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“Art Gallery is highly impressive”

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Ponce Suites Gallery Hotel
Ranked #19 of 53 Hotels in Davao City
Reviewed January 2, 2013

When this was featured on national TV on Trip na Trip, a travel program, not so long time ago, as a budget place to stay when you're in Davao City. I got curious and interested. So one day, I stopped by and checked in just to see the galleries of artwork by Davao's famous artist Kublai, up to 2-3 floors of art galleries along the corridors on each floor. Really impressive! However, the room is a bit pricey compared to its accomodation. While it looks clean, the room smelled old. They have a bar or mini-pub setup on the top floor, while the food and drinks are ok while we were there, perhaps the lack of guests makes this place looked uneasy. But of course, back then I would have loved to bring friends over to hangout on the place just for the experience of seeing Kublai's art galleries.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank PrincessMiaGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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52 - 58 of 88 reviews

Reviewed December 24, 2012

I was travelling in Davao and found that wonderful hotel. It is located close to the big shopping malls and the center. When you come to that place you will see the huge sculptures from the owners nephew, the artist Kublai Ponce Millan. Its more an outside and inside Art Gallery of this crazy wonderful artist. Every etage in different style, a wonderful rooftop restaurant to give a shady silent place in the middle of this roaring city.
The rooms are simple but nice, the reception is 7/24 and the hotel has security guards. WiFi, breakfast. All stuff is very nice and friendly, I will come again (even there was an earthquake one early morning) :)

Room Tip: Take the rooms in the 2nd or 3rd floor
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank LuckyPirat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2012

The hotel is located in a residential area where public transport is a bit of a problem. Getting in and out of the hotel means hiring a cab which prove uneconomical if you are on a tight budget. Guests are treated to an array of magficent collection of artworks done by a famous artist who happens to be the son of the owner of the hotel. The hotel comes with a dental clinic for that can serve guests by scheduled appoitnments. We decided to have dental prophylaxis while killing time but we felt ripped-off by the extensive fees charged to us after the services. The rooms are very basic, aircondition units are old and not working properly. Food in the hotel restaurant is boring. The artworks are dusty and toilets are not really impressive.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Yolanda F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 9, 2012

I stay at this hotel from the 26th October 2012 for 14 nights what place the outstanding art work that hangs on the walls on each level of this 3 story hotel build 12 years ago it a credit to the owner and a outstanding land mark for the city of Davao and it people . Rooms are standard hotel rooms they are clean and well maintain the staff do a outstanding job in welcoming guest this was my second visit to Davao.

The dinning room is on the first floor of the Ponce suite the food is great and cheap they have room service. Ponce Suite is close to the major shopping malls with a 5 -10 mins walk from the hotel.

Stayed: October 2012, traveled solo
Thank AJN279
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2012

Kublai Millan's head, to be exact. To say that this hotel is eclectic would be a gross understatement. Depending on your mood, the place might enlighten or depress you. But always invites more than a cursory glance. Every nook and cranny of this place, from the hotel's facade, entrance, lobby, hallways and rooftop, are festooned with every imaginable piece of artwork that Kublai has ever produced. Huge sculptured, installations, photos, bric-a-bracs, etc. Many of the artwork depicts sexual references, so kids staying here might ask awkward questions. But this is a very intruguing place to stay, certainly quite different from the usual. It invites the guest to wander around the entire hotel, closely examining the artwork. My only concern is the huge amount of labor needed to clean the place! Many of the pieces here are virtual dust magnets, so asthmatics and those with allergies beware!

Surprisingly, the guest rooms themselves are quite bare, considering everything outside, which might also be a good thing because of the dust factor. But the beds are adequate and comfortable, and I appreciate the thick glass windows that keep out a lot of outside noise. The bathroom is clean and comes equipped with a water heater. There is also free wi-fi, which is a pleasant bonus. The lobby staff is also friendly, and there a lot of foreign and local artists hanging out, and are more than willing to engage in friendly banter. No free breakfast, but the kitchen staff were very helpful, and allowed us to put some of our own food in the fridge (there was none in the room). They also helped us prepare the fruits we brought along with us, complete with plates and cutlery. Mucho appreciated!

It's near the main road, close to Victoria Plaza mall and its sumptuous restaurant row at the back (Ah Fat Restaurant is a gem). Lots of fast food and massage places nearby, and you can always hop on a jeep or cab if you want to go to Abreeza mall or to the beaches of Samal.

Don't forget to get a t-shirt with Kublai's artwork on it. Great souvenir of your stay in Davao!

Highly recommended for those you really want something vastly different from the cookie-cutter experience of the usual chain hotels.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank TheShrike_inManila
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 13, 2012

My husband and I stayed here October 8 to 11, 2012. I chose this hotel based on reviews and pictures of the artwork. We have visited many countries around the world, but have never stayed in what amounts to an art gallery hotel that is filled with one man's art work.

The owners came out to greet us upon our arrival by taxi. We were given a quick background on how the artwork came about. The room assigned to us was A2, directly behind the reception area. Despite its central location, we didn't hear any noise that was distracting. There was a bit of construction/renovation going on, but it's a sign that the owners care enough to fix up the place instead of letting everything go to pot like at some other properties.

Although the room was basic (bed, table, chairs, bathroom, closet, tv), the staff was just great and very attentive. I think this has to do with Min's own philosophy of hospitality and graciousness. Before the trip, I sent an email asking about the price of breakfasts. I had received a short reply from the front desk indicating costs start at PHP 110. A few days later, Min herself sent an email to say that first email, while the content was correct, needed improvement in terms of grammar and spelling. I've never stayed at a place where the owner took a more personal interest in guests.

This hotel is located inside a residential neighborhood. The landmark to use is the ChowKing on JP Laurel street. We walked everywhere, and we particularly enjoyed the food court at the Victoria Plaza. It's an older mall, but it's authentic and does not pretend to anything it is not. Lots of local people eating local fare at a cheap price.

Ponce Suites is also close to a large massage place which offered 2.5 hours of massage for a promo price of PHP 500. Tricycle rides from the ChowKing to the hotel is only 7 pesos.

Thank you, again, to Min and your great staff for the wonderful stay. We'll be back. And more importantly, we'll tell all our friends.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank bendog2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 25, 2012

Stayed at Ponce Suites for 2 nights. Room amenites were basic, as expected. It was the service that made it worth the experience. Staff were aways ready with a smile and willing to please. The owners were always on hand and played host to all the guests. The ambiance was artsy and unconventional.. Location is very accessible.you get to miss the traffic because there are many ways to reach the place. Thumbs up!

Room Tip: If you want quiet, ask for room not near the lobby.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank maanmananzan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ponce Suites Gallery Hotel

Address: Corner Roads 3 and 4, Dona Vicenta Village | Bajada, Davao City, Mindanao 8000, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Mindanao > Davao del Sur Province > Davao City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #19 of 53 Hotels in Davao City
Price Range: $15 - $19 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Ponce Suites Gallery Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ponce Suites Gallery Hotel is a small family run hotel located in a quiet location but only a few minutes walk from the business center of Davao. With 32 rooms, this hotel offers the guest a unique experience as, as the name suggests, it is also an art gallery with artworks by the owner's son, Kublai. We also cater for seminars and functions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ponce Suites Gallery Hotel Davao/Davao City

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