The attraction of staying in this hotel is of course their aqua room, where instead of a window you have a wall-sized aquarium with fishes swimming from one room to another. This is a nice experience both for children and adults. As other reviewers have already said, they turn off the aquarium lights at night - but you can still see the fish. I was a bit bothered that the toilet in our aqua room had a see-through glass door from the bedroom - you don't get any privacy.
We also stayed in a bay view room - which was a lot bigger than the aqua room where we stayed on the first day. There is a bath tub (just a shower in the aqua room) and two toilets and showers (the glass doors to the toilets are frosted and thus provide pricavy), plus a separate living area with a sofa.
The problem with this hotel is the food. My son had room service, and he said it was not good. In fact he tried to look for another restaurant downstairs (there are several, although they are closed by 9pm, probably even earlier). He ordered chicken wings, and he said it tasted like adobo. The buffet breakfast is not worth the amount they charge for it (if you don't get free breakfast buffet with your room). There are very few choices - on our first breakfast, we only had a choice of breaded fish fillet (not good), sausage (not even longganisa), fried ham, beef with pepper and chicken adobo. I had the chicken adobo and was extremely disappointed - one would think the chef/s would have perfected this national dish but I could make better adobo using commercially available adobo mix (it was that bad). The hot chocolate drink had too much water. Their lemonade was all right, but it was not available on our second day in the hotel.
We had lunch and dinner also at the hotel restaurant and I felt we paid too much for a so-so meal. If you have a choice, you'd be better off having your meals at the restaurant chains downstairs. The wait staff were extremely courteous, probably trying to make up for the below average food.
I treated my sister to a body massage at the spa, and she said it was not good at all. They also have a weird way of soliciting for tips (optional) for their masseuse: they ask you to write your name on a form, your comments, and the amount you would like to give as tip. Other spas give you an envelope which you turn over to reception if you want to leave a tip - which I think is a better system than the one this hotel uses.
If you want to go to Ocean Park, you can buy your tickets at the hotel reception (same rate as in the ticketing booth). Beware though that they might not give you the correct time for the show you want to see. My friends bought tickets for the stingray encounter and were told that they have to be there at 7.45am. When they arrived at the gate, only the guard was there and they were told that it actually starts at 8.30 or thereabouts.
I will probably not be coming back to this hotel.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel H2O is the first and only marine-themed urban resort hotel in the Philippines. Opened on April 10, 2010, the hotel is part of the Manila Ocean Park complex in the Philippine capital’s historic Rizal Park. It has been designated as the official residence for guests and patrons of Manila Ocean Park.Every part of Hotel H2O has a connection to its namesake element, water – from its next-door proximity to Manila Ocean Park; to its location on the edge of Manila Bay; to its signature aquarium wall that adorns the inner guest rooms and grand ballroom; to the seafood specialties of its main F&B outlet, Makan Makan Asian Food Village; to the healing, negative-ion treatments of its wellness center, Zenyu Eco Spa. All these make Hotel H2O perhaps the most visually distinctive urban property in the country today. ... more less
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