I really wanted to like this hotel. The staff was friendly. The rooms were really well put together with rich wood paneling and excellent attention to detail. Conference facilities were good. Beds were comfortable. Showers were....incredible. Great water pressure! Driver's service was pretty inexpensive and saved me from getting a car rental. The driver's were on point and were a pleasure to work with even in Manila traffic where traffic rules are optional.
Here's the middling side.
The evening cocktail hour/evening meal is pretty decent. The breakfast was not great for the price of the hotel or the size of the spread. The gym was 'fair'...three treadmills, some weight equipment, and the ability to use the 'broken down' cardio equipment in the available commercial gym that is attached to, but not part of the hotel. Wifi is fickle, particularly if you're trying to operate with two devices (tablet/phone). The arrangement between the pseudo-mall/casino next door and the hotel is...well...weird.
Now the downsides.
The neighborhood is a rude awakening. I understand Manila is not the richest city in the world, but I did not anticipate the human element which continued to 'wash up' on the respective shores of the hotel. There is a complete shadow economy surrounding the hotel with people peddling either stolen or fake electronics and drugs (Samsung S4/Cialis/Viagra), or KTVs (Karoake Bars) with aggressive 'pimps' or 'bar girls'. All of this with a 'PULICE' station within arm throwing distance. Toss in a few limb-less beggars and streetwalking 'transvestites' (HOLY CRAP WOW!...and not in a good way) and prostitutes and you start to get a feel for the neighborhood. Hang around in the hotel lobby in the evening and you'll see that some of the better monied 'pros' have the run of the hotel; a real breach of personal security. I'm not a prude by any extent of the imagination, but this was very 'in your face' behavior. The Diamond Hotel, in contrast, is two blocks away and has an exceptionally robust security presence and keeps the chaos, human trafficking, and human misery at arm's length.
The night I arrived, the bar was closing up and I asked if there were any restaurants or bars that were serving food. The first answer was 'we can get you room service'. That should have been my final answer. When I asked on the security staff, they ushered over a 'gentleman' who first, asked me if I wanted a girl, and then asked me if I wanted a massage. The security staff then spoke in Tagalic and I was taken down the street to a KTV where I was offered a choice of 30 women and all the beer I wanted to drink. I opted for the one beer and the plate of french fries and the opportunity to watch an 80 year old Japanese businessman stand on the Karaoke stage with four other women...which he later left the bar with. Even the most reputable looking of these venues place charge after charge on your bill, even without letting you know that they're doing it whith an implied threat that they will get police involved (or other muscle) if you don't pay up - so, yeah it's essentially extortion. My recommendation is to head over to Molly Malones, which has a late night menu, a nice, but a highly inefficient wait staff (45 mins to get breakfast, a hour to get dinner), some ex-pat flavor, and good pricing. If it's during normal hours, the Robinson's mall has a decent selection of restaurants.
I won't belabor the point.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Pan Pacific Manila Hotel is the first and finest luxury hotel in the Philippines that delivers the promise of royal treatment by providing all guests with impeccable 'Butler Service' - a unique concept of consolidated services associated with the utmost personalised care. Located at the heart of the historical and cultural district of Malate in Manila, Pan Pacific Manila Hotel is just a short drive from the city's convention, exhibition and business centres. It is just 8 kilometers away from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.A business hotel, designed to offer a comfortable abode to business travellers with its excellent facilities and service, it has 236 all-executive rooms and 7 spacious function rooms that cater to the accurate needs of the most demanding clientele.Pan Pacific Manila was recently recognised as the Philippines' Leading Business Hotel at the 2008 World Travel Awards. The hotel also ranked 44th in the Conde Nast Traveler Magazine's 2008 Top 100 Readers' Choice Awards for Asia Hotels. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Pan Pacific Manila Hotel Manila
- Manila Pan Pacific