Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Resort Review: Panglao Bluewater Resort (Panglao, Bohol)

Date of Stay: October 1-3, 2014

RATING (Scale of 1 to 10)
Location: *******
Rooms: *********
Condition and Cleanliness: **********
Staff Performance: *********
Room Comfort: *********
Food and Beverage: ********
Other Amenities: ********
Value for Money: ********

The 5.5-hectare, extremely quiet and refreshing Panglao Bluewater Resort, a Class "AAA" resort built in 2011, was designed by renowned wood artist, furniture designer and architect Benjie Reyes who utilized recycled wood (about 80%) which was repurposed, with minimal manipulation, for use in the resort.  Spaces here are well planned, no structures rise over two stories and the resort also uses an on-site water treatment facility.
The resort has 54 elegantly appointed, spacious, very Zen and modern airconditioned guestrooms (with 2 queen-size beds, mini bar, flat-screen cable TV, iPod dock, telephone, safety deposit box, coffee/tea service and private bathroom plus complimentary flip-flops and wi-fi).
The Premier De Luxe Room I stayed in (118)Premier De Luxe Room
Free standing tubFree standing tub
On arrival, guests are offered welcome lemon grass drinks and cold towels while waiting for their rooms to be ready. Every member of the accommodating and friendly staff greeted us with "Maayong Adlaw" every time we met them on the hallways.
Baroto Poolside BarBaroto Poolside Bar
The ground-level Poolside Wing (PhP18,000/night) have a private veranda with direct access, via sliding doors, to the swimming pool. Beautiful flowers trellised each coved area.
The wooden bridge traversing the swimming poolThe wooden bridge traversing the swimming pool
The fascinating, free-form, 4-ft. deep, very child-friendly lagoon swimming pool has a wooden bridge traversing the width of the pool.  Underneath, also accessible by a wooden stair from the bridge, is a raised kidney-shaped platform with some beach loungers.
Lounge areaLounge area
The first-floor Poolview rooms (PhP15,000/night) has Bluewater's signature floating bed (cantilevered using recycled wood salvaged from old homes), a beautiful freestanding tub skylighted above (makes you feel you are bathing outdoors during the day), separate shower area (with rainshower head, natural stones and earth-tone tiles) and a sitting area. The private balconies use old wooden logs as railings.
Honeymoon VillaHoneymoon Villa
Villa interiorVilla interior
Dipping poolDipping pool
For guests who prefer more luxurious accommodation, more space and privacy, there are 2 Honeymoon Villas (PhP26,000/night) with their own private outdoor dipping pool.
The Family Villa
The Family Pool Villa
Villa interiorVilla interior
There's also one Family Pool Villa (PhP50,000/night) with 2 connecting rooms (1 room with 1 king-sized bed and 1 room with 2 queen-sized beds), both with its own nice, deep freestanding tub (above which is flat screen TV) and a dipping pool and sundeck at the middle. Their Family Loft Room (PhP30,000/night) is considered a first in Philippine resorts.
Family LoftFamily Loft
The resort also has a full service restaurant (Aplaya), a well maintained Zen garden, a cliff with a view of the sea, bar (Baroto Poolside Bar), watersports center (Aquamania), boutique, facilities for disabled guests, gift shop, meeting facilities and children’s playground.
Anuma SpaAnuma Spa
Their in-house spa (Anuma) offers local versions of various massage techniques (Hilot Lamang, Hilot Ablon, Hingut-an and Pikpik Kawayan sa Siki) at one of two cottages. You could have your massage in your room and massages lasts from 30 to 90 mins. Anuma is a Cebuano word meaning “to pamper or to spoil.”
Sea kayakingSea kayaking
Activities offered here include snorkeling and diving in the marine sanctuary, paddle boarding, kayaking, catamaran and glass bottom boat rides (9:30 am). They also have bikes and ATVs.  Though their private beach area, with several thatched cabanas, is quite small, it is located within a marine sanctuary ideal for snorkeling, kayaking and other sports activities.
Beachfront cabanasBeachfront cabanas
The resort also has dive center  -  Submariner Diving Center.  A certified PADI 5-Star Dive Resort and Aqualung partner center,  it is operated by German PADI MSDT and TDI AN/DP instructor Ronny Oliwka.
Scuba diving at the marine sanctuaryScuba diving at the marine sanctuary
The resort, literally off the beaten track, is not on the main beach or socializing zone but they offer twice daily shuttle service to the busier Alona Beach which is only 10-15 minutes away.  The resort also offers airline booking/confirmation, airport transfers, baggage storage, mail service, parking, safety deposit boxes, tourist transport, laundry/pressing service, currency exchange, credit card facilities, in-house nurse, on-call company doctor, luxury sightseeing, room service and wake-up call. The resort is a 20-km./45-min. drive from Tagbilaran Airport.
Swimming pool at nightSwimming pool at night
Panglao Bluewater Resort: Bluewater Rd, Sitio Daurong, Brgy. Danao, Panglao, 6340 Bohol.  Tel: (038) 416-0702 and (038) 416-0695 to 96. Fax: (038) 416-0697.  Email: Website:  Manila sales office: Rm. 704, Cityland Herrera Tower, Rufino cor. Valera Sts., Salcedo Village, 1227 Makati City, Metro Manila.  Tel: (632) 817-5751 and (632) 887-1348.  Fax: (632) 893-5391.

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