A Secluded Family Resort in Paradise: A Review of Fairviews & Bluewater (TBIP Summer Diaries)

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Everytime  I book for a hotel in Boracay, I always go for the quiet area in Station 1 and it has to be beachfront.  I didn’t know what exactly happened, but I just found myself reading reviews and blogs about Fairways and then in just a flash, I already booked the property via Booking.com.  So, what convinced me to book in a secluded area in Bo. Yapak?  I’m a hypocrite and a liar if I won’t say that the photos didn’t help.  When I saw the image of the Ventana pool and the other amenities in the resort, that was the hint that I should give this a try.
In this post, I will give you my unbiased review of Fairways & Bluewater Newcoast.  Let us begin with their Front Office and Reservations staff.  When I heard about the Boracay closure and when the airlines and transfer service were willing to give a refund except them, I was quite disappointed.  I have reached them a lot of times via phone, messenger and email and they were firm in saying that they do not give a refund, but they can modify the dates up to 1.5 years.  I had no choice but to reschedule it to 2019.  I have informed them about the changes I wanted, but there was no confirmation from them yet.  One day, I just decided to take a peek at Boracay before its closure and surprisingly, their marketing manager approved the changes to April 15-17, 2018.  They gave me instructions to mail Booking.com and asked for another voucher with the modified dates.  I received a reply from the latter that it would be impossible for them to issue another voucher because my booking with them was already cancelled due to the closure.  They encouraged me to contact the hotel directly.  When I called back Fairways to ask for the voucher, the reservations staff told me that they already have noted the changes in their system.  To cut the story short, I didn’t print any voucher at all.
Fairways van

The Fairways shuttle service

 Fairways front desk officers
We were picked up by BPHT and the Fairways shuttle took us to the property.  We were ushered to the Veranda Lobby to check-in, but uh-oh, there was a teeny-tiny problem.  Ms. Dindin, the front desk officer was asking for a voucher.  After waiting for about 10-15 minutes, they were able to confirm with the reservations and the changes were already applied in the system.
Dindin

Ms. Dindin, Front Desk Officer

Though I have encountered a problem, I didn’t feel irritated.  Ms. Dindin was very friendly and accommodating.  While we were waiting, we even had a short talk about the Boracay closure and the presence of Ms. Jhoy of BPHT was indeed a great help because I didn’t get bored and she didn’t go until everything was finally okay.
Checking in

With Ms. Jhoy of BPHT

And so, upon confirmation, we had a short briefing about the amenities.  We were assigned to Villa Riviera and was a bit disappointed that my request to be assigned near the swimming pool wasn’t granted because they were fully-booked.  After giving us the map of the property, we left our luggage in the Luggage Area and planned to have lunch while waiting for the standard check-in time which is 2pm.
Now, let’s take a tour of our one bedroom suite in Villa Riviera.

Villa at night

I was expecting to be assigned in a higher floor, but we were assigned in the basement 😦  Anyway, when we opened the door and saw the suite, my disappointment turned into satisfaction.

Living and dining area

The suite was spacious enough for 3 people.  It was more than what I expected.  It has a living room, a dining area, kitchen equipped with kitchen utensils and cutlery.  It has two bathrooms (one common bathroom) and the other one located in the bedroom.

 

 

 

Kitchen

The kitchen

One advantage of choosing a suite is that you can stock groceries and even cook your own food in the kitchen.  They almost have everything that you need to make your stay comfortable.  They have a grocery store beside the main gate where you can buy snacks, drinks and other things that you need.

 

 

I enjoyed the spacious bathroom– the hot shower and the hot bath in the tub.  It’s just that the bidet in our bathroom wasn’t functioning.  As for the toiletries, those were basic and incomplete.  They didn’t provide bathrobes, cotton buds, razor/shaver, sewing kit and bubble bath gel.

 

 

Toiletries

Bath tub 1
The bedroom was big enough for us.  Our 10 year-old kid slept with us in the room and shared the bed with her.

