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“nice hotel..”
Review of The Manila Hotel

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The Manila Hotel
Ranked #5 of 110 Hotels in Manila
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 18, 2010

good hotel, only a bit old. But with great breakfast

  • Stayed: November 2007, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank tazzlimbo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,230 - 1,236 of 1,530 reviews

Reviewed January 27, 2010

Spectacular lobby, friendly and efficient front desk, helpful limousine service, decent food and drinks, large, comfortable room. Oozes class and history. Gorgeous pool. Overpriced, but not crazily. Great location, right next to Luneta Park and Intramuros. Easy trip to and from the airport.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled solo
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1  Thank Golfer88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 31, 2009

To begin, all ratings of hotels are relative --relative to what they are being compared to and to the rater's experiences. Thus, I tell you that I have stayed at the Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott, Crowne Plaza, and other "luxury" hotels and compare The Manila Hotel (the "hotel") to those and others. The lobby of the hotel is certainly five star. It is historic, beautiful, clean, and comfortable. The grounds are clean, beautiful and well kept. The $175 room with a view of the Manila Bay and the docks is quite nice and, if you are not comfortable walking down to the Bay Walk and rubbing elbows with the Hoi Polloi, then it is the one of the few places to watch the sunset over Manila Bay. (As an aside, if you are afraid to rub elbows with the Hoi Polloi, then you should probably stay in Makati!). If you stay on the other side of the hotel, you will get a great view of the Intermuros and see a great deal of the remainder of the Metroplex. Back to the room. We stayed in a remodeled room. It was clean, comfortable, and roomy. The bed, however, was quite hard. It was not as hard as the floor! The bedding and the pillows were attractive, clean, and comfortable. The bathroom was roomy and clean and came supplied with quality supplies. The bedroom had a nice, large, flat-screen television and the bathroom had a smaller flat-screen television over the bathtub (the bathroom had a bathtub and a seperate shower). The room did not have WiFi, but it did have access to the Internet access through "wire." Now, if you stay at the hotel and want to access the Internet --through wire or WiFi, make certain that you have access to the Internet as part of your package. If not, if my memory serves me correctly, you will have to pay 800 pesos per day for unlimited access. Do not access the Internet without first ensuring that you have free access or be prepared to pay. The room comes with a minibar that has some soft drinks, beer, and water. The room comes with two free bottles of water that look identical to two bottles that are not free. You will not be warned that the bottles are not free. The "trick" is that you will be given two bottles a day that has a sticker that says "complimentary water." You can drink those without paying. The bottles without the sticker, will cost you more than what they are worth! Back to computers. The hotel has a business center, if you have access to the Internet, you can use the computers for free. If not, be prepared to pay a fee (it seemed like it was 100 pesos or so for 30 minutes, but it might have been less). Access or not, it will cost you 50 pesos to print out one black and white page (make certain that you are not using the color copier, it costs 100 pesos to print one page!). While we are in the lobby, the check-in is fairly smooth and without problems. You should, however, find out exactly what is in your "package" and what are the costs for "items" that are not in your "package." For instance, the hotel's rate of exchange is not as good as the exchange at banks or other local hotels. If you bring traveler's checks, go to a bank! The rate of exchange was a bit over 46-to-one (dollar), but, after I completed the "name line" and signed my name, I was informed that the exchange rate at the hotel was 41-to-one. By itself, five peso is not much, but it adds up when you are cashing $100 or more. Again, while we are in the lobby, do not bother with the concierge. If you are new to the Philippines, this is where you will find folks to be quite polite, but will exhibit a "can't do" or "I don't know" attitude, which you will see a lot outside of the hotel. If you are used to a concierge found at upscale hotels in the States, forget it. Plan your own site-seeing trips and gather your own information. If you do not, you may find yourself missing "open dates" to museums and events. If you really want the concierge to do something for you, make certain that they write down your request and then double check their progress. Do not hold out much hope, however, for they seem to not be able to know the most obvious such as whether there will be any special events at Rizal Park on Rizal Day! If you need a ride to or from the airport, do not bother with the hotel's help. The hotel has a concessioner who will pick you up at the airport and deliver you to the airport, but expect to pay an extra "kicker" for their help. To avoid this fee, call the concessioner's office directly instead of going through their desk in the hotel! We saved over a thousand pesos by calling the concessioner's office directly. Oh, do not bother asking the concierge for help in this area either. We asked the concierge for help in locating the airport shuttle service and all we received was the wrong telephone number and ended up playing telephone tag at $2.00 per minute on our cellular telephone (the minute we closed our account the hotel turned off the telephone to our room, but they would be happy to charge us an additional fee for