I’ve never believed in being a stranger to one’s own country, so after I heard that my friend Ronald had been taken a job at a call center in Davao City, I immediately gave him a call and took him up on his offer to spend a couple of nights in Davao. He told me to pack an overnight bag and hop on the next flight over. He also said he would take care of booking my accommodations. Since he shares a one-bedroom apartment, he said he would reserve a room for me at one of the cheap hotels in Davao City.
As a young professional who likes to travel I’m certainly no stranger to inexpensive lodgings. I’ve been all over the Philippines – Boracay, Bohol, Sagada to name a few – and I’ve stayed in all kinds of places, from lavish five-star hotels to backpackers’ inns. I don’t mind inexpensive lodgings but it’s a fact that in some hotels you really do get what you pay for.
I needn’t have worried, since Ronald had reserved a room for me at the Jade Dragon’s Suites, located at Aurora Street. I instantly liked the location since the place appeared to be reasonably accessible. As I entered the lobby, I instantly noticed how clean and modern the place looked. I learned that the hotel opened in May of 2012, which makes it a pretty new establishment. The room rates were very reasonable, and I picked the most inexpensive option, which was a Standard room at P750. I reasoned that since we had planned a weekend full of activities, it wouldn’t be practical to spend too much on accommodations. After all, I did not expect to do much at the hotel except sleep.
All that changed, however, due to unforeseen circumstances. While Ronald had planned to take me to Jack’s Ridge for dinner, a strong rain shower altered our plans. After all, in the heavy rain we wouldn’t be able to enjoy the view. I also reasoned that it would be very hard to find a taxi in bad weather.
Just when I thought we’d have to spend the night watching TV in my room, we discovered Chings Resto-Kaffee, a nice coffee shop and restaurant right on the hotel premises. Since I had been looking forward to a delicious dinner, we eagerly sought refuge in this attractive little cafe. I was pleased to discover that it wasn’t just a place to eat – we also amused ourselves with looking at the art work on the walls. There were many interesting paintings from local artists to enjoy, and our food was ready before we knew it. I think we spent more than two hours in there because after we finished our meal, we lingered awhile and ordered a cup of coffee apiece. There was simply so much catching up to do.
The next time I go to Davao, I’m definitely going back to the Jade Dragon’s Suites. It turns out that picking one of the great Davao hotels does make a big difference!