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“Perfect Vacation”

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El Nido Resorts Pangulasian Island
Ranked #4 of 17 Hotels in El Nido
Certificate of Excellence
Manila, Philippines
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Perfect Vacation”
Reviewed January 7, 2014

Our whole family of 22 went on an after new year vacation at El Nido and we stayed at Pangulasian Resort. It was amazing, the service was superb , all the people, from the resort manager down to the crew are super friendly and accommodating to all our needs. Our guides were very informative and helpful. Our Villas are beautiful and clean. All the facilities are class A.
We will certainly go back to Pangulasian Resort

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank citrine8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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546 reviews from our community

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English first
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed January 3, 2014 via mobile

The entire experience at Pangalusian was fantastic.

The staff can't do enough for you. Nothing is too much trouble. The villas are great. The grounds are well maintained and beautiful. The food is good although it could probably become a bit boring if you spent a few weeks there. However the chef was happy to produce whatever we asked for, so that would obviate the boredom. The setting is marvellous.

It is small enough to be exclusive and never feel crowded.

The management was attentive and everything is well organised.

Everything you would expect from a 5 star resort.

Stayed December 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank MickExplorer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed December 20, 2013

My partner and I stayed at Pangulasian and Miniloc - they were both great but quite different experiences. Whereas Miniloc felt more like an upscale version of camp (somewhat dated bungalows on stilts, buffet for every meal, younger crowd, and more variety in nearby activities - all of which were fun), Pangulasian was incredibly luxurious and relaxing - more than I'd expected given the moderate price difference between the two at the time. We had a canopy room - and the room, bathroom, and veranda were all beautiful, sparkling clean, and expansive! The infinity pool and the beach were amazing. The staff were incredibly friendly and helpful/reliable. I'd definitely return.

A couple quick points of clarification re some of the other reviews I'd read when deciding where to book:

Food quality - I'd read one review that called this into concern so my expectations were low, but the food turned out to be quite good. Breakfast had a nice buffet spread and a chef who made quite nice eggs, pancakes, and french toast. Really expansive selection of breads, cheeses, fruit, vegetables, hot foods, and cereals. The quality and selection were more refined than Miniloc (for example there was a full carafe of whole milk, skim milk, and soy milk -- whereas Miniloc didn't have and the staff didn't understand the concept of skim milk).

Food price - As another reviewer pointed out, this also wasn't clear to me before arriving, but the breakfast buffet is included whereas dinner is not. However, the dinner menu was incredibly well done, and the prices were lower than I'd expect from a 5-star / high-end resort, especially given the quality. The crusted tuna I ordered was perfectly seared, breads and selection of fresh sauces were impeccably selected, etc. Average price per plate was $15-30. Re lunch - I don't believe it's included but am not 100% sure as we ordered it a la carte by the poolside and on the room veranda both days :)

Activities - At both resorts you need to take boats to get to most activities, but everything is nearby, well-organized, and mostly included in the room rate (except scuba diving, special off-island lunches, etc). Pangulasian has a pool, great white sand beach, a reef off the front, and a 30-min each way hiking trail up to a view point at the top of the island. Miniloc has lagoons within kayak distance, great fish snorkeling out front, but not as great a beach and limited lounge/cabana space.

So, all in all, a great stay. Yes it's a bit high-end, but nowhere near Amanpulo/other highest-end resorts yet the service/quality were surprisingly luxurious and staff were all genuinely great. I'd definitely come back to Pangulasian, and while we loved the canopy room I'd probably be inclined to try the beach rooms next time which each have their own beach/lounge space right off the back porch. The pool villa concept seems fun but probably not necessary given the awesome infinity pool and poolside service, and quiet atmosphere/limited number of guests.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Adam H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed December 17, 2013

When our family landed on Pangulasian Island, we were met by the entire hotel staff. They all welcomed us and made us feel SO special right off the bat. Roslyn - one of the hotel's activity coordinators, greeted us by saying "welcome to the most beautiful place on Earth". At first my husband and I were a little skeptical... I mean it was certainly beautiful but that's a pretty giant statement, right? And we've been to a lot of incredibly beautiful places. We had a week to experience it and see if her statement held up for us!

We were looking for a quiet peaceful beautiful place with a gorgeous beach and stellar accommodations for some needed relaxing family time without paying an arm and a leg - which isn't the easiest thing to find these days anywhere. Most places that are incredibly beautiful and have stellar accommodations are filled with tourists and are completely overpriced. Other places that aren't overrun with tourists, usually have no posh accommodations to offer.

We wanted it all for this holiday - peace & quiet, natural beauty AND 4+ star accommodations with service to match... and we found it ALL on Pangulasian Island's El Nido Resort!

The setting is simply stunning. From the island you can see many of the 45 islands that make up El Nido. The beach is pristine and the water is clear, warm and welcoming. They take great care in keeping everything natural and untouched with made our stay so special - where else can you see so many shells still on the beach? The resort is the only thing on Pangulasian and it's new so it's still in excellent shape. The staff was so friendly, pleasant, helpful and eager to please.

