We had selected the Hennan Garden Resort (which recently changed its name from the Boracay Garden Resort) for our stay in Boracay after spending a lot of time perusing hotel reviews and some input from our friend in the Philippines. The Henann Garden Resort is a large 4 star resort located at Station 2 of White Beach, right in the centre of the action.
Arriving at the hotel, we were impressed by the grandness of the foyer. The staff member that checked us in was friendly and efficient, and we were soon checked in and ready to really begin our Boracay adventure. A porter carried our bags (always appreciated after a long day of travel!) and escorted us through the beautifully landscaped tropical gardens surrounding the pools.
We stayed in a Premier Room on the second floor, which was huge! It didn’t appear that there were any lifts, so if you have mobility issues make sure to request a ground floor room. There was a massive king size bed, which was super comfortable and faced onto a modern flat screen TV with plenty of both English and local channels. The room also had a sitting area, which opened out onto a nice little balcony overlooking the pools, and a desk/study area. It would have been nice if there were chairs on the balcony so we could sit out there. There was a small drying rack out on the balcony which was super handy to dry out swimsuits and towels – all hotels should have something like this!
In contrast to the rest of the room, the bathroom was quite poky and a bit dated. There was a shower over a very small bath (I really don’t know any adults that would have comfortably been able to have a relaxing bath in there!). The other downside of the shower was the height of the shower head. I’m certainly no giant at only 5’3”, and I practically had to do the limbo to wash my hair under it! When standing in the tub, the shower head was at my shoulder height, so you can imagine how it would have been for Ash who’s 6’3”! The water temperature in the shower was also very variable, and did not ever stay at a constant temperature – I’m not sure if that’s typical of Boracay or is just this hotel. There was a bidet seat on the toilet with a few different settings (which was a novelty!), and there was a huge amount of bench space around the sink, which was great as it’s something that tends to be lacking in a lot of hotel rooms. Their towels in the room could use some updating, most were pretty threadbare.
One other downside of the room was that there was a quite large gap (about an inch!) at the top and bottom of the doors that led out onto the balcony. This let quite a lot of mosquitos into the room, and I was eaten alive the first night. Once we wised up and alerted the staff, they were quick to come and spray the room for us which solved the problem.
The pools and gardens were stunning, with 4 different pools to try, and a variety of sun loungers, cabanas, and tables and chairs. You did need to get in early if you wanted a lounger or a cabana, as they did fill up fast. As is always the thing with hotel pools, people did tend to leave towels on sun loungers for long periods of time, even though they weren’t actually at the pool, which takes up a lot of chairs that people actually at the pool could use. They did have a lot of rules at the pool which were quite strictly enforced, like not being able to take alcoholic beverages into the water (a bit strange when they have a pool bar!), and not being able to eat outside food around the pool. These didn’t really impact our enjoyment of the lovely pools though! Separate pool towels were available so you didn’t need to use the one from your room, and these were also allowed to be taken to the beach which was good.
Buffet breakfast was served every morning in the resort restaurant, and was included in the room price. There was a really good selection of foods for all tastes, including Western and Filipino dishes. There was also an egg station where eggs were cooked to order. I quite enjoyed the breakfast; dishes were rarely repeated in the 4 days we were there, so there was always something new to try!
Wi-Fi was only available at a surcharge, although this didn’t bother us as we had bought local SIM cards with unlimited data so we’d be able to access the internet as needed. Something to bear in mind if you’re travelling and really need Wi-Fi though!
The location of the hotel was great, and only a short walk through a hallway to Boracay’s famous White Beach. There was a section of the beach for guests of the resort with sun loungers available, and unlike the ones at the pool, there were always plenty spare! There was always a staff member from the resort there as well who’d happily purchase drinks for you on request.
I did enjoy our stay at Hennan Garden Resort, I just feel that the room we stayed in was overpriced for how outdated it (particularly the bathroom) was. Apparently they are in the process of renovating their rooms, and some rooms are a lot better – we should have asked at reception for a renovated one when we checked in! I think this place will be fantastic when their renovations are complete. The pools are amazing, and the location is awesome, in easy walking distance to restaurants, bars and shops.
Where do you stay when you go to Boracay? Let me know in the comments!