Corner A. Santos Street and Johnny’s Street Balibago, Angeles City Philippines.
Tel: (045) 892-0134 or (045) 625-6335
The Wild Orchid hotel was opened in July 2005. At the time it was looked upon by the sceptical locals as a “white elephant”. Comments like “a big plush hotel like that will never work”, “an expensive hotel on blow road doesn’t make sense”, “Who will stay there? We are talking about Angeles here not Manila”. Comments like these could be heard every day but the boys from the Orchid Inn were unperturbed. They persevered and the result is a magnificent high end hotel which is amongst the best in the region.
As I have said in previous articles, the face of Angeles is changing and leading the way are hotels like The Orchid Inn, Wild Orchid, and the ABC. The first one to herald the changes was the Orchid Inn. Taking advantage of its centralized location it underwent extensive renovation with a new pool and new wings being built. When this proved to be an outstanding success they then started planning the Wild Orchid.
Originally the plot where the Wild Orchid now stands was a series of blow job bars with some shanty like dwellings out back. These were all bought up in 2003 and rapid development began on what was to become the Wild Orchid Resort.
From the very start anybody who took the time to look could see this hotel was going to be grandiose and in my opinion it certainly lived up to early expectations.
At the front door you are greeted by the immaculately presented security guards and two large wooden tigers. The moment you walk into the lobby a feeling of luxury and spaciousness is conveyed. The lobby area is large and brightly lit with New Zealand Maori artwork dominating the scenery. There is an abundance of wood carvings ranging from wooden tigers through to large Maori tikis providing a nice juxtaposition with the modern architecture.
As you look round the lobby the scene is dominated by the giant chandelier then your eyes are inevitably drawn to the Maori wooden statues that seem to almost great you personally.
To the left hand side is the Wild Orchid reception desk. Here, efficiency and organisation are the order of the day. At the front desk there is everything you need. The money exchange rates are clearly advertised, world time is shown on wooden clocks. two overhead fans cool things down while you are waiting for information about Angeles city or information about the hotel. Wherever possible everything is computerized.
Best of all are the renowned receptionists. I say renowned because in my opinion these are the best trained receptionists in Angeles. They are always smartly dressed, full of useful information, courteous and efficient. They all speak excellent English and are only too pleased to help you any time of day or night. I have seen them handle the complete gamete of questions and not once have I seen them confused or flustered. Best of all, if they don’t know the answer to your questions they will go out of their way to find the answer for you. When it comes to booking rooms, organizing extra linen, changing rooms or any general enquiries these girls have the place at their fingertips and will always find a way to help you.
Initial impressions are all important and in this respect the Wild Orchid does not disappoint. The spaciousness, sun-lit high ceilings, clean polished floors and wooden carvings combine together to create an impression of relaxed organization perfect for an up-market hotel in Angeles.
There are also additional little touches like a free internet service for hotel patrons and a travel agency that make the Wild Orchid experience all the better. Both are located in the main lobby area.
At the end of the lobby is a semi spiral staircase which leads up to two floors of rooms, totalling approximately 50.
Deluxe rooms Php 3900.00
Balcony rooms Php 4400.00
Veranda rooms Php 4900.00
Jacuzzi rooms Php 4900.00
Garden Suite/Jacuzzi Php 5900.00
My personal favourites are the balcony rooms overlooking the pool area. They are the right size the right price and there is always something interesting to view from the balcony.
All rooms feature a comfortable queen size bed with a conveniently placed large mirror right beside the bed. The mirror is an essential feature for the customers viewing pleasure. The rooms are currently being upgraded to include king size beds.
Every room has a large TV and DVD player, a small writing desk should the desire to correspond overcome you, and of course, a fully stocked mini bar
Hot and cold showers with excellent water pressure and sufficient room in the shower area for two and enjoy some water sports activities. There is also a decent sized bathtub in each room. These are a rarity in Angeles which is a pity as baths with Filipinas are truly a delight. There is extensive use of marble and mirrors in every bathroom.
The balcony rooms feature a decent sized balcony with a small table and two wicker chairs. Each balcony has panoramic views of the pool and tropical garden setting down below. The balconies are the perfect place to sit back, relax with a cool drink and watch the comings and goings of guests and their Filipina partners. It’s amazing how many female friends you will see coming and going.
The first thing I noticed about the rooms was the air conditioning. It is excellent - extremely quiet and it cools down the room almost instantly. I was very impressed with this and mistakenly thought it was centralized air-conditioning only to find there was a split type air-conditioner mounted on the wall above the sliding balcony door.