 

 

There was a writing desk in the room, a nice blogging area actually, but I wasn’t able to utilize it because I knew that we had very limited time so I didn’t bring my lappy with me.

Wardrobe

One thing that I loved about the suite is the wardrobe room/walk-in closet.  Our stuff especially the clothes were only in one place because of this.  When you open the door, you can see the open closet where you can easily see your stuff.

Lovers2

They have two terraces– one in the living room (with two chairs) and the other one in the bedroom (one chair).  When you open the sliding glass door, you will witness the amazing view of the golf course.

Fairways security officer

All the rooms in the suite have a phone but we were not able to use them because when we didn’t have to call for help.  When you go out of the villa, there is a waiting area for a shuttle service and there were times that before we sit down, a security officer would approach us to ask where we wanted to go.

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Where to go in Fairways?  Actually, there is no need for you to go out because they almost have eveything that you need.
1.  The Pools
The Ventana Pool

View 5 ventana pool

 

 

View ventana pool

Hideaway Jacuzzi
I liked the view here but the water is dirty if you come at lunch or in the afternoon.  Better yet, come when they open at 9 or 10am.

Jas and yman jacuzzi

 Lucia Pool

Villa lucia sign

Though The Ventana Pool has a breath-taking view of nature feature the Sibuyan Beach, one of my favorites is the Lucia Pool, which is not crowded and very clean.  Unlike the other pools that open at 9am, Lucia Pool opens as early as 7 am, so after having breakfast at 6 am, you can already proceed there if you would like to have the place to yourself.

Lucia Pool 2

Atlantis Pool
Aside from the Lucia Pool, Atlantis is my fave.  It was very relaxing and peaceful in the area– not crowded.

 

 

Atlantis pool

The Infinity Pool

 

 

Infinity pool

 

 

 

 

2.  The Private Beach

Paradise cove

If you don’t feel like going to the White Beach or Puka Beach, Fairways has its own private beach with lounge chairs.

Private beach lounge chairs

Honestly, though I like the view, I still prefer to swim in White Beach and Puka Beach.  This is advisable for those who would like to go to the beach early.  They are already open at 6 am.
3.  The Restaurants
Though they have several restaurants to choose from, we were able to try only the Kudetah Italiano Restorante and the Veranda Restaurant where we have our daily free buffet breakfast.
KUDETAH ITALIANO RESTORANTE

Kudetah district

 

 

THE VERANDA RESTAURANT

Veranda receptionist

I wasn’t able to get her name, but she was very friendly to us and even offered to help in taking a family picture.
4.  The Spa
There are two spas to choose from:  the Maris Spa located near the private beach and the Bluewater Spa.  During our stay, I was hesitant to schedule for a treatment because of the time.  A spa treatment would take 2 to 3 hours.  Next time when we go back, I will include one of their spas in my Spa Detective Series.

 

Maris Spa

5.  The Gym

 

They have a gym located in Monterey ,but it’s not as big as what I have pictured in my mind before.  You can borrow towels and get a glass of water after your workout.  They have indoor jacuzzi but it is only for club members and you have to pay if ever you will use it.
Ideally, Fairways is perfect for big families.  The room is for 2 pax but you can add a kid for only P200 (includes breakfast already).
If there is a disadvantage of staying there, I could say that it has something to do with the schedule of the trips going to D’mall and vice versa.   We have experienced calling a tricycle instead and we paid P100 per ride.

Waiting for the shuttle budget mart

 Will we come back?  Definitely YES!  Next time, I will bring all of my kids with us.

FAIRWAYS & BLUEWATER NEWCOAST

Bo. Yapak, Brgy. Balabag, Newcoast Boracay, Malay, Aklan, 5608
                                                                 Phone Number;  +63362885587

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My Boracay 2018 Day 2 (TBIP Summer Diaries)

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So, we were given a chance to go to Boracay before its closure on the 26th and we had to savor every moment.  It was a limited 3/d-2/n vacay and we had to manage our time.  Because our bodies were refueled last night, we were ready to explore White Beach on our 2nd day.  I soaked myself in the hot tub before preparing our things needed for the entire day.

