This is why I rarely travel around the Philippines. It is very difficult to find a place to stay that is first class all the way—this includes even the “best” hotels around Metro Manila.
We’re currently on a Tagaytay trip—our last hurrah before the kids go back to school.
I found this place after researching extensively online. It is not cheap, mind you. Luckily there is an off-season, weekday 40% discount now.
I chose it based on the pictures online, even though some relatives of mine warned me about their billing practices and other house rules, such as no extra beds and strictly no more than four people in a room—even though one room is 75 square-meters huge.
So much space, it’s insane.
Sayang, even the most high class hotels allow extra beds at an added cost, but this place absolutely doesn’t allow it.
We’re a group of three kids and four adults, so obviously we need two rooms. But if you’re a group of five, an extra bed should surely work since there are two queen beds per room.
At first glance this room looks better than the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel.
There is a fantastic view outside and a tiny jacuzzi. It feels like Fantasy Island. Kulang na lang, Hervé Villechaize (de plane!).
It should be a lovely place. The Inn at Cliffhouse, Tagaytay has only four guest rooms, called West Quoddy, Montauk Point, Brant Point, and Minot’s Lodge.
The rooms are accessed through an underground staircase. It feels like James Bond.
Whoever did the interiors is really talented. But whoever did the bathrooms doesn’t know what a good bathroom is.
Montauk Point has the most decent bathroom at all—the rest use dark outdoor tiles you wouldn’t want to walk barefoot on.
The fixtures look low budget. They really look like they cut corners here.
This is the most decent shower here. The others are creepy.
Outside there are dining and eating places to choose from, some of which have really good reviews: Fire Lake Grill, Buon Giorno, Café Breton, and Mochiko, which my sister Ana loves.
Unfortunately we ended up eating at a café that was so disappointing. Will not name it here, let’s just say it’s in the compound.
Here’s what you have to know if you’re planning to stay:
1) If you book online, you’ll be required to make a bank deposit, which is a hassle. When you check in, they will demand full payment, instead of keeping your credit card on file like normal hotels. So odd.
We insisted on paying only for the first night in case something goes wrong.
2) When we arrived and checked in, the lobby was so hot, as in ang init ng aircon. They had ceiling fans, so I told them to use them.
3) I asked to use the restroom, having come from a long drive from Makati. There was no restroom at the lobby. Instead, the “inn keeper” led me to a dirty communal banyo at the outdoor restaurant row.
4) The bedrooms are really lovely but the bathrooms are substandard. I wish Filipinos would pay as much attention to bathrooms as they do to bedrooms.
5) Our aircon is defective, not cooling at 17 degrees and making this crazy noisy sound. We need Sleepasil. I’m really scared it will explode in the middle of the night.
6) They offered to move us to another room, but I checked and saw dead insects and a cockroach in one corner (I did not take a picture). All rooms should be cleaned everyday, even if there are no guests because you can have walk-ins at any time, like we did. Those bugs tell us that room hasn’t been cleaned in a while.
7) Our balcony is so dirty, my mother would faint. I asked them to sweep tomorrow.
8) At 10 PM they turned off the Internet!! Good thing I brought my Globe Tattoo, otherwise imbyerna na talaga ako.
Here’s a tip: if you’re using Globe Tattoo, search for an area in the room that has the best signal. Device doesn’t have to be next to your computer.
9) There are flying insects in the room. Like large bugs. Jeroen already killed two flying bugs and Ben is afraid to go back to bed.
The plus side is—the staff are really kind, nice people, so I can’t get mad.
Plus they use nice scenting. 🙂
I don’t know who owns this place, but they need to know their place cannot be run by just nice people. They have to be professionally trained in hospitality, maintenance, and cleanliness at all times.
It’s too bad because this could be the best place to stay in Tagaytay.
The reason I’m writing this is because I would like to come back in the hope that they can improve what they can.
For the price we’re paying I wish they would pay attention to details such as dead insects, aircons that need to be changed or maintained, and Internet that dies at 10 PM.
I also wish more Filipinos would push for higher standards in all bathrooms, toilets, restrooms in restaurants, hotels, malls, etc.
I find it so sayang that we strive for class but our restrooms remain wa-class.
P.S. This aircon is really stressing me. Boys are asleep now. I hope they can fix this tomorrow, otherwise, we should be going home.