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Plantation Bay Resort And Spa
Ranked #3 of 30 Hotels in Lapu Lapu
Certificate of Excellence
Penang Island, Malaysia
1 review
“Good and Bad”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 March 2014

Plantation bay... Is one great experience for me and my family.

The room was beautiful, just like all the pictures we've seen. Being there was problematic at first maybe this is just me, and maybe this is due to the humidity. But the adjustment to the climate was seamless due to the warm smiles and good guest relation shown by the employees

The performance of the dancers at this resort's wonderful restaurant was perfect and entertaining but i was disappointed seeing this tall, long-haired person standing behind me shouting at the performers- I really didn't understand the language but it seemed like he is agitated or angry at them. I don't know if he is a dance coordinator or their choreographer or an employee or a guest. But if he is a part of this beautiful resort, i have to say that what he did is not a good example of employee-to-employee relationship and in front of customers and guests.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank BlueGurl4298
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 13 March 2014
Dear BlueGurl4298,

We are pleased to read that you liked your room and that you and your family enjoyed your stay.

Thank you for the high praise on our dinner show and for your favorable comments about most of our staff. We do apologize that the behavior of our events coordinator tarnished your otherwise great experience at Plantation Bay. We have counseled him, and will make sure that this will not happen again.

We hope to welcome you again in the near future.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (324)
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Manila, Philippines
Level Contributor
33 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 March 2014

In my many years of traveling & swimming, I must say that Plantation had the best swimming pool ever. It looked & felt very clean. The coolness of the water was just fine. The artificial beach on the other hand was tasted very salty and very painful to the eye. Despite, the beach was very appealing to the eye. The view was just magical. Gazing upon the whole area makes me think of checking in (sadly, we were just on day tour). The set meal was ok. Customer service was ok as well. I still wanna go back there.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ram_Bee_Bee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 10 March 2014
Dear Mariani_Bee,

It is nice to know that you enjoyed your initial visit so much that you're already planning your return visit to Plantation Bay.

Thank you for specifically mentioning that you found our pools the best among the many that you've been to. We're happy too that you found the views picturesque and that you appreciated our service.

Looking forward to your next visit.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
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Palos Heights, Illinois
Level Contributor
268 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 349 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 March 2014

This was the first time any of our family had stayed at Plantation Bay. I had chosen the resort for our family reunion initially on the strong recommendation of a Cebuano family friend now residing in the US; their family had enjoyed their visit to Plantation Bay a few years earlier. The lodging options suited our needs. The wide variety of available activities was interesting. The resort appeared to be primarily locally-owned and managed. The reviews seemed generally positive. Numerous reviewers had expressed a variety of opinions regarding their experiences at this resort, as was to be expected. Nevertheless there are several threads that come across consistently which anyone researching Plantation Bay will pick up on when reading the reviews. I will likely be repeating several of those but I will try to add another perspective as well.

Highlights
- Efficient on-line booking, quick email responses from reservation staff. We also arranged the whale shark excursion prior to our stay
- Airport shuttle available
- Efficient check-in
- Picturesque, well-maintained, and tidy grounds
- Numerous available activities both in and out of the water at the resort
- Gameroom offers alternative, indoor activities during heavy rainfall
- Multiple off-resort excursions
- No-tipping policy; this was truly much appreciated
- Wide array of dining choices including themed dinners with song-and-dance presentations; very much enjoyed the Filipino breakfast buffet
- Extremely pleasant staff with genuine smiles and welcoming demeanor
- Staff generally eager to help (i.e. when we asked our shuttle driver about the weather forecast he immediately called up the front desk for accurate information)
- Large lagoons (both seawater and freshwater) to enjoy
- Swim-up bar at the freshwater pool across from Kilimanjaro Kafe
- Artificial beaches with soft sand a pleasure to walk on
- Free shuttle to Cebu (Ayala and SM malls)
- Comfortable, clean, spacious rooms and bathrooms in the Penthouse
- Very comfortable beds
- Free snacks and bottled water
- Golf cart shuttles and calesa for those needing a ride around the resort
- Resort easily navigated on foot
- Free Wi-Fi
- Staff tries to keep you updated as to some things that may adversely affect your stay; during our stay the Fiji Restaurant was out of commission and we were informed of the on check-in. Later during our stay we received a note that the saltwater lagoon between the Penthouse and the beach needed an emergent drainage and maintenance work.