There’s a waiting area in Villa Sycamore (the villa beside Villa Riviera).  After few minutes, a security officer approached us and he called a shuttle to drop us to Veranda Lobby where we will have our buffet breakfast.

We were the first guests to enter the Veranda Restaurant at 6 am.  I anticipated the fact that restaurants get busy at around 8 am and while it wasn’t jampacked with people yet, we could enjoy our breakfast.  We picked a table near the golf course view.

I wasn’t expecting much of their breakfast choices since I’ve read blogs and reviews that there was nothing special about the breakfast buffet.  Well, for that morning, I was satisfied because there were various food choices.

 

 

Cereals Station

Breakfast day 2

 

I took a lot of photos of their food, but I didn’t post all the pics here because I intend to make a review of Veranda Restaurant.  After filling out our tummies, we went for a short walk to explore Fairways before we head to White Beach to buy food which we will take with us in our island hopping.  While walking, we found Villa Lucia; unfortunately, we didn’t have our stuff with us at that time because we left it at the luggage counter and we had very limited time so we went back to the Veranda Lobby instead.

Fairways has shuttle service for their guests, but we had to wait for 30 minutes before we get a ride.  That morning, we had to be in Astoria at 10 am because BPHT will pick us up for our parasailing activity.  We didn’t have any choice but to just call a tricycle to bring us to D’Mall and we paid P100 for that.  After buying food at Andok’s D’Mall, we started our morning walk in White Beach and I fell in love with the beach!

White beach morning

White beach day 2

I understood why the government has decided to save the island and I truly support them in their advocacy.

Family pic day 2 white beach

At 10 am, I texted Mark, BPHT’s guide and he was already there.  A boat transported us in the part where they do the parasailing activity.  The guides gave us few instructions.  At first, it was normal to experience fear, but after few minutes, I felt relaxed and I couldn’t help but to admire the amazing view.

Parasailing 2

After the parasailing activity, the boat dropped us to Station 3 where we waited for the private boat for island hopping.  The funny thing is that… it couldn’t be considered island hopping because we just went to Puka Beach to have a swim and we opted not to go to Magic Island and Crystal Cove.  We had very limited time and I knew that island hopping would take us 3 to 4 hours.  Hubby would like to catch the sunset in White Beach that’s why we decided to cut the activity.

shane puka beach

 

After our activity booked via BPHT, we went back to our suite in Fairways & Bluewater.  We visited Monterey because the play lounge and the gym is located there.  I was quite surprised to see that the gym is small.  It’s been months that we haven’t had our workout that’s why we didn’t even perspire.  We headed to the Laguna pool, but when we saw it, we opted not to swim– the pool wasn’t inviting and we thought that it would be a waste of time.

 

 

Hubby workout

Unlike the other luxury hotels/resorts, Fairways only allow the guests to use the outdoor jacuzzi.  You have to pay if you will use their indoor jacuzzi.  So, we just took the shuttle to the main gate and hired a tricycle to take us to Station 1.  We paid P100 again because hubby didn’t want to miss the sunset in White Beach.   Well, it was worth the money because we were able to witness the Boracay sunset.

Sunset day 2

 

Boracay is considered a paradise and the favorite summer destination of tourists especially the foreigners.  In my short stay, there was something smelly in some areas, but there were locals who were busy with the road constructions and clean-up.

We keep on coming back to Boracay because of its fine, crystal-like sand and we are already excited to see it next year.  Yes!  My whole family will be there to see the NEW Boracay in 2019.  Thanks to Airasia because we have successfully rebooked our flights for next year.

White sand

We walked from Station 1 to D’mall and waited for the Fairways shuttle to drop us to the main gate.  We bought food in Citymall which is just across Fairways because that particular night, we wanted to have dinner in our suite.

 

Because we were extremely exhausted, we didn’t have night swimming.  Instead, we slept early to recharge our bodies for our last day in the island.  The following day, we planned a pool-hopping activity after breakfast before we finally say goodbye to Boracay.

