TBIP’s Microtel Baguio Review 2017

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When we go to the Summer Capital of the Philippines, we always pass by Microtel Inn & Suites in Upper Session Road.   I couldn’t help but to notice the cute blue structure next to Te Quiero Tapas & Bar Restaurant and Victory Liner.  It was just recently that I discovered that there is a shortcut from Te Quiero leading to Victory Liner Bus Terminal.

We traveled last month via Joy Bus because I thought that Victory Liner doesn’t have De Luxe so I didn’t bother to check.  (That was actually my fault!)  From the drop off point, we had to get a cab to bring us to the hotel (which was more of a hassle).  I was contacted by the reservations staff few days before we travel and I told them that our arrival will be around 9am, but because we had the non-stop bus, we have reached Baguio City at 7:30am.  There were no available rooms yet so I just settled the full payment and we just left the luggages in the front desk.  After few hours of strolling in Burnham Park and Botanical Garden, we went back at 1pm and luckily, we got a room. 

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Because we were dead tired when we checked in, I wasn’t able to take photos of our 2 Queen Beds Room.  As the name already describes, the room has two queen beds and a daybed.  I inspected the bathroom– it was ok, there were free toiletries but the shampoo was too small and obviously it wasn’t enough for all of us there.  I couldn’t help but to compare it to the other hotels we’ve checked in before.  If there is a kid or another person, he or she would be included in the toiletries.  On Day 1, we only had two toothbrushes.  We just bought another one in a pharmacy near the hotel the following morning.

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On our Day 2, we left the room unorganized, with towels, clothes and pairs of shoes everywhere, but to our surprise, when we came back, it was clean.  Hehehe, I just noticed that we left the sign on the table (we didn’t do that on a purpose but thanks to the staff!).  Also, they placed a new small bottle of shampoo and two boxes of toothbrush and replaced the towels.  (Too late because we already bought another toothbrush and sachets of shampoo and conditioner because I didn’t like the scent of their shampoo).

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Unlimited Coffee

If there is one thing that I like with Microtel aside from its very convenient location is that they have free flowing cofee in the lobby.  There is also a hot/cold water dispenser so you don’t have to spend much in buying bottled water.  Another thing, even if Baguio has already a cool weather, they still have airconditioning in the rooms.  In the other hotels, they do not have aircons anymore– they only provide fans.

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Mang Domeng, our private driver and tour guide in Day 3

If you will go out, taxi drivers are already waiting outside the hotel to drop you where you will go.  If there is none, the guard will help you look for one.  Unfortunately, it was peak season when we visited so it was seldom that we find a cab outside the hotel.  We were able to book Mang Domeng in our Baguio Day 3 Tour because he gave us his contact number the day when we arrived.

The room rate is quite reasonable already @ P3,300 per night with free breakfast.  (My review about Te Quiero will be in a separate post).

In our last night in Baguio, I found out that my booking with Joy Bus didn’t get through, so in my pajamas, we went to Victory Liner to purchase tickets.  There were many people on queue, but we patiently waited for our turn, and ALAS!  After an hour and few minutes, around 1 pm, it was already our turn and luckily, we were able to book bus tickets to Cubao at 9:50 am.

The check out was a breeze, the staff were efficient and we even got luggage help from the room to the bus station.  How convenient it was!

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If you plan to have a Baguio trip, I recommend Microtel Inn & Suites, however; there are things that they need to improve:

  1.  Give enough toiletries (shampoo and conditioner please!)
  2.  Provide iron and ironing board in the rooms.  My clothes were crumpled in my bags.
  3. One closet isn’t enough for 2 adults (probably that will work for others, but I was the only one to utilize the closet.  Hubby and my kid used their bags in storing their clothes.
  4. Consider having a fitness center and spa in the hotel.

These are just minor things, but if they will consider, it will give them a higher rating.   Other than that, no more complains— we LOVE Microtel Baguio and we will definitely be back!