Things to Note
- Lagoons are man-made and beaches artificial
- Lagoons may be temporarily out of use due to maintenance; the aforementioned lagoon emergency was dealt with quickly having been drained at night, cleaned/fixed early in the morning and refilled by the afternoon.
- Natural beach is small; but corals and fish easy to swim to just off-shore
- The resort is about an hours drive from downtown Cebu given the bad traffic
- Only 2 pick-up/drop-off times in the morning and in the evening for the city shuttle
- Dining choices and food quality may not be to everyone’s taste; our family had differing opinions
- Surprising slip-ups in housekeeping (i.e. failed to replace towels one day)

My parents celebrated a major anniversary and I wanted a communal building for the three generations to stay in. We are a small family and could fit in the Plantation Bay Penthouse. A larger family would have to stay at the Quantum Villa. I made the arrangements many months ahead of time to secure the unit for several days during the holiday fortnight. The Penthouse suited our needs perfectly with a large living room and kitchenette on the main level. There is one bedroom and bathroom on the same level. There is a larger bedroom and bathroom on the second level. The windows on the main level look out over most the resort providing a great panoramic view of the surrounding lagoons. There was hot/cold water dispenser which as useful. The kitchen area and refrigerator might have been fine for a couple but should be larger for the kind groups that would be using this unit. The bedrooms and living room all had LCD flat screen TVs. Storage space (closets, shelves, drawers) was very adequate. The bathrooms not only had showers but full baths as well.

The Penthouse sits atop the Kilimanjaro Kafe. The great thing about this is the central location which makes most everything an easy stroll away, which is something to consider when bringing elderly parents whose mobility may be relatively limited. The Kilimanjaro is open 24/7 which makes it easy to get something to eat just by heading down the stairs. Extremely convenient for breakfast. On the other hand, being above a popular dining establishment had a significant downside: noise. The staff setting up for breakfast would wake up the light sleepers on the lower level, and the breakfast crowd woke the rest of us up. The most egregious noise barrage was that of hammering one night down In the Kilimanjaro at midnight, of all times! It woke us up, naturally, and it took multiple calls to the front desk and one hour of sleep deprivation to get them to stop this noise. Why they chose this time to install mirrors was unclear.

We made the most of all the activities. We snorkeled off the beach; the beach is tiny but if you wade out and then snorkel a little further you will find corals and reef fish. We tried the Hobie Cat sailboat; the wind was so wimpy that the boat did not get far and the Aqua Sport staff actually waived the fee. We went stand-up paddling and kayaking in the lagoons. We made our way to the top of the climbing wall and tried our hand at archery. We played table tennis and pool in the game room during one particularly heavy downpour. We enjoyed pina coladas and margaritas at the swim-up bar. Unfortunately we did not get to try out the Mogambo Spa. The large slides and the waterfall at Mogambo were not working while we were there.

We love playing tennis and made use of the single tennis court. Plantation Bay actually hosted a Davis Cup match earlier that year between the Philippines and New Zealand and we thus had high expectations of the court. The staff by the court was very friendly and made sure we had towels and ice water. There were a couple of rainy few days and the court was frequently unavailable as a result. I saw a large tarpaulin cover rolled up at one end of the court but it was obviously never deployed to cover the court and keep it dry. We still managed to get a few hours of court time in, however.

We thoroughly enjoyed our coral excursion to the reef at Hilutungan Island; the corals and fishes were astounding. The staff on the bangka were friendly and helpful. We also enjoyed our day-trip to Oslob and the whale sharks.

Certainly a hotel or restaurant or other service-oriented business deserves kudos when the experience is flawless for their clients, but I have always felt that the true measure of a service-oriented business is how it well it works when things go wrong as they inevitably do even with the utmost preparation. The closing of Fiji during the peak holiday season was unexpected, but were apprised of this on check-in. The closing of the lagoon was also a surprise but again the staff let us know ahead of time and the lagoon was soon back in service. Clearly the midnight construction was uncalled for and was the “fly-in-the-ointment” of an otherwise very enjoyable stay. When we talked with the staff on the following morning they were were apologetic about what had happened but had no explanation for why this had even happened and for why it took an hour for them to stop the hammering. It took me a while to compose a letter after I got back home but I eventually completed it and communicated with the resort regarding our experiences, both good and bad. They acknowledged that our experience could have been better and offered compensation.