Boracay 2018 Before the Closure Day 1(TBIP Summer Diaries)

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Yey!  And so, I was able to take a sneak peek of paradise before Boracay will close on the 26th.  Though I’ve been to Boracay Island many times already, the excitement is just the same as my first visit.

 

Life vest 2

How to use the  life vest demonstration

I knew that we had to leave before 6am that’s why I prebooked our in-flight meals.  Our booking includes 20kg baggage allowance and value pack meal.

 

We didn’t expect to arrive early because all the time we have experienced delayed flights.

 

As soon as our plane landed, I texted Ms. Mariel of BPHT Booking Services and informed her that we were already there.  To my surprise, Ms. Joy of BPHT was already waving at me, holding a placard with my name in it.   Hmmm… that was impressive and so far, everything went well.

 

She ushered us to the Fairways van and we traveled from the airport to the Caticlan Jetty Port.  She bought tickets for us and assisted us with our luggage suntil we reached the Cagban Port and transferred to another van.   Everything was perfect until we arrived in the resort.

The Fairways shuttle dropped us to the Veranda Lobby where guests check in and out.  I approached Ms. Dindin, one of the Front Desk officers in the hotel and she was asking for my voucher.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to present one because Booking.com cancelled my reservation due to the Boracay closure.  I received an email from Booking.com saying that it is impossible for them to send a new voucher because the reservation was already cancelled.  I called the resort and they assured me that I won’t be encountering a problem since the changes regarding the date of my reservation was already in the system.  Ms. Dindin verified that thing to the Reservations Department and after few minutes, she told me that reservations is already putting my booking into their system.    Good thing, Ms. Joy was there to give me company while waiting.  She could have left already when we reached Fairways but she patiently waited until we checked in.  Thank you so much, BPHT!

Since it was only past 11am, we just left our luggage to the luggage room.  After we got our luggage stubs, we went to the Ventana pool area and we ordered pizza while charging our mobile phones.  We loved the view and we had a short photo session while waiting for 2pm.

 

 

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View 5 ventana pool

We definitely fell in love with the breathtaking view and we couldn’t wait to hit the beach and to have our swim in their inviting pools.

 

We waited for the shuttle service to drop us to the Veranda lobby.

Veranda lobby while waiting

We were assigned to room 17101 at Villa Riviera–a spacious one bedroom suite.  (A separate blog post will be written to feature our assigned suite.)  I was quite disappointed because our room was located in the basement.  We wanted a poolside room and the one with veranda in the upper floors, but we couldn’t do anything but to accept the fact that the hotel was already fully booked.

Riviera

Because we were exhausted, we decided to rest for two hours and get ready for an afternoon swim.   While hubby was taking a nap, my daughter Shane asked me if I wanted coffee.  How sweet it was when she prepared a cup of coffee for me.

Coffee service

 

There is a shuttle service that will transport you the different places inside the property or to the D’Mall.  We waited for a while and a security officer approached us and asked where we wanted to go.  The driver dropped us to Paradise Cove.

Paradise cove

Nice beach view

Beach view 1

Love

 

Private beach 1

The nice thing about Fairways is that they have their own private beach.  If you don’t like to go to White Beach, just ask the security officer to call a shuttle to drive you to Paradise Cove and ta-da!— in just a matter of minutes, you are already in their main beach.  They have lounge chairs for their guests, so you can relax while watching the sea.  The only thing that I have noticed, though the sand is white, it’s not as fine as they have in the White Beach.  Also, when we had our afternoon swim, my feet was hurt because there were lots of small rocks and shells under the water.

We decided to go back to the Ventana pool and we also tried the Hideaway Jacuzzi because it seemed nice in the photo and there was nobody using it at that time, but after finding out that the water was dirty, we transferred to the Ventana pool.  Eeew!  We felt like we were going to have a skin disease as my skin was becoming itchy already.

