Monday, August 24, 2015

Club Paradise Palawan Review: Why they are the best hotel in Coron (With Hi-Res Photos)

It was a vacation more than 12 months in the waiting. Yes, we’ve waited for a long time to have a nice quick break after my wife gave birth to our son, Alex. Little did we know that giving the child the name ‘Alex’ also means we have to be ready as most of the Alex’s we know in the family are... let’s leave it at that. He’s a very energetic dude. So energetic that a nuclear power plant producing thousands of megawatts of power will be put to shame. This is why we badly want a quick vacation. (Disclaimer: We are not complaining. We are happy that he is a very energetic happy boy. Just putting to context how excited we are for a quick vacation).

The day of the our trip came. Everything went well. From our house to the airport, until we arrived in Busuanga airport. Everything was well. Or so we thought. Little did we know that the trip we thought was well was just starting to get even better! Upon coming out of the airport, we were warmly welcomed by Noel, a cheerful guy who is part of the welcoming team of Club Paradise resort. He was very courteous. Note that you will hear this word often in this post because this is what all the staff of Club Paradise showed towards their guests. This was also the last time we got hold of our luggages.

Private cruiser owned by Club Paradise Palawan for our last leg of transfer
Travel from the airport towards the resort starts by a van ride that is filled with trivia and stories from Noel. It was a 25 minute drive that seemed like 5 minutes only because we were entertained by him. As we reached the jetty port of Club Paradise Palawan (see map below, blue dot), it was raining. We were told to exit the van and leave our belongings behind and they will be the one to carry every single bit of it — including our camera bags and personal bags. Then, someone with umbrellas accompanied us and on the covered part of the jetty, we were handed our own umbrellas and straight we go to their cruiser to be ready for the final leg of our transfer to Club Paradise Palawan!

Tip: For those that are sensitive to motion sickness, have a bonamine before the van ride because it might be a bit shaky. Roads are usually damaged (bumpy) during the rainy season. It’s a fun off road experience for me though!

What a view!
As if all the special service was not enough, when the boat started to set sail, Noel handed us dry towels even though we weren’t getting wet from the rain. We were given snacks (sandwich) and water bottles, as well as welcome bracelets! With all the superb service and comfortable seats, It was a 40-minute boat ride to the island I don’t mind! During this ride, you get to pass by a mangrove lined river, a fishing village, and upon reaching the open sea, amazing views of what you can expect in an island being dubbed as the best island in the world!

As the boat docked by the shores of the Club Paradise Palawan resort, another set of welcoming committee greeted us. Warm moist towels were distributed to everyone and there’s no better time to freshen up than that moment and they knew that. Welcome band was playing tunes that’s enough to give you LSS for the rest of the day — ♪ ♫ ♩ ♬ “Welcome to Club Paradise”♪ ♫ ♩ ♬!

My already half done non-alcoholic margarita (welcome drink)
Then, we were all given their very own version of non-alchoholic margarita. It was good! Light, citrus-y, and cool that you’ll really feel the tropical vibe inside and out! We filled up a short form for check-in and we were handed our room keys! Up to this point, we haven’t held our luggages. They were delivered straight to our room. Beach front, baby!

Tip: Get beach front cottages. First, it’s nearer the main clubhouse, the restaurant, and the rest of the possible activities in the island. Second, you’ll have AMAZING views of the seas and be just a few steps away from the beach! Cottages are numbered 1 to 20 (Not sure of the highest number) and the arrangement is 1 being the nearest to the main club house.

Walking to our room, we already started to enjoy the ambient tranquil nature sounds. Birds chirping, waves splashing, and it was just the beginning. As we arrive in our cabin, two more ladies greeted us as we enter. Or so I thought (again. see the pattern? They might as well call this “surprise island”). This was the first time, among many other high-end resorts, that we were given a welcome foot wash! I think this is standard extra mile service across all their (Discovery group) properties. It’s a simple gesture but it definitely left a lasting mark. And, again, it was just the beginning.  Check out the inside of the room and let the photos tell the story:

Tastefully done, they really know how to make one feel comfortable and at home. That’s how I felt as soon as I entered our room. Surprises? I was actually expecting it already! From a photo frame with us in it, a "welcome home" printed banner, a bouquet of flowers, a plate of desserts, wow! I really thought the surprises would never end. They really know how to spoil their guests! And yes, the surprises didn’t end there.

It was around 3-4pm when we started to try exploring around the island. I love how peaceful it was. Walking on the white, fine sand while appreciating God’s wonderful creation. Absolutely amazing! The views were breathtaking. This wasn’t even sunset yet. There’s only 1 way to describe all what I saw — even if you have all the money in the world, you’ll only see what I enjoyed in THIS island. A unique beauty that words can’t justify.

