Lagen Island Resort, El Nido, Palawan

Lagen Island Resort. P12,500/person/night at the water cottage inclusive of meals and activities. slightly cheaper accomodations available. One of the more exclusive resorts in the country (meaning expensive). some people actually prefer staying in Miniloc, same resort, different look, a bit cheaper. Lagen offers a little bit more luxury.

pick up from airport coincides with flights arriving. it was a bit of a hassle arranging pick up from the town. good thing, the boat leaves from the town pier that day, else we had to make our way to the airport (a tricycle ride there would cost a small fortune).

We had an absolutely magical time here. the water cottage was roomy and opens to the porch overlooking the sea, fishes (and sea urchins) underneath, bathroom was marbled, and there was hot water! and electricity for 24 hours. at night, the sky was the clearest i’ve ever seen. staff were courteous and never failed to greet you when you walk past. i think staff here are better trained than the ones in the best hotels in manila.

You take a pick from all their available activities and they will organise it to fit your schedule. expect busy days if you’re staying for only a couple of nights like we did. we went island hopping, kayaking, had an intro-dive, intro-rock climbing. they arrange all boat transfers. they take their time to know all the guests and their planned activities. you will be assured that they know where you are at all times. life vests are a worn during boat trips. and endless supply of towels are provided everywhere.

Meals are buffets served in the island restaurant, or out in the garden by the pool at night, or at another island for lunch when you go island hopping. live music at night, and it can be quite romantic (even if the singer has a heavy accent). tasty, good choices of food.

Security is quite important here as there has been a spate of kidnappings in palawan a few years back. uniformed, armed men will be with you in airport transfers on land. alarms are installed around the island (i could hear them going off every night though). on our last day here, we received a weird phone call – we thought it was a resort staff who had a message for us. but he did not know our names and asked for my phone number for security reasons. he was trying to get me to ring another number while he waits on the phone. it was getting weird so i put the phone down and complained to the front desk demanding why they were asking me to ring another number on my expense. turns out, there wasn’t a message, and they did not know anything about it but promised to investigate the incident. at breakfast, there was another filipino there complaining to the staff saying they have received a thretening phone call. Turns out 3 filipino guests at the resort have received this weird phone calls and looks like a new scam. Not sure how their investigation turned out as i haven’t received word about it yet.

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