Your accommodation of choice is more than just a place to sleep and shower: it’s part of the whole travel experience. Why stay in high-rise, cookie-cutter hotels where you’re one of a thousand guests when there are more unique boutique hotels offering a personalized experience? Read on and perhaps you’ll find yourself cancelling that chain hotel booking and checking in at one of these divine lodges instead.
This artsy hostel on the island paradise of El Nido, Palawan is the perfect environment for meeting like-minded, adventure-seeking individuals. Making a conscious effort to foster an ideal atmosphere for socializing, Spin not only has several shared spaces that are bright and cozy, but also regularly organize fun events like pub crawls, barbecues, and karaoke nights. Clean, endearingly stylish, and serving a good breakfast – this is a far cry from your run-of-the-mill hostel.
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38-rooms small, this quirky hotel is as amusing as it is comfortable. Large comfortable beds and big bathrooms don’t cramp the spacious rooms that could easily be mistaken for contemporary art galleries. The funky hotel also features a cozy reading room and cafe. With vintage furniture, random knick-knacks, and modern art pieces at every turn, this one’s for travellers who get a kick out of the eccentric.
For Boracay visitors who aren’t there for the crazy nightlife, this 14-room boutique hotel is located in one of the quieter areas. In a prime beachfront location, Zuzuni has spectacular views of the sea straight from the rooms and balconies. Though not particularly large, these bright and airy rooms are perfect for guests who enjoy waking to the natural early morning sunlight softly streaming in. The hotel’s restaurant and bar, La Cozina, serves Latin flavors you can enjoy out on their terraza by the beach.
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Staying true to the historical vibe of Vigan City, Hotel Luna is a museum hotel, the first and only in the Philippines. While one area is devoted to rooms, a courtyard and pool, the other is devoted to artworks of among the most renowned artists in the country. The architecture reflects Spanish colonial-era influences.
Very aptly named, this aesthetically pleasing hotel in Puerto Princesa looks like an artist’s workshop. Designed by a team of visual artists, the hotel is a Palawan-inspired visual story piece from the lobby to the top floor. Each level has its own theme, and each room is adorned with a hand-painted mural. This aesthetic continues in the natural-chic pool area and the hotel restaurant, where a colorfully painted table stretches 5-meters down the center of the room.
Escape the hustle and bustle in this relaxing, seemingly remote hideout in Iloilo City, which will make you feel further from the city than you actually are. Urban Sands has seven rooms, all of which are poolside. Striking a perfect balance between a clean, sleek design and a native-inspired one, the wooden flooring and colorful hues come together to give the place a peaceful energy.
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A more modern-industrial version of its Cebu counterpart, The Henry Hotel Manila is an oasis tucked away in the otherwise hectic metropolis. It has 34 tastefully designed rooms that are vintage, modern and industrial. The spacious rooms are cozy and inviting, with large beds, plush sheets, warm lighting and coffee-tinted floor-to-ceiling curtains. Suites have their own private garden areas, while the more upscale owner suites have private balconies. Being such a quiet property in chaotic Manila, you may never want to leave. The compound also houses an art gallery and Apartment 1B, a well-loved restaurant.
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For Boracay party-goers who still like to leave the fiesta at their doorstep, Villa Caemilla is the place to settle into. While it’s peaceful, it’s not too far from the nightlife that many come to Boracay for. The boutique hotel is right on the beach, with splendid views of the sea and sunset, and settled behind beautiful palm trees. There are 39 rooms and top-notch service. The hotel has its own private beachfront area with several sun beds and umbrellas. There’s live music in the evenings for guests to enjoy while sipping tropical cocktails. And to top it all off: Villa Caemilla even offers pillow menus, ensuring maximum shut-eye comfort.