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Reviewed June 1, 2022 via mobile

The Waterfront - Insular Hotel Davao , one of the "oldies" in the hotel business located in this sprawling super clean city with so much high rise buildings sprouting both for office spaces and of course for the booming tourism here (again -semi post COVID) . I first experienced the then Insular Hotel Davao ( not yet partnered with Waterfront group) back in the mid 90's . When it probably was the best hotel in the city , offered a nice bar (vinta bar) with someone playing the piano , food was very inviting , nightlife , crowd , ambience was 8 out of 10 combined. Hotel staff were different, more respectful , accommodating and pleasing . Not to take away anything from the present staff working , its usually management who calls the shots and trains their staff.

Back then after a long drive coming from the province of Sultan Kudarat ( 120kms away) , the minute you stepped in the hotel you wouldn't want to go anywhere anymore. The drive would be so tiring that after a bottle of White wine , served with your choice of seafood - grilled tuna , fresh shrimps , oyster and everyone's favorite inihaw na baboy (grilled pork belly) with hot steaming rice. That was it . No time for coffee nor a cigarette , it was straight to the comfy bed and cold airconditioned room blasting away. Now its a bit different , aircons not working properly , didn't even bothered checking what was being offered on the menu, waiters didn't know what to suggest for finger foods .... But how can I complain it still felt like being back home. (Of course I had to transfer room, one with an aircon blasting) . Overall it a 5 out of 10. Thank you Insular Hotel . We had good times together before. It's kept in my memory bank! Cheers.

Date of stay: June 2022
Trip type: Traveled on business
Thank patrickmH3745ZF
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed May 13, 2022 via mobile

Room 311/316

The good:
2 nights stay, first night in 311. We noticed that resort was half empty when we checked in, arrived early at noon, only one staff at front desk dealing with an exiting client issues, waited 30 mins for assistance, room wasn't ready, told to return at 3pm. That was fine, we returned at 630pm all good, but I asked for a room upgrade to pool side view, one available next day. So yes, the view is a world of difference instead of looking at a roof, big thanks for the upgrade. Very competitive beds, very beautifully kept grounds, very good breakfast buffet, and helpful and friendly staff.

The bad:
Very outdated room bathrooms, shameful for such a beautiful resort, slow drainage, and really feels like a cheap motel trying to stay alive, c'mon waterfront, fix it. Air conditioning was not good in either 311 nor 316, thermostats felt like just fixtures to look at. Furniture in rooms was acceptable, tv channels ok, WiFi abysmal and almost non existent. I came to this resort in 2005, and not much has changed in the rooms except newer tvs, and carpeting removed.

Overall:
This is a beautiful landmark and serene resort in a growing city, it deserves updates. I would even go as far as to say I liked it better than the Dusit Thani next door, because it offers what no other hotel in Davao City does, serenity, very friendly and helpful staff, a beach, great big pool, immaculate groomed grounds, but please fix it.

Room tip: Building 3 is closest to water, get a room there
Date of stay: May 2022
Trip type: Traveled with family
2  Thank hawagz
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed April 25, 2022 via mobile

So many problems
Pool
Was green, restaurant still
Not serving the proper
Menu using covid as an excuse everywhere
The other restaurant 5 dishes unavailable and no wine the only bottle they had was off
Every time everything was blamed on covid !! We had an upgraded room but the wi fi didn’t work

Date of stay: April 2022
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Thank Dreamer58856439469
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed April 24, 2022 via mobile

Been coming for many years. While the grounds and location are still excellent, the service and building maintenance is poor. It took 2 hours for someone to correct a tv fault. At 10am...now..... there is no hot water! Yes none! The air-conditioning is hot around 26 and uncomfortable.
This hotel has sadly sunk to 2 star Philippino rating. New management is needed. If you want value find another hotel.

Date of stay: April 2022
Trip type: Traveled as a couple
Thank Navigate49728731171
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed April 22, 2022

Sure there are newer places (if multistory hotel rooms are your thing). But the grounds and relaxation at Waterfront Insular are beautiful. Just being around all the coconut trees and immaculate landscaping when walking around the pools, beach and ocean are wonderful. The morning breakfast is essential to purchase ahead of time, so good and plentiful. Its great to be outside under the canopy there and just soaking in the tropical vibe. You can have drinks by the pool, wish they had live music though as it would be perfect for that sort of ambiance. The rooms are a bit dated, but so what is my opinion. Its part of the old school charm of this place. ALL the staff are so friendly, from the daily housekeeping to the servers and cooks at the restaurants. If you want to just take a walk for some fast food nearby is Jollibee, McDonalds and Chow King right outside the gated Waterfront complex entrance. Also a Choice Mart convenience store is there for beers and sodas and snacks nearby for chilling in your room. Vacationing is what you make it, this place can be a great time if you are fun and not super picky. Keep up the good work.

Date of stay: April 2022
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank 4AVICII
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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