Overall, our family had a great time at Plantation Bay. We never lacked for anything to do and the staff was always friendly and welcoming. The resort is perfect for families, in my opinion, especially those with younger children. Our youngest generation was in the teen years but there was a lot of activities available to engage the teenager and the adults still young at heart. Consider Plantation Bay for a multigeneration family reunion.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ImmerWandern
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 9 March 2014
Dear ImmerWandern,

Thank you for bringing your family to us to celebrate your parents' anniversary and your family reunion!

We’re delighted to learn that, even though you have been to many resorts around the world, you consider Plantation Bay a well-designed and well-maintained resort with various leisure activities and facilities for everyone to enjoy.

We apologize for the noise from Kilimanjaro Kafe on your last night, and for the inconvenience this caused you and your family.

Thanks again for the kind sentiments, especially for directly communicating with me your observations and suggestions. We especially appreciate candid comments from well-traveled guests like you and have undertaken measures to improve for your next visit.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johor Bahru, Malaysia
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 March 2014 via mobile

Stayed here for 3n/4d with smooth check in and check out. When we arrive to the room, a complimentary basket of Philippine delicacies were present.

Rooms
Stayed in Piazza Palermo Rm. 32, got 2 bunk neds and 1 queen bed. Toilet and bath are absolutely clean.

Service
Over-all service was excellent, its just that the verbiages used by some staff are unpleasant to the ears of the guest. I would like to commend all the service staff of Kilimanjaro for they did a service beyond expectation, especially Angie and Cassy.

Food and Beverages
The food was okay but I certainly think that it needs to have a makeover, from the taste down to the food presentation.

Price
If you'll think of the price on a bigger picture,according to its hotel type of course, the price is most likely the same with the other resort hotels in town.

Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank iamkennethbryan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 10 March 2014
Dear iamkennethbryan,

We are happy to note that you appreciated the cleanliness of and the amenities in your room and that you found our prices reasonable. Thank you too for the high praise on our staff. Angie and Cassy are particularly heartened by your commendation.

And a big Thank you! for taking the time to reply to our private message to provide us with more details about your stay.

We look forward to welcoming you back to Plantation Bay soon.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
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Taipei, Taiwan
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 March 2014

Plantation bay is perfectly set up for a restful family holiday. There are many different scenes and activities to keep children amused, and the set up is very child-friendly and safe. In addition we found the choice of dining venues to be very good. The staff were consistently friendly and helpful, at times going well above and beyond the call of duty to make us feel relaxed and at home. I highly recommend the resort for families with young children.

Room Tip: All the rooms are very nice. The non-water view rooms are excellent value.
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Joel L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 6 March 2014
Dear Joel L,

With its Old Plantation atmosphere and secure layout, Plantation Bay is one of the very few resorts in the world where parents quickly feel comfortable letting children out on their own while mom and dad enjoy each other's company. Thank you for being a testament to this, and for sharing that you appreciated the service from our staff and the quality and variety of food in our restaurants.

We look forward to welcoming you and your family back here soon.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lae, PNG
Level Contributor
99 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 March 2014

This is an oasis in the middle of a typical poverty stricken area of Cebu. Once your in the resort grounds though its like being in another world. The lagoon is fantastic. Staff were friendly and helpful. Room was big and airey. We had a lagoon suite which backed onto the lagoon which made swimming a treat. Plenty of things to do around the resort aswell. We tried jet skiiing, parasailing, biking and ofcourse swimming to name a few.

A few things to take note of though that may catch you unaware...
1/ It is along way from anything (SM, Ayalla Mall, Cebu City). Takes about 20 - 30 mins to get to them with taffic and after 5-6pm, your wait for a cab at the resort can be a nightmare. The resort will call one for you and it only costs PHP100 extra on the fare but its still a wait so be warned if you have dinner reservations anywhere away from the resort.

2/ If you take family or guests they have a surcharge for each person to use the facilities. PHP2000 per head for adults and discounts for kids and seniors. Whilst I have no issues with these charges, I do believe that they should offr discounts to guests that are staying at the resort (eg: half price if you are with a paying room guest) We had 3 adults and 3 kids with my wife and I and it cost PHP8200 for the family to joinus for the day. Now that does also inclube lunch for the day trippers which is actually an awesome lunch and pent of food for them from a set menu. Still no advantage for the paying room guest is a small turn off from using this facility. Even a 10 or 20% discount would be nice. The rooms are quite big and for the price are reasonable. Room price does not include any form of breakfast at all and is not an option to add either which is strange.

