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“Filipino owned and operated”
Review of Rosanna's Pension

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Rosanna's Pension
Ranked #29 of 108 Specialty Lodging in El Nido
Manila
Level 6 Contributor
87 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
“Filipino owned and operated”
Reviewed August 7, 2013

This Filipino owned and operated place has four beach-front rooms with balcony, good for two-people, in a wooden two-story building, while directly across the road it has another two-story concrete building with eight more rooms, some good for four-people.

A new concrete three-story beach-side building is just being completed and will provide an upgraded Reception area and additional smallish rooms (some beach facing).

Our off-season rate for three-pax was just Ps1600, including breakfast for two - consisting of either two-pancakes, with butter & syrup, or what is known locally as a "Continental Breakfast (one-egg and three-slices of toast, with butter & jam).

Staff is friendly and accommodating, providing a large flask of hot water, cups and glasses on request. Room make-up is also on request (leave your key with Reception). Towels and linen are both fresh and in a good state of repair.

Laundry service is available at Ps70/kg. Other "tourist" services are offered, such as Island Hopping tours and motor-bike rental. There are sari-sari (convenience) stores nearby for all of your needs, from the wonderful Tanduay Rhum, San Miguel Pale Pilsen and sodas to soap and shampoo.

Also near-by are a couple of rustic cafe-style eateries while along the beach, in either direction, are restaurants offering good Filipino and European fare. Some place chairs, table and torches in the sand in the evening (ala Alona Beach, Bohol).

El Nido generally is rather cramped and ruled by the ubiquitous "tricycle"; these ones with flashy Toyota or other car "grills", running-lights and chromed car-style rear-view mirrors. A ride is 10-pesos, or 20-pesos for a private hire anywhere in the town. Rides further afield, perhaps to one of the accessible and beautiful white-sand beaches, is by negotiation. A ride from the bus terminal is 50-pesos including all the people and luggage you can manage to load.

The west-facing bay provides a magnificent view of unusual volcanic rock formations thrusting out of the sea found all around the area. The many small islands dotted outside the bay provide the basis for the island hopping mentioned earlier; many with lovely and secluded white-sand beaches and a few enchanted lagoons boasting crystal-clear waters.

The high-light of the day and evening experience is "Art Cafe", where quality souvenirs, beach clothing, sun-screen etc. are offered along with an excellent dining and entertainment experience each evening. Several beach-front restaurants offer "dining" on the beach, with candle-lit tables on the sand and a good selection of sea-food. Lobster was offered at Ps1500 per half-kilo.

In summary, El Nido suffers from poor government, offering electrical power for just 16-hours per day, helter-skelter building codes, puddled and dirt-laden streets. Access is by expensive private airplane or a 6-hour road trip from Puerto Princesa; offering 40-km of construction. The road will, one assumes, eventually be completed and the power problem eventually addressed.

But since my first visit, five years ago, there is scant sign of any Local Government involvement or understanding of how to exploit the natural beauty of El Nido and the natural friendliness and charm of it's residents.

DIVING? Read on...

The main attraction, beyond island hopping, is scuba diving; with a good choice of operators offering banca (outrigger style boats) or speed-boat access to dive-sites. I can recommend Sea Dog Diving which offers a very useful speed-boat, guide and full equipment rental at just Ps1000/dive (if you log more than six dives with them).

The scuba-diving is just OK, with most sites showing little sign of soft-coral life and large areas of dynamited hard-corals; making it difficult to get a really useful 60-minute dive without a disappointing finish.

It really seems inexcusable that the local officials do not yet accept that scuba divers, while El Nido's best source of income, are not satisfied to see the continued destruction of the surrounding area. I personally heard one day-time explosion and was thankful to be far away from any fishing boats. Corals and undersea "critter" life is very limited, but there are interesting clams, blue-spotted sting-rays and a reasonable appearance of the usual varieties of small reef-fish.

Room Tip: If you are booking early, ask for a beach-front room. If you are adventurous, just arrive in El Nido...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank SaranganiDiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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138 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
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English first
Paris, France
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed July 23, 2013

We initially planed 3 nights in El Nido, but sceneries, food and accomodation were that good that we extended it with 2 more nights.
Nice staff member, good location ( main street) and reasonnable price for low season : 800P for a big DBL room with private bathroom and fan and a balcony. It's a good deal.
They also offer a wide range of services: Island hopping ( just above the average price in town), kayak tours, transports and more...
Bad point is Internet: No signal in the room, you have to go to the "reception" and share the only one table with staff members and others customers.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank CyRieL_75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Quezon City
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed June 20, 2013

We stayed in Rosanna's mid June 2013. The room we stayed in was big enough to accommodate 3 people, maybe 4. The beds were comfortable enough. The toilet and the washstand were cute. The bathroom and the place were clean. If you've read the other reviews here, you'd know that electricity in El NIdo is from 2pm to 6am. It will be good if your hotel has a generator. This one does. However, their generator is not enough to keep the aircon going.

