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“DO NOT GO HERE: HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE! LIED TO AND RIPPED OFF.”

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Carrillo Garden Resort
Tagaytay, Philippines
Level Contributor
25 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“DO NOT GO HERE: HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE! LIED TO AND RIPPED OFF.”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2012

I recently had the worst case of getting ripped off and paying for money that was not even worth it AT ALL. Less than a week ago prior to our check-in, I went to this so-called resort myself to inquire about their accommodations and rates that they offer. The caretaker, who dressed up in very unprofessional house clothes, explained to us the rates. I was very captivated when she implied, with very clear verbalization (I speak and understand Tagalog perfectly), that the resort will be empty and private on the day of our check-in. The price of the room was at PHP3500 for 6 people for one night, but since there were more than 6 of us (the rest wouldn't be staying the night), they had to charge extra individual fees which totaled up to another PHP3000. I agreed to the terms and gave PHP1000 deposit, because it sounded very promising that the resort will be privately accommodating my family for such a cheap price.

My mistake is that I knew it was too good to be true. However, I looked around the resort. From outside, it does look like an entrance to a prison. The inside of the resort is alright, nothing too fancy, but not too bad either. The rooms were very small, with two beds, no airconditioner, and the restroom did not have a shower. It wasn't very clean either, but I was enthralled by the pool because it appeared clean and blue that day I inquired. I was okay with it, because if I was promised a private resort for less than hundred dollars, why not? I was on a budget and we weren't looking for anything fancy, I just wanted my family to have a good time and enjoy our time PRIVATELY. That was my main concern to begin with.

So Saturday comes, and we get there, and the barred gate was locked. We see from outside that there was a big family in one of the table hut. I was very upset at this instant. When the same grungy-looking lady came up to the gate, I quickly asked why there were people when I thought it was just gonna be us? Without even opening the door, she answered me that if I wanted private accommodations, it would be PHP25,000! Not only it was already very unwelcoming, but I instantly felt so ripped off because she obviously lied to us. She then tried to change her words and accused me of misunderstanding her by saying that she said that it would POSSIBLY be private if no one comes. I am an educated person who speaks the language fluently and I am very positive about what she promised me.

Since it was the only day of the year everyone in my family was available, we all agreed to just check in anyway since the deposit has already been given, and we do not have time to look for another one. We put away our stuff and all the food we brought at their "convention" area which appeared to be a classroom-sized room. They were charging us an extra PHP500 to use the refrigerator, and another extra if we wanted to use the karaoke machine! Right then and there I was very angered at how much more unwelcoming the caretaker was! Do not get me wrong, she wasn't rude, but she was very condescending and offered NO CUSTOMER SERVICE AT ALL!

I was finally able to let it go and decided to focus on spending time with my family. Luckily, the other family at the resort left at 5pm. We asked the pool boys if they can add more water in the kiddie pool, because there were about 2 feet of water left, but they refused to, saying, the water pressure is too low? And then we asked if they can turn on the water filter but they also refused to do so because they are only scheduled to do it in the morning? At this time, the water was already dirty.

Right after dinner, another family came. They did not turn on nor cleaned the pool still. We, my family, were all very upset that we decided to just leave. It was not worth spending the night there for such horrible service. They did not even clean the public restrooms. Mosquitos were endlessly attacking us, and it was dark and poorly lit around the entire resort. She still charged us for the room, which I understand, because we already put our stuff in there. She still charged us for the entrance fee of the rest of the people, and our bill turned out to be PHP4800. The price is not bad, but for the service we got and the amenities they provided, it was not worth it. It was pure false advertisement. I should have known better. She obviously ripped me off by lying to my face.

Also, you might as well know that at the time we were there, I've noticed that the other guests coming in were from a lower class. I don't mean to be judgmental, but this is what I've seen. I was not from the area and had no idea what I would be dealing with. If you want to be cheap, go ahead and you will get what you paid for. That, I just realized after my experience. However, it was not fair how this caretaker fooled me and gave me false promises. Another thing, they do not have any staff, this is a family resort, and their residence is actually inside the resort also. There are no staff, just the caretaker and a couple of male helpers, who were no help at all.

Room Tip: Do not get a room.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
9 Thank Erica L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    1 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
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Cuchillo
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 February 2011

