Last weekend, we took a short, overnight trip to Island Cove in Kawit, Cavite. I knew I’d be back! To be honest, it’s not that far, considering the drive to Island Cove from the SM Mall of Asia only took 20 minutes. We had just come from the Oishi Snacktacular 2016 and the car was filled with our Oishi loot.
J was worried that we were going to be late, blah blah, and I was like, nah, don’t worry, we’ll be there in 15 minutes! He really thought it was going to take at least 1-2 hours’ drive to get there. It was early Friday afternoon and southbound traffic was light.
We took the Cavitex, and there were 2 toll booths. One charged P24.00, the other charged P64.00, for a total of P88.00 one way. We just used Waze to navigate, but it was just all driving straight ahead until Kawit, a little past Island Cove, actually, and then making a U-turn after the toll booth to head back to Island Cove.
To see the map to Island Cove, please read my previous post on Island Cove.
This was J’s first time to visit Island Cove, but I had already been there before during a day trip. Island Cove is located on an island in Kawit, and you pass through a guarded gate, and then a bridge with colorful banners to get to the island itself. I was going to take pictures of the bridge and entrance but the guard told me that they don’t allow taking pictures of the view?!
There’s also a big sign that says there’s no bringing of outside food & drinks, so, to respect that, we left our Oishi loot in the car.
Island Cove is an “AAA” accredited resort by the Department of Tourism and is ISO 9001:2008 certified. You can check the rates here.
ISLAND COVE HOTEL
Parking space was plentiful. We checked in at the hotel, it was the usual process where we were asked to provide a deposit. The staff was helpful. The lobby was cold and air-conditioned, and the original hotel building, where our room was, was obviously old but maintained. They have some newly built villas beside the main hotel.
Here’s our deluxe room, also with cold air-conditioning.
The amenities are modern – there’s an Asian-sized bath tub, hot and cold water, rainfall shower, telephone shower head, soap, shampoo with conditioner, lotion, vanity kit, shaving kit, hair dryer, etc… room entry also used key cards.
They also provided some insect repellent lotion. You’ll need this. It is an island, after all. There will be insects.
Slippers are also available. It’s nice to see Island Cove’s support of the local community.
At first, I was worried that I wouldn’t have enough water to drink, so I was so happy to see that they provided complimentary filtered drinking water, and you can request more drinking water if you want to. I’m one of those people whose first order of business after settling in for a foreign trip, is to buy a gallon of drinking water, so this is great!
They also provided several USB sockets located near the headboard! It’s much appreciated for charging our gadgets.
Our room had a balcony that had a view of the private pool for hotel guests only.
Wifi was available, but was spotty. It’s good enough for casual surfing and staying online, but if you need internet for work, better bring your own pocket wifi that you can position near the balony. I had good Smart signal outside, but weak cellphone signal inside the room.
… AND LEISURE PARK
After settling in, I played tour guide and showed J around Island Cove. There’s an electric shuttle you can ride to take you to the different buildings and areas on the island, but we decided to just walk. It is really not too far, just 2-10 minutes’ walk to anywhere on the island.
We checked out the Fishing Village:
J wasn’t interested in visiting the zoo, and I had already seen it before, so we skipped it thinking we did not have time before the sun set.
Then we went swimming at Oceania’s big slide pool:
Note: remember to bring the stubs they give you during check-in…
This was better than a staycation where we just stay inside the room. We were actually walking around, breathing fresh air, in wide open space, getting good vibes from the abundant plant life. It is so different from crowded Metro Manila. Time moved so slowly.
I mean that. Time moved so slowly. We left the Oishi Snacktacular at 3:30 pm, so most likely arrived at Island Cove at around 4pm. By 4:45 pm, we were in the pool and had already swam around the whole big pool. By 5pm, I was like, why isn’t it dark yet? I want to have dinner already! Waiting for sunset seemed like an eternity! We stayed at the pool for what seemed like a long time, and I truly felt like we had entered a dimensional portal on our way to Island Cove where time slowed to a crawl. It’s not a bad thing, actually, it is one of the things I like about going to a provincial area. It’s very different and you realize how fast-paced life actually is in the city.
After swimming, we had dinner at Sangley Point, Island Cove’s main restaurant. Sangley Point and the pool are connected, but have different entrances. However, you can order food from Sangley Point and eat it at the poolside tables.
We ordered the Sangley Point Burger (P330), 6 sticks of their Pork Barbecue (P495), and Chicken Piccata pasta (P330).
The Pork Barbecue is the one to order, and ours included 2 sides – we chose mashed potatoes and rice. It is bacon-cut pork belly that has been threaded onto barbecue sticks, grilled, and glazed with a sweet, sticky sauce.
The hamburger was delicious! The beef patty was well-seasoned and flavorful. They also provided a salad on the side. J was very satisfied with the burger.
The Chicken Piccata was also very good. It is angel hair pasta with a red sauce, capers, olives, parmesan, and flame-grilled chicken.
Even though we were hungry, we ordered too much food and ended up asking for our leftovers to be wrapped up. When we were about to eat them for a midnight snack, it was nice to see the staff was thoughtful enough to include plastic utensils in the doggie bag.
The breakfast buffet was at Sangley Point, from 6 AM – 10 AM, Saturdays and Sundays. I was happy with the breakfast buffet — it’s not the most extensive, but it was just such a relaxing morning, the ambience made one feel like they had their own hacienda, it just didn’t matter.
They had typical Filipino breakfast fare like rice, tuyo, tinapa, adobo, corned beef, goto, champorado, etc… There are eggs cooked different ways. They had breads, pancakes, cereal, salads, fruits, coffee, juices. There’s nothing to complain about.
FAMILY GETAWAY PACKAGE
Island Cove has an ongoing promo for a family getaway package for P4,750 net, it already includes buffet breakfast for 2 adults. See details on the flyer below:
Our stay at Island Cove was a happy, relaxing one. It brought us out of the Metro Manila time dimension and we experienced a slower pace of life – can’t believe it had just been a day! It felt like we had a long time to unwind and relax, more than the actual 20 hours we actually had.
Island Cove is also only 20-30 minutes away from Manila (off-peak hours). That totally breaks the idea that most people have that you need to travel for hours and hours just to get to a resort where you can relax. Getting back to Manila was just as fast.
It seems to also be a good place to do wedding pre-nuptial pictorials and to have weddings. When we checked out, there was a wedding party getting ready for the big day.
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The Barat Queen
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