With regard to location, the hotel has two (soon to be 3) buildings. One faces the sea and the other is across the street. Of course the seafront one is more expensive but I believe the view is well worth it.

While Rosanna's may have used to serve food, they don't anymore.

One thing I like about this place is that the staff, including Rosanna, are friendly. While we were there, one guest was complaining that no water was coming out of their room's faucet. Rosanna let that guest and his party take showers in another unoccupied room while they repaired the one in the guest's room.

One thing that marred my stay there was that our ceiling was leaking, due to heavy rains earlier that day. They weer not able to clear the puddles in the viewdeck above us so the water seeped thru the concrete. But I think plans are underway to renovate the building we stayed in.
Overall, our stay here was pleasant.

Room Tip: Definitely get a room that faces the sea!
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank biyay2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed February 25, 2013

I arrived in El Nido on the 19 around 3 pm and as I was passing by the small town, most of the hotels, lodges and Inn had a hand-written sign: Sorry, we are full.

So I a solo traveler and I didn't want to have to stay in any doggy room. So for Php 2,500 a night I had a room for four people, for one... for 2 nights. Does not include breakfast.

The cottage is right on the beach, the sound of the waves... it has a lot of potential but since in El Nido they have shortage of electricity... it runs only from 2pm till 6 am. So the room is so dark I could see anything in the bathroom.
I didn't buy candle because I was there only 2 nights.

This is a OK stay, if you want to be left alone type of experience. The room is very basic..

If I had a choice of smaller, brighter clean room I wouldn't have stayed there. But keep in mind I was a solo traveler. I am sure if you are a group staying there it could be fun and the scenery is really beautiful.

I hope this helps.

Room Tip: Get candles or torches, the rooms are dark and lighting are dim where the electricity is running.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
5 Thank Ka W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2013

It was raining really hard when we arrived EL Nido. We were very unlucky with our two nights stay because it was stormy and was blackout (no electricity all over the place). So yes we never experienced the electricity of the hotel but still paid 3500 per night. (not their fault but we are just really unlucky I think).. Even it was blackout some places in EL nido got generators though I am not sure if Rosanna got one because I heard that the aircon next door was working.. It was so dark at night that it was so impossible to see anything!!! We used our cellphones to manage to go downstairs and ask for a candle. Yes they provided us candle-"ä 1 inch long candle that can last for 5minutes".. Same night my Mom got bitten by a mice or rat that her finger was just suddenly bleeding after she felt a puncture while she was sleeping!! towels they provided smells like crap.. Never ever we will stay in this place again. You will find more safer, cleaner, and cheaper room than this.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank sara f
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these El Nido hotels

Ho Chi Minh city
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2013

There is not a lot of great midrange hotel options to choose from in El Nido. There are a lot dank, musty Pensions/Guesthouses or high end private places on islands. We stayed in a clean beach front room. The room was quite large and had a balcony overlooking the beach. The staff were shy but very friendly and accommodating.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ted M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tacloban, Philippines
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 15, 2013

we arrived at el nido around 5pm, and we still didnt have any hotel to stay. luckily, the tour operator suggested that we stayed at Rosanna Cottages. but since we want our vacation to be memorable, we also looked for other resorts with beachfront. In the end, we ended up booking for a room at Rosannas. The room is clean and cool. But the view overlooking el nido is breathtaking. the staff are polite and helpful. when you need anything you just ask them. Also we were able to reserve our return trip to Puerto Princesa at a discounted rate.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank qliq1983
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rosanna's Pension

Property: Rosanna's Pension
Address: Hama St. Brgy Masagana, El Nido, Palawan Island, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Mimaropa > Palawan Province > Palawan Island > El Nido
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast
Hotel Style:
Ranked #29 of 108 Specialty Lodging in El Nido
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Rosanna's Pension 2.5*
Number of rooms: 20
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Rosanna`s Cottages Hotel El Nido
Rosanna's Pension El Nido, Palawan Island

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