Having seen the one review from 2009 we were attracted to consider this resort for my wife's family(she originally from Philippines)/extended family and my adopted family etc. We already had booked a hotel for ourselves and were looking for somewhere nice and able to accomodate group of about 12(7 adults) and (5 children"aged from 8 months to 13").
Whilst the external photographs were very attractive and supreme cottage accomodation described in review seemed ideal, I was a bit sceptical, as no photographs of cottage(inside or out)!!!!! My wife's family contacted the owner who said it would take too much time to put such pictures on and update them and she was very busy etc.
Anyway, based on my wife's family located in the Philippines and their local negotiations with the owner, we booked and paid for the supreme cottage for the group(approx 17000 pesos for 2 nights accomodation.)
We flew over to Philippines and initially stayed in Manila in a double room at a quality hotel. We then headed for Tagaytay on 26th January 2011 with the family group in a minibus/people carrier from Manila. The plan was to drop them off first at Carillo Garden Resort and get them settled in and spend sometime together before heading off to our hotel in Tagaytay.
When we got to the Carillo car park the external wall and gate of the resort looked more like a prison entrance and was very dull and unattractive. Eventually a workman came to the rusty gate and opened up.
Inside, things improved initially, as the garden area and pools were looking quite colourful, if smaller than described and imagined(expected quite large grounds and gardens)!!!
We followed the workman down to the "Supreme Cottage" which was about a 30 second walk from the pool area and normal bleak chalets around one side of the pool(more like little sheds).
I don't know if "cottage" has a different meaning in the Philippines or in tagalog language but what we were taken to was basically a bigger version of the bleak chalets and nothing like a cottage or anything remotely like a dwelling property one would expect when booking a "supreme cottage"!!
As I followed to the rear, I could almost hear the underwhelming sighs and then witnessed the disgusted looks on the faces as I caught up and entered the doorway.
The doorway itself was sparse and dusty and rundown and decorated with an ongoing marching army of ants in great numbers(inside and out). It was clear as we entered further that the "shed like" dwelling was dirty, rundown and had not seen life for sometime(human life that is!!) The rusty fridge freezer was disgusting inside and out in a draughty kithen area, which was also the eating and living area(very tiny). A small amount of steps(about 3) led to 3 cold and dirty bedrooms with basic camp like beds and bedding(like in a barracks). That was it really, with an undescribable toilet area off the same area.
PLEASE TAKE NOTE THAT I WAS NOT EVEN GOING TO BE STAYING SO I HAD NO REASON TO MAKE UP SUCH A REVIEW AS THIS!)
However, seeing my wife's famiy's faces(bearing in mind they are Filipino and based in working class area of Manila) and how even they were disgusted at the conditions facing them and their looks of disappointment and concern, I couldn't fail but be angry and upset and let down; particularly at the price we had been charged for 2 nights in this filthy shed for them.
My wife told me to stay calm and I went with one of her brothers to speak to the owner; bear in mind we had not received any welcome or hello from her or any management of any kind or even a basic welcome from anyone!!!
When we told her what we had just witnessed in the proposed "supreme cottage" she appeared unruffled and just said "What do you want from me??"
She then showed some of the party, some of the poolside chalets which were all equally unattractive and empty, to see if they would prefer to stay in them!!
This was not an attractive option either.
If it had been up to me or if the accomodation was for myself and my wife, I would have just left and consulted a solicitor and kept the outstanding balance and just written off the deposit we had already paid!!!
Anyway, eventually I just walked away and left it up to my wife's Filipino based family to deal with, which as per their nature, was compromise and no confrontation. The owner eventually instructed a workman to get stuck in with insecticide and mop etc etc etc in a vain attempt to clean up and make the "shed" appear like a "supreme cottage". She must have mistaken him for some kind of world famous illusionist or magician!!
I was glad to get out of Carrillo Garden Resort but ashamed and sad to be leaving the 12 members of my wife's family at the mercy of such dreadful living accomodation. What a disgusting place to put human beings in.
Overlooking the rest of the resort is a big grand type residential dwelling(the owner's residence). If our experience is normal in relation to what she charges for this type of dirty and basic guest accomodation, then it was easy to see how she could afford to live so grandly herself whilst innocent travellers suffered the freezing filthy conditons she laughingly advertises as a "Supreme Cottage"!!!
Later on and much in hindsight, she tried to blame us for arriving too early. This only made her moneygrabbing charade even more tasteless and unsavoury.
At least the family members were able to spend most of the two days out and about with myself and my wife, picking us up at our comfortable hotel. Also the pool area and little garden area were not too bad, so they got a litle relaxation out of these. But the accomodation was a disgrace and made worse by the freezing Tagaytay winds at night coupled with the sheet like sparse blankets provided which made them all suffer horrible cold conditions through the night with no extra or thicker blankets offered or supplied. Plus the unsatisfactory main door/doorway and atrocious window fittings!!
I hear the Philippine Government and Business Leaders are hoping to improve tourism in the Philippines; if they allow owners like this woman to get away with charging innocent guests to suffer such a dirty concentration camp type dwelling advertised as a supreme cottage, then they will be fighting a losing battle.
It maybe that we were unlucky or January 2011 was a bad time for visitors(yet she quickly took the booking and the deposit and the eventual 17000 pesos in total)?? So all I can say is "buyer beware" and if you are asking me for advice, then AVOID CARILLO GARDEN RESORT AT ALL COSTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed January 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Cuchillo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 May 2009

My husband, three kids (ages 5, 6, 10) and I recently stayed at the Carrillo Garden Resorts, Tagaytay, from April 1-4, 2009 after hearing about it from one of my friends that loves to travel and stay in unique places. Upon arrival, we were greeted with a professional and friendly staff. The parking area is spacious but we had to park in the designated bus parking area due to a conference that was going on. Once we entered the grounds, we were greeted by vibrant colors and the floral smells of the majestic gardens that surround the complex. There were waterfalls to appreciate and the sparkling pools looked inviting. I didn't use the pool but my husband and kids enjoyed the heated kiddie pool!
We upgraded to their Supreme Cottage which was privately located in the hillside garden area. We were surprised at how spacious and comfortable the cottage were. The beds were comfortable and the linens were so soft making it easy to sleep in. The accomodations made us feel like we really were in a garden paradise. There are paths that take you around their gardens and a nearby stream that makes you feel one with nature. They had lots of activities for the kids and my husband and I enjoyed some great karaoke singing. We loved the location since it was close to my husband's convention center and the casino of course! My kids didn't want to leave and neither did I. My husband and I felt like we were leaving a vacation home. I would highly recommend this resort for families and couples that are looking to stay off the beaten path in a unique, quality hotel without breaking your piggy bank.

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank trave1mom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Carrillo Garden Resort

Property: Carrillo Garden Resort
Address: Paradise Road | Guinhawa South, Tagaytay, Luzon, Philippines
Region: Philippines > Luzon > Calabarzon Region > Cavite Province > Tagaytay
Hotel Style:
Ranked #28 of 40 Speciality Lodging in Tagaytay
Number of rooms: 10
Also Known As:
Carrillo Garden Hotel Tagaytay

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