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“Good facilities, can be better. But nice and friendly staff”
Review of Kawayanan Resort

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Kawayanan Resort
Ranked #39 of 50 Hotels in Puerto Princesa
Reviewed 19 April 2012

Booking:
Very fast and efficient. Ms. Mary Rose (manager) promptly replies to all emails & queries. Once I emailed the scanned copy of the deposit slip, my booking has been confirmed.
The booking comes with free RT airport transfers which is very convenient. Check-in time is around 2pm but they accommodated us for early check-in. We availed of the family cottage (Dahlia) and it has 2 air-conditioned bedrooms. The living room is provided with TV and Mini-Ref. The toilet and bath is clean, there is hot water available anytime. Water pressure is ok. As it was “kubo type”, I was expecting the “filipiniana” theme to extend to bathroom, but there was no pail and tabo. Towels, shampoo, soap and tissue roll are provided. Accommodation comes with free daily breakfast. The staff will already get your order the night before so that once you seat yourself in the restaurant; the food will be available after a few minutes.

Facilities: Pool is clean and with depth of 3 to 5 feet. There is restaurant, a videoke within the restaurant, one billiard table (near our cottage).

Areas for improvement: 1. Prepare cash as they will charge additional 6% for credit card transactions (which is illegal, btw) 2. There is no closet inside the bedroom, no space where to hang your clothes. There is a table of sorts where you can put your bag (so all your clothes are inside the bag). 3. For those who will be availing of the Day Tour: the shower area near the pool needs drastic improvement. There is only 1 working shower and 1 faucet, when it seems the shower area is for use of 3-4 pax at a time. 4. We rented the family room but we were only provided with 1 glass, while other rooms (good for 3) have two glasses.

Note:
1. Bring mosquito repellant. Once I entered the PPC Airport, I noticed that there are lots of mosquitoes. Even inside fastfood shops, there are mosquitoes. The resort puts mosquito coil outside the cottage.
2. Book for the Underground River Tour with the resort at least a month in advance because permits are not easy to get. But DIY the City Tour and Honda Bay Tour. Instead of spending P600/pax and P1,100/pax respectively, you can lessen your cost/head if you do the tour on your own. For example, renting a van for the city tour is P1,500 which is good for 5 hrs compared to the organized tour of 4 hrs (at 4 pax, we spent P2,400). Savings of P900 which you can already use for pasalubong. Honda bay tour for 4 pax is P4,400, whereas DIY will cost you P1,500 for the van (drop off and pick-up) and P,1500 for the boat (good for 6). Total of P3,000 only, with savings of P1,400 which you can spend for your lunch. Besides, you'll get to control the time spent in each sites unlike booking the tours with resort and they will lump you with their other guests. It was a hassle sharing a van and boat with people you don't know and you have to be mindful of the time you spent on each site.

Positive tone: Kawayanan Resort has friendly and accommodating people, from the manager down to the housekeeping staff, drivers even the freelance tour guide that they hire. The resort is located quite far from the airport so you won't hear the take-off and landing of planes, unlike the inns or lodging near the city proper. The place is quite restful.

While there are areas for improvement, the good outweighs the bad and I will definitely go back here in case I'll be in PPC again.

Room Tip: Rooms near the restaurant/dining area are duplex-type and near the dining area where the videoke is...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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8  Thank traversata
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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33 - 39 of 96 reviews

Reviewed 17 April 2012

I booked this resort for our Easter holidays because of the favorable reviews here in tripadvisor. Also because Ms. Mary Rose was very prompt in replying to my emails and enquiries. We LOVE this place! We love the resort, the staff, and Palawan! We truly enjoyed our 2 nights stay mainly because the staff went out of their way to make this possible. All email enquiries were replied to and my concerns answered even before our trip.

Room rates includes breakfast, use of amenities (swimming pool, cabana huts, billiard, videoke), free wi-fi and round trip airport transfers.

We were welcomed at the airport by their friendly van driver, who had to wait for more than 1 1/2 hours because our flight was delayed. At the resort we were greeted right away by Ms. Mary Rose and had our welcome drinks at a cabana by the pool. I initially wanted to book the family room - cottage with 2 bedrooms and living room. But because we are traveling during the peak season, they were no longer available. We got 1 double room and 1 triple room instead. Rooms are very spacious and very clean, with air-con, ceiling fan, mini-fridge, tv with cable-tv and a sofa. The whole look of the resort is very welcoming and relaxing, as the name suggest there are "kawayans" (bamboos) everywhere. From the furnishings to actual bamboo plants. Complimentary breakfast comes with fresh watermelon. Apart from the daily breakfast, which to us were good, we only had 2 meals at the resort restaurant. Don't expect much as the food were not bad, but not great either. We had a lunch/snack before our City Tour. The fish & chips dish is really just for kids, not recommended if you are expecting the British kind. The clubhouse sandwich should be renamed really, portion is really small and lacking in ingredients you normally would come to expect from a clubhouse. But the noodle dish, Pancit Canton was flavorful and filling. The Firefly watching tour comes with dinner, grilled meat with rice. You choose from fish, pork or chicken, tasted great, but I had to order a separate vegetable dish on the side.