 

Ventana pool

We brought dry clothes with us because we wanted to go to D’Mall and have dinner there.

The beachfront was not as jampacked as it used to be– Yes, there were still tourists who visited the island but foreigners dominated the number, particularly Koreans and Chinese.  Boracay, despite of its present state remains to be my number one summer favorite destination.

 

 

We bought groceries at the Budget Mart, where the Fairways shuttle arrives every 30 minutes to pick up the guests.

We slept early because we had planned activities the following day.  Watch out for my next post featuring those activities.

A Peek at Boracay 2018 (TBIP’s Summer Diaries)

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Happy Summer!  By this time you might be seeing my Instagram and FB posts.  For those who follow my posts and those who know me personally, you might be wondering why the hell am I here in Boracay.   I already have rebooked our scheduled trip to April 29 ro May 4, 2019 and I started searching for other summer destinations.   Well, I really tried my best to find one, but I always end up being disappointed.  It’s either the hotels are fully booked, per night is expensive or the sand is dark gray.  I already have conditioned myself that for this summer, I only have staycations to enjoy– not until the day I was searching for the rates of Boracay Cruise via 2Go.  I compared the rates to Airasia and I was surprised to see the low rates P13k plus for 3 pax (roundtrip). That moment, I had a sudden interest to go to Boracay before the closure on the 26th of April.

I immediately called Fairways & Bluewater and asked if it’s possible for me to rebook on April 15-17.  After 20 minutes, it has been approved by the Marketing Manager and the transfers and activities that were scheduled on the 29th will just be used on our trip.  Hmmm!  I was firm in my decision that I had to take a peek in Boracay Island this month.  Nothing beats the so-called paradise when it comes to the powdery white sand.  If I will be spending P20k plus to go to Batangas, Zambales or Pangasinan, it would be a better decision to go to Boracay for just P13k.    So, I booked our roundtrip Manila to Caticlan flights via Airasia and coordinated with BPHT and everything has been settled in few minutes.

I won’t be able to follow the itinerary that I have prepared for my 6-day Boracay vacay because it will just be a 3/d 2/n vacation instead.  Here’s what I have prepared:

April 15, 2018- 10:55am-Arrival to Boracay

11:30- Check in and explore Fairways

5:00pm-  walk to White Beach and D’Mall

April 16, 2018-  7am-  Breakfast

8am to 9:30- Morning walk

10:am-12nn- Parasailing

12nnto 1pm- LUNCH

1:00-3:30 pm-  Private Island Hopping

4pm-  Back to the resort to rest

7pm -Dinner

8pm- Night swimming

April 17m 2018 7am-breakfast

8am to 9am -pack the things and get ready

9:30am- Check out

The 6 Day Boracay Special will be scheduled on 2019 instead, but at least I will be able to see the island for the last time this year and on the peak season next year.  Watch out for my posts in IG and FB.  I will try to blog as soon as I get home on the 17th or 18th.   Bye for now, folks!

TBIP’s SUMMER 2018 UPDATE

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HAPPY EASTER, EVERYONE!  Well, I purposely didn’t book for a trip/staycation this Holy Week as I would like to spend it at home with my family.  Yes, I just stayed at home and finished some paperworks (Unfortunately, I can’t rejoice yet and as much as I would like to motivate myself, I am still CLUELESS on what’s going to happen next.

I know that you’ve heard about the Boracay closure issue and our trip is scheduled on April 29 to May 4, 2018.  If President Rodrigo Duterte would announce his approval of the Boracay closure by the first week of April, there is a possibility for us to enjoy Boracay in the peak season because it will take 30 days after the announcement will be effective.  So, I am praying for a miracle– to think of it, it will be too much of a hassle.  Why?  I have to deal with airline rebook/refund.  If I will rebook, there is no guarantee though that I will get a hotel on those dates because it’s PEAK Season.  I just hope that they would do the closure on the lean season because a lot of tourists have already made their plans and it’s pretty frustrating if that would be cancelled.

