12 April 2013

Day 1 of 3: Revisiting Tagaytay -- Taal Vista Hotel

Gus and I were supposed to go to Taiwan this summer, but unfortunately, the Taiwanese Embassy denied our visa application. Since we already had a 3-day leave from work, we decided to find an alternative summer getaway. Fortunately, I stumbled upon Taal Vista's tweet about the Ultimate Vacation Package. For PhP12,100, you get to stay overnight in one of Taal Vista's Premier Lake Wing rooms, which has a perfect and beautiful view of the Taal Volcano, and another overnight stay at Pico de Loro in Hamilo Coast, Batangas. It sounds a bit pricey for a 3-day/2-night holiday, right? But let me give you the breakdown of their regular room rates.

Taal Vista Premier Lake Wing Room = PhP8,000-10,000 (depending on the day -- weekday/weekend, peak/non-peak, with or without breakfast buffet)

Pico de Loro Premier Lagoon View Room = PhP6,699 + PhP500/head for non-members/guests of members

Had we availed of separate, regular rates for each room, we would've spent around PhP17,000. This is a PhP5,000 saving!

Gus quickly made reservations and we found ourselves on a roadtrip to one of our most visited destinations since college. We decided to make the trip worth every penny so we made sure we explored the hotel and used all of its facilities this time (we used to just sleep in at Taal Vista while we explored Tagaytay.) This entry will cover everything (or at least, most of what you need to know) about Taal Vista Hotel in Tagaytay City, and Pico de Loro in Batangas.

2nd Stop: Taal Vista Hotel (Click here for Stop #1)

This isn't our first time in Taal Vista Hotel, and though we had an unpleasant experience with their customer service/reservations group last year, I would like to say that that was an isolated case. The staff of Taal Vista Hotel in Tagyatay are very accommodating and helpful. Since this was a family trip (we brought all our kids, hahaha), we had a lot of luggage. The first thing we did was ask the girl at the door if there was anyone who could assist us with carrying our luggage from the car to the hotel. There were two events that day so the place was packed. We had to know if anyone could assist us while we were parked momentarily on the side of the hotel since we couldn't carry all the bags from the parking lot to the hotel. The girl was very helpful. She quickly called one of her co-workers to attend to us. Her co-worker immediately came with a luggage cart so we were able to transfer all our bags and bring it inside the hotel.

While waiting for Gus to find parking, I lined up at the reception since a lot of people were checking in and out. One thing you have to know about Taal Vista is that they require a PhP2,000 incidental charge refundable upon check-out if you don't consume anything in the bar/refrigerator in the room. If you don't have cash, you could also use your credit card. They won't charge your card right away, it's just a guarantee.

Our room was located on the 4th floor. As I mentioned earlier, it was one of their Premier Lake Wing rooms. We only had a deluxe room before (which I will blog about soon, so you can see the difference) so we were both very excited to see our room for the night. On our way up, we had to wait for our luggage because the elevators in the hotel could only accommodate around 4 people at a time. If you include the luggage cart, no other person can fit. It's just the bell boy and the cart. Comment #1: The elevators are too small.

When we got to our room, all I could say was, "Hello, vacation!" It was a spacious room, just a little bit bigger than the deluxe room since the premier room could accommodate 3-4 people. There was a king sized bed and a double bed, a balcony overlooking the Taal Volcano with a table for two (we had our afternoon tea here after swimming), a big bathroom with a separate shower and toilet. It was perfect! I didn't feel like a sardine in a tin can. There was just so much space. No hitting your knee because the bed was too close to the drawers or to each other. I think we definitely got much more than we paid for.

Since we wanted to get our money's worth, we didn't leave the hotel during our stay. We rested in our room, we watched tv, we went to the pool for a quick swim, and had afternoon tea at sunset with an amazing view of the Taal. We went to dinner at Cafe on the Ridge after, but I will be writing a separate post on that. :)

After dinner, we took a stroll outside, just to let all the food we ate go down. Though the temperature wasn't as cold as before, the night breeze was cool enough to make you feel relaxed. We went back to our room to relax some more, watch tv with chips and soda, when we received an invitation to their Saturday night bar. The "party" begins at 10 PM so we had a few more minutes to relax before checking it out. Unfortunately, it was too bright, noisy, with only a few people drinking. It wasn't something I would consider a party or a hangout place. Gus and I decided to just walk around some more and gaze at the stars. Yes, it sounds cheesy and shallow but you don't see that many stars when you're in the city. We just enjoyed the cool breeze under the stars before heading back. We also had a great view of the new ferris wheel in Sky Ranch.

The following day, we decided to check-out the gym first before having breakfast. We already tried Taal Vista's breakfast buffet and it wasn't really something you'd wake up early for (but I'm not saying it's not good). The gym was okay, they had basic gym equipment BUT it wasn't maintained well. Some weight-lifting equipment had no weights, while some were rusty. We stayed no more than 10 minutes inside. Comment #2: The gym equipment is not maintained well.

As for breakfast, I'll post a photoblog about it in the next couple of days. It was a decent spread but I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Day 1 of our Ultimate Vacation was definitely unforgettable. We got our money's worth, plus, everyone was really pleasant. Oh, I almost forgot. We got welcome drinks while waiting for our room the day before.

4 out of 5 for Taal Vista Hotel Tagaytay (the breakfast buffet could use a little improvement considering they offer it for around PhP800++, and the gym equipment must be checked and maintained regularly)

Taal Vista Hotel
Km. 60  Aguinaldo Highway
Tagaytay City
Contact Nos: (632) 917 8225; (6346) 413 1000; (63 917) 809 1254


Click here for Stop #3.

Contact details courtesy of: http://www.taalvistahotel.com/

1 comment:

  1. good day!
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