All our tours were arranged thru the resort. I recommend this, specially if it is your first time in Palawan, they plan everything!

We had the Honda Bay Tour on our last day, our flight back to Manila was not until later on that night I asked if we can check out before our tour and just leave our bags at the reception. What they did was give us a 2 bedroom cottage (family room) where we can relax and freshen up after our tour! So we had a quick dip in the pool before we leave.

An excellent experience! Will definitely come back.

TIP: Book early, specially during the peak seasons. Book tours thru the resort. If you are going to the Underground River, make sure to have them book your permit in advance. If you have any concerns ask before you arrive at the resort. If you are eating at the resort order from the grilled meat selection.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with family
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6  Thank travelbugcatcher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 March 2012

i went there with my girlfriend and we stayed there 5 night, i can say lovely place lovely staff,
its far from beach but they have really clean swimming pool and awesome garden you can enjoy it, i recommend this place for couples because its very calm, its just 3 minute far from main street. we liked the restaurant , price is reasonable and food is good.if i'll go there again for sure kawayanan will be my place to stay.rooms are clean and air condition work well.
i appreciate the manager she helped us a lot and she arrange the tours for us, everything was
really good and on time,i recommend the honda bay, we enjoyed it.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Alireza F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2012

We've been to palawan last January 16-19, 2012 and we stayed here in Kawayanan Resort. The owner named Ms. Rose has been very accomodating and nice to us. She and her staffs would do anything to assist you and give what you need. I remembered the time when we about to leave the resort, all of them accomodate us til the gate just to say goodbye and see you soon. I can't say anything bad about the resort especially to their staffs. I would recommend this to anyone who will visit the palawan soon!

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with friends
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4  Thank Becca122685
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2012

they got the best service.. best place to spend with your partner.. they have a very accommodating and friendly staff.. nice place.. will surely be coming back again soon...

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank martini2125
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2012

I took this trip to Puerto Princesa with 2 of my other friends. & the resort was an escape from the city. Nipa huts all over the place. Very friendly & accomodating staff. Went that extra mile.. when they didn't have Buko shake on their menu.. they found a way to get me a buko shake.The rooms may be made of nipa, but it's fully air-conditioned.

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled with friends
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6  Thank BeachBumGurl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2012

Kawayanan Resort is a great place to stay in Puerto Princesa. I was looking for a hotel close to the airport and this one had good reviews on TripAdvisor and offered the day trips I was looking for. While the price seems a bit steep (1800 pesos a night), it does offer everything you need: AC/fan, a clean room, comfy bed and pillows, cable TV, a hot water shower, a patio outside your room, a pool with waterslides, beautiful grounds, and an onsite restaurant and travel agent. Also free breakfast and airport pick up/drop off were included with our rate (I'm not sure if it's because we booked a package or if that comes with just a room). We were greeted at the airport promptly with a large sign and upon check in we were given complimentary iced tea before being shown to our room. Service was friendly throughout our stay.
The resort was nice but not perfect.

Areas with room for improvement:
-Wifi didn't work well anywhere and didn't work at all in the room.
-Shower pressure was very low.
-Strangely, the TV didn't have a plug that fit into the socket so I had to use my adapter. Wasn't a problem but just odd.
-Food in the restaurant is not very good. We had a bad experience our last night when we waited almost two hours for dinner. When it was served we couldn't even eat much of it... The beef kare kare was very salty and the club sandwich was smothered in a Thousand Island-like sauce that ruined it. However, the owner Mary did everything possible to fix the situation. She later brought a fruit plate to our room and offered complimentary mango shakes, grilled chicken and rice, or whatever else we wanted. She also comped our meals and mango shakes. By the way... Their mango shakes are AMAZING. They definitely get those right. Breakfast was just OK but actually on our last day (after the dinner disaster) it was much better... American-style bacon and fresh watermelon! Anyway, a tricycle ride into town is only 30 pesos and 10 minutes, so I recommend going there for dinner. See my TripAdvisor review for Blue Ginger if you tire of Filipino food while you're there.

