Gloomy weather, flight cancellation, a big travel extravaganza that put a hurt on the wallet—who cares about these when we can opt for a staycation? First, what is a staycation? Glad you asked! 🙂 It’s a fancy term for “stay-at-home vacation” or by definition, a vacation spent in one’s home country rather than abroad.
Now let’s admit it, most of us have spent more time going to places outside the country than we have sites to travel to on our own town or area. We tend to dismiss exploring the local regions because of the assumption that going there is easier as we wish. But by having stuck with this same thought every time, we’re missing out on wonderful places around us that showcase great explorations.
Case in point: F1 HOTEL MANILA in 32nd Street, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, Metro Manila. 😀
I’ve read reviews on F1 Hotel Manila and I’ve also seen the pictures online. Thanks to “Daddy” Richie‘s recommendation and Boss Spanky’s invitation, my mom, sister and I had the most awesome time at this hotel last weekend. 😀
After parking at a secured car park slot at Basement 3 of F1 Hotel Manila without any hassle, we set foot at the fifth floor where we were greeted by the friendly hotel staff and met another early bird, Jeng of www.foodinthebag.com with his companion. We felt so welcomed, as we were offered treats at the Premier Lounge.
For this coming Halloween, F1 Hotel Manila is featuring the Marvel theme, and this explains why the cookies have the Hulk and Green Lantern’s symbol on them. Good-looking and delicious pastries have the magic, always and forever, to draw us in and put smiles on our faces. 🙂
Our two-day staycation itinerary was delivered via this cute piece of rolled paper tied to a Christmas ball. From there, I knew—F1 Hotel Manila would be making us experience how it is to stay in a “Home of Happy Experiences.”
Top 7 Staycation Activities to Do in F1 Hotel Manila (Bonifacio Global City, Philippines)
1. Indulge with Food
We had the Christmas lunch buffet, an awesome barbecue dinner and the buffet breakfast at the F Café. Chef Sau Del Rosario is no longer their executive chef and for now the kitchen team is being handled by Sous Chef Pierre Tan. Anyway, food was still great. F Café presents a wide array of dishes for an enjoyable meal, we pretty much loved everything that came out of their kitchen. Here is the Review of F Café / F All Day Dining (F1 Hotel Manila, Bonifacio Global City).
2. Surf Online
We appreciated the free, fast and reliable Internet connection everywhere in the hotel. The availability of free Wi-Fi is an important factor for choosing where to stay. As for any purpose of the travel, people nowadays want to be connected online.
Since residents of F1 Hotel Manila, as we observed, are mostly holidaymakers and business travelers, it’s good that the hotel’s Internet connection wasn’t at all disheartening. Laptop users can also make use of the LAN cable in the room to work and maintain constant contact with clients and the office.
3. Relax and Have a Massage (Spa & Wellness Center)
F1 Hotel Manila offers a nice massage for hotel guests. My mom and sister received a relaxing Swedish massage from the masseuse who went to our room.
The massage therapist was pleasant, professional and obviously experienced. She spent more time than what’s expected and offered kind advice to Mom who’s suffering from some leg pains. She paid careful attention to problem areas and used an appropriate amount of pressure, quickly adjusting her technique based on response. These prompted us to give a service tip she deserved.
We also visited the Spa & Wellness Center at the 3M floor, where hotel guests can have the massage service as well. I just wondered why the beds are arranged side by side in one room with a bath tub at the side with no curtains or any walls in between. What about privacy issues of people who don’t know each other? I guess the room will be booked exclusive to a family or a group of friends who are comfortable to be in the setup.
Furthermore, the Spa & Wellness Center has a sauna room for those who just want to steam and like to stay hot.
4. Go Out
Staycation activities are not limited inside the building. There are lots of exciting places to go around at Bonifacio Global City, and a number of them (e.g. SM Aura, Market! Market!, Serendra, etc.) are just a walking distance away from F1 Hotel Manila. Mom was thrilled to go to S&R Membership Shopping for some retail therapy immediately after seeing it nearby. Upon hearing this, Jane of www.sugargospice.com was really sweet to offer us to use her membership card. Yay! Thank you so much, Jane! 😀
5. Sleep and Stay Sound
F1 Hotel Manila has these room types with the respective published rates:
- Deluxe Room (PhP 9,500 per night)
- City Suite (PhP 10,700 per night)
- Fort Suite (PhP 13,100 per night)
Each is good for 2 adults and 2 kids. The rate is inclusive of breakfast, applicable taxes and service charge.