MICROTEL INN & SUITES BAGUIO

Upper Session Road, Baguio City

(074) 619 3333

https://www.microtel-baguio.com

 

 

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Baguio Trip 2017 Day 2

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Our previous day in Baguio was kinda stressful because of our struggle in finding a cab and Grab car, so we decided  to just explore some places in the morning by walking.  We went to Te Quiero Tapas Bar & Restaurant at 6:30 a.m for our free breakfast buffet which was already included in our room accommodation in Microtel Inn.  After our breakfast, we walked from our hotel to the market.  It was fun discovering places and burning some calories at the same time.

Breakfast @ Te Quiero

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We followed the signs to know where the market was

We passed by the Igorot Stairs and were impressed by the giant statues.  There are restaurants in the area like Pamana Restaurant, Barrio Fiesta and Tsokolateria.  As much as I would like to try the hot chocolate and some food there, we had to go right away because we have an appointment after lunch.

 

 

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SM Baguio

We also passed by Casa Vallejo and North Haven Spa.  We walked until we reached SM Baguio and walked again until we reached the market at Session Road.   There were Ukay-Ukay finds, but the clothes and footwear were kinda expensive that’s why we haven’t bought anything there except for my daughter’s brand new pair of slippers.   (Too bad, Microtel Inn Baguio doesn’t include free pair of slippers in the room.)  As usual, we didn’t find a cab AGAIN so it was a wise decision to walk back to the hotel from the market.

I finally saw North Haven Spa in Casa Vallejo but it has a creepy feeling that will make you have second thoughts of going there.  Honestly, I wasn’t impressed with the exterior, but I haven’t tried the service yet so I can’t judge it yet based from what I see from the outside.

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We walked from the Igorot Stairs to the Session Road

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While waiting at the Microtel entrance

When we got back to the hotel, we rested for a while and had our lunch (sandwich and water for me since I am on a diet).   We were picked up by Ms. Jonie Flores, marketing consultant of JIC English Academy Baguio before 1pm and we had a tour of JIC Baguio located at 73 Nacia Apts, Upper West Kennon Road Camp 7, Baguio City.  It’s interesting to know that finally, there is an English academy in Baguio that offers accomodations to students who are enrolled in their courses.  Just to share,  I am a licensed teacher here in the Philippines (currently teaching English to Grade 8 students) and also a certified TESOL teacher (I got my certification online via LTTC-The London Teacher Training College).  Before I got hired in DepEd, I planned to study onsite in Thailand, but I need to consider the tuition fee and other expenses, so I looked for a school here in the Philippines and the only city offering TESOL in 2009 was Cebu.  I opted to enroll online instead and tried my luck in Deped Antipolo.  I didn’t know about JIC Baguio; otherwise, I would have enrolled there.  I will have another blog post about JIC Baguio– watch out for that!)

 

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With Mr. Takashi Mitsumoto, part of the JIC Baguio Marketing Team in their famous wall.

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The IB/IELTS Center

After the JIC Baguio Tour and meeting some of the managers, head teachers and some foreign students, I had the chance to meet the President, Mr. Leo Im in one of his restaurants, the Baguio Red Station in 12 Legarda Road.  Beside it is a bakery that he owns, Le Vain Bakery.

 

 

We also visited the main branch in Outlook Drive and I was not surprised why many people go there and why they have positive reviews.  The Korean bakery is pleasant to the customers’ eyes not only with the cute interior design, but because of the variety of breads and pastries that they offer.  (I will have a separate post about Le Vain Bakery to showcase the breads and pastries that they offer).  We were able to taste some of their cakes and they were all DIVINE.  My diet was ruined, but it was a temptation that I won’t regret for the rest of my life, hahaha!

The sweet temptations @ Le Vain Bakery

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With Ms. Jonie Flores (Marketing Head of JIC English Academy) and Mr. Leo Im (President of JIC Baguio and owner of Le Vain Bakery)

 

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i had the chance to strike a pose with the Korean manager in Le Vain Bakery

After that, we headed to Samgyeop Pocha and a dinner was arranged for us at 7pm.

