal. You can chose the day, time, and location! We chose to have a beach picnic. After our island hopping, we were brought to a secluded beach where everything was already set-up and fresh food and cold beverages waiting for us!

The resort was really perfect for what we were seeking – total relaxation. It is completely secluded, no roads, and no distractions. But in spite of that, it was never boring because there are several activities that you can enjoy like island hopping, windsurfing, kayaking, snorkeling, diving, rappelling, etc.

Overall, the resort’s asset is not just the beautiful island but its amazing staff. They are what indeed makes the island so special. I really love their thoughtful gesture of leaving hand-written messages on leaves – always made us smile!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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6  Thank MJ H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 21, 2012

food is varied and well presented. Enjoyed the massage and 'special' dinner. Staff work very hard to serve. Had a credit on my reservation and the local resort were unable to process it but head office eventually credited my visa
Manager Franck works hard to maintain a first class operation

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank kcreek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 3, 2012

My wife and I stayed here for our honeymoon last month (Nov. 2012) and pretty much had THE perfect experience. We're both teachers in South Korea and have traveled Asia a bit. It was both of our first times to stay in an all-inclusive place and the staff were simply amazing. We stayed 7 nights in a Deluxe Water Cottage since it was such a special occasion for us and were impressed by the size of our accommodation, as well as the scenery. You can't beat waking up to a gorgeous ocean every morning, not to mention, having steps right into it from your cottage.
The staff were extremely friendly and went beyond their duties to make sure we were always comfortable and taken care of. We'd like to give a special thanks to August and Mary for their stellar service. We always had activities to do, the food was awesome every day (always changed up a bit so it didn't get old), and August even arranged a private, surprise dinner for my wife one night and ended up comp'ing it since we were staying so long. We really can't say enough good things about this place, so if you're considering it then don't hesitate! It's completely worth the money. The Basic Water Cottages might be better priced for anyone who wants to save a little. We can only hope that we have a chance to experience another one of El Nido Resorts in the Philippines!

Room Tip: It really depends on your preference. The Basic Water Cottages are all in the bay and closer to the...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Smize
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Nido Resorts Apulit Island

Address: Apulit Island | Taytay, Palawan Island 5322, Philippines (Formerly Apulit Island Resort)
Location: Philippines > Mimaropa > Palawan Province > Palawan Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Palawan Island
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Palawan Island
#5 Luxury Hotel in Palawan Island
Price Range: $493 - $642 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — El Nido Resorts Apulit Island 4*
Number of rooms: 50
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Apulit Island Resort is nestled within a pristine cove with a backdrop of sheer limestone cliffs. Apulit offers a wide expanse of white-sand beach lined with coconut trees. It has 50 cottages built over the water in traditional architecture mixed with contemporary design. Apulit Island Resort is part of the El Nido Resorts group of eco-island resorts. It is located in Taytay, northeastern part of Palawan. It takes an hour flight from Manila to El Nido, and an hour and a half van ride, or a 4-hour land trip from Puerto Princesa City (Palawan's Capital City). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Apulit Island Hotel Palawan
Club Noah Isabelle
Hotel Noah Isabelle
Resort Noah Isabelle

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