We also booked the Honda Bay tour (7 hours, 1100 pesos per person) and the Underground River tour (10 hours, 1600 pesos per person) with Kawayanan Resort. Both were excellent and we thoroughly enjoyed them. Great guides on both trips. Also I was pleasantly surprised to find that we were on small tours with only other guests from the resort (5 total for the Honda Bay tour and 8 for the Underground River tour)... Very personalized and no wasted time spent picking up and dropping off people from other hotels.

For the Honda Bay trip we left at 7am and returned and 2pm. (We were told the departure time was 7:30am but they knocked at our door at 6:25am and told us it had been moved to 7! Although they warned us the night before that that might happen.) Later other guests told us they took the same tour starting at 11am... I wish we'd been given the later time option!! Another hidden surprise was that snorkeling gear wasn't included. You stop at a rental place on the way so prepare extra money if you want to rent gear, towels, or buy bread to feed the fish (which you should!). It was 150 pesos to rent just the mask and snorkel, which is all I got. Our boat took us to a coral reef where the guide leads you around the water and points things out such as giant clams. I also saw fan coral, which was cool! Then we went to Snake Island. Lots of tropical fish in clear water, we took a walk past the mangrove trees, so many sand dollars you can find, and we saw live starfish! We also ate lunch here which wasn't great because it was cold and the meat was fatty: chicken adobo, pork, rice, beans, and fish. But it's included in the price. Then we went to Pandan Island. There is more to do on this island, you can get a henna tattoo or a massage. But my recommendation: Walk to your right (facing the ocean) with a big beach towel and find yourself a spot about 10 minutes away that's completely deserted. That's what we did! It was heavenly. At both islands there is only one main swimming area however.

The next day we did the Underground River tour. We were supposed to leave at 7:30am but ended up leaving at 8 after waiting around for half an hour. Not sure why. Also the owner didn't tell us until we checked in that the price had increased by 100 pesos for foreigners due to some permit fee. Also, no one told us to bring an ID but luckily I overheard someone talking about it so we did! Anyway, it's a 2 hour drive to Sabang Beach; on the way there we stopped halfway at a "rest area" to go to the bathroom and buy drinks/snacks/souvenirs. (Tip: Don't forget to bring toilet paper with you on these day trips!) When we got to the pier our guide took our IDs to arrange our permits. Unfortunately half of our group had a problem and their permits were delayed. So four of us went on without them while our guide stayed with them. We took a 20 minute boat ride to the underground river area. Our guide had told us that we would have time to hang out with the monkeys and monitor lizards but as soon as we were there we were rushed to the waiting area for our boat ride through the cave. I don't know why they rushed us though as we waited there for at least an hour. We walked towards the ocean and went swimming for awhile until someone told us it wasn't allowed! We wondered why no one else was swimming in this beautiful clear water... Our guide had apparently forgotten to tell us the rules (no swimming, smoking, or feeding the animals). So having to wait for an hour with no swimming allowed is really boring. But, once it was our turn, we donned our lifejackets and helmets and got into the ten person canoe for our ride through the cave. It felt so short and I wish it was longer!! The guide pointed out all the different formations to us and showed us places where the ceiling was so high. It was awesome I just wish we were able to go farther! After we got back to shore we did get to see some monkeys before we were rushed back to our boat. I wish we had more time with the animals and at the beach and I think usually you do. But our tour was just odd because our group got cut in half and we were without our original guide. When we got back to Sabang Beach our guide was waiting and the other half of our group had gotten their permits and gone to the underground river. So we went with her to the restaurant for a buffet lunch. The food was just OK again but a step up from the lunch on the Honda Bay tour. We got really lucky on the walk back from the restaurant to the van as we got a Chinese New Year show with dancing dragons! When we got back to the van we ended up having to wait longer but it was OK as we bought pearls from the sellers walking around and played basketball with some local kids.

All in all a great time was had in Puerto Princesa!

Check out my blog posts here for more info and photos:
http://growninsouthernground.wordpress.com/2012/01/25/kawayanan-resort-puerto-princesa-palawan-philippines/
http://growninsouthernground.wordpress.com/2012/01/25/honda-bay-puerto-princesa-palawan-philippines/
http://growninsouthernground.wordpress.com/2012/01/25/underground-river-puerto-princesa-palawan-philippines/

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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12  Thank iselynjenniep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Kawayanan Resort

Address: L.A Abaa Rd | Puerto Princesa City, Puerto Princesa, Palawan Island 5300, Philippines
Region: Philippines > Mimaropa > Palawan Province > Palawan Island > Puerto Princesa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Princesa
Price Range: £20 - £23 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
a resort within the city that provides comfort, privacy and security. Only ten minutes from the airport. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kawayanan Hotel Puerto Princesa
Kawayanan Resort Puerto Princesa
Kawayanan Resort Palawan Island/Puerto Princesa

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