Check out some of the sights we enjoyed on the island:

Activities available in Club Paradise Palawan

Island Hopping
Coron Island Tour
Island Escapade
Bottom Fishing
Calauit Safari Tour

In-island activities / Amenities in Club Paradise Palawan

Glow Spa
Bar (Dugong Bar)
Children’s Playroom
Table Tennis
Swimming Pool
Beach Area
Hiking Trail
Food tripping (@ Ocean Restaurant)
Bicycle/ Cycling

Believe me, you would first run out of time before you will run out of things to do. But if I were you, don’t stress yourself out too much on your vacation here. Palawan is known to be more for peaceful vacations rather while Boracay is known for activities and partying. I don’t mind both but this time, a peaceful vacation sounded perfect. The day we arrived, we did some snorkelling when the sun was not as intense already, around 430pm. We saw schools of fish and some nice corals just a few meters away from the shore. I highly recommend doing snorkelling near the area where you will dock on your arrival. It’s the area where you can see turtles, fishes, and other sea creatures common in Coron. I’ll upload a separate post containing videos I took so you know what to expect. During my second day there, I went island hopping. That will be detailed in another post as well.
We also tried the glass bottom kayak. It was enjoyable and a unique experience as I’ve only tried the normal kayak before. Still (not literally), my wife was a better “navigator” as my clumsy attempts to control the kayak ended us up floating in circles. It took around 10 minutes before I got the hang of it. It was around 7am when we started kayaking in front of the Ocean Restaurant area. There, we saw a schools of fish and a turtle and a HUGE turtle.

Tip: Reserve the glass bottom kayak the day you arrive. They only have 2 of those and the rest are normal kayaks.

Tip: Turtles sometimes surface. To spot where the turtles and where the schools of fish are, stop the kayak, be calm, and look around the surface of the sea. You’ll see bubbles and not the usual calm sea where these creatures are currently in. Highest chance to see these creatures are right in front of the Ocean Restaurant area (where you dock as you arrive or o go out of the island.)

Food tripping was one of our favorite activities as well. Check out my detailed post about it here (Ocean Restaurant @ Paradise review) but food tripping doesn’t stop outside the restaurant. Here, they have a turn down service where they will also bring snacks to you. One night, we got biko and another night, we got kuchinta. The first day, other than the usual turn down service, we received complimentary wine and cheese platter (with crackers) as a welcome gift from the management. Before I forget, the moment you arrive in your room, you’ll already have jars of snacks (nuts etc) and a platter of sweets as a welcome treat from Club Paradise! See? Who said you can only food trip in the metro?

I wanted to try the other activities but because of time constraints, I was forced to pick my favorite activities. If I stayed longer, I would have loved to try the hiking, cycling, foosball, and just lounging around the private hammock while reading a book outside our beach front patio. So setting priorities is important if you are only staying for a short period of time. So, I allocated time to try out Glow Spa.

Tip: It is HIGHLY recommended to stay in this island for at least 4d/3n.

During my second day, I went to the island hopping activity as I posted in another post. As soon as I arrived back in the island, the muscle strain and tiredness haven’t sinked in UNTIL after dinner. It was a good thing that I have made spa reservations prior because I was somewhat expecting it. No other perfect time to have a good massage. The package I got was the “Anti Stress massage”. If I could have that massage for the entire night, I would have loved it! The package was for 1 hour and it was already good enough. I don’t need to give you details on the massage itself but the next day, all my muscle pain were gone. As in literally gone like yesterday’s muscle strain was just a dream! Amazing! Worth every penny! Glow spa is open from 10am to 10pm.

Tip: Doing island hopping activities or any activities that might make you tired and get muscle strains? Book the “Anti Stress massage”! You’ll never regret it and you’ll leave all your muscle pain in the island and go home relaxed even though you had a tiring (but of course, fun) activity.

Before leaving the island, make sure to drop by their souvenir shop. It also acts as the in-island convenience store where you can buy basic stuff like snacks, napkins etc. Near the souvenir shop (outside it) is the clinic. Good to have a clinic in the island but of course, we don’t hope anyone to visit there. There’s also a KTV place, aquasports center where you can borrow water activity equipments (free), a pool, and inside the clubhouse, more of the usual activities like darts, billiards, foosball, some books, and dugong bar.

Here’s the thing with this vacation. As you arrive, you’ll be greeted “welcome home” by the staff. As you enter your cottage, you’ll see a welcome home banner with your names, a photo frame (in our case) by the bedside and more than what you can expect welcome surprises and more than the usual surprises  one can expect. Add the usual greeting they do, which is the usual good morning, afternoon, or evening and touching their heart while doing that. You’ll really feel they are very sincere and at home. With all that, I’m telling you this. It’s not going to be a pleasant experience leaving all that behind in the island. If you can now paint a picture on what I am saying, you’ll know that if you need a vacation where you can rest, relax, and do some activities, there’s no better island AND resort to visit when in Coron, Palawan. As I have mentioned in my Trip Advisor review, I’ve been to a lot of places both locally and internationally — high end to ultra exclusive resorts. But for some reason, this is one of the best among a lot of them. An island with exquisite views, superb service, and wonderful overall experience, guests in this island will surely have a hard time leaving the island but I bet you, the memories it can leave you, usually priceless, will last more than the few days you have spent there. Worth every single penny spent. I can’t wait to be greeted, “welcome home” again.

Surprise until before leaving!
For more info about the resort,

Club Paradise Palawan
Telephone: (+632) 7196971 / 7196972 / 7196973 / 7196988

Links to Club Paradise Palawan Social Media Accounts:
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | TripAdvisor

*Videos will be uploaded to our Youtube account. Links will be placed here as well*

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