Ilocos Series: Balay Da Blas Pensionne House

November 04, 2015

As I promised, I will be sharing with you today our family's recent trip to Ilocos.  This travel adventure will be posted in a series of blog entries entitled "ILOCOS SERIES" in order to make each part concise and organized, so make sure to visit Thoughts of a Happy Momma in the coming weeks to view the complete itinerary of this trip.  

For the first part of this series, allow me to share with you my honest review of our Bed and Breakfast accommodation -- Balay Da Blas Pensionne House.

Balay Da Blas Pensionne House
Balay Da Blas Pensionne House
Balay Da Blas Pensionne House
Balay Da Blas Pensionne House
Balay Da Blas Pensionne House

We are basically a big group (composed of 8 adults and a toddler) who are traveling on a budget, that is why affordability is, without a doubt, our priority.  However, that doesn't mean we are willing to sacrifice quality.  Hence, we made it certain to choose an accommodation that would meet our standards in terms of quality of service and budget.  Based on my online research, those criteria seemed to have been met by Balay Da Blas, which ranked #1 (based on 159 reviews on TripAdvisor) out of the 21 Bed and Breakfast accommodation in Laoag.

We contacted them by email and I must say that Anna, their receptionist, was prompt in answering all our inquiries, which was actually great because it only showed how serious they were in doing business with prospective customers. So without further hesitation, we decided to secure a reservation with them for four nights, which by the way had been a breeze and totally hassle-free!

"Balay da Blas Pensionne House was built as a residence for the Blas family. It was designed as a home first, which can be seen in its decor as they were chosen with care to create an atmosphere that is quaint, charming and warm. Then, as Laoag City enjoyed an influx of tourists and business travelers, the decision was eventually made to open its doors to "guests"."  -- Balay Da Blas official website

This bed and breakfast accommodation is located on Giron Street, which is just a tricycle away from SM Hypermarket and about 15 minutes away from Laoag Airport.  It consists of two buildings -- an older building with a traditional Ilocano/ Spanish ambiance and a newer building with a contemporary-modern vibe.  

We stayed in their Barkada room located in the new building, which is a loft-type unit with two attached bathrooms that can accommodate up to a maximum of 10 guests.  

Balay Da Blas Barkada Room
Balay Da Blas Barkada Room
Balay Da Blas Barkada Room
Balay Da Blas Barkada Room

Barkada Room's Bed Configuration:
2 Queen size beds
2 Double size beds
1 Sofa bed 

Guest Room Features and Amenities:
Air-conditioned
Private Bath with Hot and Cold Shower
Flat Screen Cable TV
Complimentary Filipino breakfast for each paying guest

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BALAY DA BLAS PENSIONNE HOUSE:
1.  Their staffs are warm, friendly, and accommodating.
2.  Our room is equipped with two split type air conditioning unit that's enough to keep the entire loft cool.
3.  The barkada room is very spacious for a group of 8 persons at a price of Php 4,600 per night.
4.  They provide complimentary bath and face towels for each guest (not all B&B provide this kind of amenity).
5.  Their Filipino breakfast tastes good and their Saramsam restaurant is absolutely charming.
6.  Wifi is free!

WHAT I DIDN'T LOVE AND AREAS THAT NEED IMPROVEMENT:
1.  The restrooms are small and too narrow (probably a little more than a meter wide) making it a bit difficult to move around especially when using the  toilet.
2.  They do provide a complimentary liquid soap in a dispenser, but other toiletries such as tooth paste, tooth brush, bar soap, shampoo, and conditioner are not available, so you have to bring your own.  
3.  The bed sheet which my husband and I used, unfortunately, has a small hole in it, that's probably caused by too much washing and its bed frame also makes a squeaking sound which can become really annoying especially in the middle of the night.
4.  The room is not well-maintained and lacks cleanliness as evidenced by stained white walls, dull-looking faucets and bathroom tiles, and worn out vertical blinds with missing slats -- all of which make the room look awful.
5.  There are also quite a few mosquitoes in our room, so make sure to bring OFF lotion and Baygon plug-in mosquito repellent in case you're planning to stay in this place.

Overall, I would give this B&B a rating of 3/5 stars. The main reason why I just gave them an average score is because they failed to prioritize our room's cleanliness and properly maintain its facilities.  I guess it would be best if they would address the issues I mentioned above so as to give their future guests a better experience of Balay Da Blas Pensionne House.  

For inquiries and further information, you may visit their website at www.balaydablas-laoag.com, or send them an email balaydablas@yahoo.com, or contact them through the following numbers: +63 (77) 770 4389 / Sun +63 (922) 882 6907 / Smart +63 (920) 968 6695 / Globe +63 (917) 550 7522.


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