Manila Hotels, Guesthouses and Resorts
Though considered by many tourists not deserving a closer acquaintance, Manila is a gateway to many popular destinations in the country, and you're almost inevitably find yourself staying a day or two in Manila at some point. We've shortlisted a few tried-and-tested accommodations to help make your stay as hassle-free as possible.
In general we recommend the first timers to stay in Makati area as Makati has the best of the both worlds. It's close enough to the airport and it's not too far from historical sites, too. It offers all the modern conveniences of city dwelling and you can find anything what you fancy, from high-end shopping malls to fine restaurants to decent museums. It has a lot of things going on and also has a wide variety of lodging options from budget to luxury.
We personally love the Hometown Hotel (57 EDSA, Makati) for its location and proximity to the airport. It's pretty basic with no frills but does the job well. The hotel is new so facilities were clean and we appreciated the helpful staff who ensured our stay was as comfortable as possible. You can get a dorm bed for as slow as PHP349 or a private room for between PHP1,850 to PHP2,600. The rooftop terrace is a bonus and the hotel also arranges tours. If there's any downsides, it would be that it's quite close to the metro line so it can be a bit noisy.
If you have the budget for it, we recommend staying at Discovery Primea (6749 Ayala Avenue, Makati). We absolutely loved its central location, the pool, and their exemplary service from the concierge to housekeeping to security. An overnight stay can cost you between PHP10,200 to PHP17,500 but hey, you get your own bathtub with TV, too!
If you're a seasoned traveller and have adjusted well to the city's temperament then Malate is a good place to go. It's a few minutes walk away from MRT1 and there are plenty of hotels, bars and restaurants as well as a big mall catering for all your needs. There are numerous travel agencies, too, if you need help with your onward transportation.
If you're traveling solo and just need a place to crash for a night or two, you will love the Red Planet Mabini (1740 A. Mabini St. Malate) for their superb service and value for money. It's right at the heart of Malate so it's close to everything, and there's a 7-eleven downstairs just in case. Private room rates start at PHP2,237 so if you need an inexpensive place to stay, this is it.
If you prefer a luxurious abode then book a room at the historic Manila Hotel (One Rizal Park, Ermita). The interior is lovely and the view of Manila Bay is spectacular. Their buffet breakfast never disappoints and we always love having drinks at The Tap Room at the end of the day. Rates at this hotel ranges from around PHP12,500 to PHP 17,000 per night.
If you must stay close to the airport then the Park Avenue Guesthouse (2443 Park Avenue Pasay) or Sofitel Philippine Plaza (CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard) both fit the bill.
The Park Avenue Guesthouse is a delightful gem tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the city. It is a 1920's colonial house turned into a beautiful guesthouse what makes staying there a truly unique experience. It is located inside a closed compound so it's well secured and will guarantee you some peace and quiet. Dorm beds go at PHP765 while private rooms start at PHP2,250.
At the other end of the spectrum is the resplendent Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila (CCP Complex, Roxas Boulevard, Pasay). Their pool is amazing and their spiral buffet is the grandest spread we've ever seen... Its scenic location right by the bay is what makes it special and we also like that they have a tennis court on site. Enjoy your stay here from about PHP 9,000 to PHP 26,000.