using the telephone that we already paid to use!). To the restaurant, (the Cafe Ilang-Ilang), the breakfast buffet should come with the room. Because it comes with the room, the buffet is alright. There are plenty of choices of meats, there is a station where a cook will make a wide range of egg-based dishes, and there are other types of fruits and other dishes. If it is not at the buffet, the very helpful staff will try to get it for you (this is the place where I found "can do" attitude and it did not cost me more money!). As to the dining room, it is dated, which is reflected by the holes in the ceiling and other signs of aging. The same can be said about the bathroom in the lobby. Now, if the buffet is not part of your room, ask about the price, see the buffet, and then make your decision. It cost about 1800 pesos per person, which is over $20! The service is great in the Cafe Ilang-ilang, but the meal is not a $20 meal. Speaking of prices, if you are going to have a guest overnight, check on the price. It is an extra $45 for an overnight guest, which comes with a roll-in cot and a meal at the Cafe Ilang-Ilang. When you combine the $175 and the $45, you may decide that you might want to stay somewhere else. Outside, the pool looks very nice, but there is no hottub and the water in the pool was uncomfortably cold at night. The gym is well equiped with modern equipment that should satisfy just about anyone. There is a sauna, but "they' are for seperate sexes. Thus, if you want to sit in the sauna with your spouse and not some naked person of your own gender, then the sauna may not be for you. Regarding location, the hotel is quite near the Bay Walk, Rizal Park, the Embassy of the United States of America, various museums, the Intermuros, the Intermuros golf course, the Oceanarium, and other items of history and culture. Also, however, you will find abject poverty and all that comes with such poverty: filth, beggers, the stench of urine, people sleeping on and near the sidewalks, and other indicia of poverty. Yet, in the times that I have travelled to the Philippines I have stayed in the hotel and in nearby Ermita and walked around in the day and evening and, either by the grace of God, dumb luck, or the lawful nature of the folks in the area surrounding the hotel and in Ermita, I have not had any problems. As an editorial, if you are in the Philippines to see the Philippines, why go to Makati and surround yourself with westerners or upscale folks from other parts of the world?! As to my recommendation, it is all in what you want. The price of the hotel is fairly high: $175 for a remodeled room. The room is nice, but the bed is meant to last and does not have much give in it. Frankly, if you have every stayed in a nice Holiday Inn Express, you will be disappointed with the bed at the hotel and the price, which is about $100 more than the aforementioned bed at Holiday Inn Express. The "nickel and diming" the hotel does is quite aggravating. The complete absence of the qualified services of a concierge (do not get me wrong, the "conceirge" was quite polite and friendly), was one of the most aggravating aspects of staying at the hotel. In the end, if you want to stay in this part of the Metroplex and want to stay in a historical hotel that is quite, do not mind shelling out $175, and, most importantly, you do not want to smell cigarette smoke or the "ghost" of someone's past cigarette smoke, this is a great place to stay. Outside of that, if do not mind foregoing some of the above, you can find great service, affordable good food, and a "clean well lighted place" that is much cheaper near the hotel. Thus, again to relativity, for a $175 room, it was average (three star). For a $100 room, it would have been a superior or deluxe (five star).

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank CaliforniaKano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2009

Overpriced for the service and quality. I can get the same quality and service at less than half the price all over Manila.

Stayed: May 2007, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Tod R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2009

I love the food, our suite has fascinating view of the Manila Bay. I would love to go back again.

Stayed: February 2006, traveled as a couple
1  Thank BamandFam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2009

The Manila hotel is the gem of the Manila area. Overlooking Manila bay, it is close to the historic Old Manila city and the Makita business and nightlife.

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank blackandtans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 17, 2009

A fantastic historical building that has been upgraded and exceptionally maintained, very friendly and helpful staff, fantastic tour of General McArthur's Suite, great food and service
what else can you ask for and at a reasonable price when booked over the internet. Will
definately return.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled on business
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1  Thank Tomsol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Manila Hotel

Address: One Rizal Park, Manila, Luzon 0913, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Luzon > Metro Manila > Manila > Walled City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 110 Hotels in Manila
Price Range: $95 - $173 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Manila Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 510
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Manila Hotel embodies a rich tradition of elegant living, fine dining, and gracious service that goes back over 97 years. Here the city celebrated its most important events. Here the world’s personages held court and left their mark. At once, ageless and historic, Manila Hotel has always been everything a hotel should be: comfortable and gracious ... more   less 
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