Bayleaf Hotel has laurel leaves

The entrance to Bayleaf Hotel.

By Anthony O. Alcantara

When you don’t cook, you don’t really care about ingredients. I learned something about a popular cooking ingredient when I was introduced to bay leaf, which, I learned recently, is just another name for laurel leaf. Don’t laugh. Maybe I came from another planet.

I learned this lesson recently after staying at the Bayleaf Hotel in Intramuros. My wife told me about the connection with the owners, too. Yes, the Hotel is owned by the Laurels. They also happen to own Lyceum University.

And there is the Lyceum Culinary Institute at one wing of the hotel. The Laurel family, Bayleaf Hotel, and cooking school. Now it makes sense to an ignoramus like me.

The hotel only has 10 floors, including the Skydeck.

In any case, I just love new hotels. They tend to offer huge discounts. Yes, I’m a newly minted bargain hunter. So when Ensogo offered a huge discount, I grabbed the opportunity by the balls and booked myself a room.

I really don’t know how Ensogo is making money. Groupon, a pioneer in the business, is having trouble. Some are questioning its business model, which I thought resembled that of a charitable institution.

But who am I to complain? When Ensogo sent me an email alert advertising a 50% discount for Bayleaf Hotel I quickly computed the risk-reward ratio — 50% discount on the P6,600 per night price tag for a room.

I concluded that the reward of untold happiness to be derived with my wife and 1-year-old baby there at the hotel greatly exceeded the risk of paying interest for this purchase.

Bayleaf Hotel is a boutique hotel. It has only 10 floors, including the skydeck, and 57 rooms. At the lobby, one wall has images of bay leaves etched into it. The architecture blends well with the buildings nearby and the walls of Intramuros. Just cross the street and you’ll immediately bump into the walls.

The view from our room.

This is our room. Baby not included.

Nice LED TV.

My wife Em enjoys the fast WiFi access.

Tickle time with Aria.

There is a spectacular view from our room: a stretch of the walls of Intramuros, the calming green grass of the golf course, the majestic bell tower of Manila City Hall, and a colorful swath of Manila. You can begin your walk along the walls of Intramuros from the hotel, if that is to your liking.

The hotel, which was opened only in September this year, has a lobby with an ascetic and modern feel. There is also a brand new Yamaha grand piano, on which my wife was able to play Für Elise, along with my baby Aria, who embellished her mom’s playing with random discordant notes.

Delicious churros from Cioccolata.

9 Spoons World Bistro at the 9th floor penthouse.

There is the 9 Spoons World Bistro at the 9th floor penthouse, where you can have an almost 360-degree view of Manila. The buffet breakfast has a limited menu, though. But it can satisfy most people’s hunger.

Consider this: Orange juice, cereals, fruits, pastries, arroz caldo, rice, corned beef with potatoes, sweet and sour fish fillet, pancit canton, and omelette an egg station.

I can’t say anything about the buffet lunch since we ate outside.

The skydeck is still under construction. Even part of the staircase at the ground floor is still unfinished. The staff said there will be a bigger and grander opening for the hotel soon.

There is also the Cioccolata café at the first floor of the hotel, near the culinary school. We liked the grilled ensaymada with queso de bola, worth P100. Even Aria, my baby, liked it.

The original churros with Spanish chocolate is good, too. Five churros loops for one order worth P75. The Dulce de Leche frappucino for P120 and the Cappucino for P100 are just as good as those of Starbucks in my opinion.

As for our room, all I can say is that I’m happy with it. There is a Sharp 32-inch LED TV, nice interior design with white and purple as the dominant colors, and a soft, nice bed that the porter said is the same type used in five-star hotels such as Sofitel. You can also surf the internet all you want with the WiFi access, which  is included in the room fee.

So if you’re looking for a nice hotel with a great view of Intramuros, the Bayleaf Hotel is it. Just don’t expect a swimming pool and a gym there.



7 Responses to “Bayleaf Hotel has laurel leaves”

  1. Hello sir.
    Thanks for excellent information for a hotel bay leaf, I think that the stay was enjoyable? Would you recommend to stay at the hotel?
    I have a reservation for five nights in a Superior room is the interface to this room beautiful? Written in my booking city view.
    see u

    • gohelpyourself Says:

      Yes, I would recommend this hotel. I hope you enjoy your stay.

      • Thank you sir.
        Is all of Superior rooms overlooking beautiful? I ask you because you are lived in the hotel.

      • gohelpyourself Says:

        All rooms basically have the same view of the Intramuros wall. You may want to research on Manila Intramuros so you know what to expect. Since the hotel is relatively new, the interior design is modern, with a touch of minimalism. Have fun. 🙂

  2. Thank you very much.

  3. Awesome post; love how you named your blog and the tips I got on Bayleaf! Thanks!

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