Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Discovery Shores Boracay: Best Luxury Resort in Boracay Experience (Part 1: Welcome, our junior suite, lunch at Sands, and sunset paraw sailing)

Highlights: Welcome home, Our Junior Suite, Lunch, and Paraw Sailing

Last year was nothing short of awesome. It was one of my best "traveling years" of my life. Having visited around 20 cities in more than 10 countries, I thank God for those experiences and I'd like to share some of those with you. Since it all happened the second half of the year, I had a hard time keeping up blogging about them. One of the most memorable was my Discovery Shores Boracay experience. You might wonder why Boracay was one of the best destinations I had last year when I went around mostly Europe and all over Asia. Read on to know why.
The cancelled flight
Our flight was at 9am. It was a Friday. When you've been living in Metro Manila long enough, you know that Fridays are one of the worst traffic days there is. We decided to head out to the airport earlier than usual to beat the traffic. Upon arrival, we learned that our flight was cancelled... BUT, since we were early, we were asked if we wanted to take an earlier flight instead! I was thinking like, "of course! We are going to Discovery Shores Boracay! We'll be happy to arrive at an earlier time!"

Upon arrival at Caticlan airport, you'll see the usual welcome greeters holding placards with names on them outside. Not Discovery Shores Boracay staff.. they were inside the luggage claim area, holding on to our names! After a short welcome introduction, the girl just said to us to point where our luggage are and another staff carried them for us to the van.

Exclusivity from the start
The van had Discovery Shores Boracay markings on it. It sorts of makes you feel proud to ride on it. It was a quick 3-minute van ride from the airport to the jetty. For all of those who have been to Boracay, you know that once you arrive in the jetty port, you'd somewhat be buying those port fees whatsoever and having to deal with porters bugging you. Well, Discovery Shores Boracay has their very own private jetty. This jetty is shared by a few exclusive resorts only so when we arrived, instead of those metal benches that are almost always full, we were brought to a lounge with almost no other people in. It was clean and well staffed.

After a short wait, our boat transfer is ready. It was an air conditioned speed boat, complete with clear windows to protect you from splashes but offering an unobstructed view while on the way to the island. As we embarked on the boat, we were offered moist towels and some quick snacks. Safety briefing was also like those done in airplanes but this time, for a sea vessel. Upon reaching the island of Boracay, we were welcomed by more "DSB" staff to transfer us to another premium private van.

During this flight, me and my wife were the only arriving guests for DSB. From the airport to the jetty to the boat to the land transfer going to the resort, the only passengers were the two of us. I'm sure if this were other resorts, they would have us waiting for other guests to arrive and give us all sorts of excuses. Not here at Discovery Shores. After 20 minutes, we finally arrive at Boracay's finest.

Check out the video of our transfer below:

Discovery Shores Boracay
Not a lot of resorts consider your pre-arrival important. It's part of the overall experience and DSB surely knows that well. Everything was well planned and coordinated. Remember that our flight was cancelled so we were moved to an earlier flight? One quick text message was all I needed to do to adjust our pickup time hours earlier from our planned arrival time. No phone calls to the resort, nor to anyone. It took a single SMS to adjust it.

Upon arrival, we were greeted by more staff. If I remember it correctly, up to this point, more than 10 different people have greeted me and my wife already. It's like you are coming home and not going on a vacation. Everyone is so friendly and accommodating. This is why I have a hard time blogging about other places I've been to. Nothing much to write about except maybe a beautiful scenery, room, or tasty food. Discovery Shores Boracay is full of well thought of details that it makes writing about it fun to the point that I am reliving the experience all over again.

After some welcome drinks at the main lobby, checking-in was a breeze. It was done AFTER we were escorted to our room. We were asked to fill-up and sign a form. Usually, you need pay for security deposit which will be refunded to you as you check out. If you will pay using a credit card, they have with them a portable credit card machine. In just a few minutes, you're done and ready for the welcome rituals. So far, I can say that they truly are the best luxury resort in Boracay!