* 24 hour room service
* 24 hour bar
* 24 hour security
* Cable TV in all rooms
* Fully stocked mini bar
* All rooms fully air-conditioned
* Internet LAN all rooms
* DVD players all rooms
* Full laundry service available
* Good sized bathrooms with bathtubs
* Queen size comfortable beds
* Thick glass doors to the balcony area ensuring peace and quiet
The garden suite / jacuzzi rooms are at ground level and are bigger than the balcony rooms. At the time of our visit they were all occupied so we couldn’t get shots of the inside however no such problems for the outside balcony. These rooms are literally a stone’s throw from the pool and they have thick sliding glass doors as well as plush curtaining ensuring your peace and privacy.
You will notice how the Wild Orchid is named as a resort rather than as a hotel. This name clearly demonstrates the owners concept which, in my opinion, they have achieved extremely well. The tropical resort feel is very much conveyed by the huge swimming pool in a lush garden setting along with the popular open air restaurant.
As you stroll around the resort it seems like the whole place is built around the pool and tropical garden.
The garden is large and features seating for up to 100 people. There are comfortable chairs situated around the pool along with 10 banana chairs - perfect for those wishing to work on their holiday tan. There are other plastic chairs conveniently placed throughout the garden and also next to the tables.
There are seven sets of tables and chairs placed under giant umbrellas which provide the much sought after shade when dining. The tables can fit up to six people seated around them and they are very popular with guests and locals alike. This is a great place to take your honey-ko or even the extended family. Here they can enjoy a swim in the pool, a delicious meal or just a relaxing cool drink whilst soaking in the tropical ambience.
Currently, if you are not a guest or a guest of a guest there is a 500 peso per person fee for using the swimming pool. This fee is consumable and the idea is that you will buy drinks and food.
This is also the perfect area for parties, weddings, or any get together involving a large number of people. In the far right hand corner is a podium where they perform marriages have live bands etc. Catering can also be provided for any big events.
The pool is without a doubt the best in Angeles. It is meticulously cleaned every day and there are separate sections allowing swimmers to get the most out of it. For those of you wishing to simply get some exercise in the form of laps there are the marked lane lines. For those of you who wish to just cool of there are two smaller pools with sunken chairs where you can enjoy a cool drink as you bathe in the pool.
For the social swimmer there is a shallow end with a bubble fountain in the middle. In this section there are a series of gently sloping steps and on sunny days you will normally find a host of locals reclining on these steps escaping the heat, half in half out of the water. There are two separate little swimming pools which have sunken seats. This is the perfect area for a little chat with some friends or your chosen honey-ko without getting too hot.
Another feature of this pool is the famous outrigger bar. The outrigger features two separate small swimming pools with seats sunken in the water. The outrigger has a sunken bar area which people can sit around whilst still being in the water. They serve food and drinks here and on hot summer days there’s no place better to enjoy the now famous frozen margaritas by the pitcher.
The food at the Wild Orchid has always been of the highest quality. At the far right hand corner there is an open air canteen sort of area which serves a superb collection of snacks and meals. This is the home of the famous Wild Orchid bar-b-que and features everything from steaks through to sausages, pork and chicken dishes.
Another highly rated aspect of the Wild Orchid is its restaurant. The restaurant is open air where people sit around a central bar area or at separate tables situated throughout the restaurant. This restaurant is extremely popular with the locals and tourists alike. At just about any time of day or night you will find some of the local AC identities seated around the bar area enjoying a drink some food and a good yarn.
The restaurant is undercover and they have a television with a satellite link playing various sporting events 24 X 7. Many of the locals come here to watch various sporting events. It is also a great area to conduct informal meetings. Many people I know go there to have a quiet chat over some good food nice drinks and enjoy the ambience away from the crowded noisy bars.
There is also a wide variety of wines available to complement your meal
The Wild Orchid is centrally located and within strolling or stumbling distance of all the major Fields Avenue bars. In fact there is an instant reminder of the way this area used to be in the form of Honky-Tonk bar. This is literally just across the road from the hotels main entrance.
For those who wish a little bit of privacy there is a secure private parking area for the use of Wild Orchid guests anyone and it costs 50p per day. This is situated on Johnny's Street 50 yards from the Wild Orchid entrance.
The Wild Orchid is a centrally located high class resort. For some of the AC veterans it is somewhat of a contradiction in that they remember this area as a seedy, unkept little road where oral skills were the name of the game. There are still a few of these bars left but with the emergence of the Wild Orchid the feel of A.Santos street changed. There is now a whole new clientele attracted by top end establishments such as the Wild Orchid.
The pool and garden area are extremely well appointed and guests really do feel like they are staying in an upmarket tropical resort. In many ways it is reminiscent of a classy and very large Aussie beer garden however, the eye candy here is a lot more attractive than in Australia. The pool and garden area tend to dictate the ambience of this resort and they create a very nice tropical holiday feel. Sitting here it is easy to forget you are in Angeles. It is in many ways a little tropical microcosm and delightfully relaxing.
This is a genuine 5 star hotel with impressive rooms and excellent service.
Best of all it is AE friendly and they will give a 10% discount upon presentation of your AE membership card.
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