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“Not for nitpickers...”

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Manila Grand Opera Hotel
Ranked #30 of 109 Hotels in Manila
Reviewed 20 January 2013

This is a 3-star hotel and, contrary to its claim of having 5-star services, guests must not let their expectations go over the top.

I checked-in at this hotel for a brief staycation, and the choice of hotel was mainly from curiosity as well as the rates.

OBSERVATIONS:
- accessible from the train (LRT Yellow Line), although this causes some noise (train and road traffic) to filter in rooms facing the street.
- prompt check-in and check-out, i.e.less than five minutes. I did my reservation from the hotel website. Since I've been warned by other reviewers, the 1000-peso deposit did not surprise me.
- apparently secure. Guard at entrance checks bags; there's also a K9 posted nearby, presumably for guests coming in with lots of luggage. Within 10 meters of the hotel is a police detachment.
- above average food quality with Chinese, Filipino and International selections at reasonable prices. I ordered from room service menu, which is served by Circa restaurant; there's a mark-up compared with outside restaurants, but not that high. I was also asked to immediately settle food charges upon delivery of food in room instead of charging it against hotel bill.
- spacious room (I got an Emperor Suite, which has a separate living/dining room and bedroom. The bed was large and comfortable, two aircon units kept the room cool, two flat-screen tvs are available, separate toilet/shower/tub (with jacuzzi). Furnishings were average though: some were wobbly, some had their paints chipped, there were come stains in the upholstery. The gasket seal around the shower area door was loose in someplaces causing water to trickle outside of shower area. Between-room partitions made of wood, not cement, so tv noise from adjacent room can and does filter through (minimal though).

Take note:
1. The external environment may make some queasy, as there are vagrants loitering in the streets near the hotel. It is also not uncommon to find trash littering the street.
2. Hotel is far from airport.
3. Hotel has a Casino at the second floor. Elevators servicing guest floors shared with elevator servicing casino.

I was not able to sample buffet breakfast (dined from room) and hotel pool.

  • Stayed: January 2013
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8  Thank ML_Visayas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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136 - 142 of 182 reviews

Reviewed 18 January 2013

Boasting of Manila's Grand Opera History, you'd find the corridors of every floor of Manila Grand Opera Hotel adorned with photographs of posters of films or shows (a few vaudeville) of veteran actors and actresses in those era or should I say in those Old Manila days.

The rooms vary and can be cramped and can be a bit roomy good for a family of (4) - not 5 star standards but maybe to re-create the olden Manila times of how rooms were. Our family checked in for an overnight stay as my parents have an event to attend to at Manila Grand Opera Hotel's Ballroom for the night. I have to admit it takes quite a while to check-in with the not so attentive or accomodating staff at the reception counter.

The swimming pool is clean upon ocular inspection but I didn't take a dip. There is a huge outside, open parking lot provided by the hotel. And for check-in guests like us, we opted to park inside the hotel upper parking space though limited to assure us that our vehicle is secure during the night.

They have a casino in the hotel's 2nd or mezzanine floor with mechanical tables and slot machines for those looking for night activities. They have to fit in the casino in the same floor with their dimly lit karaoke bar with the karaoke bar taking more floor space than the casino. The LRT is accessible thru this floor for their karaoke and casino patrons and personnel taking the train or cab. I no longer checked how the night life is in this part of the Hotel.

The treat for me is their resto for my food cravings - breakfast buffet and snacks. They serve a delicious healthy fare of a little mix of Asian cuisines mostly Chinese Cuisines for their patrons. Seafood fare are served fresh and they do concoct they're own versions of cake desserts to satisfy one's curios palate.

Visually the resto is bedecked with photos of famous veteran Filipino actors and actresses of the times, brightly lit with heavy drapes on certain sections for a lovely Manila Grand Opera ambiance.

They have a donut shop at the front corner of the hotel for midnight snacks, a souvenir shop and money changer too. I wouldn't advice going out of the hotel for walks on certain unholy hours, maybe even in the day unless you'd take utmost care of yourself and your belongings. Maybe the knowledge that a police headquarter or precinct is nearby the hotel should you decide to wander off.

  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank kbhernandez
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 December 2012

We were lucky to be given a free accomodation by PICO Travel and Tours at this hotel. the breakfast was okay, the pool looks inviting, but, the standard room does not have windows it is dark even at day and there is no bible. I dont like the smell of the cr, they is something not good it that smell especially for those meticulous at bathrooms. I inquired about the spa service via phone and the staff who answered is sarcastic to answer that it is only served for guest and that she cannot confirm availability since said service in an on call basis

Room Tip: Go for their best room which have windows
  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with friends
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4  Thank thenavigator8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2012 via mobile

Well after reading other reviews...yes guess what your in the Philippines...yes its a 3rd world country & yes there's poor area!! well despite people pointing out the obvious of stating that this hotel is in a bad area, the hotel itself is SUPERB, great value for money! The staff are just incredibly helpful,friendly & welcoming. The security in the hotel was fantastic, they were very strict at the door & even a sniffer dog at hand signals they take security at the hotel very seriously. The food was good, the room was so clean! The girls at the reception were very accomodating & willing. The cheapest hotel in Manila & certainly delivers the highest standard of service. Lets hope they keep up the good reputation & keeps the standards high. I would also like to praise the swimming pool,jacuzzi & sauna facilities...fantastic!!! will definitely use this hotel again ;)

  • Stayed: September 2012
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3  Thank Eggtastic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 September 2012

The hotel's website boasts of "five-star amenities for a three-star price", but I have to disagree. With Manila Grand Opera Hotel, you get what you pay for. It's a decent three-star hotel located in downtown Manila. Very accessible via LRT, which is a huge plus. Cafe, restaurant, and casino in the ground floor. Surrounding area resembled an alleyway in Chinatown - not so safe, but for someone residing in Manila I'm used to it. Location wasn't too much of a bother for us, I was just glad it was a few steps away from the train lines. Made everything ten times easier. Manila Grand boasts of its 'historic' past, but honestly, you cannot see any traces of the old opera house, nor did they attempt to preserve or recapture any elements of its history, save for a few photos lined along the hallways. So if you're booking for the nostalgia/history of the place, I suggest you don't.

