Thursday, August 11, 2011

Cheap Hotel in Cebu City : Verbena Suites

I just stayed at Verbena Capitol Suites in Cebu City for two days. Coming from the North Bus Terminal, it took us about 40 minutes to reach the place via taxi due to heavy traffic. I think, from the airport it would also take about 40 minutes to reach Verbena Capitol Suites minus the traffic. Verbena Capitol Suites should not be mistaken fromVerbena Pension House. Both places are managed by the same people but they are the same. Although, not too far from each other, Verbena Capitol Suites is the newer establishment between the two.

Verbena's Lobby

On the surface, Verbena Capitol Suites is a picture of simple elegance. And I must say that the management seem to be trying its best to make the place comfortable. However, the place fell short of what I expected- at least during my last visit.

Here are my reasons along with an overview of the hotel:

On Reservations: 

Based on their website, people can reserve through email, text message or phone call. I'm used to doing online reservations whenever I travel. So far, all the online reservations that I made in other places were answered except when I made reservations here in Verbena. There was a confirmation of the receipt of my reservation but that ends there. I was unsure whether our reservation was confirmed or not so I texted the cellphone numbers posted on their website. I did this twice but there was no reply for confirmation. I had no choice but to call. The person who answered said she did not receive any text message nor email. I could probably believe her but I received a confirmation of my email while I texted them twice during normal working hours.

So I guess, what I'm trying to say here is if you want to stay here call them directly just to be sure. I just hope the management would improve their reservation system. They boasted that  people can make online reservations but the staff can't handle it.

Twin Room at Verbena (Our room before leaving)

On Service:

The place is not keen on service. The staff seem to be lax and I did not feel a warm welcome from them. I'm not expecting a super welcome gesture but I did expect a little help and courtesy.

Why do I say these things? First, upon arriving the guard did not extend any helping hand to us as we carry several luggage. He just stared at us while my boyfriend and I were having a hard time alighting the taxi and entering the lobby. Even during the several times we went in and out of the hotel premises, the guards did not have an automatic gesture to open the door or to help people carry things even when they are obviously having a hard time carrying time.

Second, the front desk person did not smile to us even once during our stay. You might think I'm too sensitive but this is the first time that I encountered a person from the front desk who seemed to be annoyed with the clients. She also did not accommodate my request to be transferred to another room because of the noise. Our room was just behind the lobby and we can hear the comings and goings of people. Just to settle the matter, we had the TV on and had it on a loud volume to drown the outside noise.

Lastly, the service in their cafe and restaurant should really be improved. When we went there for breakfast, there was no one whom we can place our order. We had to wait for about 15 minutes until someone from the kitchen came out. As I was going to place our order, the girl said something which I think means " Sandali lang," then went to get the order of another man who arrive later than us. We had to wait again even though we're supposed to be catered first *sigh*

The small bathroom- a puzzle where to bath esp. for big people

On the Facilities: 

As I've said before, Verbena Capitol Suites seem to be trying to be a comfortable place. In terms of facilities, the place has a general relaxing feel and quiet luxury. All rooms have cable TV. Wifi can also be accessed from the room. The beds are comfortably firm and the airconditioning is good. The room is generally clean. They provide towels and soaps. The room we rented, twin bedroom, has a minibar and a heater just in case you want to have hot drinking water. In general, the sleeping area is good especially with the hotel's high ceilings giving a spacious impression.

On the other hand, I felt trapped because there were no windows. The noise from the staff room (beside our room) can be heard. The faucet in the bathroom sink had no water during our stay. There was no hot water in the bathroom even if the hotel said that they have. The bathroom itself is small. There was barely space for bathing.

Now let me conclude this by saying that Verbena Capitol Suites has a lot of potential esp. if they improve on their service. But honestly, I wish I could have stayed in a different place in Cebu City since there are a lot of budget places in the area with the same facilities.

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