The Philippines - Luzon

Sundowners Vacation Villas (Bolinao, Pangasinan)

A couple of months back, someone posted or rather ranted, on a group in Facebook that he was asked to wash the dishes that they used after paying 30K for an overnight stay. Another issue was that one of the pools in the property is located across the port where a lot of locals see the guests on their swimming attires. I got curious about it and found out that it was Sundowners Vacation Villas that they were talking about. Coincidentally, I have already booked our stay in the villa for 2 nights. Not the kind of news you would want to hear especially if you already paid the full amount for the reservation.

Nonetheless, we packed our bags and headed to Victory Liner terminal in Cubao and took the 5-hour journey going to Bolinao, Pangasinan. Victory Liner is our preferred bus liner mainly because their drivers are cautious with their driving. The seats are also comfortable and we haven’t had any bad experience with them. From Bolinao bus terminal, we took a tricycle going to the villa which is just 2 minutes away.

So, how about the issues above? Well first and foremost, Sundowners is a villa, not a hotel. It is a vacation house for rent service. This is the reason why toiletries are not provided and housekeeping services are kept to a minimum. If the client fails to wash the utensils in the villa, they will be charged PHP 350. There’s no corkage fee as well so anyone can bring food and drinks from outside. There is a fully equipped kitchen in the villa so guests may cook their food. There is a bar that serves Mediterranean cuisine if the guest wants to order instead. Besides, if one can afford 30K for an overnight stay, an additional PHP 350 would not hurt that much right? ☺

With regard to the swimming pool, Sundowners actually has several pools. We stayed 3 nights in the Bougainvilla 2 and just beside it is one of their infinity pools. It’s in perfect location, perfect scenery. It’s so relaxing that you wouldn’t want to leave. On our fourth night, we stayed in one of the Marina bedrooms. This one is located outside of the villas. It’s like a condotel unit. It is true that the pool in the Marina area is just across the port and people would see the guests while swimming. But to be honest, locals don’t care. And if you don’t want people looking at you while swimming then I guess you need to stay inside the rooms. Just kidding! I mean, staff from Sundowners already see you in your swimming attire and they’re just a few meters away from you. So what’s the big fuss if locals a hundred meters away from you see you swim?

Overall, this is one of the best vacation-slash-staycation that I ever had. Why staycation? I had LBM and stomach cramps on the second up to our last day in Bolinao. I know, it sucks. Originally we only plan to be there for 3 days and 2 nights but because I was sick, I opted not to travel back yet to Manila. C’mon guys, it’s a 5-6 hours bus ride. It already spells disaster. Haha! On the fifth night, we had to transfer to El Pescador Resort because Sundowners was fully booked. I have to thank the staff especially Ate Janet who took care of me while I was sick. Sundowners is definitely one for the books. See pictures below to know why.

It’s just unfortunate that I didn’t get to tour around Bolinao. We just went to the church, Saint James the Great Parish and their public market to buy food and souvenirs. For 6 days, I could have visited all the tourist spots in Bolinao but sadly, I was just inside the room and toilet most of the time.

Don’t worry Bolinao, I will come back someday. ☺

Until next trip,

Cha & Gee ♥

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