We booked a superior room with 2 double beds with their weekends away promotion for a day on Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010. We arrived at the hotel at noon, the first impression is the doorman, no greetings, no smile.
As we walked into the lobby and check in area, we noticed that there are quite a bit of call girls (the filipinos use the term Japayuki) lounging in the lobby lounge. Not good for a family like us to see this environment in a hotel that classified itself as a five star hotel.
We went to the check in desk, when finally is our turn the person at the check in desk told us that our room will be ready for us at 2pm. Since the hotel is nearby the Mall of Asia, we decided to wait for our room to ready at this mall.
When we arrived at 2:15pm, the check in desk looked a little chaotic. There were only 2 people handling all the check in/out, while there are many people trying to check in/out.
When it is finally it is our turn to be helped, the check in person told us that our room is still dirty and not ready. We thought, okay, maybe in a few more minutes, it's okay we can wait.
But when we asked how soon the room will be ready, we were told that our room will not be ready until at least 3:30pm. The person suggested that we waited at the lobby lounge while waiting for our room to be ready. Right away we thought, no way for us to wait in the lobby lounge with our 11 yr old daughter while there are call girls lounging there.
So we told the check in desk person that we do not want to wait and want our room right away as promised. She then frantically (although she tried to maintain calm) making call here and there to find available room.
After several attempts, she then told me that they cannot provide any room right away, and told me that we will have to wait for at least another hour. Because of that I insisted that I must be provided a room, because I do not want to waste my time waiting.
At that point she then, again, try to look around for available room, and finally offered us a Club room with 1 King Bed. We decided to settle with this offer, although our daughter might have to sleep on a sofa, or all three of us cramped on one bed.
As we walked in the room, we noticed the room was spacious enough for a Club room, although in many other five star hotels, the Club Room are more beautifully decorated. No fruits in the room (even in standard room of other four/five star hotels in Manila we always see a fruit plate at least). There is noipod dock station, the television is an old fashion tv.
There is a patio and the door to the patio is almost impossible to open, due to a water leak from above there seem to be a corossion on the sliding door.
The bathroom was quite spacious although we found another drawback, the curtain on the bathtub is only as wide as the tub itself, so if we shower, the water will spill all over the floor.
We decided to go to the swimming pool, and alas! In a hotel that claimed to be a five star, this swimming pool is maybe a standard from a non star hotel swimming pool. There is a pool bar, however it is in a condition that is not suitable to provide any service from there. It is dirty, dusty, corossion on some of metal door for their cabinetry.
There is a kid pool, but it is not functioning (it has a sign that it is under renovation).
The main pool has good clear water without having too much of chlorine to treat the water, so the water was good, however there were many tiles that either chipped or missing and was not replaced. We noticed some tiles were replaced with tiles that is not even matching in color with the whole pool tiles.
We decided to order some food while we were swimming, our finger food was delivered quick enough and our server asked us "is there anything else I can get you with?", while actually our noodles were not delivered yet, so I told him that he is missing our noodles.
Finally after sometime, he delivered the noodles, but maybe he thinks we should eat our noodles with our fingers because we were not served with our utensils and napkins. We had to call him to let him know about that.
Buffet breakfast was acceptable, with limited selection of local filipino food, bread and eggs to be cooked on order, pastries are also available. However, it is a no frills buffet breakfast for a five star hotel.
There is a casino in the hotel, however we did not go to their casino. There is also a business center that we did not utilize.
Location of the hotel is slightly away from the tourist belt of Manila, but close to the airport and the large Mall of Asia. Within walking distance we can easily find KFC, McDonald and local food joints.
Heritage Hotel Manila needs a MAJOR renovation, not just physical renovation but also service training renovation. This hotel cannot even be considered as a three star hotel, five star hotel will not have a swimming pool that is not maintained well, and five star hotel restaurant service will not forget to provide utensils and napkins for their customers.
Its standard cannot even be compared to other hotels from Millennium or Copthorne hotels that we have stayed like the 4 stars Copthorne Kings in Singapore, the 5 stars Grand Copthorne Waterfront and the Millenium Resort Patong.
Heritage Hotel Manila is not worth every pennies we spent, eventhough they have upgraded to the Club Room, even the Club Room is not up to par to 5 star hotels.
Unique Quality: Nothing is outstanding in this hotel that rated itself as a 5 stars in their website. Physically old and need major renovation, service staff is way below par to other international hotels in Manila area (i.e. Sofitel, Marriott, Shangri-la, Hyatt).
Directions: Near Manila International Airport and Mall of Asia