I actually have included LABoracay in my itinerary since I haven’t celebrated it before and it will be my first time if ever.   Boracay is such a paradise and my sympathy goes with the locals, business owners and the tourists.    I support the government agencies in their plans of saving the island and I will do my part in preserving its beauty.  If our planned Boracay 2018 trip won’t be cancelled, I will show everyone how beautiful Boracay is and why it is considered as a paradise and one of the world’s most beautiful beach.  So, I’m just keeping my fingers crossed and will leave it up to HIM up there.

I hate to entertain negative thoughts, but just in case our Boracay trip won’t push through this summer, I’m thinking of going to nearer destinations like Subic, Pangasinan, Tagaytay or Batangas but again my fear would be most of the hotels are fully booked already 😦

Since this is the first day of April, I started it with good vibes.  Yesterday I went to the salon and treated myself with foot spa with pedicure and gel manicure.  The only disaster that I have so far  is my hair and I’m actually having second thoughts if I would have it rebonded or not.

 

 

I am also thinking of having a productive summer vacation so I might as well feature home improvement segment in my blog as well including an upgrade of the home furnishings, accessories and appliances.  By next week, I will be posting the parts of our humble home and hopefully before the start of classes, it will have its new look.

I will also feature beauty rituals you can do at home for spa/salon alternative since I know going to spa is kinda expensive.

Before our Boracay trip, I will show you my very own PINK luggage and its contents (My BORACAY 2018 Packing List).

After April 20 to 28 and on May 2018, my schedule is still open for hotel/restaurant features/reviews.  Feel free to shoot me a message in my email if you have suggestions, ideas or you wanted to collaborate with me.

Cream with Eggs Easter Facebook Post

 

My Boracay Summer 2018 6-Day Itinerary

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Probably you are wondering why of all the places to go this summer, why did I choose Boracay despite of the negative issues? Well, I already planned this trip as early as August and I already have booked our roundtrip flights and transfers via BPHT.  Boracay is one of my favorite summer destinations– the primary reason why I decided to have the our 6-day summer vacation there is the awesome powdery white sand beach.  There is something enigmatic with this paradise– something unexplainable that makes me keep coming back.

Supposedly, I have an important even scheduled on the 30th of April, but it was rescheduled due to some problems.  Since the trip was already prepared, all I need is to enjoy this long vacation before I finally face work this summer.

I would like to take advantage of our long stay, that is why 3 different hotels were lined up for my hotel review.  Here is the 6-day itenerary for my summer vacation.

April 29, 2018

-Depart from Manila to Caticlan

I chose to have a morning flight to enjoy the rest of the day.  This time, not only hubby and I will travel, but my family members as well.  They will be in another plane via Kalibo in the afternoon.

boracay airport

-Check in to Fairways & Blue Water.

 

-Tour of Fairways & Blue Water for my hotel review.  I alloted the whole day just to roam around the place and see their different pools, restaurants, and other facilities.  I will also check their spa for my Spa Detective Series.

– Night stroll @ White Beach (take out of dinner and buying of grocery                                      supplies).

firedancers

April 30, 2018-

-Restaurant Review

– Morning walk @ White Beach

– Private island Hopping @ 1pm

 

-Dinner and review of Mama’s Fish House

May 1, 2018       –

-Horseback Riding

– Transfer to Azalea Residences and hotel review

– LABORACAY celebration and feature

-family dinner and restaurant review

May 2, 2018 

-breakfast and restaurant review

– Parasailing

-Tirta Spa Review (for my Spa Detective Series)

treatment preparation

-dinner and restaurant review

May 3, 2018          –  Transfer to Estacio Uno

estacio uno seaside

-Terra Wellness Spa Review  (for my Spa Detective Series)

terra wellness2

-dinner and Restaurant Review

May 4, 2018 

-Last stroll in the island

-Depart from Caticlan to Manila

NOTE:  This is not yet final and could be updated for changes.  For suggestions of activities or place that you would like me to review, OR for collaborations, please contact me @ jasmine@thetravelbloggerinpink.com.