The rooms are decent and clean but definitely not luxurious. Very basic, but clean. Beds aren't very soft and comfortable, but decent enough to sleep in. TVs are small. Unfortunately I got the room without a window, and it was very gloomy. They provide bottled water upon check-in. Bathrooms are decent, clean, and provide basic amenities and toiletries. Hot shower was good and strong, though it took a while for it to heat up. Swimming pool located in the ground floor was well-kept and a joy to swim in. At night, the pool ambience is fantastic, though it's chilly. Jacuzzi was working but wasn't heated, which defeated the purpose. Wasn't able to try the sauna but one of each was provided in the comfort rooms.

All in all, good value for budget stays. But if you could afford to check in somewhere more luxurious, by all means do. However, the place does offer decent amenities and good value for money.

  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Zaya P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 September 2012

When we got here it took ages to check in and I was thinking lets go elsewhere! However, I loved our 19m2 room and even though we didn't have a window....I swear I never slept that well. It was so quiet and the super quiet a/c kept us nice an cool. We managed to get a promo at 1800 php/night including breakfast! I had a swim in the pool which was great though it could do with some lights in it for a night swim! Service was excellent. When you go outside you really wont believe the contrast..it is MANIC out there! I have never seen so many people or so much traffic! Really for the price...no way could I fault this hotel!

Room Tip: Well...maybe go cheap and have no window because you then get the best a/c and its so quiet!
  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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4  Thank Martyn John C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 September 2012

My husband and I knew where the old Manila Grand Opera House used to stand but could not imagine that the the site would be ideal for a hotel. The area of Rizal Avenue had long been relegated to oblivion after the old buildings had been demolished/ deserted by its owners and tenants in lieu of more progressive locations in Metro Manila. Without any undue expectations, I decided to book a room for me and my husband. An overnight stay was deemed practical for us. We did no want to tire ourselves in going home at midnight after attending a benefit show in the hotel. The no-nonsense reception required full payment and a P1,000 deposit for consummables upon check-in. The room was adequate in size and furnishings, no frills but it has all the basic necessities for an overnight stay. Wifi was available inside the room without any additional charge. The buffet breakfast was filling and tasty and it included a bit of everything...rice, bread with butter or marmalade, eggs, vegetable dish, Korean noodle soup, kimchi, pancake, rice cake, chicken hotdog, ham, coffee/juice and fruits in season. The simple elegance of this hotel was in stark contrast to the neglect and the depravity that could be observed outside. If it were not for the location, I would have given this hotel a higher rating.

  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
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2  Thank sonjie923
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Manila Grand Opera Hotel

Address: # 925 Doroteo Jose | Sta. Cruz, Manila, Luzon 1003, Philippines
Region: Philippines > Luzon > Metro Manila > Manila
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #30 of 109 Hotels in Manila
Price Range: £24 - £32 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Manila Grand Opera Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 205
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Manila Grand Opera Hotel stands today on the former site of the Manila Grand Opera House, a cultural landmark that showcased Philippine arts from 1900 to the late 1950. Formally launched in August 2008, it combines the historic theater's cultural legacy with a boost to the travel and tourism industry as the only luxury hotel in Manila's Sta. Cruz district, near Binondo's Chinatown. Located on the corner of Rizal Avenue and Doroteo Jose Street, the Manila Grand Opera Hotel today caters to an increasing number of visitors from China and Taiwan, aside from habitues and residents of the area who have long hoped for such a center of elegance and beauty to emerge in their midst. At the hotel's entrance stands a historical marker about the inauguration of the first Philippine Assembly on Oct. 16, 1907 by United States Secretary of War William Howard Taft, a historic event that was held there. As the only elegant hotel in downtown Manila, Manila Grand Opera Hotel expects to cater to the increasing number of Chinese visitors from the mainland and Taiwan who will feel at home staying near Manila's Chinatown. The hotel also serves the needs of the Chinese community residing in the nearby Chinatown by providing accommodations for their relatives and friends coming from abroad, he added. The luxury hotel has 250 contemporary guest rooms equipped with state-of-the-art door lock system, cable TV and Wi-Fi and LAN access, a mini-bar with a wide variety of snacks and drinks, with amenities such as buffet breakfast, use of the Infinity swimming pool,and spa. For the dining enjoyment of guests, there are the New President Sharksfin Seafood Restaurant serving authentic Chinese cuisine and the Circa 1900 Bar and Restaurant offering an array of gastronomic delights in an old world ambiance created by the blown up photographs on the walls of artists who had performed at the old theater. For big social gatherings, the hotel's Ambassador's Hall can accommodate up to 1,000 guests while several Meeting Rooms are also available for smaller gatherings such as business meetings, social get-together, dining, meeting and banquets. ... more   less 
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