Welcome Home -- Our Junior Suite
All rooms are suites here. The one we have was a junior suite. As we look around it, we noticed that it had a welcome banner with our name on it. On the side, there is a table with sweets on it. It had a welcome message written on it using syrup and icings. Part of the "welcome ritual" is the welcome foot wash, which was so fitting (pun intended) as you just traveled by land, air, and sea. It was so relaxing that my wife wanted to skip lunch and just sleep in the white, soft, cool bed.

Here's what our room looks like and the things you can find inside it:

Lunch @ Sands Restaurant
A few hops away from our room is the Sands Restaurant. That is where you also have your buffet breakfast. They do offer ala carte menu as well for lunch and dinner but at certain peak times, they offer buffet meals for lunch and dinner as well. The ambiance of the restaurant is light and relaxing. It's somewhat comparable to some of those Miami beach restaurants sans the vehicles coming and going. It has white walls with matching light colored accents and decors. Since the swing doors are all open, the air could freely pass through making you smell and feel the beach vibe even when inside the restaurant. The best part is, almost all the tables here has amazing beach views!

As a summary, here's what we had that lunch:
Kilawing Tanigue
Lumpiang Sariwa
Green Mango and Jicama
Green Mango and Bagoong
Bistek Tagalog
Adobo Fried Rice

As you can see above, we had a sumptuous Filipino meal! Some of the best sellers I can think of associated with Filipino dish was served and prepared deliciously by their in-house chef. I also requested for him to tell me a little bit about each of the dish served and he graciously accepted my request. Here's a quick video that lunch:

Prior to serving our orders, they also asked us if we were allergic to anything or to any specific type of food or ingredient. I believe that this is a sign that they always go the extra mile in all the things they. Boy, was I glad we brought with us a big appetite! As big as our appetite was, the dishes we got had huge servings so we ended up not finishing some of them. Having been to Boracay several times already, so far, our first 2 hours here in Discovery Shores Boracay already beat our 3 to 4 days stay elsewhere before!

No meal will be complete without dessert! Even though we cannot move because we were so full, we still had space for dessert. I always tell my wife that I believe that our stomach was made with a divider. 1 compartment for main meals and the other compartment for dessert! We had the best turon X banana split of our life! It was a Turon Banana Split dessert! 3 kinds of turon was served -- ube, langka, and sweet potato. It was topped with a generous serving of ice cream with a dash of mallows and cereals then with an ample amount of syrup overlay. It was a happy ending, indeed!

To check out more details on Sands Restaurant, please go to http://www.discoveryshoresboracay.com/bars-restaurants/sands-restaurant

It was a good relaxing 2-hour lunch. The timing was perfect as we had enough time for a siesta before our first sunset of the trip... while doing paraw sailing! Boracay has a marvelous sunset and is one of the many best places to view the sunset here in the Philippines having an amazing play of colors at times with the clear skies as a backdrop. If you plan to do paraw sailing in Boracay, there is no better time to do it than during sunset! Make sure to ask the boat guy that you want a sunset sailing.

Day 1 hasn'y ended yet. Wait for the part 2 of our Discovery Shores Boracay review.

Sunset Paraw Sailing
To know more about Discovery Shores Boracay and their other properties, visit:

Related Discovery Shores Boracay articles
Discovery Shores Boracay Review Part 1:
Discovery Shores Boracay: Best Boracay Experience (Part 1: Welcome, our junior suite, lunch at Sands, and sunset paraw sailing)

Discovery Shores Boracay Review Part 2:
Discovery Shores Boracay: Best Boracay Experience Ever (Part 2: Turn down service, the pool, and private dinner by the beach at Indigo)

Discovery Shores Boracay Review Part 3:
Discovery Shores Boracay: Best Boracay Experience Ever (Part 3: Breakfast buffet, massage, Italian lunch at Sands, and beach area)

Discovery Shores Boracay Review Part 4:
Discovery Shores Boracay: Best Boracay Experience Ever (Part 4: Going around the property, amenities, and the ultimate boodle fight dinner)

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