 

While waiting because it was too early, we went to Café Lusso in Gen. Luna Road cor. Assumption Road, one of the popular cafes in Baguio City.  I won’t let the day pass of course without having coffee there, but unfortunately there was no hot Café Mocha that time so I just had the cold one.

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Cafe Lusso

 

Because my hubby was not feeling well and was having LBM at that time and bad timing that we couldn’t get a cab, we were not able to go back to Samgyeop Pocha for dinner.  After waiting for almost an hour, we finally got a cab back to Microtel.  I transferred the payment for the bus tickets online to Iwantseats.com for a hassle-free trip (I didn’t know that it will be a total disaster!)  We slept early to recharge our bodies because we booked for a whole day Baguio tour the next morning.

NOTE:  I promise to feature the food in Baguio Red Station, Samgyeop Pocha and Café Lusso the next time I visit Baguio City. I might be able to feature the rooms in their dorm in JIC Baguio.  Thank you so much to JIC English Academy for making this post possible.

Baguio Trip 2017 Day 1

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Because we wanted to make the most of our trip to Baguio, I have carefully planned about our 4-day itinerary.  I have booked in advance via Iwantseats,com for our Joy Bus Deluxe Bus (non-stop trip from Manila to Baguio) which makes the trip 4 to 5 hours only.

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We chose to leave at 3:30 am so we can get to Baguio at around 8:30 to 9 am, but since there was no traffic, we reached Baguio City at 7:30 am.  We headed to Microtel Baguio but unfortunately there was no available room at that time yet so we had to leave our luggages and go to other places.  I settled the payment first for 4d/3n stay and after getting my receipt and luggage claim stub, we left to enjoy our first day in the city of Pines.

 

We went to Burnham Park and as expected, we were awestruck by the beauty of nature.

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The famous Strawberry Taho

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We were surprised to find out that plain taho costs P35 and plain taho is P25.  Honestly, there was nothing special with the taste and I find it overpriced.

We decided to proceed to Botanical Garden since there was a sudden change with my schedule.  We were having a hard time finding a cab, but after few minutes we were able to find one.  We had lunch first at The Garden Diner since it was already past 11am when we got there and we were planning to explore the area before we go back to the hotel to check in at 2pm.

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The Garden Diner @ Botanical Garden

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That was catually my third time in the Diner and for the previous visits, we had iced delights but this time, we got to taste their food.

We were satisfied with the food and because we were already fueled up for the afternoon, we explored Botanical Garden.  It’s a must-visit place especially if you would just like to admire the beauty of nature.  Looking at the colorful flowers will make you feel relaxed and forget that you were exhausted.

 

 

 

Credits to my husband (Emmanuel G. Dedomo)  for this video.

It was already past 1pm when we got back to Microtel Inn.  I apologize because I do not have photos of the Queen beds room because we were dead-tired during that time and all we wanted to do is to lay down and rest for a while.  After an hour that seemed like eternity, I cancelled a visit to a cafe because we had difficulty in finding a ride.  It was almost 5pm when we finally got a ride to Camp John Hay.  We headed to the Filling Station and we were really starving but the place was jampacked with people.  We waited for the pizza for almost 40 minutes.  The next time you visit CJH I suggest you just bring your own food and eat at the picnic area instead.

It was past 6pm when I have reached Belfrei Spa in Ayala Technohub.  I was supposed to have their Belfrei Pamper Package, but since I was in a hurry, I settled for the Indulge Package instead (facial, foot spa and massage).  I totally forgot how exhausted I was because I felt relaxed that I fell asleep while we were having the combination of Swedish and Thai massage.  I’ve been to spas in different places but Belfrei Spa massage can be in the first spot (together with Tirta Spa Boracay).  You will find out more about this in my separate post about Belfrei Spa.

Belfrei Spa can be found at the 2nd floor of Ayala technohub (atop Pizza Volante).

