Life has returned to normal in Roxas Boulevard after Typhoon Pedring, and especially when you’re billeted in Manila Ocean Park’s Hotel H20!
H20 prides itself for being the first aquarium-themed hotel in the Philippines. Service is still rather raw coming from the mostly neophyte staff but there’s no doubt in my mind that this is one of the best hotels to stay in town right now. The first reason being its sheer newness. Its other asset is its natural scenery and being closest to the bay. Having wall-to-wall aquarium in your room or a view of the serene waters? Take your pick.
Our sponsor Samsung booked us the Aqua Supreme Room (approximately $200 a night) which stands out because of its aquarium walls. I tell you this is really something for the kids to ogle at. Room size was rather modest at 42 square meters but it was laid out well.How else can you fit a queen-sized bed, a work station, an entertainment area, a bath tub, a shower and toilet if not for the magic of great design?
The wall aquarium indeed sets Hotel H20 apart from the rest. But my favorite part of the room was actually the bath tub. This was the best size out of those I’ve seen in hotels.It was highly functional and yet didn’t take up much space.
To go to Hotel H20, you have to enter the Manila Ocean Park. The entrance beside Mabuhay Pearls was rather inconspicuous and it was just bad that they didn’t bother to put up the necessary signages. We got lost for a few minutes. Going up the elevator on the second floor brought us to their modern-looking lobby….
Afterwards, we were ushered to their Club Lounge to wait for our room to be ready. The place looked posh and well-designed (again!) but the welcome drink was a rather tacky, over sweetened iced tea.Pandan water would have been a better idea, or heck, four seasons. Still, the place looked good enough to hang out in. I busied myself reading the day’s papers.
I liked the free Oriental-themed buffet breakfast at Makan Makan Asian Food Village. It had dimsum, fried rice, noodles & the rest of them. I must say Makan Makan (formerly Makansutra) has greatly improved since our last visit.
I like this view looking out into Manila Bay & White Moon Bar below. The only thing I missed was the famous sunset, it was way too early when I took this shot.
Hotel H20 has a big pool and the Liquid Pool and lounge for chilling out. The only problem is that hotel guests will not be able to swim in peace because the swimming areas are also open to the public. There was a whole bunch of students swimming when I last checked.
Despite some shortcomings, am still happy with our stay at H20. In fact, I can’t wait for the whole family to experience “aquarium living,” maybe these coming holidays.
Rizal Park, Manila
Tel. No. 238-6100