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Oriental Hotel Legazpi: A Cozy Staycation in Bicol
(Donna Marie Nisperos-Gojo/ Aug 15, 2018)
Who wouldn’t want to feel at home outside your home when travelling? I have always wanted a good view of nature whenever I stay in a place outside the metro to escape from the daily grind of the city. Being away from home though is a mixed feeling of nostalgia and excitement.

Did I say nostalgia? Oh yes! It was what I felt when I first entered the doors of The Oriental, Legazpi. It took me back in time when I was an active teenager taking part of an organization in college. The feel was very familiar to me, seeing all those featured native gowns displayed in the lobby, showcasing Filipino talent. The Oriental Hotels are very thematic that they change not only during special occasions but they invite the feel of each season with a touch of creative hands and ideas of brilliant mind of their COO.
My expectations of the place were exceeded by the very nice view of the Mayon Volcano as we stepped out of the cab. As you enter the cozy lobby, a refreshing native drink is stationed by the door to welcome all the incoming guests. The front desk officers are very accommodating and pleasant with their gown-like uniforms. It feels like you are watching a beauty pageant!

The bellmen’s assistance was very warm that you need not to call them. They will come to you in their most amicable approach and will assist you with full smile on their faces, as if not getting tired on what they do.

As we entered the room, I was caught in awe because of its spacious feature. The contemporary feel is very relaxing. But that’s just the icing on top. We were given a Mountain View room on the second floor where the Volcanic Grill, the in-house resto, is just within reach as it can almost be accessed through your veranda. It is also the same floor where the swimming pool is.
As you dip in the pool, a breathtaking view of the perfectly-shaped volcano will get you stunned especially with the sunrise or the sunset. You get the feel of as if you are part of a painting – a subject of a perfect view. Get those tired muscles massaged by the Jacuzzi at the far end of the pool. Oops, not to mention their super attentive pool attendants. Though we never even asked for a towel, it was handed over in an instant. Wet towels? Not a problem, they also know when you want to change it! That’s how trained the staffs are!  Indeed a staycation of a kind!
Of course, we also got curious of what the hotel could offer our palates. We tried the Tangigue Kilawin (fish sashimi) as a starter. Quite intense with chilliness for my taste but of course, I remembered we are in Bicol, known for hot, chili dishes. I must say that the Chicken Binakol is a must-try. Similar to Chicken Tinola but this dish uses coconut water and mind you, it’s a good soup for a cool weather!  What is a complete meal without desserts? Oriental’s dessert platter is to-die-for! The Pili Panna Cotta gives the serving justice as a distinct taste of Bicol.
Yes, I do plan for a comeback in Bicol as I have heard of many more fun places to visit and foods to try. Where to stay? Where else but in a place where I left an imprint of my overall Bicol experience, The Oriental, Legazpi.
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