After the relaxing Indulge Package that I had from Belfrei Spa, we went to Red Rustikz for dinner.

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Red Rustikz at  Upper Gen. Luna Road

My review of Red Rustikz will be in a separate post.  After dinner, we headed back to Microtel and had a good night sleep.

Note:  Honestly, we didn’t enjoy much of our first day because it was stressful on our part to find cabs.  Bring your car if you have so it won’t be much of a hassle or arrange for somebody to tour you around Baguio.  I enjoyed Burnham Park, Botanical Garden, The Graden Diner  and especially Belfrei Spa.  It’s only the transportation that made our Day 1 stressful.

 

My Baguio 4-Day Itinerary 2017

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It’s been a tradition for me to go to the City of Pines every year and probably it was blessing in disguise when we rescheduled our trip after Christmas due to the typhoon last August.  We were not able to refund the bus tickets, but thanks a lot to Microtel Baguio because they granted our request to rebook.

I have already experienced to go to Baguio City after Christmas and as expected, the places were jampacked with people.  It was very difficult for us to have taxi or private car rides. Anyway, though the case is like that, it’s relaxing to bond with your family and lucky for me— it’s like hitting two birds with one stone!  It’s actually family bonding and press trip at the same time 🙂  To be organized, I designed a 4-day itinerary for out Baguio trip.

baguio day 1

9:00 am-  Arrival to Baguio City

9:00-9:30 am– Leave the luggages to Microtel Baguio Frontdesk

10:00am–  Cafe Review

12:00 nn.–  Lunch

1:00 pm- Check in and unpack

3:00 pm– Camp John Hay Strolling

4:00 pm-Spa Review

8:00-8:30 pm-  Restaurant Review

9:30-10:00 pm-  Back to the hotel to have a good night sleep

baguio day 2

7:00 am- Breakfast

8:00-12 nn– Strolling and lunch

(Mines View Park, Burnham Park, Wright Park, Botanical Park, The Mansion, Grotto, etc.)

1:00pm- 7:00 pm – Cafe and Restaurant Reviews

7:30-8:00 pm- Go back to the hotel

baguio day 3

 

7:00 am- Breakfast

8:00-11:00 am- Strolling, Biking, Horseback Riding and Pasalubong Shopping

12nn–  Cafe Review

2:00-6:30 pm- Spa Review

7:30 pm- Restaurant Review

8:30-9:00 pm- Go back to the hotel

day 4 baguio

7:00 am Breakfast

8:00-9:30 am– Strawberry Farm

10:00-11:00 am- Buy veggies at the supermarket

11:30 am- Check Out

12:00 nn – Restaurant Review

2:00 pmProceed to the bus terminal

 

There might be some changes but at least there is something that we will follow for an organized trip this Christmas break.  I will be posting about this very soon.  HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

TBIP’s Upcoming Baguio Trip

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Hello!  Since December is the only month this year where I can have a short break and unwind, I decided to have my press trip in Baguio City.  We are really busy and we still have work until 22nd and a lot of parties and other events are also scheduled that’s why I have chosen to have our vacay on the 27th til the 30th of this month.  We will be staying in Microtel Baguio (one of my favorite places to stay when I am in Baguio).

In our four-day stay in the Summer Capital of the Philippnes, I will be featuring different cafes, restaurants, bakeries/pastry shops and spas to visit.  (Watch out for that- I will be posting these establishments in my Facebook and Instagram account as well.)

Aside from that here are the activities that we will be having:

  1.  The Lourdes Grotto Challenge
  2.  Pasalubong Shopping
  3.  Strawberry Picking
  4. Horseback Riding and Biking
  5.  Oh My Gulay (Vegetables)  and Fruits Haggling Challenge
  6.  Halukay sa Ukay-Ukay

Originally, we are booked only until the 29th but since I have a lot of businesses to feature, I extended another day.  Thank you, Microtel Baguio for granting my request 🙂    I will see if I can still squeeze some time to have more activities.  Any suggestions?  Feel free to leave a comment below.