We stayed at the Fort Suite. Checking in was seamless. The staff gave us the access key cards to tap on the elevator and on our room door, and they promised to bring us our luggage thereafter.
We got into the room easily and were super awed by its coziness and beautiful design. An abstract painting on the wall welcomed our view, providing a visual link in the background. A few steps brought us to the “living room” area which obviously has all of requirements. It’s very clean and spacious, equipped with an air conditioning unit, a sofa bed, telephone and television on a work/study table, stand lamp, cabinets, kitchen counter and a mini refrigerator.
The big windows with the view of the neighborhood made the ambiance shimmer in the mid-day light. There were plenty of outlets (to charge our gadgets), and the TV had plenty of channels. We were also happy that there’s a full-length mirror that’s perfect for checking out our outfit, ensuring there’s nothing stuck in our teeth or other things I’m sure you can imagine. 🙂
It didn’t take five more minutes before we heard the door bell ring. It was the hotel staff carrying our bags and another staff carrying the folding bed (pull-out bed) that he placed beside the sofa bed nicely. My mom and sister jumped in right away to test the comfort of the bed. As you can see in the picture, it passed! The pillow was fluffy yet adequately firm.
Moving on, there’s a door separating the living room and the bedroom, assuring that privacy never feels intruded. As in the living room, the bedroom has thick blackout curtains that prevent sunlight from waking you up from a good night’s dream. The bed was plush and the bedding, including the sheets and comforter, was high quality, so make sure to set an alarm clock if you have to wake up earlier than your body clock is set for. It felt like sleeping on top of the cloud. Weeeee! 😛
There’s also an LCD TV mounted on the wall and a cabinet which has an existing closet light.
Inside the closet were a full-size ironing board, an iron, hangers, a mini vault, hotel slippers, bathrobes and weighing scale. We got plenty of space to put our stuff.
Attached to the bedroom, the bathroom looked lovely and elegant with minimalistic interior. It had one of those modern waterfall shower heads installed with the right water pressure. The hot water made showering feeling good after going through the rainy weather. Temperature was easy to control.
The glass door doesn’t have a latch but it’s great that it has seals that stop puddles of water from leaking out of the shower area. Toiletries available were nicely scented shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, tissue paper, shower cap, razor/shaver, and body lotion. The face towels, hand towels and bath towels provided were wonderfully clean and soft.
6. Work Out at the Gym (F1 Hotel Manila’s Fitness Center)
F1 Hotel Manila’s gym at the 3M floor is quite small for more than 10 people to be accommodated. But the good thing is that it’s open for hotel guests 24/7. There are three treadmills (my cardio favorite), two stationary bikes, one stepper (also a great way to elevate the heart rate), weights, a yoga ball and other machines at the back.
7. Swim – Infinity Lap Pool, Kiddie Pool and Family Pool
We planned to go swimming but then it rained on a Saturday afternoon. I hoped that the swimming pool area could be covered with a roof that can protect us against the sun rays and rain and that can slide open to the sky on balmy days. Anyway, it was fun watching the kids splash around in the kiddie pool the next day.
The family pool was great for a refreshing dip as the water’s not too deep as the infnity pool so both kids and adults can play and waddle in the water.
The infinity pool looked most inviting and mesmerizing against a spectacular view of the city. I’d have to say it’s one of the main attractions and highlights in this hotel. Shame that I could not try to even swim a lap because I had some signs of a common cold last Sunday and the water was just soooo cold. For sure, I won’t pass up the chance to swim in the infinity pool the next time we book for a stay at F1 Hotel Manila! 🙂
Recently, I was again realizing that life is too short not to spend time with people you love and do things together that you love. If you want a short break and are looking for a great place to stay for a vacation and a perfect bonding time, know that F1 Hotel Manila in BGC for a staycation should not be skipped, especially in this coming holiday season. It’s a top notch hotel in Metro Manila where you can take refuge and a nice dose of luxury at a reasonable price. There’s so much more to rave about, but do yourself a favor and come visit F1 yourself. You will not regret it. 😉