I was very pleasently surprised by my trip to Pirate's Cove. The best description I could come up with is that the resort is a mix of Baja California style meets one of Jimmy Buffet's dreams. The whole resort is extremely well done, and well thought out. This is not a large style resort run by a rich hotel group, but the dream of the owner who has spent countless years imagining, creating, and repeating the cycle. It is an extremely well thought out, well done dream.
The resort is run through with colorful tile throughout the resort. The childrens pool is massive, and something out of a dream, complete with slides, towers, and obstacles. Below that is a different pool that is filled by the tides every day. It is a magical spot, rimmed with artistic concrete seating areas, that was the perfect time to spend a sunset or sunrise. There is a jacuzzi overlooking both. Separate from that area is an adult pool that is grand indeed, with large tile walls, and different levels. Overlooking is a jacuzzi that is heated by a small fire, which creates an amazing evening sight and experience.
The amenities are the thing. Besides the pools there is great sorkeling, due to the resort being perched on a reef. Fishing poles and snorkeling equipment are free to use upon request. There is also a volleyball court, a small climbing wall, and one of the most amazing slot car setups I have seen. There is also river tubing available, but was not the right season when I visited. There are also great cave exploring chances, which I did not do either. Of course, there is also a very solid surf break that would be fun for lots of different beach activities.
Rooms are clean and did the trick. We had one towel that was not very clean, and we were given clean towels when asked. Based on previous reviews, we asked for the room with the balcony over the ocean. This was a solid tip, and was amazing. It was nice to feel restless during the night, walk out on my balcony, and feel like I was somewhere really amazing, really different. Rooms also come equipped with solid air con, cable TV, wifi, a fridge, and a cooking area. There was no hot water in the room, but this wasn't necessary for is. The water is warm by itself. If this is a necessity, there are rooms that use solar heating to give hot water.
There are only two negatives. One is that there is no food served at the resort. This is less of a problem as there are places in town that deliver, and menus and phone calls are provided by the resort. The second negative is the location, in Borongan, East Samar. It is about 4 hours away from both Catbalogan and Tacloban. But my title holds, it is worth going out of your way for, especially if you are anywhere in Samar.
The hospitality, also, was tremendous. An anecdote: I was craving big, thick, quality burgers and was saying how it was difficult to find that in the Philippines. The owner mentioned that his wife was a great cook, and that if I bought the ingredients she would cook some up. I accepted, and the burgers were absolutely delicious. Based on the amenities, and the other positives, I will be making this a for sure destination on my next trip to the Philippines.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Pirates Cove was established in 1992 - first in the region. We try hard to insure our visitors coming all the way here have a good time. We are more of a self-serve place with kitchens in the rooms, restaurant delivery - keeps it less expensive. Surfing, Diving out front, kids water park, pools, gas bbq, good meat shop, climbing wall, bikes, billiards, slot car track, cable, a/c, fridges in all rooms, aquariums, jacuzzis, river tubing, caves, kayaking, eco treks. We help travelers with a large range of services,getting boats, where to go, rides to town for supplies, facilitating their interest, etc. We don't charge for these things, so folks can have a good time. We are not lace and glamour, but more of a hands-on place sitting on the edge of the world. Very comfortable, relaxing and quiet. But, things to do here are very exciting, if you're into the outdoors. Folks visiting have to make their own entertainment. Bars and discos are in town 10 min away. So if that's your thing just walk over the bridge - it's close and easy. ... more less
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