Makati, the Philippines
August 24 – 25, 2014
Granted, a hotel is fancy and convenient, but for an extended stay, a big family, or a no-frills staycation, it can be pricey and unnecessary. There are digs that combine the ambiance of both home and hotel: the apartment hotel, which offers the downtown location and luxuries of a hotel and the homey comfort and privacy of an apartment. I have the privilege of enjoying such a staycation at one of the well-appointed units of Alcoves Apartments, located at several high-rise condominiums in Makati.
Upon reservation online, we are given a lock code for access into the penthouse unit of BSA Mansion. The airy, high-ceiling living room, warmly lit by hanging circular lamps, makes us feel at home in no time. My mother plops onto a rocking chair and my sister stakes her spot on the sofa bed while I look out the window at the south view of Makati. We have eased in nicely at our weekend digs.
Barely filling all that space, we imagine how the rest of the family can fit quite comfortably in the living room alone. Outfitted with wide-screen entertainment equipment and various furnishings, it can be a bonding space for a large group – a family snuggling together on a collapsed sofa bed for a movie marathon or a group of friends celebrating and partying. The place is ideal for balikbayans as well. Instead of staying at hotels where they will still be away from their families and loved ones, they can spend quantity and quality time together here without considering a cap on room occupants or paying for extra beds. The kitchen and dining room are rather small relative to the size of other rooms, but they serve their purpose.
While togetherness was the point of this staycation, we have our favorite nooks for some me-time. Mine is the rocking chair where I surf the Net, care of the unit’s Wi-Fi connection, with my feet up. Our visitor Ki takes to the tub for a relaxing bath after a long day at work. My sister prefers the master’s bedroom. Mom owns the chaise longue. The next morning, I find her in her jammies snugly lounging on it and reading the papers.
The penthouse is a 4BR affair, two of which are on the lofts, both opening to indoor balconies overlooking the living room and facing each other. One loft can be accessed by a trapdoor atop the spiral staircase. The balconies, powered by several outlets, allow simultaneous charging of gadgets and doubles as a personal space, although not entirely enclosed, for older kids where they can hang out, even literally. Two T&Bs are provided with toiletries and towels changed by cleaning staff every other day.
Located right smack at the heart of Makati, the apartment is also a centrally-located meeting place. In the evening, we work up our appetites by walking to the Ayala Museum to see Ki before driving to the other side of Ayala for dinner at Salcedo Village and nightcap at Century City Mall. Family friend Joemer, coming straight from the airport, drops in the next day, and we all walk a few leisurely minutes to Greenbelt for lunch.
An alcove connotes a cozy personal space, truly an appropriate name for such an accommodation in the country’s premier business district and entertainment center. For reservations and inquiries, click here.