So, after our week there, I have to say that Roslyn's greeting to us was nothing short of absolutely true. It takes it's place as number 1 on my list for sure.

Can't recommend it enough and simply CANNOT wait to go back!

Room Tip: We stayed in the beach villas - which I highly recommend. You walk out of your villa and you are on...
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Missy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jakarta, Indonesia
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed December 13, 2013

For me this place is all about location and people....If your idea of fun is waking up every morning and being able to swim off the beach directly in front of your villa and go snorkelling for an hour before breakfast, then follow on the day with some island hoping, with kayaking, secret beaches and more snorkelling then this is the place for you!
The welcome and goodbye, singing and guitar playing is quiet magical. And all the staff, especially the activities gang make the stay very special.

7am guided snorkelling on the house reef was fantastic, dropped off by speedboat at one end, we worked our way back to the clubhouse... It must of been good, we did it 3 mornings out of 4! Black tip reef sharks, turtles, blue spotted rays and endless amounts of fish, the fact that this reef is on your door step is quite incredible, so you could take advantage of it at any time of the day. Yes there is some dead coral, but there is a lot of excellent stuff too, with clown fish spotted in some parts of the reef.

We did the two included boat trips (lagoon tour and island hoping). We didn't pick the best day for the lagoon tour, there was quite a swell running when approaching the small lagoon, but once inside in the kayak it was still pleasant. The next day the sea state and weather were much improved for island hoping, taking in snake island, and a couple of caves.

For us the highlight was the day we chartered one of the outriggers for the day. We toured around the islands under the excellent watch of the boats crew and our fantastic guide Joe-boy. First stop Minoloc island, and snorkelling with the jack fish and large school of big eyed cod.... This shouldn't be missed. Then a couple of stops off the beaten track, secret beach... Where we swam through a hole in the rock to access the secret cove, and then followed by hidden beach.... We kayaked in, a bit of excitement with some small surf, but we made it without incident! Both places we had to ourselves, thanks to Joe-boys excellent time management as the other boats (from El Nido town) we saw at this stage had all stopped for lunch! We had are own late lunch at one of the El Nido resorts beach clubs, before more snorkelling and kayaking the the afternoon. What a day! Yes it is extra to hire a boat for the day.... But all I can say is do it!

Back to the resort.... Great villa on the beach, we had number 7, kind of half way between the pool and the club house, so couldn't have been better... And you have a large beach (the biggest in the bay) that you only have to share with the other resort guest.... When we were there it was only about 40% occupancy, so half the time it was like having the island to yourself.

I liked the Eco friendliness of the place, no plastic water bottles, only a refillable bottle supplied for you to take away. Bio-degradable products in the bathroom.

Food... Breakfast has a good choice in the buffet section with eggs made to order..... With varying efficiency! You can eat at the pool bar or main restaurant for lunch and dinner. We liked the menu, for 4 night, there was plenty of choice, I think between us we ate all the seafood dishes! The salads were always goo too. Service at the pool bar, could be a bit slow at the lunchtime 'rush'. I preferred the menu at the main restaurant.

And finally a stroll up to the viewing point at the top of the island 30mins one way is definitely worth it!
Wished we had stayed longer to take advantage of some of the water-sport activities... Next time!

Room Tip: Beach villas are just perfect
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank mollyjetset
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barcelona, Spain
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed December 5, 2013

Pangulasian is a great island to visit with the family or for a couple's getaway. The hotel rooms are all cottages with five star amenities. There are beach front options, with or without a small pool and a treetop option. We took a beachfront with small pool, though I don't think it's worth the extra cost compared to the regular beachfront cottage because you can't access the beach from the one with the pool.
The room itself is very large. It has breathtaking ocean views. The bed has a canopy, there is a sofa, iPod docking station and TV with satellite channels. The bathroom is very large with an alcove window and sitting area. All bath products are eco friendly. The whole resort is actually eco friendly. Each guest is given a metal water bottle to use for the entire stay which is great!

The service is excellent, all the staff is extremely helpful and everyone knows your name. They give you whatever you want and are pretty quick to act. Whether it be a golf cart to pick us up or a water activity we wanted to do, they would make it happen. They also ensured we were always safe. I went paddle boarding and the current was taking me far away but the nice water activity man came to save me on a kayak. Another time we went kayaking and my father in law's glasses fell into the water and the guide jumped in and found it in the deep blue sea! That's service! When we arrived and when we left, we were greeted by the whole staff of the hotel and when we were leaving they did not stop waving and singing until we were well beyond view which was really touching.

We were there during low season, right after a typhoon so we had most of the resort to ourselves so it felt very exclusive. I am not sure if it would have the same feel during high season. People with mobility problems or small children may also need to specify this because there are a lot of steps to get to the rooms and the hotel may need to designate the appropriate room with easy access. They do bring you as close to the rooms with golf carts.