One last thing that seemed strange was that none of the staff are allowed to accept tips of any nature. There motto is they are happy to serve you. Whilst I understand why it could work, Im a great believer in the hospitality industry being rewarded accordingly for above and beyond efforts. If I want to tip someone for doing an exceptional job, I should be allowed and not rejected as I was. (I left a PHP20 tip with the dinner bill and I actually felt a bit offended when the waitress chased me through the crowded restaurant yelling sir, sir you cant tip us. Please take your money back. We are hear to serve you!') There are no signs that I could see in reception stating this tipping ban. Forwarning would have been nice. I know that sounds funny coming from an Australian who have a bad reputation of being cheap charlies but some of us recognise good work ethics. These guys and girls don't earn a fortune so every little bit helps their families. My 2 cents anyway!

PS: I am married to a Filipino!

Room Tip: Rooms are good but expensive compared to other parts of Cebu closer to the city. If you stay here pl...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank tincoll
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 7 March 2014
Dear tincoll,

Thank you for sharing your positive review on our facilities and services. We're glad that you enjoyed your stay and appreciated our various leisure activities.

One of the reasons for our No-Tipping Policy is to ensure that no guest gets preferential treatment just because he tips heavily, but the most important reason for this policy is that tipping can be a continuing source of anxiety to hotel guests, who will be thinking: How much should I tip? Whom should I tip? Do I have change? If I don't tip extra, will they give me a lousy table? Then, after giving a tip, guests wonder: Was it too little? Was it too much? Maybe I didn't need to tip. Because anxiety is the opposite of the fully relaxed atmosphere we wish to promote at Plantation Bay, we have a strict No-Tipping Policy.

Our staff enjoy competitive salaries and benefits that is why here at Plantation Bay, it is not unusual to find people who go the extra mile to better serve our guests.

Thanks again for your review. We look forward to your next visit.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Xiamen, China
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 March 2014

This is my BF's third time and my first time staying at Plantation Bay. We stay about half month in between end of Jan to mid Feb. This is definitely the relaxing and romantic getaway.
I was amazed by the view when we first arrival. They specially set up our room to our need defore our arrive. Superising that they remembered the details as it has been over a year since my BF's last trip. The first room was perfect, romantic and with beautiful lagoon view.

The service is remarkble, the best service we have ever experience even with their strict no tipping service policy. They made our customized dishes off the menu as we like. We Really appreciated their caring...

Anyway, we would definitely come back if we visit Cebu again next time

Room Tip: Rooms with lagoon view are the best
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank xmbizwhiz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plantation_Bay_GM, General Manager at Plantation Bay Resort And Spa, responded to this review, 6 March 2014
Dear xmbizwhiz,

Thank you for the kind review of your two-week stay at Plantation Bay. We're happy that you found the resort ideal for a romantic and relaxing vacation, and that you found our service remarkable.

Most returning guests are pleasantly surprised to find out that we remember their preferences, and we're delighted that you shared this in your review.

We look forward to welcoming you back to Cebu soon.


Sincerely,
Nenette G. Castillon
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Plantation Bay Resort And Spa

Property: Plantation Bay Resort And Spa
Address: | Marigondon, Lapu Lapu 6015, Philippines
Region: Philippines > Visayas > Cebu Island > Mactan Island > Lapu Lapu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Lapu Lapu
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Lapu Lapu
#2 Luxury Hotel in Lapu Lapu
#3 Spa Hotel in Lapu Lapu
#3 Family Hotel in Lapu Lapu
#5 Romantic Hotel in Lapu Lapu
#5 Business Hotel in Lapu Lapu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Plantation Bay Resort And Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 256
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover a resort in a class of its own. Set in 11 hectares of secluded grounds yet only one hour (when traffic is bad) from Cebu City, Plantation Bay offers one of the largest privately-owned waterways in the world, with the clean elegance of colonial-plantation architecture. Decompress from life’s pressures in the healing tranquility of an environment that truly feels “away from it all.” If you have ever spent time at a tropical plantation, you know what we mean. If not, come and discover a refreshingly different Flavor of Life. Whether you’re traveling for a family vacation or romantic getaway, for business or pleasure, this is far and away your best choice in the Philippines. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Plantation Bay Resort And Hotel Lapu Lapu
Plantation Bay Hotel
Plantation Bay Resort And Spa Cebu Island/Mactan Island

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