The hotel has complimentary activities such as tours to other islands and other water activities on Pangulasian itself. The activities are fine for first timers but I'd been to Lagen before and partook in the same activities I had done before (visit to caves, snake island and lagoons) so it got a bit old for me. I suggest they come up with more activities, especially complimentary ones because that is the allure of the other El Nido resorts and for what it costs to stay at Pangulasian, more activities should be included.

Food - The breakfast buffet was great with lots of variety and included in the price. Lunch and dinner were separate and a la cart. After a few days, the menu lacked variety. The food quality also needs improvement. We had fish and it was overcooked.

The hotel has internet access but it is spotty depending on the location. The gym is small. The spa is also small and can only accommodate two people at a time but treatments can also be taken in the rooms. There is a large and very nice pool. They were building a walking/jogging exercise trail which should be done by now.

Room Tip: Beach villas are great. No need to pay extra for a beach villa with pool. People with mobility pro...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank angypsy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
italy
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed December 2, 2013

I have stayed in Pangulasian for 2 nights only and travelled to luxury resorts before ( Maldives and Thailand) therefore I would base my judgment on this as well, despite it is never good to compare.

The Pangulasian is a very beautiful groomed location and what I loved the most was my bedroom. Truly 65 square meter of pleasure, comfort, safety and relaxed atmosphere. I would have spent my entire days in this space. I loved the fact that the decorations have been studied properly with a truly local touch, some Philippinos furnitures mixed with contemporaneity pleasure and design. A room with a soul.

I didn't like very much the restaurant area as, compared to many locations at the Maldives, here it is more a formal restaurant rather than an enjoyment of the ' feet on sand". The restaurant lacks of atmosphere, candles, moods, lights are too ' wrong' for this place, and overall it feels empty. Outdoor furnitures seem like been picked up from any outdoor garden wholesale and I think this area lacks of a proper soul. It seems the house of anyone, or you could be anywhere ( Maldives, Mauritius, Thailand where am I?). I think that for such a high standard location, the attention to details should have been more selective in these terms. It feels you can be anywhere here, rather than in the Philippines.

Food at the restaurant needs a vibe and it would probably be better to have a sort of buffet idea with live cooking areas at night, rather than a la carte menu. Staff is friendly and very attentive, so attentive that it feels annoying sometimes. I personally like when a waiter cleans the table and the plates and his/her presence is not felt around, rather than having every 2 minutes a nice person cleaning up the plates or moving the glasses or changing the cutlery. It is a nice gesture which can be done in one single shot, rather than in interrupting 4, 5 times. Just an advice, rather than a complain anyhow.

I think the staff is a bit under pressure here and probably they want to give their best and show their best, but a little bit off pressure would probably make everyone, the clients as well, less stressed.

I also found that the staff for example at the restaurant is just following some rules but don't have initiatives. There is no one who can introduce you to a nice plate or dish, or take initiative to inform you which is the catch of the day, giving a hint of how special this or that plate is without you asking for that...it feels as the maitre is not really there, so my vote to the restaurant is 6.

Communal spaces are clean and groomed, once again the choice of furnitures is a little bit in doubt. ( but I love interior decorations and locations with a deep soul therefore if you don't mind this, this is the place for you). Pool is great and you can use as many towels as you wish. Also water is never ever missing and you will never be thirsty. I found this to be a very kind gesture.

Sea is full of wonderful fishes, corals etc... a must for the divers and the non divers.

My vote to the restaurant area, attention to interior decoration of this area, atmosphere, selection of furnitures is 6 and 1/2.

My vote to the room, tidiness, space, comfort of the rooms is 10

My vote to the staff is 10 for their kindness, 7 for their preparation, 10 for their attention to your needs.

Room Tip: We had a canopy Villa and we loved it! It felt a bit sleeping on top of the trees.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank evita1974
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 Pangulasian Island

Property: El Nido Resorts Pangulasian Island
Address: Bacuit Bay, El Nido, Palawan Island, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Mimaropa > Palawan Province > Palawan Island > El Nido
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in El Nido
#3 Top resorts Hotel in El Nido
#3 On the Beach Hotel in El Nido
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — El Nido Resorts Pangulasian Island 4.5*
Number of rooms: 42
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pangulasian Island is El Nido Resorts’ eco-luxury island hideaway in Bacuit Bay, El Nido, Palawan. The resort is set fronting a pristine beach and against a backdrop of tropical forest. Also known as the “Island of the Sun”, Pangulasian has breathtaking views of both the sunrise and sunset. Frolic in the 750-meter stretch of white sand beach and be amazed by the marine sanctuary right at its doorstep. Discover diverse flora and fauna thriving in its forest.Discerning guests will be treated to luxurious amenities and impeccable and personalized service at Pangulasian Island. The resort offers a total of 42 deluxe accommodations built with contemporary Filipino and cutting edge “green” design. Resort facilities include a boutique, library, restaurant and bar at the Clubhouse, an infinity pool with beach bar, gym, spa, hiking trail with view deck, Scuba Shack and marine sports center. Located just minutes away are vibrant coral reefs and El Nido Resorts’ Beach Clubs. ... more   less 
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